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How to market a Design Studio?

Discussion in 'Black Hat SEO' started by lackote, Nov 3, 2009.

  1. lackote

    lackote Junior Member

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    Hi, well the title says everything.. I want to make a Design Studio (web design, graphic design, etc). but i don't really know how to do a good marketing for that..
    I mean, yes i can post on related forums, or do some SEO (this wont work because of the high competition out there), I can post on freelance sites (but again, there are a lot of competition) so what do you recommend me to do to obtain some good customers?

    thanks!
     
  2. Griffin

    Griffin Regular Member

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    Try posting on unrelated forums. Like this one. We're going into the slow season, due to Xmas being just around the corner, so don't expect too much right now. For design or dev, SEO is just a time sink -- not worth it IMO. Unlike a "Pet Supply" niche, you're up against thousands of people who are great with SEO anyway.
     
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  3. TheInsider

    TheInsider Registered Member

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    The best way to do this is to design. Design pages for generalized categories.. pets, clothing, if you can use them yourselves, even better. Maybe even offer to make 10-20 sites for free for members of BHW. Then build you a portfolio of what you have designed. If people like what they see, they will buy!
     
  4. lackote

    lackote Junior Member

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    but that's the main point, i can be the best designer in the world, but without marketing nobody will know me, I can design 10 free sites here in BHW, then what? also, BHW is not a good place, here people like cheap things.. they pay 5 bucks for a "simple logo deisgn", I'm talking about making good websites, good and professional design, no installing wordpress + a free template for 5/10 bucks..

    so, if SEO is not the way to go, then how can I get customers? Can CPC/Adwords be the solution?

    thanks!
     
  5. eacarey

    eacarey Newbie

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    Not a good attitude. Yes, the design pricing here and at other forums is low, however you are building a portfolio, and more important a reputation.

    Those $5 clients can lead to $500 even $5000 projects. Word of mouth is the best marketing for a design firm. Happy clients are always willing to pass on the name of their designer.
     
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  6. TheInsider

    TheInsider Registered Member

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    Exactly, you have to have a portfolio!

    Also, regarding money.. You need to adjust your way of thinking.. When I made 1 dollar a day, I tried for 10, When I hit 10, I tried for 100, when I hit 1000, I didn't stop, I try for 10,000.. Always go for more! And Remember, $5 is better than nothing...

     
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  7. lackote

    lackote Junior Member

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    ok, thank you guys, i'll try!
     
  8. Griffin

    Griffin Regular Member

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    Adwords isn't a solution IMO. Some designers hire commission salespeople. I have been bidding a lot lately to add variety to my portfolio. Here you'll get a lot of sales-related or corporate gigs. A bidding site will give you everything under the sun.

    Odesk is great for bidding on jobs, I made quite a bit in the past month. The clients I've had have either A) been burned by cheap design or B) realize that you have to spend on design to be successful online. Some clients just won't get that having bad design is like having a store in a rundown building on Skid Row. You can sway some of those types, but very few.

    BHW. What do people here want: sales pages, squeeze pages, landing pages for cpa offers, blog themes, and personalized templates. That's basically it. There are good clients here and bad clients here. I just got ended with a client who likely won't be paying and wasted two days of my time. always check Ripoff Report first when you can.

    I don't play the Banners Game -- non-US peeps who can live on very little can make banners for almost no money. I can't get away with that because I live in the US and have a higher cost of living. So why bother? List a reasonable banner price and an example. Maybe no one will bite, but you're not lowering your costs to an unlivable level.

    Customer Service needs to be 100% all the time. If someone loves your work, ask for a referral and a testimonial!!!! Then beef up your site with the testimonial.
     
  9. Griffin

    Griffin Regular Member

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    Happy Clients will recommend someone at the rate they paid. "Man, this guy Milosh made my website for $60!" "Cool, I need a site for $60!"

    $60 is good for something basic, but if you gave out an original osCommerce template for that rate... ehh... let's just say people will be sniffing around for a handout. Charge ONLY what you are comfortable with, or you will wind up resenting it.

    That said, keep your expectations realistic. What would you be making at another job right now? If you are otherwise making little or stuck in min wage (or unemployed), you should factor that in.
     
  10. madblacker

    madblacker Regular Member

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    Don't work for ridiculous rates like the people here have suggested thats just dumb and you just get shit on and will get nowhere, obviously someone paying you $50 for a website doesn't have any good contacts who are going to get you a good paying project... I am in the same boat as you and had been working on a portfolio but now have just stopped to concentrate on internet marketing because as you said it doesn't matter how good your stuff is unless a lot of people see it because only certain people are looking to buy at any given time so you need to have a lot of traffic to have a chance..

    I think I have some good ideas on this, basically its about building niche websites to target a specific type of client, such as a realtor, so build a landing page for this and then drive traffic to it from real estate sites, etc.. thats what I am still working on is how to mass post links but I think doing it on forums and blogs is a good start, just I am still working on my mass posting script, you need to incorporate a captcha solution into this as well, also making automated scripts to troll the business networks is a good bet, linkedin (although you need to harvest their email address first to message them), ecademy, xing
     
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