The holidays can be very busy and stressful time. But for designers, the season can actually be quite slow. Mainly because a lot of clients are in their busy sales season or are preoccupied with other things. Don’t let your clients forget about you. Do something nice for them this holiday season.
Create a Custom Holiday Card
If you have some free time on your hands create a holiday card you design. It doesn’t take a lot of time and can be very inexpensive. Not to mention, your clients will appreciate the time you spent. Hopefully, they will also remember you after things slow down for them, and they will bring you more work.
A handwritten message is also the way to go. It doesn’t have to be an essay, just mention how you appreciate the client’s business and hope to work with them again in the New Year.
This is also a non-intrusive way to get back in touch with clients you have lost or those that you have not heard from in a long time. No need for a sales pitch, just stick to a friendly, holiday greeting, and you may just get them back.
Spruce Up the Ol’ Website
The holidays are a good time to look over and see where you can improve on your web page. Add all the new projects you have done to the portfolio section and try to add some new testimonials. Add new skills, areas of expertise, or new areas of work that you now do.
Write for Your Neglected Blog
The holiday season can be slow for bloggers as well because a lot of readers are spending time with their families and not online reading. But still, if you haven’t posted in a couple months, spend the time to do so now.
Do Client Evaluations
Take a look at the work you have done for each of your clients and see which areas where work still needs to be done or would help them. Write it down so you can bring it back up again when you begin working with clients again. It may lead to more work and your clients will appreciate the fact that you are thinking about their business, even when they aren’t paying you.
Many times, even we get caught up in the daily grind and can no longer see the big picture. Step back and make sure you are doing everything you can to help your clients succeed.
Plan for the New Year
No better time to make a plan for the upcoming year. Write down your goals and projections for upcoming business. Perhaps you need to look into getting a new office, or hiring another employee. Take the time to see where the business is headed and get a plan in place so that you are not surprised when you get there.
Everyone needs goals to measure success and push yourself forward.
Get Ready For Taxes
Never a fun task but you can make it a little less painful by getting prepared. Go through all of your recepts and get everything organized. Try to find everything you are going to write off, how much money is still outstanding from clients and what your overall expenses have been so far during the year. Should make for smoother sailing when tax time comes along.
Improve Your Skills
Now that you have the time, try to improve your skills in some area. Do some tutorials, read some books, contribute and get involved in the design community. For more on this check out: Benefits for Learning Complementary Skills for Creatives.
Spend the time to reach out and contact people in your area. Try to go to some Chamber of Commerce or other business meetings. Get yourself out there in front of people.
The holiday season is the perfect time to take on some pro bono work. Find a charitable organization in your area and see what kinds of design services they might need. Maybe they want some signage made, or some business cards, or a website. Pro bono work is great because you can flex your creative muscle a little bit. People are generally acceptive of anything that is free. If they have to pay, they want to critique and revise a lot more. And you never know, through this new contact you may be introduced to some nice paying clients. Just don’t expect anything.
Have Fun, Get Creative
Hey, why not have some fun. Think of some creative games to play or start a fun side project. Come up with some fun designs that don’t have a purpose aside from increasing your creativity and maybe a little enjoyment.
A few ideas:
- Create some holiday decorations for the office
- Play a round of Photoshop tennis with a designer friend
- Create a totally random website, like for worshiping your favorite food, perhaps bacon, or your favorite movie star from the 80’s.
- Create some wacky crafts and see if you can get them on Regretsy.
- The possibilities are endless, just make it fun
Hopefully your holiday season is not too slow but if it does slow down, use some of these tips to increase your business in the New Year.