How to Show Your Clients That You’re Serious!


When you’re working as a freelance designer, there’s a good chance you’re struggling to get new clients. Competition out there is usually hard, and every single thing can count. In this article we’ll have a look at some tips for what you can focus on to show your client(s) or potential client(s) that you’re serious and professional.

If you want to lose clients fast, acting without thinking is the way to go! By focusing on how you represent yourself towards the market in general, you can avoid a lot of things that could harm your business. By following these tips, you could instead build yourself a good reputation out there and take a huge step closer to freelance success!

Picture by Svilen Milev

As a freelancer or small business-owner you have a lot of responsibility when it comes to taking care of your clients. Each and every client means more to you as you can’t serve as many clients as many bigger companies. This can be used to your advance also, by being able to give the clients a more personal service.

Be prepared to give everything in order to get and keep your clients, as competition gets harder and harder for every year.

Now let’s have a look at our tips!

Show off your portfolio and previous work

Picture by Brendan Gogarty

No matter if you’re talking to a potential new client, or an existing one, showing your portfolio can be very valuable. This shows the variety of your work and can also give more ideas to the clients regarding what you’re capable of doing. This can be extra important of you have a range of several products and services to offer.

Meet them in person if possible

Picture by Carl Dwyer

In today’s Internet era, we tend to do everything by mail, instant messengers and so on. In the cases where it’s possible, you should still try to meet up with your clients when possible. This can make a much better bond with them, and you wont be just an avatar. From my own experience the relationship with clients can reach a whole new dimension if you have the chance to meet up with them. Obviously this can’t be done in all cases, but you should definitely think about it when you can.

Give customized offers and services

Picture by Peter Nielsen

All serious designers have the ability to give the client exactly what he wants, sometimes without the client having to give every single detail. Use your creativity and take the time required to check out every single client further. Read up on their website, ask questions that can help you understand them better and so on. You can’t give everyone the same treatment or the same services, simply because they’re all different. If you understand that they are unique and help them feel that way they will look at you as a more serious designer and be more likely to become very loyal.

Giving something extra

Picture by Clifford Shirley

This is related to the customizing in a way. Not only should you make sure that your products/services are made to fit your client 100%, you should also give something extra when you can. This is often done by those who understand the game and take their clients seriously. If you only do what is wanted and never give anything extra, you could lose clients to designers who walk the extra mile. Throw in an hour or two of free consulting after a bigger project, make an update or two for free if you can – use your imagination to come up with things that you can afford to give extra. The clients will soon understand that you know how things should be done to give good service.

Never talk bad about your competitors

Picture by Robert Linder

One of the things I remember really well from when I studied was when our teacher taught us about how the really serious designers act to be professional. And this goes for most situations you come across. Never talk bad about someone else to make yourself look better. I can say for sure that this is wrong in at least 90% of the cases, maybe even 100%. If you’re giving good service and have great products, they’ll be able to speak for themselves. If you talk bad about others you will look unprofessional. Your clients will notice right away!

Don’t mix business and personal affairs

Picture by Teak Sato

Becoming friends with clients is of course allowed. But remember that you have to take the business part extra serious. Friendships must not come in the way of business. With some practice and focus, you will be able to switch between the business and personal side of you. If you’re not aware of this many things got be affected.

Keep your promises

Picture by Sachin Ghodke

By doing what you say that you’ll do, you come across as serious and stable. Don’t make promises you can’t keep in order to gain new clients. At some point, sooner or later, it will come back to haunt you. Be someone who your clients can trust all the time and they will pay you back with loyalty and make you gain a good reputation.


These were some tips for how you can show your clients that you’re serious about business and not just playing around. Most of these things are logical but not always easy to remember in the heat of the moment. So try keep these in mind when possible, and maybe they can help you a bit on your way to happier clients.

Picture by A. Feldmann

We hope you liked this article and would love to hear your comments!



  1. Susan

    Thank you Hilde for this useful post. If every business (not just small/freelancers) followed these steps, the world would be a far better place.

  2. Shrikrishna meena

    Excellent advices, You took out most of the mistakes that I do day to day but struggling on how to avoid them…
    But your this article motivated me to take proper actions at times…..
    Really I appreciate the work of team behind this site on generating such useful resources…

    • Hilde Torbjornsen

      Thank you so much for your positive feedback!
      I hope this can help you :)
      Good luck!

  3. Stefan

    I think you’ve hit the nail on the head! I try to give my clients that extra something to make them feel special and connected with you rather than just another number.

    It’s the nice little touches which causes them to pass on your name as well. Thus creating on going business as people refer people which is a win win. Sometimes I think people should take a step back and try and see how it can work better or they can do it better.

    One thing that does bother me though is how the “competition” charge such cheap rates, makes me want to break the rule on speaking bad about competitors but i always hold it in! :)

    Good article, thanks :)

  4. Dannie

    Keep your promises and say what you will do when you say you will do it. That alone will put you ahead of 90% of people out there. Having been on both sides I can say that’s definitely something very valuable.

    • Hilde

      Very much agree with you.
      This is a problem and if you know how to be able to keep up with this 100% you are definitely ahead of many others.
      Thank you :)

  5. Matthew Monroe

    Great refresher on client service basics. These tips help build a firm foundation in a tough market. Particularly, doing a little extra for a client will produce the “Wow” factor that is needed for your clients to remember you.
    Thank you for the great article.
    Matt Monroe
    MRMC Consulting

  6. Viacheslav

    I think that first and last pictures in this article are not suitable here.
    1 – hackneyed profit association
    2 – simulated emotions

  7. Pank

    This is very helpful and interesting.
    Following each of them would not be possible every time
    But it definitely leaves an clean impression on the clients.
    I’m totally agreed.

    • Hilde

      Thanks Pank! :)
      Yes, I agree. All cases are individual so it will be hard to follow every point every time, but by following some of them we can make a huge difference in the long run :)

  8. Hi, Hilde.
    Nice post! Maybe all the things you said are already known, but it is aways good to keep those points in mind.
    “Meet them in person if possible” was the best advice. Sometimes, we fall in traps and mess with one project and the best way to fix it is talking with the client, certainly if you meet him it’d be a lot better than talking by phone or mail.

    Well, thanks for the post and sorry for the “bad english”.

    • Hilde

      Thank you for the positive feedback. Yes, I very much agree with you. We do sometimes tend to take everything through phone or mail, leaving out a great way to get better relations with clients (as meeting them in real life).

  9. Excellent list, I think is real when you say offer something more, that is really important to get a client happy, but dont offer too much either or you’ll look like a poor designer.