Your Website must work for you
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Your Website must work for you

I’m a creative and I need all the impressions I send out to look fine. Every my website does that for me. I can’t be standing on every corner asking every client if they want to look at my art. That’s why I send my sites out to pimp my work for me.

Make Your Websites work for you

A long time ago I either had to spend a fortune on overnight freight fees or I had to settle for faxing a black and white version of my work to my clients, and hope their fax machine was working right. To work with the clients in my local district, I had to carry around large portfolios and print expensive color samples or shoot color slides. Now I just tell each and every client to check out my sites. They’re something to see, too. I make sure they get to see it all. I want to them to see enough to want to date my art. Site sells.

You haven’t sites working for you? What self-respecting businessman haven’t sites? Any site is better than nothing. Don’t wait for that perfect beauty; just get something on the Net that sells your work. You can always make it better later. However bad sites out on the Net don’t help anyone.

But, I don’t want my sites looking too slick for their own good. Each of my sites shows only the assets that are relevant to their aims. My storyboard site shows off great boards and credits. My animation site reveals hot animations. My writing site titillates* you with surgically enhanced words.

Since anything is possible these days, it’s easy to dress your sites in the latest hot effect or animation. However, be aware of what you are selling. Focus on your product and what your clients are looking for. I’m not saying you need to have a plain-Jane, just don’t distract your clients with things that don’t matter.

I’ve seen sites who like to Flash. They Flash animations, they Flash their designs, they hold their pages together with Flash buttons. But most of those sites don’t offer Flash services. Flash is great, but use it to support your sites, not to confuse your clients. There are also other issues with Flashing which many creatives don’t consider when they are dressing their promotional sites.Flashsites often do not have page links that can be forwarded. This happens when the pages and transitions are part of one Flash file and not uploaded as separate HTML pages. It may not seem like a big deal to you until you can’t send a link to a specific page on your to one of your clients.

How it works

I’ve also seen sites that try to be too slick for their own good. They use ultra-cool terms for their links that no one understands. If someone doesn’t understand one of your links, they won’t click on it. The term samples may be boring, but sometimes the classic fishnet hose still work.Try not to let your clients get lost. You want them to find their way back to check out more of your proposals. Too often pages in websites have no links back to the main page. Better yet, break your site into sections and have links to every section on every page.

I make sure each of my sites have what they need to promote my work. Every page can be printed and each print contains my contact information. Every sample should print with your name and phone number on it. You never know how your work is going to be passed around or shared and you always want your clients to be able to get a hold of you.

Each site includes not only samples, but anything else that will promote my services. You should have pages for credits, awards, list of services, press clippings, anything that makes you special. My site are also fast. I can be talking to a client on the phone and guide him to the samples on my site and score before he hangs up.

What is the price

Now you may be asking how much all this is going to be cost. First of all, paying for a month of hosting a website is cheaper than mailing out one overnight package. The cost goes down even more when it helps you land more clients. How much is a new client worth to you?

Some services even offer free hosting and most hosting services have free templates and wizards to help you design your site. Beyond hosting, there are a number of sites that also act as free ads for artists and creatives. There are a few sites which offer free online portfolios for artists. Now you’re looking mighty fine!** But you’re going to be lonely on that corner unless you tell your clients where to find your sites.

The first thing you need to do is make sure everything you send out or print has your contact information and website addresses on it. This includes every piece of art, every letter, every e-mail, business card, flyer, poster, advertisement and invoice. You could even list your sites at the end of any articles you write.

Some tricks for your website

A great trick is to also leave your website address on your answering machine or voice mail. Let your clients check out your goods while they are waiting to hear back from you. Most clients use search engines when they are looking for great creative work and a fun time. You should submit your site to any search engines you wish to be found on.

You should also trade links with other sites that share your fetishes. You can get many links on other sites by offering to place their links on your site. Make it easy for clients to find you. If you want more clients, you have to dress your site up, make it sweet and easy for your clients and pimp it so everyone can find it.

* Titillate = щекотать; приятно возбуждать. (such lines titillated them = такие строки щекотали им нервы)

** mighty fine = всё тип-топ!

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