As well as spending time managing your finances and working with clients, business owners need to work on their marketing strategies to attract new clients. Without a proper marketing plan, a business can struggle to find clients, and without clients, a company may not make enough income to continue running.

This article will focus on how to market a graphic design business. We’ll provide a few different methods you can use to promote your services, such as:

  • Freelancing sites
  • Social media 
  • Blogging
  • Networking events

Freelancing sites

There aren’t many differences between how most freelancers and most graphic design businesses work. Both are client-based and usually work for many different organisations instead of selling a product. This means that graphic design businesses might consider using freelancing websites to market their services. 

These sites work similarly to an online noticeboard: first, individuals and organisations post jobs that they need doing on the website. Then, users will send applications to the individual or organisation explaining why they’re the best person for the job. The original poster can then pick who they want to work for them at their leisure.

Freelancing sites are good for finding work quickly, as the larger ones usually have tons of jobs available. Some freelancing sites allow users to create profiles, so potential clients can seek out specific freelancers and send them job offers. It’s these sites that are best for marketing your company, as you can fill your profile with lists of your services or previous work that shows off your skills.

In particular, Dribbble is an excellent place for graphic designers to market themselves. It’s a specialised freelance website specifically designed for people to find designers — graphic designers in particular. 

Social media

Using social media is a common marketing tactic for businesses because it’s free and reasonably easy to use. Although making quality social media content – photos, blog posts, videos – can be a little trickier, simply having a social media presence means a great variety of potential clients can find you.

When it comes to marketing yourself on social media, remember to be consistent. It’s not much use putting together one perfect video that explains your entire career as a designer, then not sharing anything for months. Instead, post content to your social media pages frequently, but make sure it’s all relevant to the people you want to work with.

A graphic design business will benefit significantly from the visual focus of most social media platforms. For instance, posting pictures that show examples of your work is a great idea, or you could create video tutorials teaching others how to perfect specific design techniques. 

Paid services on social media

If you want to get better results from social media, though, you can also pay for some additional services. These include things like paid advertising or boosting the range of your posts beyond your followers. 

These are handy services to pay for if you think social media will be an effective way to market your company, but you don’t want to spend a lot of time attracting followers to make sure your posts reach many potential customers. This means it’s a particularly good idea for businesses where the jobs clients hire you for can be difficult and time-consuming, such as graphic design.

They’re also cheap: Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram offer very affordable advertising rates. Facebook and Instagram also provide the ability to boost posts from only £1-£5 per day, and you can customise your budget for this service by setting a maximum you’d like to spend. 

Blogging

Starting and maintaining a graphic design blog is a great way to market your business. More specifically, it can show that you’re an expert and that you’re up to date with graphic design trends

Getting the most out of your blog means combining it with some of the other marketing strategies we’ve listed. You might be posting quality content on the blog, but you’ll not get many readers unless you post about it on social media or talk about it at networking events. 

There are tons of different articles you could write for a graphic design blog, but a good general rule is to write about things you’re particularly knowledgeable about. For instance, if you’re skilled at using a design tool like Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop, write an article full of tips for using that tool.

Networking events

Although in-person networking events are less popular in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, they still exist, and they’re still a smart way to expand your network. Networking events provide a professional setting for different organisations within the same industry to discuss topics and learn about each other. 

Many people attend networking events specifically to find experts in a particular field. This means you might discover that you don’t need to put much effort into marketing yourself — if you’re a talented designer, people will come to you. The event simply provides an easy place for potential clients to find and approach you. 

Even if you don’t win any clients while at a networking event, don’t worry. By attending and speaking to people about your graphic design business, you will have made many people and companies aware of you. This is one of the key reasons why attending a networking event is a good way to market your services.

Check out this article for a list of graphic design networking events you might want to attend. Even if you’ve missed them, many industry conferences and events are annual, so you can always attend next year. 

Tips for managing your marketing expenses

Sometimes you’ll need to spend money on your marketing to get the most impact. It’s smart to keep track of this spending so that you don’t spend too much. This can be complicated, though, unless you have a specific business account that separates company transactions from your personal finances. 

Countingup is the business current account with built-in accounting software that allows you to manage all your financial data in one place. One particularly useful feature is its profit and loss reporting. 

This shows a real-time report of your spending and income, so you’ll know whenever money comes into or goes out of your Countingup account. This way, you can confidently keep track of all your marketing-related expenses. 

Find out more here.