Who Is Your Freelance?
There are a lot of creatives out there these days. Have a look around Elance.com, or Guru.com – these sites are packed with guys who will happily design your site or logo, or write your copy. Some of them promise the earth for very low prices, and while its true that the increased competition that the internet has permitted has driven the price of creativity down in recent years, the old rule still holds good:
You Get What You Pay For
There it is, in nice big letters. It’s not just ‘the old rule’. It’s ‘THE old rule’. It’s the law of nature Newton forgot to write down. It’s the eleventh commandment that didn’t fit on the stone tablets. It’s often found in other permutations: ‘there’s no such thing as a free lunch’, and – my personal favorite – ‘if you pay peanuts, you get monkeys’.
And boy, are there a lot of monkeys out there. A client recently came to us for a redesign of her logo. Her original had been commissioned from an Elance provider who offered to do it for $100.
$100. Pretty good price for a corporate logo, huh? Let’s consider some of the stages in logo design, and how long they take.
· Talking to the client, focussing on ideas, looking at the client’s competition. Four to five hours, minimum. Usually twice that.
· Producing drafts – all good designers come up with a number of ideas and let a client choose their favorite. Five to six hours, minimum
· Taking client feedback. An hour or two.
· Producing the final design in Adobe Illustrator (for vector graphics) and/or Photoshop (for bitmaps). Three to four hours, minimum.
· Sorting out paperwork and billing, writing mail, and other miscellaneous tasks related to the project. Two hours, minimum.
So the shortest possible time in which it’s possible to produce a professional logo is around fifteen hours. Mr Hundred Dollars was working for $6.66 per hour – an appropriate wage for the Designer From Hell.
No pro in the world works for that amount. Mr Hundred Dollars falls into one of the following categories:
· A complete amateur – probably a kid – who knows a little about Photoshop and knocks off some designs his mom thinks are cute.
· A crook that puts together logos in under an hour from clipart or dingbat fonts.
· Someone in Asia for whom $6 is a reasonable wage. It is possible to find great Asian providers, especially in India. But you should bear in mind two things: first, are they culturally sensitive to the needs of a western market? Second, why aren’t they making more in their home country? India has a huge corporate market and lots of great agencies and studios – a talented creative can make as much in New Delhi or Mumbai as he can in London or New York.
Our client’s Mr Hundred Dollars fell into the second category, and delivered a logo stuck together from Dingbats. We re-did the job properly. Why not save your money and appoint the right design team first time around? Give the job to someone who will:
· Show you a detailed portfolio of work
· Can provide verifiable references from satisfied customers
· Set out in advance exactly how s/he intends to work with you and how long s/he will spend on the project
· Has a website
· Will talk to you on the phone
5webdesign, of course, are happy to do all these things. Why not get in touch to discuss your project?