Graphic designers have been essential in the season of pandemics in order to help in palliating the impact of the disease on the health of the people both nationally and internationally. Graphic design is a way to communicate visually with people. Posters, logos, websites, advertisements, mobile apps among others are all products of graphic design.
Good graphic designs have been used in effective communication since time immemorial. Apart from this period when there is a widespread of a pandemic virus, there are other emergencies that could bring about a sudden need for one to work remotely. It could be just for a few days or it could encroach into the year like the case of the Corona Virus. Any way it comes, you should get yourself prepared to work from home sometimes, or even all the time.
To make the best of the pandemic period, you should look for ways to work as your own boss. Freelancing is a good way you can use to take charge of your work and how you spend your time. During this period, many businesses will be temporarily on lockdown, while some will be partially open. This gives you an ample opportunity to reach out to them to see if they need a graphic designer for adverts, online seminars, and so on.
It is your responsibility to go out and look for your own clients. Do not wait for them at the comfort of your home. There is always a demand for creating and designing a wide range of items by individuals and corporate bodies. As a graphic designer, you could reach your clients through advertisement, referrals, family and friends, and other avenues. Ensure you have your samples ready to show a prospective client so as to get him to believe in you enough to give you a job to do.
The following are numerous ways to make money during a pandemic period as a Graphic Designer.
- Choose a niche: Know the industry you would like to work with and create your niche to suit the industry. It is more lucrative to choose a particular niche you want to focus on while considering your passion, interest, experience and knowledge.
- Have a website: As a graphic designer, you will need to build and own a website in order to register a strong online presence. Here, you will be able to showcase your work and even send links to your previous works to prospective clients so as to see things themselves. This also is a way of showing professionalism. There are quality and affordable website designers to give your work a professional touch.
- Market your business: In marketing your business, it is possible to meet so many people who are going to say no to you. Do not give up, rather, make consistency your key. Keep waving your products to their faces, with the time you will be able to have an overflow of clients. There are various avenues to market your business and subsequently, make sales. Known avenues are social media platforms and blogging. However, through participating in different fora, public speaking engagement, person-to-person networking, print advertising, and so on, you could be able to tell the world what you do for a living.
- Sell digital files: Create images, textures or fonts and sell online. You can either join a marketplace where your files could be promoted by the company or you can use your website to sell your products. Using your website is very important because it will give you a hundred percent profit while using other platforms means you will part with some percentages as commission.
- You can freelance: The major problem in freelancing is finding a client. This is why most of the graphic designers get discouraged to look for a job. Of a truth, there are so many clients online. Sign up for freelancing websites where you can showcase your products, and get connected to clients who are looking for just you to strike a deal. You can upload some of your work, set your price and get a review from each of your clients. Designhill and Upwork.com are some of the platforms you can advertise your work.
- Teach your work online: So many people are willing to learn a skill these days. With most of them staying at home, you can choose to start online tutoring where people could pay a token in order to learn. Students and pupils will be the best set of people to target. Their parents will be glad to have them learn one or two skills in this pandemic period.
- Create a podcast: Podcast is one of the ways business owners advertise their business. You can choose to use it as a means to get to you heard and your services advertised. While having that in mind, you will need a good audio content to drive traffic towards you. As you serve them what they need, you wave your product to them and have some of them stopping to take a look. With strong convincing and marketing skills, you could convert them to clients.
- Apply for a job: There are so many online advertisements for job vacancies nowadays. Graphic designing is one of them. Do not shy away from writing the company and applying for the job. Even if you did not get a particular job, apply for another one. You will be able to get clients and use the opportunity to create a longer-lasting relationship with them.
- Add discounts and incentives to your offer: During a pandemic, there is a tendency for you not to have an influx of customers as before. For you to keep people coming to patronize you, you have to do something special for them. Give them some discounts or incentives to make your offer more attractive. They will not just pay for your skills; they will refer others to you. The incentives or discounts is just like an icing to the cake. It may not be much, but it is going to make the offer so attractive and irresistible.
- Go global: Do not restrict yourself to only your community or click of friends. With the internet, you can reach anywhere you want to. Think of enlarging your market share by venturing into deeper opportunities globally. There are sites and links that would help you reach clients in other countries and increase your clients and share of the market. Fiverr.com and Upwork.com will do just that.
How to Improve Your Skills as a Graphic Designer
Graphic designers are part of the people that add beautiful colours to the world. It is never enough to have the skills, constantly improving on them are very necessary for you to go to the next level. Therefore, we have put the following together to help you.
- Look out for good designs: Steve Jobs once said that good artists copy, great artists steal. So, whenever you see a good design, you can ‘steal’ it and use it in your next project. It will improve your skills over time.
- Keep practising: Practice makes perfect, so they say. Aim at becoming an excellent graphic designer. So, keep on improving your skills. Design on any surface, just for fun until you master the craft. The more you practice, the more you discover new ways of doing things and shedding off unwanted skills. Though you need to embrace your imperfect work, do not dwell on them so much that you forgot the word ‘excellence’.
- Study design theory: Despite the fact that you are improving, you will need to understand the intrinsic part of the profession. Concepts like colour theory, typography, grid theory, and golden theory are the fundamentals of graphic design. It is essential you get to understand them. You can take up a course on graphic design, just to sharpen your skills.
- Ask questions: Feedback is very vital to growth. Ask people close to you to appraise you and be humble enough to accommodate constructive criticism. Share your work personally with a few people who will be fair enough to tell you the truth. Talk to other designers too. Attend meetings and conferences and get to learn how others are doing theirs. This is part of the ways you can improve.
- Freelance: Assuming you are working for an organisation, you can take your time to find a side project and get engaged in it. Take up jobs and do them. Apply self-discipline and make sure you do a very good job to impress your clients. As time progresses, you could opt-out of your 9 – 5 job and start up your own business. Freelancing is one of the ways you can be your own boss.
Ways to Survive a Pandemic as a Freelancer
- Think outside the box: This is a time to be creative and think out ways to offer a unique service that will get your clients coming back for more. You could start an online class to teach people your skills for a token.
- Apply for a job: Send an email with your resume to job vacancy openings. If possible, add your work samples so as to convince your potential client of your ability and professionalism. Do not stop applying, unless you have got enough clients you can handle. But then, who says you cannot outsource your job?
- Invest in your skills: Sharpen your skills and become better than before. Look for alternative sources of income if your current one is not earning you enough. You may not earn immediately with your new skills, but it is going to serve you well as time progresses.
- Do not neglect your mental health: Your mental health is as important as your physical health. There is a tendency for you to get fewer jobs during a pandemic as a freelancer. Just know that the problem affected everyone in the world. So, be in charge of your health and live a positive life. Think positive thoughts and do not entertain fear or any negative feeling.
- Work on that big project: Sometimes we set a goal for ourselves, but could not meet up due to work or other circumstances. You can use the period of the pandemic to achieve any goal you kept on hold because there may not be another perfect time.
Graphic designing is not one of the jobs that would go obsolete in the near future. So, keep improving your skills and reaching out for more opportunities. Be open to learn and accept corrections. Extend your tentacles and take up challenges you have not taken before. There are so many reasons for your pocket to smile during a pandemic.