If you’re going to hire an independent designer to help your business with graphic design, web design or logo work, you should understand the difference between a “Basement Guy” and a “Freelancer”.
We all know a “Basement Guy” (I use the term interchangeably for both sexes). They’re the guy or gal that works from home and can help you with social media, graphic design, web design, or just about anything else. And they can do it for dirt cheap—after all, they don’t have the overhead that comes with staff and offices. In most cases, the Basement Guy has a primary job that pays the bills, and provides these other services on the evenings and weekends to make some extra money.
One Tiny Thing Makes All the Difference
A Freelancer also works in the same environment, providing the same services… but there is one extremely important difference: Career Focus. A freelancer is somebody who has a true passion for what they are doing, are talented at it, and are prepared to stick around for the long haul. Most freelancers often pursue their home-based business on a full-time basis, focusing all of their energies on their work. Some dream of one day opening a commercial office, but some prefer the freedom and comfort of working from home. Either way, they treat their business seriously and their clients professionally.
Plenty of Escape Routes
Where a Freelancer is running a business, a Basement Guy is just bringing in some extra cash. The Basement Guy may not have the necessary skills or even motivation to finish your project and do a great job. But most of all, the biggest risk with Basement Guys is they tend to disappear. They move, get jobs, go back to school, have kids or whatever, and sooner or later your calls and emails aren’t being returned. Just pray you don’t have a business that depends on them for ongoing support and services… because you’ll be left in the dark wondering what happened (many clients have landed on our doorstep for this reason.)
So if you’re going to hire an independent designer, and continuity of service is important to you, be sure you’re working with a Freelancer. In my experience, true Freelancers are far and few between, but when you find a good one, they can be golden.