How To Increase Your Clients Budget

01 Feb 2024

5 minute read


I have spent years refining my process and learning from doing!!!... But this is something I truly wish I had started to do earlier in my career!

I grew my agency in the early years by being an order taker, I said yes to everything without ever questioning why my client wanted the work they were asking for... I was basically a design vending machine.

Now, when growing from nothing, you have to do that! At that stage of your career you are basically in survival mode and any work that comes in you don't have the need, or experience, to question it's necessity.

My process used to look a little like this;

  • Client asked for a logo

  • I send price

  • They say yes or no

  • bing bang bosh.... done.

This worked for a while but I found that the work I was doing did not really solve any REAL problem or TRULY help my client. Yes they ended up with a cool new logo but I was not adding any long lasting value to them... I was not really solving a problem, as much as a plaster isn't going to heal a broken leg.


If I wanted to truly bring value, through my skillset, to my clients... I had to understand the problem that my work was fixing.

I know many of you may be reading this and thinking "Well James, some people just want a logo!!" and I am not going to challenge your thoughts there, as you are right.

But the argument is this… Will "just a logo" really help fix your clients problems? Are you happy creating for the sake of creating? or do you want your work and effort to guarantee positive results?

Here is a simple visualization of my onboarding process now:

By giving your prices upfront you are not diagnosing any real issues that your clients might be having! They may be struggling with building an audience, and they think a new logo will fix it. They may be struggling to convert sales on their website, and they think a new logo will fix it.

When we ask questions and diagnose the real problems they are having we are able to generate more work for ourselves and build real value into our clients brand - and our services.

This is why now I ALWAYS have a 20 minute call with my potential clients before sharing any prices... but to clarify the leads I am pointing them to my form on my website that lets me know whether they are serious or not... and more importantly have a workable budget.

On the call I am diving deep into their needs and being curious;

  • Why do you need a new logo?

  • Why do you need to re-design your logo?

  • Where will the logo be used?

  • How will it help your business?

  • What are you looking to use it for in the future?

By asking these types of questions I may find out that they need a new brand identity as they are launching a new product in 6 months time! This is when I realize that as well as the new identity they will need packaging, event booth artwork, marketing strategy for product launch, social media content strategy, email marketing and a developed e-commerce store etc, etc.

If I had just sent them my prices for "just a logo" before even jumping on a call with them I would have lost all this extra work... and money.

This takes practice, knowledge and experience to execute - things that took me a long time to acquire (and I am still learning) - so don’t panic if this process makes you feel uncomfortable. Keep rocking it the way you are until you reach a point where you feel you need to change your tactics.

Remember that you should always be refining your process and finding ways to bring value to your clients - this in turn will bring you more self worth and help you realise your importance to the world.

I’m always here to help you be the best designer you can.

Sometimes we need an extra bit of help when it comes to navigating the client relationship, so I’ve created a number of tools to help you along the way.

The Client Process from Hi to Bye - this will help you navigate those client relationships. I’ll show you how we run things here at The Made By James and it’s totally free!

The Client Questionnaire Bundles - Now this will help you step up your game and really get to know what your client wants!

If you struggle with what exactly to ask your clients and how to get the information you need from them to make their dreams a reality - this is the tool for you mate!

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