Blog posts on creative business & entrepreneurship

It’s all about who you know

It’s all about who you know

In some countries where corruption abounds, using personal connections to build career opportunities is seen as unethical, because it's so often abused. However, connections are not only a perfectly valid tool, they're “the way of the world”. Here's a few stories on the role of personal connections in my career, and some tips to ethically use them to your advantage. Read more...

Hyperfocused vs. holistic brand: which one is better for you?

Hyperfocused vs. holistic brand: which one is better for you?

When it comes to the very highest level of branding and marketing approaches, currently I see two currents: “Be focused” or “Be all of who you are”. Which one should you adopt? It’s not a decision anyone else can make for you. What I can do is give you pros and cons for both to help you make the right choice—so let's do that. Read more...

How to avoid getting ripped off by a logo designer

How to avoid getting ripped off by a logo designer

Unethical freelancers are the worst, and it stings even more when those rotten apples are my own colleagues. I want to make their job of cheating you harder, and your job of finding great freelancers online easier. Here’s what you can do to protect yourself from being taken advantage of. Read more...

8 painful lessons from my most horrible client experience

8 painful lessons from my most horrible client experience

Last year, I’ve had the most awful “client from Hell” experience in my 12 years as a professional designer. While the experience itself was horrible, the things that came out of it made my business so much better. Here are the lessons that inspired my transformation toward the next level of professionalism. Read more...

Stop chasing clients: 4 effective alternatives to cold pitching

Stop chasing clients: 4 effective alternatives to cold pitching

If you've found yourself in a situation without clients and many bills to pay, you might get tempted to start pitching your services to people who haven't heard about you yet. Pitching is not fun, it puts you in an inferior position, and the effectiveness can be hit or miss. Here's what I recommend instead. Read more...

Why basing your brand strategy on your “ideal client” is wrong

Why basing your brand strategy on your “ideal client” is wrong

Ideal clients: those mythical creatures all brand strategists talk about. Who are they? How do you find them? How do you charm them so they become your real, not just ideal clients? Maybe those aren't the first questions you should be asking yourself. In fact, by starting your branding strategy with your ideal clients, you might run into some traps. Read more...

The 5 Types Of Bad Clients & How To Repel Them

The 5 Types Of Bad Clients & How To Repel Them

Service businesses can’t afford to work with the wrong kinds of clients. We spend so much time immersed in the projects and client communication, and constantly taking on people who are a poor fit will destroy your business. Here are practical ways to use your marketing to repel the wrong clients from your business. Read more...

Who the Hell needs “branding”? Here’s how to get noticed, your way.

Who the Hell needs “branding”? Here’s how to get noticed, your way.

I write a lot about branding on this blog, but I don’t blame you at all if you’re getting sick and tired of hearing this word all the time. Let’s try something different today instead. Let’s drop all pretense of there being any system or formula that you need to know or follow in order to succeed in business. Let’s deconstruct “branding”. Read more...

What is a unique value proposition & how to create one

What is a unique value proposition & how to create one

Your unique value proposition is a statement of how your business solves the customer’s problem in a unique way – what differentiates your business from thousands of others in the world who are attempting to do the same. Finding it may be one of the most challenging aspects of branding and marketing. In this post, I offer tips on how to do that. Read more...

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