WIP: First week back after being on leave so catching up on things. It's been a mixed bag this week with quite a lot of smaller jobs on including the rollout of a simple identity for a 'thought leadership' dinner event, finalising some icons for a software product, making a start on a nice infographic piece about the differences working in private and public healthcare and initial designs for some animated web ads.
Some thoughts on marketing: I have talked about marketing before, and the fact that I often struggle to find the time to do it (yeah, yeah, that old chestnut). I have had a few new business inquiries come in lately that have been word-of-mouth referrals from existing clients, which is fantastic. It got me thinking though. When I think about the marketing I know I should be doing the assumption is that I should get out there and make new connections. This is really important of course. But it is all too easy to overlook the opportunities closer to home that your current and past clients offer. Here you have a network who know you, know what you offer and understand the value what you do. Given the opportunity, most are happy to be an advocate of your services. I did a very small survey a while back and asked some clients if they were comfortable referring me to people in their network–just about all answered yes.
This takes me to a broader point. It is all too easy to get caught up in the day-to-day and neglect to check in with clients who perhaps you are not working with on a current project. A quick call or email to see what they are working on, ask how business is going and generally showing an interest goes a long way. Russell Davies wrote a great blog post years ago and made the point that you need to be interested in order to be interesting. Perhaps 'marketing' doesn't have to be the hard sell, maybe it is simply talking to people who value what you do.
Listening: Bit of a rock sort of week this week (I blame Dave Grohl's excellent book) – Minutemen, Mike Watt, Hüsker Du, The Pixies, Nirvana Live at Reading '92 (I was there–feeling old).
Don't forget: Unbilled is on this Sunday at Lightspace, Brisbane. I am really looking forward to taking part in this great event and talking through how I quote and invoice projects with Tanja Hall from Jolt. A must for freelancers, creative studios and small businesses.
Have a great weekend.