Aside from the obvious – creating beautiful work for them – there are many factors that keep clients coming back.
I asked a few of my clients to help me understand their reasons for returning, since I figured my charming personality couldn’t possibly be enough … sad, but true. They had an interesting cross-section of answers I am sure you will be interested to hear.
If a client calls and asks for samples, show them samples – but stick to the styles that match what they’re looking for, and do it as quickly as possible. As much as you would love to show them all the amazing projects you’ve worked on, just give them what they want – and try not to take up any extra time.
By the time the assignment comes your way, the client has most likely been through numerous creative meetings. So trust the direction you’re given. Unless they specifically ask you to come up with new concepts, give your clients what they asked for.
If you want to submit additional concept options, ask first if they’re open to suggestions. They may like your idea, but you don’t want to insult theirs. Being able to create someone else’s vision is a special talent – and maybe why they commissioned you in the first place.
No divas, please! Leave your egos at home. Who wants to reach out to someone with a bad attitude? Being professional, friendly and enthusiastic will only make the project better.
Since there are so many aspects to a single project (marketing, printing, etc.), meeting deadlines is a must. No matter how wonderful the work turns out, if it’s late, the client will not return. If you know you’ll need more time than is scheduled, let them know and ask for extra time before the project begins.
If clients know that you’re dependable and that you consistently deliver solid work, they’ll not only return – they may even create new projects specifically with you in mind.
Michael Thibeault is the founder Art Rep NYC, an agency representing the very best in illustration and motion graphics talent, both independently and also provide full illustration/motion graphics packages. Some clients: The New York Times, Williams Sonoma, WNET / Thirteen, Simon & Schuster, The Wall Street Journal, Proctor and Gamble, New York Magazine, Nickelodeon, Harper Collins, Penguin, Scholastic, Mattel, MAC cosmetics, Nylon Magazine and more. Art Rep NYC
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