October 6, 2021
If you work 1:1 with clients or are growing a client-based business, you wear a lot of hats. You are probably the sales team, the admin team, the team that does all the actual client work, and the marketing team. That’s a lot, but you knew that already.
Of course, there are so many experts out there telling you to create systems and templates to make your life a little bit easier. But what do you NEED to create to make your client work easier? Since we’re branding experts and designers, we’ll cover the client-based business design assets you might want to consider here.
(For things like project management and systems, you might want to check out our friend Kate Hutcheson at The Efficient/Creative.)
Okay, this probably feels like a “duh” moment, but don’t roll your eyes. There are a number of freelancers and service pros out there who focus their design time on their Instagram feed and in their work presentation.
Maybe you’ve been convinced that your website doesn’t need to be updated because who visits it anyway with social media nowadays? Okay, so now it’s our turn to roll our eyes. Maybe some of you don’t even have a website because you’ve been successfully selling your packages over Instagram and email.
Newsflash, though: Your website is your most important asset because you own it and it is endlessly customizable. Even if someone is familiar with you from social media, they will still likely go to your website for more information once they’re serious about working with you, or even to confirm your legitimacy. If you want to book more clients, you need a website!
A website is also a great place to host everything else you own — all those lead magnets, PDFs, and blogs that you use to share your expertise need to live somewhere! Giving them a home on your website is an added part of the client experience that feels seamless, special, and a reflection of your brand values.
After your website and social media feed, this is the first thing a serious client is going to see from you. Whether it’s a PDF or a page on your website, your pricing guide needs to look super well-branded and, most importantly, organized. This is not just a representation of your brand aesthetic, it’s a client’s first look at what it feels like to work with you.
Are you wordy or to the point? Will you anticipate their questions and make it easy to work with you? What does your process look like? It’s also where clients are going to go for all of their important questions, so making it easy to find details like payment schedules and inclusions will help a client make a decision to work with you faster.
This is the second thing your client will see and, just like your pricing guide, it needs to be on-brand and easy to read through. Don’t overlook this asset and assume that your service is sold by virtue of simply sending a proposal. This is where clients are faced with a huge decision — do they invest in you or not?
This is a great place to talk up your value, whether it’s through special perks of being a client, testimonials, or added care you put into your work. Even if you’re formatting proposals in a CRM like Honeybook or Dubsado, go the extra mile to customize your forms and make sure that your dashboard has your logo.
Do you have a standardized way of showing potential clients what kind of work you do and how happy your past clients are? This is a great place for a template. Come up with 2-3 text-based testimonial graphic templates that you can share on social media and 2-3 image-based templates that show off your actual work, like mockup graphics or PDFs, depending on your type of work.
Having templates at your disposal simplifies your workflow and ensures you’re actually sharing recent work with clients who are curious about what you do. Plus, having a consistent (and beautiful) way to show off your work lends an air of legitimacy, professionalism, and finesse to your work, making it easier for potential clients to jump onboard — which is what you want!
Do you have a freebie or opt-in resource on your website? Make sure it represents your brand by being both aesthetically on par with the rest of your online presence, AND make sure that it is easy to read and skim through. Don’t dismiss organization, navigability, and accessibility in anything you design, but especially if it’s one of the first touchpoints someone will have with you.
Potential clients will likely download your lead magnet just to see what sort of expertise you share and what your style is like. Creating something beautiful that can’t be read or doesn’t answer questions is frustrating, and the last thing you want to do is piss off a potential client before you have a rapport with them.
This is a big category, because it can include so much! For us, onboarding includes:
For a photographer, onboarding assets might include a guide on how to dress for a photo shoot. For a marketing coach, you might include a timeline or roadmap of what to expect. (P.S. we have these templates in the shop.)
Don’t overthink this one. It doesn’t have to be fancy — even though we’re a big fan of whipping up custom boxes and gifts for clients). It does, however, have to be clear and concise, and make your client excited to work with you. Your onboarding materials should look like your service-based brand and give folks a taste of what it’s like to work with you.
Like we mentioned at the beginning, your 1:1 client work or client services require you to do a lot in a day. You can cut down on the time involved with wooing new clients, onboarding them, and even delivering their projects by considering ways your brand — and the designs you create for your brand — can do the work for you.
Hopefully, these design assets give you a starting point for cutting down on marketing, sales, and onboarding time. Of course, we know there are so many more parts to your work, which is why we have an entire shop of design templates that you can use for your business.
Whether you want to wow potential clients with a great social feed, pricing guide, and proposal, or you want to share a roadmap of what to expect from working with you, our DIY Compete Course Design Kits can help.
Don’t let the name fool you — you can use these templates to create virtually any asset that you need for your client-based business. Want to see how you can customize these graphic templates to grow your biz?