Networking and Finding Clients: Interview with Megan Hazel Designs
Welcome back to the Introvert’s Bubble Podcast. I am pleased to introduce you to Megan , the owner and graphic designer at Megan Hazel Designs. We will be chatting about how Megan built a full-time with business in a YEAR, how she networks and finds clients, and (most importantly to us!) the benefits of working alone.
Even though Megan majored in media and broadcasting in college, she “kind-of” went to school for graphic design, too. She quickly fell in love with the art, so she decided to leave her post-college job at a coffee shop to hustle-hard in creating logos and small designs for new businesses.
Since she was starting from scratch, Megan had to work hard to build from the ground-up. She did this by setting goals and persistently pushing herself…which is sometimes really hard when you are an introvert. I myself can relate to not always wanting to sell myself and talk to people all the time, but as a business owner, it is necessary!
Here is a peek into this week’s episode with an introverted business owner:
Streamline Your Work
Establish a consistent routine to communicate with customers. Answering emails, sending files, collecting questionnaires and other paperwork can often get lost in the shuffle! (General business tip: Using a project management system like Trello, Asana or Dubsado is a great way to keep things organized!)
Networking is really hard for introverts. Sometimes you really have to push myself to attend events (rather than watch Netflix, as Megan says), and that is so relatable for me! Networking events can happen several times a month, so compromise and pick one or two that are best for your business. For example, I always go to Tuesdays Together and Women in Podcasting. It works for me because there are only 10-20 people and they are a week apart. Note: I always find a trusted Uber driver to take me to and from events so I can have some quiet time to prepare before and unwind after.
You can also network online! Facebook groups are perfect for creatives, designers and people starting small businesses. Cruising Facebook groups will help you know when (and how) to sell yourself and when to leave a potential sale that doesn’t align with my business’ mission statement.
Determining who your ideal client is can work wonders in creating a consistent client-base. For example, Megan said her ideal client is a new business owner looking for a logo, t-shirt designs, brochure designs, etc. But it is hard to find out where these people actually hang out! You can usually tell in Facebook groups which ones are just starting out. From there, you can craft a message that isn’t salesy, but instead builds a relationship so you can find out if you are a good fit together.
Working with Newbies
Depending on your niche, the new business owners may not know the ins-and-outs of what they need. For example, copyright processes, trademark laws and getting them to understand why a professional is necessary. Communicating this information can be hard for an introvert, so directing them to a FAQ page on your website or having a “script” explaining all of the common queries is a great thing to have on hand.
Megan says that watching YouTube videos on how to start a business was a helpful practice when she first began her journey. She also is a fan of the book Business Boutique by Chrissy Wright.
Learning how another introvert is successful in her business is so inspiring to me, and I hope this episode with Megan has inspired other introverts (like you!) feel inspired to start on their freelance journey.