A lot of us have been in the position where we don’t have work, where there are seemingly no clients that want to work with you. Obviously you can’t stay in this position for a long time, so what do you do during this time? Do you sit around and wait for the next potential client to email you, then with desperation you work under your rate of pay? Or do you do something else?
Paving The Way For Your Next Client
Being in a position where you don’t have work is demotivating and not fun - you feel like you maybe shouldn’t be in your line of work. No one likes you, the client’s have gone to someone better than you. I don’t know about you but when I’ve experienced lack of client work I’ve felt all these things.
When my YouTube channel started to take off I soon realised that I needed to invest more time into the content of the channel. There was now an expectation for people to see a new video every week. So I made a plan and scheduled. I promised to bring at least one video every week. Two years ago that was a huge commitment for me to keep - I didn’t feel qualified to do this.
During this time when I was tirelessly making content, exporting and uploading videos, I didn’t realise that I was investing into my future and business. I didn’t know that potential clients would look at my channel and see the qualities that I had that made me unique as a designer. I didn’t know that I would become successful from just making video content.
Business is this: Invest Your Time For The Future.
I know now that because I didn’t have many clients when I was starting the channel I had a lot of spare work time to create videos. Doing this made sure that in the future I would get more clients and charge a higher rate of pay. So wherever you are in your journey, if you find yourself without any client work invest your time into creating online content to separate you from the market and make you stand out.
Work On Your Portfolio
One of the first things you’ll learn when taking an interest in graphic design is that having a portfolio is important. You realise that the portfolio of work is the “make or break” with potential clients - not your qualifications. That’s why it’s vital to spend time making it the best you can. No one likes to think of the creative industry as competitive, but in reality your business is a business, and you need work. If you’re not spending proper time on creating your portfolio you’re never going to see the results that you’re wanting to see in the future.
When you’ve got no client work, spend that time on your portfolio. “On what project?” I hear you ask?
On your own personal project.
I think a lot of us get caught up in the fact that our portfolio has to be work we’ve done for other people and clients. This simply isn’t true. Very rarely I put work out from my clients on my portfolio - it’s just not sustainable for me to do so. I’ve designed countless logos but I still have an NDA (none disclosure agreement) on those designs. I have to upload personal work to my portfolio.
Uploading personal work should be the work you want to do in your job, not the work you think clients would want you to do. The best way of making sure you’re getting the clients and the work you want is by uploading to your portfolio work that you want to do for other clients. Don’t upload work that you’re not happy with, this isn’t going to take you anywhere and will leave you stuck on work that you ultimately don’t want to do.
My Instagram account is my portfolio. I normally have a lot of time to do whatever I want. This isn’t because I don’t have any client work, it’s because I’m selective with the work that I want to do for clients. I would much rather work with someone that I’m going to enjoy working with than someone I don’t like to work with. That’s why I’m able to upload videos on a regular basis, because logo design isn’t the only thing that I do. I write, I make hand hand lettering art, and I invest a lot of time onto my Instagram posts for the future.
The bottom line is this: If you don’t have work you need to do, then start investing your time into creating amazing content online that others will follow . This way, you’re opening doors in your future. You’ll be earning a wage from the work you’ve done today in two years
I hope you’ve leant something from this post. I know how difficult and mind-blowing it can be to create content online.
The one thing I want you to take away from this is knowing that there’s always something that you can do to invest your time. In the future when you’re too busy to create online content you’ll be kicking yourself because you wasted your time on trying to find clients instead of making a path for a client to find you.
If you’re reading this post, you have an amazing future ahead of you. Never give up even when it seems like all is against you. Like I always say, “If I can do this, then you definitely can to” I believe this with all my heart.
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