Shopping Product Reviews

How Creative Freelance Designers Can Tactfully Avoid Clients Waiting For Free Work

Recently a customer sent me an email about their website, the subject read “New link on website”. His message contained no instructions, no conversation, just a long URL. It didn’t take much to see what he was heading for; I could understand that you wanted me to replace an existing link on your site with this new one. No problem, right?

Wrong – This could create a big problem.

Sure it won’t take me that long to fix the link, but looking at the context of this customer’s email, you can deduce that he assumed I knew what he was talking about, assumed I could do it quickly, and assumed there. it would be free of charge. These assumptions can lead to big problems and miscommunication down the road if left unaddressed. A lot of assumptions are happening, and that usually spells trouble for freelance designers. If you see your customers starting to behave like this, you better address it right away rather than allowing them to develop bad habits.

In any case, I updated the link for this client; however I also sent him an invoice documenting how long it took, I made a point of clearly stating that they gave you a FREEBIE on the invoice. The bill came to $ 0, but it showed this client that I value my time and expertise, and I hope he does too. Consider this strategy if your clients begin to assume that you do free work, even if it only takes “a couple of minutes.” By the way, the customer replied, “Thank you very much!” By taking the approach I did, I was able to make the client feel that they really got a good deal and that I value them as a customer, while also not investing a lot of time and letting the client know. that we are both expected to value my time.

Creative freelancers often feel like clients are trying to take advantage of them, sadly this is often true. What these same freelancers don’t realize is that most of the time it’s their fault for allowing clients to develop the habit of deciding what to pay and what not to pay. If breaking bad habits sounds a lot like training a dog or a child, well … I guess it’s a bit. If you had a new puppy that chewed on your furniture but did not reprimand it, it would be your fault if the puppy continued the behavior into adulthood. No, clients are not dogs or children, but the point is, as a creative freelancer, you are the professional and it is your responsibility to educate the client on how you work.

If you didn’t get anything else from this article, be sure to remember:

o It is your responsibility as a creative freelancer to shape the clients you want to have

o How people (including customers) treat you is often a function of how you let them treat you

o If you see a behavior problem emerging, address it right away rather than spending a lot of time.

o Call or meet the customer in person when you discuss the matter. Avoid sending emails

o When you approach the situation, try to see the problem from your client’s point of view, have empathy but make your case and why you will need the situation to change.

o Always show your clients that you value their time and be sure to let them know that they will need to do the same.

o Lastly, be prepared to let the client go (fire him) if you find that the situation will not be resolved or if it will get worse.

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