Now that you have built a up a nice portfolio, the next step is to go out and find some clients who are willing to pay you for your work. In this post I will list a few methods that I have used to find clients. Hopefully some of these will be useful and can help you find some work!
Create A Portfolio Website
Create a website were you will be able to display all of your design work, and make sure to include a page with your contact information and a form that can be filled out and submitted to you directly on your website. You have to put a lot of work into your website but it can pay off once you start getting emails from people interested in hiring you.
Get Business Cards
Design your own business cards and get them printed. Your business card design can say a lot about how good you are as a designer and it could be your first impression as far as your work on a prospective client so make sure to create something that will display your design skills. Make sure to include your websites url, your phone number, and your email address.
Ask Family And Friends
Ask your parents and relatives to let their friends at work know that you are a designer and give them your business cards, chances are one of them might be in need of your services.
Handout a few business cards to your friends and ask them to let their parents know that you are a serious designer.
Talk To Your Neighbors
Talk to your next door neighbors or go door to door around your neighborhood and tell them about what you do and leave them your business card. If your community has a club house put up a poster with your contact info. Growing up in the United States I know most students already have some experience with this, remember when you set up a lemonade stand as a child? Or when you sold chocolate around your neighborhood for school fund raisers!
Use Social Networks And Online Job Boards
Another method you could use to bring in some clients is through social networks such as Twitter and Facebook. One way you can search for clients is by using the search form on twitter (you could search for “need graphic designer” or “hire graphic designer”) and send people who are looking for someone a tweet.
You could also try using one of the many different online job boards. Although it may not be the best place to find good clients, Craigslist can be one way of finding clients especially if your a beginner and in need of some experience.
Not only is blogging a good way to learn new things and to keep your skills up to date, but it can also be a good way for people to see that you are involved in the design community and that you are knowledgeable about what you do. Blogging can also be a great way to educate potential clients and together with your work it may just be enough to convince them that your the right guy for the job!
Advertise The Old Fashion Way
Leave a stack of your business cards at places like the gym, ice cream shops, car dealerships the dentists office, and the doctors office. These places usually have a table where they will allow people to leave their business cards for others to take and business owners frequent these place quite often!
Collaborate With Classmates
If your majoring in graphic design then your taking classes with several people who do the same thing you do, so make sure to get to know some of them, they may just be working on something where they could use your help or the other way around. Your professors or teachers may also be able to help you out as far as clients, so don’t be afraid to be a teachers pet it may just pay off!