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33

You have a "thumbprint" client. This person must always change something, and feel like he's left his thumbprint on it, or he doesn't think he's done his job correctly. I have a coping strategy I got from When Bad Relatives Happen to Good People. It's called "Setting a Budget." A woman was upset because every time she went to her son's house for a ...


29

Well… your bullet doesn't have to be silver as long as you hit a vital spot. Sadly, there isn't one. There's an awful lot of people who are unable to visualize design (thankfully, otherwise we'd all be wearing foam hot-dog suits for a living), which is why they come to us. A few points you should try to make: 1) "I'm the expert, and you would be wasting ...


28

Stefan has several excellent points, which I'll echo and expand upon: Write up a contract. You don't start anything without a contract. It took me over a week to write my first contract, but that baby is as detailed and iron-clad as I could make it, and now I can slice-and-dice and adapt it to future jobs. The AIGA has a ridiculously detailed sample ...


28

Another common issue is, that by posting their content on Behance in your name, their brand is on a platform they can't control. It may be difficult (even borderline Quixotic) in our age, but many organisations try hard to keep complete control of all uses of their brand. Worries can include: They might simply have unspecified concerns about a comms ...


26

If the client was given opportunity to proof read final files before they went to press, it's the client's responsibility. If you failed to allow the client to proof read before anything went to press, it's your responsibility. Clients should always have the final say before anything is reproduced. That means the client should proofread all files once ...


25

I point out to clients that large logos are the equivalent to SCREAMING at customers. When you walk into a store, do you want the sales rep to come up to you and scream, "HI! WHAT CAN I GET FOR YOU TODAY?!" or would you rather have the rep walk up and quietly ask, "Hi, what can I help you with today?" (It carries more weight when spoken :) ) I ask them to ...


24

Depends on your contract. In general, absolutely, yes. You did the work, you provided it to the client, now their job is to pay you. I would not offer a discount (seriously, 50 variations?) but would keep it in mind for negotiation if needed. Given that you did so many variations, I would probably offer a 20% discount at most, but only if they were ...


22

I personally would let it slide since they are a regular client. It sounds as if it was a communication issue, so you may want to let them know somehow, "Hey we removed this item from the invoice due to a misunderstanding, but please note that our design fee is XXX for furture reference." That way they are aware, and you look like the "good guy" to a ...


19

Not to detract from lawndartcatcher's excellent answer, there are some additional pointers that might help: Don't ever make the client wrong, especially when they are. Clients are human (for the most part, anyway), and if there's one thing a human can't stomach it's being wrong. This is so much the case that proving to someone that they're wrong absolutely ...


18

I will start by saying I have negative social skills with a seasoning of Aspie on them. So, taking that into account, here I go. Based on my Spock-like field work I have learnt that my non-creative clients (I have creative clients as well) tend to be problem solving oriented. They tend to focus on the problems they have and are very interested on how you ...


17

There are actually a couple issues here. If the client just repeatedly wants changes, as @LaurenIpsum posted, they are a "thumbprint" client. And you simply need to get to a point where you can separate yourself from the work and just do what they ask. I often have to tell myself "this is just what I do, not who I am." So changes aren't personal attacks on ...


16

This is common. Sometimes surmountable. Sometimes not. What you can try is to 'sell' your solution rather than merely present it. Explain why you made the decisions you did. Why did you go only 2 color? Why did you chose the typefaces you did? Etc. Some call this 'design speak'. The ides is to show your boss that there was thought put behind it--based on ...


16

For me, it's always the why. I've run into many situations where a client is initially uneasy about my work. Not because they outright dislike it, but because they don't think it fits with "what they've seen." When clients are accustomed to seeing the same thing over and over from themselves as well as any competitors, it can be a challenge to get them to ...


16

It's her responsibility. That's why you provide proofs that she can freely take as long as she wants to review. A good trick is to make them write by email that they approve the proof. You ask it this way before sending the final print-ready file: "So, is this approved or do you need any more revisions?" She'll respond a Yes, or No. You got your approval ...


15

As in my comment, I do not think I entirely understand you Q, but what you are after are names for fictional companies that have a strong visual impact. Strong relation between the fictional name and logo? That is what logo design is for; the company name is not chosen as such. The all-time classic fictional company is Acme Corporation. Cinema and ...


15

Get a lawyer who specializes in intellectual property or copyright infringement and have the person review your contract. Depending on the wording and your local laws, you might have standing to sue for cease-and-desist or your full contract payment. (Next time, don't accept a job from someone who thinks "pimp" is a term which business professionals use to ...


14

I think a lot comes down to having courage. Work only for good clients. Turn down jobs from people from whom you get the vibe of trouble ahead (either by politely declining, or asking for an outrageous price). Glamorous jobs that would look good on your portfolio may be among them, as well as big-money jobs. In that case, it's up to what you want more ...


14

You need a Creative Brief. The graphic designer you approach should have one to give to you. Here are a number of topics to consider, though this is for large projects and some of the subjects may not apply for you: Project Background Who are you and what do we need to know about you? Give some background information on how this project came about. ...


14

To give some sort of an answer for you: Sales figures on similar branding update data would be one very good approach. Just make sure it relates and had a similar reason. A racist logo from the 1920s updating to not be racist is different then not liking the color choice or something. Data from one would have very little meaning on the other. If the new ...


14

Don't resent your client for wanting more, but educate them. The original editable files are your blueprint by which you create their design, but the design is what they buy, not the blueprint. Try a comparison, like: If you get a tailor made suit, you don't ask the tailor for the pattern and a pair of scissors afterwards, just in case you'd want to make ...


14

It's not normal, but not uncommon. There can be many reasons for it. Often it is simply a strong-armed legal department that insists on NDA-type relations with all vendors. I typically leave a line in my contracts that states I reserve the right to showcase the work in my portfolio. If this raises a red flag for the client, then it's a topic we can ...


13

A good analogy I heard regarding this problem that you can use on the client is this: take a look at how a Wal-Mart is laid out versus how a high end retailer like Nordstrom's or Von Maur is laid out. The Wal-Mart is cluttered and stacked wall to wall with as much stuff as they can fit in there while the high end stores have their product displayed with ...


13

Some clients you have to be brutally honest with and flat out tell them to pick a direction because otherwise he/she is merely wasting your time. You have to often treat these types of clients as children. Allow them to make choices but specifically engineer the choices they have -- "Do you want A or do you want B?" NOT "What do you want?" If ...


13

When a client bashes my design, I move on with my life and just do whatever they want. They're paying so screw it. All I can do is advise them as a trained professional, try my best to convince them, and then move on. If they're that adamant about what they want than that's what they're going to get from me. Embrace your capitalist core. You're a business, ...


13

I would judge by the company and its existence. If the company is a well established brand, like Coke Cola, Pepsi, Red Bull then an expectation of the brand's color scheme would be expected in your design and judged with a fine tooth comb. Also, depending on the company they may have a campaign they're trying to stick with that should be defined in the ...


12

There may not be a good reason to redesign a logo if it is easily recognized and if the market generally has a positive opinion of the brand. In fact a better option would be to make subtle updates that keep logo pretty much the same but perhaps improve how it can be applied in different use cases. So make sure you have a good, solid business case before ...


11

Round 1: Hey John Doe, I need some (object) made by (date). Its to promote (product, event or service). I can offer (dollars). Are you interested? Or you might wait to see if they're interested and then negotiate that last point but it still belongs in Round 1. Round 2: Great! Here's my (logo / branding) and the (copy). As you see in the branding we ...


11

Yes, I would line-item a rush fee to make it very clear that they are asking for something above-and-beyond the norm. And if you want to let them negotiate it, that's certainly up to you.


11

Well, your contract should have stated that you are only creating a design (or print job, website, whatever) for the client, and that you explicitly are not surrendering source files. If it didn't... Then you tell the client that while it's physically possible to give them a clean PSD (IL, INDD, etc.) eventually, right now the file is a mess. Or it's ...


11

To one of @SteveA points, no client of mine has ever cared that I need to make money from my work. To a one, they pulled and pulled and pulled to extract every penny they could out of me and my work. I could see the incessant revisions and last second changes the hour before delivery coming down the pike and would try to head them off at the pass based on ...



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