It probably goes without saying that a strong social media presence is essential for any business looking to attract new customers. And as a freelance designer, you’re uniquely placed to create a visually striking profile that garners maximum attention.
By attracting the largest possible number of eyeballs to your work and your brand, you increase your chances of being noticed by those who can offer you exactly what you’re after – paid opportunities.
Let’s take a closer look at the best social media channels for designers who've already nailed their personal brand.
Which platforms should I post on?
One of the most widely used platforms, Instagram is a great place to showcase your visual skills with options for stills, videos, carousels, and stories. Using hashtags can increase awareness in design communities and among potential clients, as can using the location feature. Don't just be limited to your actual geography, use industry events' geo-tagging and conferences and festivals, too.
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Instagram also has the option of adding a contact button to your Business Account page, and you can now add hyperlinks to your Story posts even if you have under 10k followers. In fact, Instagram recently released a guide to promoting your business on the platform, check it out here.
Social platforms love content that keeps people on that platform, so video content is going nowhere. Now, with Reels, you can add trending music (like TikTok) to further increase your chances of high views.
Hear me out – yes, it can be a cesspool where the very worst of humanity can post their terrible thoughts about current events, but Twitter is also a place where you can connect directly with clients. By keeping an eye on what they’re posting, you can get a sense of what projects might be coming up that they might need a designer on.
Although less visual, it's an ideal place to post links to your portfolio and / or current projects in process.
Alright, it’s not sexy, but it’s still the place that most potential clients will post available roles, so keep yours up-to-date and looking sharp. Give yourself a headline that clients would search for (e.g. graphic designer, illustrator etc), and include your recent experience in your career history. You can also follow groups and hashtags and be sure to comment on relevant posts in your industry to increase profile awareness.
What should I be posting on social media?
Before you hit ‘post’ on any content, you need to work out what your brand is and how you can promote it with a key visual identity. Need some help getting started? We gotcha.
Mix it up with some like-fishing
As well as showing off your most amazing work, share a few easy-win posts that you know will provoke busy scrollers to ‘like’ or share. Posts on social media tend to serve different purposes; it's hard to construct a post that will encourage audiences to both like and click-through to something, so decide which one you're aiming for. Is this post for likes or clicks?
If it's for likes, what have you given aforementioned busy scroller that will appeal? What about it would make YOU to double tap? If it's for clicks, how have you encouraged intrigue enough to spark curiosity in a scroller to the extent that they would leave their scrolling and go to your bio? Seduce them.
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Be your own champion
Had some great client feedback? Share a testimonial. Just finished some killer project work? Show it off – tell people why you’re so proud of it and which skills and techniques you got to flex. If a client found your website and clicked through to your social media profile, what would encourage them to carry on and get in touch with you? Satisfied customers, brilliant work, and technical know-how.
Show off your expertise
Livestream a Q&A, fire off a tutorial, or even host a chat with another creative to position yourself as an expert in your field. Short, tutorial content is a brilliant way to rack up views, reach fellow creatives and assert your authority as an expert in your niche.
Give praise to your fellow designers and peers
Is there another designer on your level whose work you can’t get enough of? Give them some love. It makes you look nice (even if you’re a seething pit of professional jealously), boosts their network and yours, and is a great way to link up with your fellow artistes.
Give an insight into how you work
Post a video of a work in progress, or a typical working day. What does your office / studio look like? Is your desk tidy or messy? Do you have a cat / dog / African Grey parrot? The people demand answers!
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What should I link to on social media?
Social media is great for showcasing your work, but you want to make it as easy as possible for potential clients to take the next step and hire you for a job.
Here’s what you should link to any and all of your channels.
Having all your sexiest work in one place makes it easy for clients to see what you’re capable of doing for them. Need some advice? Again: we gotcha.
Sell prints and more directly to clients with a link to your store.
A contact form
Make it easy for them to hit you up with a link to a contact form. You could even add a calendar so that they can book an initial consultation with you straight way.
Some general housekeeping notes:
Consistency is king. Keep your channels up to date so that when a happy client recommends you for another project, the next one will see your most current work.
Don't be shy
Of course, you can use socials to reach out to the people and companies you want to work with.
Don’t overthink it – use one of their recent posts or projects as a springboard to start a conversation. Something like:
‘Hi, I’m reaching out because I really admire the work you did for ABC / your post about XYZ. This aligns with my work and focus because of XXX. I’d love to have a quick chat and see if there might be the opportunity to work together in the future.’
Be polite, don’t badger or chase, don’t be weird (no pick-up lines, no spicy language, no negging their current or past work) and keep an eye on your DMs.
Don't forget to connect with other designers!
If only there were a community where millions ofcreative people could work on open briefs, share their work, and interact with each other. Oh wait, there is! Sign up to Talenthouse today and join a wealth of talented creatives from all over the world. And who knows? One of them might be looking to collaborate with someone just like you.
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