Fellow designer, if you struggle with feeling 100% sure of yourself (especially when you’re chatting with potential clients), you are NOT alone! Throughout my 9+ years as an educator for fellow designers and strategists, I’ve often been asked: How do I position myself as an expert in my field? How can I provide more value and charge more for my services? I hear these questions ALL the time!
And honestly, friends, it all boils down to confidence.
As designers, we constantly feel the pressure of competing with other talented designers for client work. We’re already hyper-aware of our own skills (and shortcomings), and so many of us are constantly second-guessing our workflows, marketing strategies, and more. Because we can be oh-so critical of our own every move, many designers feel a deep sense of insecurity when it comes to calling themselves an expert.
So today, I want to have an open and honest conversation with you about what it means to truly be an expert designer and strategist.
Friend, whether you believe it or not, you CAN kick that imposter syndrome to the curb. Today, let’s discuss four things you can do to step into the truth that you are an expert at your craft.
Related: The brand strategy process that will position you as an expert designer and strategist (and let you triple your income!)
4 ways to position yourself as an expert designer and strategist
First, you must know that “expert” is not some title reserved for only a select few in the industry.
Everyone can be an expert in their own area. You might be the go-to gal for typography, while another designer specializes in strategy. Someone might be an expert in Showit website design, while another is an expert with Squarespace.
There are so many different ways we can excel in our own, unique ways as designers and strategists. Thus, we have to recognize just how brightly we shine on our own, without looking to others for constant validation. When we get caught up in what others are doing, we shrink within ourselves even more. We see how far they’re going, and we wonder if we will ever be able to reach that level ourselves.
If you want to position yourself as an expert to your ideal client, you first must believe it yourself.
When your ideal client views you as an expert they can depend on, a powerful sense of trust is inspired. This allows you to take charge of your work, guiding your clients through your unique processes with authority.
Now that we’ve established this ground rule, let’s dive into the four ways you can 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 across your work, no matter what platform it may be on, you have the opportunity to make them feel seen and understood, a chance to tell them that you see where they are and what struggles are standing in their way of achieving the success they dream about. Let them know that they are not alone, and assure them that there is a way to get through each and every one of their problems!
When you successfully communicate that you know your ideal client so intimately, to the point where you can see what’s standing in the way of their dreams, they immediately feel a connection to you. Finally, somebody that understands! And not only do you understand who they are, but also how to help them navigate through their deepest struggles. You hold all the answers they’ve been looking for!
#2 — TRANSFORMATION IS POSSIBLE
The second way to position yourself as an expert involves building on step number one by showing that transformation is possible.
When someone comes across your work, it’s not enough to just identify their pain points and leave it at that. Right?
You have to show them that you understand their struggles, and that you also know the way out. This is your chance to show your potential clients the kind of transformation you can deliver. This is a method that I teach in my totally free masterclass on how to triple your income without taking on more clients!
For example, if a potential client comes to you struggling with a brand that no longer represents them, it’s your job to communicate the solution you can provide by crafting an intentional, custom visual identity.
The more detailed a picture you can paint of the transformation you provide for your clients, the more confidence they will feel in their decision to hire you.
#3 — LEVERAGE RESULTS
The third way to position yourself as an expert is to leverage results that speak for themselves.
Instead of simply stating the kind of transformation you can provide your clients, let’s take it one step further by highlighting results from your past client work.
If you have a past client that you took from the land of pain points to now being able to confidently market themselves through their beautiful visual brand… friend, that is a glowing testimonial that I want you to shout from the rooftops! Post it on social media, talk about it on your website, write a blog post featuring their full brand reveal. Let those results explain how your clients benefit from their choice to work with you. Allow your past clients’ testimonials to do the heavy lifting for you, cultivating trust and confidence with potential leads.
Powerful testimonials create social proof, which is absolutely invaluable for your business. This lets your past clients influence potential clients by showing the transformation they’ve experienced from their decision to hire you.
#4 – TAKE YOURSELF SERIOUSLY
The fourth way to position yourself as an expert is to take yourself seriously.
The way that you view yourself directly influences the way potential clients will view you. Similarly, the way that you carry yourself directly influences the degree to which potential clients will respect you.
If you truly do not view yourself as an expert and you hesitate to address yourself as one, your client will be far less likely to feel comfortable hiring you. If they see you as self-conscious and hesitant, they’re not too likely to believe in the results you provide.
So, friend, if you’re wanting to position yourself as an expert designer and strategist, you’ve got to shift your mindset and truly believe that you are the expert you know yourself to be. I know how easy it is to fall into the trap of imposter syndrome, but friend, don’t listen to it! You know what you’re doing, even if some pesky insecurity tells you otherwise. Own that, and own it confidently. I promise it will transform both your business and your life.
Want to dive even deeper? In my signature course, The Brand Strategy School, I teach designers how to refine their processes so they can confidently step into the role of ‘expert’. For more info on the course, head here!
HOW TO POSITION YOURSELF AS AN EXPERT SO YOU CAN TRIPLE YOUR INCOME
Each and every point discussed today boils down to one thing: confidence. You must cultivate confidence within yourself, and allow that confidence to pour out of you whenever and wherever you connect with potential clients.
Now, friend, if you’re dreaming of positioning yourself as an expert designer and strategist, then let me introduce you to my totally free Netflix-style training: How to Triple your Income as a Designer without Taking on More Branding Clients.
After this webinar, you’ll be able to:
- Charge more for your services so you can experience consistent income without working crazy hours or taking on hundreds of clients.
- Kick imposter syndrome to the curb and position yourself as the expert your branding clients are searching for.
- Get out in front of your ideal clients without hustling to be seen online.
Raise all the praise hands emojis for that, my friend!
HOW DO I KNOW IF THIS FREE CLASS IS FOR ME?
✨You’re working long hours and 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.
✨It feels like you miss out on gaining a new client every time you step away from your laptop.
Friend, if this sounds like you, then I encourage you to register for this entirely FREE training. I can’t wait to see you there!