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Jun 5

How to Move Past Your $50 Clients

So you’re sick of doing logos for $50, $100, or even $500. You value your design more highly than that. How do you find clients who do, too?

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So you’re sick of doing logos for $50, $100, or even $500. You value your design more highly than that. How do you find clients who do, too?

It starts with understanding the mindset of the people you want to work with, as well as the people you’re working with now. Here’s what I mean.

Why You Don’t Want Referrals From A $50 Client

You’ve completed a logo for $50. Your client loves it. They’re showering you with praise. They’re going to tell all their friends about you. Great, right?

Not really.

What’s going to happen is those referrals are going to come to you expecting the same service at the same price. They’re not going to be someone who’ll pay $5000 for a logo. People tend to associate with similar people. The person looking for a $50 logo for her Etsy shop probably isn’t going to be sending lots of small to medium businesses your way. You have to find those clients on your own.

But how?

Understanding Client Mindsets and Pain Points

The first thing to do to find high paying clients is to understand their mindset.

Think about how many small businesses are in your area. Shoe stores. Tattoo shops. Barber shops. Restaurants. Coffee shops. That one shop you’ve never been into that sells the little figurines your mom likes so much. Every single one of those businesses need three things: a logo that looks professional, a website, and some level of social media marketing. Every single one of those businesses want to differentiate themselves. Many of them can afford to spend much more than $50 to do so. That’s their mindset.

Equally important is understanding their pain points. What do these clients need? What problems are they facing? What’s making them really, really frustrated? How can you address it?

A blog can be a good way to start. I see a lot of designers keeping a blog, but only focusing on the stuff they’re interested in. You need to turn it around – provide content that your potential clients find useful. Add value by answering questions they have. Guide them through finding, hiring, and working with a designer before you meet them. By the time you have your first meeting, you’ll have created a great client.

Another pain point I often see in clients is that when they started their business they did things cheaply. Now that they’re more established, they feel embarrassed when they hand out their business cards because they just don’t look good. Rarely have I met a client that feels the external facing parts of their brand matches how they feel about it on the inside.

The power of a designer is they can make things look more expensive and of a higher quality than they are. You can make a million dollar company look like a billion dollar company. You can make a mom and pop shop feel like a reputable, substantial, and powerful brand. This is where you excel, and that’s what you need to show potential clients in your portfolio.

The Bottom Line

Moving past your $50 clients means understanding and interacting with a new type of client. Think about the mindset and pain points of a $5000 client and how you can best address them. The more you focus on the clients you want to work with, the less you’ll have to rely on the clients you have now.

Chris Do

Chris Do is an Emmy award winning director, designer, strategist and educator. He’s the Chief Strategist and CEO of Blind, executive producer of The Skool, and the Founder and CEO of The Futur— an online education platform that teaches the business of design to creative thinkers.