How to hire a designer

Hiring a designer can be intimidating, especially when you are not a creative mind exposed to designing anything with household-name tools that are essential to a designer’s life. However, the entire process can be less intimidating when you realize that it’s a matter of reviewing past work because any designer is only as good as their portfolio. This is true because designers have the liberty to create any project they can conceive without any real or burdensome costs. 



So their portfolio should be very telling of all their capabilities. Do not hire a designer based on their potential but on their past work. That is the key takeaway message.

Define the designed content that you need

To get started with a design project, you need to know exactly what you want to be designed by the freelance designer. Is it a design for printed (physical) material? is it going to be a digital design? For what purpose and for which target audience? 


Once you define the type of content you need, you need to break down the message you want to convey through the content. You need to figure out what you want to say verbatim and then consider how you can represent that message in the designed content. For example, you cannot fit an essay on a poster nor can you write a paragraph to be featured on a Google ad banner.


So you need to break down your message with clever copywriting to make it appropriate for the type of designed content you are looking to publish. Writing copy for a social media graphic is different from approaching the copy of a printed book.

Finding the designer

Here are the things you need to know before you start searching for a designer: 


1. The type of media you want to be designed

2. A sense of which design software will be required


Once you have those, you are ready to review, interview, and hire a designer. With those things earmarked, you are simply left with posting a job on freelancing platforms and then going through the interviews before making a hire. 


Here are things to keep in mind: 

  • Keep your job post short and simple. 


Your job post should include an eye-catching title. Including the name of the design software and the type of medium you want to publish. The post itself should describe exactly what you want the medium to convey to your target audience, which should also be defined in the job post. 


  • Your interviews should be about reviewing a freelancer’s past work


Reviewing a freelancer’s work should be done with a fine tooth comb during your live call (interview) with them. The purpose is to see how the freelancer will discuss approaching their past projects and your project. Do they sound like they have a clear plan? Do they sound like they have the experience to pull it off? What about them do you feel makes them superior to other candidates? 


  • Hire the freelancer with the clearest plan for your content


A freelancer should be able to articulate how they are going to produce your designed content. Not only that but they should be clear about everything in between. 


How will they involve you? How will they give you a chance to give feedback before committing too many resources along the journey? How will they make sure your content is engaging?


Working with a freelance designer

As you work with a freelance designer, you need to start by making sure they understand what your job post is asking for. Often, the job post that you will create will not necessarily reveal detailed instructions or thoughts on what you want from the freelance designer. 


This is why you should take the time to clarify the scope of work when you start working with a freelance designer. This entails clarifying the copy that will be included in the design and sharing samples from the internet that resemble what you want to be designed. 


Once you share those requirements, it’s your turn to sit back and review the drafts as they come. You need to be ready to provide highly detailed feedback (to the best of your ability) to help the designer make the necessary progress required.


A good designer will not need more than two rounds of feedback. So you should expect it to take less than that. You should make sure you are happy with your designed content before ending a project with a freelance designer. You need to do that because the project can go on and on. You need to be very transparent and forthcoming with your feedback, even when you think your idea or thought is too silly to share.


Where you can hire a freelance designer

Dollar Talent – Dollar Talent is the best if you are looking for affordable talent. 


Upwork – Upwork is the place to go if you are looking to review many freelancers before you pick someone with the right experience.


Fiverr – Fiverr works if you know exactly what you want and how you want it. That way you can browse Fiverr to see if there’s a freelancer who offers a precisely relevant gig to what you want. 


99Designs – This is where to look if you need highly specialized and experienced designers. 


Designjoy –  This is where to look if you need highly specialized and experienced designers.


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