4 ways to position yourself as an expert designer and strategist

June 18, 2019

Over the past seven years I have worked with fellow designers and strategists to grow their businesses through education and mentoring, I’ve seen one of the biggest pain points designers just like you struggle with the most is confidence.

As designers, we are always hyper-aware of the quality of work we’re putting out there and because of that we’re usually very critical of ourselves, too. More than the quality of design work we’re doing, I’ve noticed that many designers feel this deep seated sense of insecurity when it comes to calling themselves an expert.

Friend, I want us to have an honest conversation about what it means to be an expert designer and strategist.

4 ways to position yourself as an expert designer and strategist | b is for bonnie design #brandstrategy #branddesigner

Four ways to position yourself as an expert designer and strategist

So today, I want to share with you four ways you can position yourself so you can kick that imposter syndrome to the curb and start stepping into the truth that you are an expert strategist and designer!

In order to do this I believe we first have to understand that calling yourself an expert isn’t some title that’s reserved for only a select few designers in the industry.

I believe that everyone can be an expert in different things. You might be an expert in typography while your friend is an expert in strategy. Someone might be an expert in Showit website design while some other designer might be an expert in print design.

There are so many different ways we can excel and shine as designers and strategists, and so I believe we have to recognize just how brightly we shine on our own without looking to the left or right to see what others are doing.

When we get caught up in what other people are doing we shrink within ourselves even more because we begin to see how far they are going and we wonder if we will ever be able to reach that level, too.

If you are wanting to position yourself as more of an expert to your ideal client, you first have to believe that of yourself.

Now, we want our ideal client to view us as experts because that inspires a truly powerful sense of trust. It allows us to charge more for the work that we do and it allows us to really thoughtfully guide our clients through our design and strategy processes as they know they can depend on us since we know what we’re doing.

So if you’re wondering how you can make that happen, how to inspire that kind of confidence from your clients, and feel that way about yourself—keep reading for four ways to position yourself as an expert.

#1 — VALIDATE PAIN POINTS

The first way to position yourself as an expert is to validate where your ideal client is struggling.

When your ideal client comes to your website or they stumble across your work on social media, you have such a great opportunity to let them know you see them. You see where they are currently, where they’re struggling, and what is standing in their way of achieving success.

And when you do that and are able to intimately know your ideal client to the point where you can see their biggest pain point standing in their way of achieving success, then that inspires immediately a sense of confidence in their mind.

They see you not only understand where they are or even who they are, but they see exactly that you know how to help them navigate through this pain point.

If you can paint a picture while letting them know you can validate their fears or struggles, that immediately begins to inspire a sense of trust that lets them really take you seriously and captures your attention so they listen up.

#2 — TRANSFORMATION IS POSSIBLE

The second way you can position yourself as an expert is by building on step number one—show them that transformation is possible.

When someone comes to your website or when you’re chatting with them on a sales call, it’s not enough to just identify their pain points and leave it at that. Right? We have to show them that we understand where they are struggling, but we also know the way out.

I want you to be able to guide your potential clients through a conversation that shows them the kind of transformation that you can deliver for them.

So if they come to you and they are struggling with a brand that no longer feels or sounds like them or they are struggling with a visual identity that positions them as a pro in their industry, let them know that you can transform the way they feel about their brand and the way their ideal clients perceive their brand by crafting an intentional visual identity that positions them in the right way.

If you can really paint that picture of the transformation—whether that is tangible, emotional or even mental—that you can deliver for your client they are going to feel so much confidence in their decision to hire you.

#3 — LEVERAGE RESULTS

The third way is to leverage results that speak for themselves.

If you’re able to highlight the kind of transformation you can provide your clients through your design work I want you to take it one step further and highlight results that really do the heavy lifting for you.

If you have had a past client that you helped take them from the land of pain points into the land of transformation and they were able to go from feeling all the negative feels about their brand to now feeling confident in their ability to market themselves beautifully through their visual brand—that is a glowing testimonial that I want you to shout from the rooftops! Post it on social media, hIghlight it as an Instagram caption, leverage that transformation on your website, include it in a blog post where you’re introducing their brand reveal. Let those results that show just how your clients have benefitted when they chose to work with you do the heavy lifting for you and inspire that trust and confidence from your potential clients.

A valuable thing around having those testimonials on your website or other channels stems from inspiring valuable social proof. You’re letting peers influence peers. You’re letting past clients influence potential clients by letting them see just how your past client experienced success with how they were able to grow because they hired you.

#4 – TAKE YOURSELF SERIOUSLY

The fourth way to set yourself up as an expert is to take yourself seriously.

The way that you view and carry yourself directly influences and informs the way that your clients will view you and the way they will respond and respect you.

So if you truly do not view yourself as an expert and you hesitate to address or carry yourself in that way, then your client is going to see you as a self conscious and easily intimidated designer and that is not a series of character traits that inspires confidence or makes someone feel comfortable in dropping a serious investment to work with you.

So friend, if you’re wanting to position yourself as an expert designer and strategist you’ve got to take yourself seriously.

HOW TO SET YOURSELF AS AN EXPERT AND TRIPLE YOUR INCOME

You’ve got to believe that you know what you’re talking about and allow that confidence to pour out of you whenever you’re connecting with potential clients online, in person or even just through a sales call.

Now friend, if you’re dreaming of scaling your income without adding more to your already overflowing plate, then tune into the totally free training below!

I’m going to guide you through “How to Triple your Income as a Designer without Taking on More Branding Clients” and I would love to see you there.

In this webinar you’re going to learn:

  • The #1 secret to dramatically increase your income without working crazy hours or taking on hundreds of clients.
  • How to transform your client education process in order to maximize results and minimize busy work
  • And the key to getting out in front of your dream branding clients without hustling to be seen.

Raise all the praise hands emojis for that, my friend!

HOW DO I KNOW IF THIS FREE CLASS IS FOR ME?

✨You are working long hours and are only inching the needle forward on your goals

✨You have a big, dreamy revenue goal in your head, but need guidance on how to make that amount of income land in your bank account

✨You love the *idea* of positioning yourself as an expert designer and strategist but you’re not quite sure where to start

✨You feel like you miss out on gaining a new client every time you step away from your laptop

Register for the free training!

4 ways to position yourself as an expert designer and strategist | b is for bonnie design #brandstrategy #branddesigner

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I'm Bonnie -- a designer, brand designer + strategist, writer, wife, and pet parent to the most rambunctious golden retriever this side of the Mason-Dixon! I'm passionate about building authentic brands, encouraging small business owners to chase their dreams, and spreading joy through design. It's a delight to have you here, lovely! Grab a cup of coffee, pull up a comfy chair and stay a while, won't you?

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