If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? Sure. If no one sees your design portfolio, does it actually exist? Technically, yes, but if no one sees your design portfolio, you are never going to get any work – no matter how good it is.
As a designer today, your talent and the quality of your work can only take you so far. The most important thing in today’s work is getting your work noticed. Here are five excellent methods to get your design portfolio seen and to make potential clients recognize your abilities.
Offer free services to high profile clients
Just like volunteering or interning for practical experience will help you get your foot in the door of your profession and get some work under your belt, offering up your design services for no fee can pay off big as well. If you spot a chance to work for a high profile client for free or a very small fee – jump on it. This is a fantastic way to get your work seen by others who will potentially pay you for your services. Designing for free in return for getting your work seen on a high profile stage is absolutely worth it and will pay dividends in the end.
Join networking sites
There are many free sites out there that serve as social networking hubs for designers. You should join as many of them as you can. Sites like Behance, deviantART, and Virb not only allow you to display your portfolio in a professional manner, but they also allow you to network with other designers who might be able to give you leads on new work. It is also important to note that a lot of potential clients who are looking to hire people spend a lot of time browsing the portfolios found on such websites.
Start your own blog
If you already have your own domain where you showcase your work and offer your services, getting more attention for it can be done very effectively by starting up your own blog on that domain. A blog can give you a fantastic outlet for showcasing your expertise and increasing the viewership of your site. If you are running a high quality blog on your site, you are attracting subscribers, networking, getting high quality links to your site, improving your website’s SEO and SMO capabilities and making a name for yourself. Running a good blog might take a lot of added work, but the benefits are well worth the effort.
If you are holding giveaways, obviously, you don’t want to design entire websites for free (unless it’s for a big-name client, as mentioned earlier). But you can hold small giveaways to get your name out there and get the attention of potential clients. Designing small things like wallpapers, icons or WordPress themes is not a very time consuming process, but it can garner a lot of attention. These giveaways are great for getting your website shared by others, increasing activity on your social networking profiles and generating referrals.
Write and submit guest posts
If you feel as if you really do not have the time to dedicate to running your own design blog, you can still take advantage of what the blogosphere has to offer. Guest posting on other design blogs can benefit you greatly. Guest posting allows you to showcase your expertise, gets you attention, establishes your reputation and gets you great incoming links to your website. Of course, if you are going to submit guest posts, make sure that you are sending them to high quality and relevant blogs with big readerships and solid reputations.
Any designer can use these five methods to increase the visibility of their portfolios and get their work on the radars of potential clients while networking and gaining experience at the same time.
David Lazar is a regular blogger at PDF Converter blog. With a background in journalism, he specializes in writing blogs on a variety of topics, including freelancing, careers, finances, technology and new media.