AMA: Brian Hoff

over 5 years ago from Brian Hoff, Creative Director @ Brian Hoff Design, Inc.

  • George Bartz, over 5 years ago

    Hi Brian,

    Thanks for taking the time to do this AMA. Is there anything that you wish you knew before going out on your own? Would you have done anything differently or is it all one big learning process? I've been flirting with the idea of starting my own freelance gig but am hesitant to leave the stability of my 9-5.

    -gb

    0 points
    • Brian Hoff, over 5 years ago

      Glad to be here :) To answer your question, yes, tons! I pretty much fumbled and dug through the early years of operation. Reading design books and those blogs I've admired helped tremendously, however, ultimately it comes down to what works best for you. Pricing was a big learning experience for me. I start with a low hourly rate. That wasn't sustainable. I tried set prices. Things got out of hand with revisions. I tried set rate with 'x' amount of versions. That sucked because I could show 50 vesrions and 20 they'd like and 20 they'd dismiss (and would always pick the worst of the 50 of course! LOL) Now I'm on a set deliverable over a defined timeframe. That seems to be the ticket. This way I can map out milestones and adhere to the price / their budget.

      That's just one of many examples. But you're right. It's one big learning process. And that's ok. Eight years into it and I'm still refining and changing my design process and business practices. Learning how to talk to clients is huge though. I feel like it's the most important element to business of design at the end of the day. Being confident, yet friendly. Stern, yet allowing. Honest and exceeding expectations. If you can manage the client, it's easier to manage the project. :)

      1 point
      • George Bartz, over 5 years ago

        Thanks for the reply Brian. Some of those situations sound all too familiar and I think you said it best, "Learning how to talk to clients is huge though. I feel like it's the most important element to business of design at the end of the day." There is no business without clients!

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