As 2023 comes to a close, obvious reflection is underway. This year has been about leaning into what this brand means to both myself and my clients.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve embraced the mindset of “how can I do this better?” This simple thought process has played a role in every project. If you’re not changing, evolving, and seeking the most efficient way, then you’re stagnant.
Here’s a list of things I plan on doing more of, doing better at, and things I’m breaking up with in 2024.
With Instagram pushing video content more, I don’t see reels going anywhere. I’ll be incorporating more screen recordings of the designing processes and snippets of me building out design boards. I’d love for them to become more complex *I might regret this* and to have more animation layers, textures, and mock-ups of products, making them feel interactive. In 2024, I aim to make less content with knowing that each that I produce will take more time and patience.
My goal with one-off projects is to do less of them and spend more time with a smaller client base. While smaller projects have their worth, in the long run, they can be a distraction and take effort away from larger, more demanding projects.
This is probably what excites me most about 2024. Creating branding for businesses is extremely rewarding, but the real goal is to put those files to work and have clients walk away with a brand that is set up and ready to go.
Which leads me to my next offerings for 2024.
Social Media Design
Owning your own business can be a lot, but when you have tools that can take that workload down a few notches, it makes a big difference. I want my clients to feel supported and have pre-made assets they can pull from when they want to post. This means creating templates for you in Canva, uploading your fonts, colors, and logos, ensuring your social media tells your brand story. This will be available with a start-up cost with the option to do a monthly retainer to keep things fresh. Clients who choose to do this must either be past branding clients or clients who have a sizable amount of branding assets.
This leads into…
Welcome Guide/Rate Sheet PDFs
Many of my clients have PDFs they send to their clients inquiring about their services. This can span from wedding venues, caterers, photographers, florists, etc. These guides can feel overwhelming, and not properly share their aesthetic with their potential client *which is a big miss*. As consumers, we don’t like too many choices and can easily feel overwhelmed. The goal for this service will be to clean up these guides, tell your brand story, incorporate your branding photos, and have pricing and descriptions neatly laid out. This guide refresh will act as an add-on for branding and web design clients. For web design clients, I will then create a link for your new guide to make sharing it with potential clients much easier!
Stressing Out About Likes and Followers
This one might be obvious but it’s out. The amount of time, effort, work, and general creativity that goes into posting online is endless. I’ve chosen to change my mindset to be okay with my traction not always being at the level that I would like. Some ways to increase engagement are to weave your personality into posts and stories more, showing the face behind the brand (ahhh, my least favorite), and having the content be original to your brand. Have fun with your posts and write captions that are authentic to you. It can feel like a doozy at first, but the more you do it, the easier it gets!
These are super in and a great way to break up the stress that comes with social media. Social media can acts as a marketing tool, but it doesn’t need to be your only marketing tool. Designing newsletters for clients is something you’ll be seeing more of from me in 2024. Both MailChimp and Flodesk have the ability to create your brand kit and track your clicks. It’s also a great way to stay relevant with inquiries that have ghosted or with past clients who may want more work done by you in the future. Newsletters are a great way to not put all your eggs in the algorithm basket with diversifying your marketing.
These are forever in and the best way to help out a fellow business owner. Yes, a majority of my clients find me on Instagram, and reviews might not come into play there but they do when it comes to searching for a brand designer in Missoula, Montana. And let’s face it, I’m competitive at heart. Most of my days start with checking my Google Analytics and ranking to see if I’ve grown and pushed more traffic to my site. Reviews go a long way and are the easiest way to say “thank you” to a freelancer, creative, or small business in your community if you appreciate what they’re doing.
Blogging is another in for both business reasons and personal. From a business perspective, blogs allow you to create something on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly bases that adds value to your website and pulls in new clients with interesting content. Blog posts help with your SEO by adding keywords and give a solid base to post content on social media around. If you write a blog, don’t just post it and close up shop. Promote it on your story and take snippets of it to use for a post. You’d be surprised how many people will click on it and up your website’s ranking for the following week and then some.
From a personal perspective, blogs feel like a space to connect with your clients on a more human level. This could involve you giving business tips (like I am here) or insight on where to eat if someone were to travel to the town that you’re located in. As someone who graduated with a marketing degree but whose favorite course in college was poetry, it feels like to have an outlet to write and keep that part of my brain sharp.
I’m curious about other business owners’ ins and outs for 2024 and how you see your business evolving to keep up with demand. If you ever want to know more about having branding and web design work done, have any questions, or just want to chat, feel free to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.