Trying to avoid a potential client fiasco but he/she can't take a hint? Sometimes ignoring calls and emails just won't be enough. Don't panic. Take a deep breath and try out these client break up tips!
1 | Market yourself poorly.
If a client requests to see samples of your work, show them the pieces that didn't make your portfolio. If he/she likes your worst work, then induce doubt about your skills as a designer. "Well, I prefer to use programs like Paint and even Microsoft Word! What is this 'Photo Shop' you speak of?"
2 | Give the client a quote that's out of his/her budget.
The going rate for designers can be up to $75/hr - $100/hr. Many designers even charge after a certain amount of drafts are exceeded. If he/she is willing to pay, take this time to evaluate: Is dealing with this problem client really worth the extra money?
3 | If not, require a 50-75% deposit before starting the project.
If the client is a real troublemaker, then ask for full payment up front. If the client is willing to comply, ask yourself again, "Is this really worth it?" (See "Bad Client Behavior Profiles" below.*)
4 | Tell the client that you're booked solid, even if you aren't.
If he/she asks when you'll be able to take on new clients, pick any date in the far, far future. As far as excuses go, get creative. "I'm actually working on a big project right now. I can't talk about it but trust me, it's gonna be HUGE."
5 | Be honest.
Tell the client that you're just not that into them. "You deserve someone who's passionate about your project. *whispers* You deserve better."
Yes, fellow designers, you deserve quality clients that make you remember why you decided to become a designer. Don't feel bad when you know you have to walk away. Your sanity and creativity always come first.
*Here are a few Bad Client Behavior Profiles to look out for during your evaluation:
- The Wanderer - An indecisive client that can't give you a clear idea of what they want.
- Bargain Hunter - A client that talks down the cost and still tries to get more than what they paid for.
- The Critic - A picky client that is never satisfied and endlessly seeks out problems.
- The Brainiac - A client that is blinded by intellect and sometimes arrogance.
- Control Freak - A client that doesn't trust you as a designer and restricts the potential of an idea.
- Escape Artist - A flaky client that can't commit to a collaboration and often loses touch.
Stay tuned to learn more about the difference between good vs. bad clients and how to handle bad clients when you're in too deep.