One thing that can really make your design business stand out even more is when a part or all of your process is really unique in comparison to that of other designers out there. Presenting one logo solution to your clients certainly falls into that unique category, and Jamie Starcevich of Spruce Road is the first person (and one of the few) that I’ve seen do this exact thing.
Aside from owning this unique approach to branding, Jamie also has a lot of experiencing with working with a team of designers to outsource work to, which we know a lot of our listeners are curious about as they work to grow their business. So, today we thought it would be perfect to get Jamie on the podcast to share all of her secrets on both the one logo solution as well as working with a team!
Why Jamie started presenting just one logo concept
Her experience as a designer and at the studio she worked at led her to believe that there should be a better way to approach branding. Beforehand, she would send 2-3 options and would often experience her client wanting to mash up the different options, and while she felt she knew what was best she began to realize that this wasn’t the best way to go about the process with clients. Jamie also pointed out that there is some psychology that goes into decision making, and when you have too many options it’s just too difficult to make a decision.
The first time she tried this approach out was with her very first client she took through Spruce Road. She made things a lot more casual by not making a big deal about it to her client and instead just noting that it was a part of her process. The awesome outcome was that her client loved it, so she’s kept going since then.
The differences in her process this unique approach creates
She said there’s a lot less friction with her clients in taking the one logo solution approach. As a designer, you always want to do the best work, use the best supplies, and sometimes when the client comes back with a different choice there’s often a bit of a let down. Since she uses the one logo solution, Jamie feels the friction is totally gone, and that the process is a lot more enjoyable in the long run.
Her advice for those of you wanting to try this one solution approach
Jamie recommends to have confidence in yourself, especially if you’re feeling scared to try it. A lot of designers doubt that it’ll work, but she’s seen it work for a lot of her students, so she highly recommends to start there. Even if it doesn’t work out, it’s important to remember that it’s not that big of a deal. You can always go back to the drawing board and tweak the designs for your client.
Another thing to keep in mind is how you’re presenting the solution you’ve created. Take the time to schedule a call with your client, and then send them a link during the call to walk through it. Jamie shares that she actually doesn’t ask for any feedback during the call but instead focuses on explaining the rationale behind the design, which gives the client more time to get excited about what they’re seeing.
How Jamie knew it was the right time to start working with a team
She started Spruce Road in one January, and by September / October she had started outsourcing. Jamie shared that she actually got the idea from her accountant, as odd as that sounds, as he was suggesting that she spend more money through her business so she could get more of a tax write-off. Even though she wasn’t making a huge amount of money, she knew that she wanted to work with other designers through Spruce Road anyway, so she took the leap before she was ready.
Passing off design work to her team while keeping a hand in her project
Jamie said this is one of the biggest hesitancies she sees other designers have when it comes to outsourcing. The biggest takeaway she had for us here, though, is that she tries to hire designers that she doesn’t have to do a lot of overseeing for. While there’s nothing wrong with hiring a junior designer, she reached out to other designers that she admired to see if they wanted to work with her. Jamie shared that the designers she brings on are people she’d trust with her own rebrand, so she totally trusts them with the work they’re doing for her clients.
Her advice for those wanting to outsource their work
Her biggest tip would be to keep it as simple as possible. She’s found that’s easier to work with them on a per project basis instead of a lump sum of hours or an ongoing basis, especially if you’re just starting out. You may find that with a virtual assistant, for example, that you eventually have them working for you with a lump sum of hours. However, when you’re working with a fellow designer, try it out just for one project at a time to get used to doing the project management and just outsourcing your work, in general.
- If you’re going to test out the one logo solution, focus on the presentation. Schedule a call so you can really explain your decision making and remember to focus on feeling confident in your work.
- If you’re interested in working with a team, start with one person you admire on a per project basis. Don’t feel like you have to jump in head first with a full ongoing contract the very first time.
Learn more about Jamie
I’m Jamie, founder + creative director at Spruce Rd., and creator of the Share-worthy Design course for freelancers. I’m also mom to a little one, hiking enthusiast (walking around the park counts, right?!), and will never say no to cookies, tacos, or a Wes Anderson film.
I love coming alongside fellow freelance designers, and revealing my journey in freelancing and designing standout brands for our lovely clients.