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Managing project inquiries: from crickets to inbox overwhelm

As a designer, the success of your business is heavily determined by how well you can turn leads into client project bookings.

But before you can book a new project in your calendar, you need to attract leads who love your work, appreciate your creative process, and can’t wait to collaborate with you.

For some of you, trying to convince a client lead that you are the right partner for them already feels like an uphill battle.

You’re doing what you can to share your story and show off your design chops on your website, but the leads aren’t exactly pouring in. They aren’t even trickling in right now.

Then you find yourself having to hustle to post on social media every day, attend business networking events so you can pass out your business cards, and take on any small project that comes your way.

Was this what I signed up for?! Welcome to feast or famine mode, friends.

I’ve been there before, and trust me, it’s not a fun place to be.

But maybe you have the opposite problem. Do you find yourself spending countless hours on free consulting calls with clients who can’t afford your services, try to discount your work, or aren’t ready to make a commitment?

If your email inbox is full but your project calendar isn’t, you could be suffering from what I call “inquiry fatigue”.

It usually happens when you are receiving more project inquiries than usual, which seems great at a first glance, but none of them are right for you.

Instead of wasting your energy on attracting more leads, you waste your energy trying to sift through the wrong ones. Something’s gotta give!

In this stage, burned-out designers often work with clients who don’t fit their ideal client profile or take on projects that won’t help them build an intentional design portfolio.

There has to be a healthy in-between, right?

That’s what I want to talk about in this new series on how to accept project inquiries that help you build the freelance business you’ve been dreaming of.

There are a lot of tactics, strategies, and factors that go into attracting clients, but in this series,  I wanted to focus on how to respond in various seasons of your business.

We all go through them — zero inquiries, too many good inquiries, and too many “not the right fit” inquiries.

No matter how long you’ve been in business, your project inquiry stream will ebb and flow.

The best way to navigate these ever-evolving seasons is to know when they are coming and have a game plan that outlines what to do when they happen.

In the next few weeks, we’ll talk about each of these seasons and how you can prepare for them. Get a pen and paper ready because it’s about to get GOOD!

I’ll meet you here again next week, same place and time.

Can’t wait to get started,


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Managing project inquiries | Spruce Rd. Design | There are a lot of tactics, strategies, and factors that go into attracting clients for your freelance design business, but in this series, I wanted to focus on how to respond in various seasons of yo…


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