As the head of marketing of your company, you have one purpose: to deliver qualified leads to the sales team and eventually, to drive revenue. This is not easy because you have limited budget and time as well as your competition to stand out from.
Part of your success comes from hiring the right people for your team. One of these people are designers to produce brand visuals for ongoing advertisements, videos and social media images.
Hiring in-house is always ideal. You may already have one, but he or she is always piled with too much work, your designer is on the brink of burnout with no bandwidth left to do more. You’ve ran out of budget to hire another designer.
Then you start looking for the best freelancer in town. Every time you need a graphic done you have to request for quote and negotiate for a good price. The best designer is out of your budget, and some of the less expensive ones couldn’t sustain or turn out to be unreliable. You are dead-tired with the process.
Agencies have highly talented designers, but they are not cheap and revisions are limited to three rounds, after which you’ll have to pay.
With MeetAnders, you pay one fixed monthly fee of US497 or SG688 for a team of two. You are assigned one manager to correspond with you and a designer solely to design everything for you. Pay one fee and request for as many designs and revisions as you want, cancel anytime, no extra fees.
You may find that being able to request for as many designs and revisions from us sounds too good to be true. It is natural for anyone to think so.
So far, we’ve encountered three groups of people, one group thought “yucks, these people are out to scam us”. The second group is comfortable working with 3 rounds of changes and paying more if required. While the third group wants to try something different and works with us.
After receiving tons of feedback from existing customers as well as worried folks about us providing “unlimited” design support, we’ve decided to document about how the actual process works.
In this article, I will list out all worries and address each of them as detailed as possible.
Worry#1: Quality work
Worry#2: Delivery speed or turnaround time
Worry#3: Designer burnout
Worry#4: Are designers properly paid?
Worry#5: Clients asking for too many changes
Worry #1: Quality work
You may be wondering, what kind of designs will our designers create at such an affordable price. In short, this service provides production-level designs rather than high-level strategic ones.
We have been operating for 4 years and those who use us usually need regular artwork for things like Facebook ads, resizing of ads, images for email, social media, lead magnets, video graphics, and constant tweaking of their designs. If you are expecting for your designers to get creative and churn out something super original, like an award-winning advertisement, we are not the ones you are looking for.
Our designers are talented in their own way and love to create designs for customers who already know the end result of the deliverable. Rather than suggesting ideas, we require you to provide your own samples of what you want and those that you don’t want us to reference.
We align designs to your brand by asking brand-related questions and designing according to your brand guide and instructions. I must say we don’t do deep detective research on your history and competitors, as those require a different set of expertise. Our research is just sufficient to base on your instructions and brand guide to keep turnaround time fast.
If you don’t have an existing brand guide, we create that for you as part of the package and base your designs on that.
We see “quality” as doing our best and we have a system to do the quality checks (more of how it works below). However, standard-wise, if you need brand design strategy like what Chris Do’s team from Blind does, we are not the right fit.
If you are working with an agency and need designers to help change text and designs to test your campaigns, rather than pay too much for those changes, you may come to us to do that. Companies also use us to adapt existing designs created by their agencies. You can engage us to be your design support and keep your budget low.
Worry #2: Delivery speed or turnaround time
For timeline, currently we don’t have a guarantee, but we promise to work as fast as we can. Each designer works on one task at a time.
So far we have always been able to deliver within 3 days max. A lot depends on the scope. If you need one FB ad design, with clear instructions and content all given, we can deliver as fast as one day later or same day. If you need a 30 page lead magnet, it may take 3 days.
For revisions, similarly, that depends on how much revisions you need. Say you would like to change a letter “T” to “S”, that should be done on the same day. While if you need to change the whole design, that may take a day up to 3 days, delivered as and when complete.
With regards to super last minute changes, we have an add-on where you can purchase urgent design requests, we call that “Fast Forward”, What happens here is, your request will be expedited to the top of the queue. The speed of completion will also depend on the type of change you are requesting for, just rest assured it’s being tended to right away.
Worry #3: Designer burnout
Operation wise, we have a senior or supervisor who corresponds with the attached customer to make sure all instructions are clear, he/she will come up with the concept and work with the designer to churn it out.
Oh yay! So you have a team of two supporting you instead of just one designer.
In this case, your designer gets to do what he/she loves to do, without having to respond to emails or spend time doing deep research. Both supervisor and designer work hand-in-hand as a team to create a design.
Once work is done, the supervisor takes over to do the quality checks and delivers to the customer. This system ensures requirements are met and designer does not get burnt out with too much work.
For the number of clients, each designer will work with maximum 9 clients. So far each has been working with 6, and we allocate according to client’s needs, style, brand and working relationship.
You can say it’s a bit like a freelance model, just that with us, you have a team of freelancers to rely on at an intern rate. The advantage to both designers and clients is that if any designer has to go on sick leave etc, we have another designer to take over, business goes on as usual.
We also have a supervisor tag to 2 designers and the supervisor will make sure not to overload any designer and balance the work allocation. Designers can go on leave knowing the work is taken care of, and clients will still receive the work as per request.
Worry #4: Are designers properly paid?
At the moment our headquarters is in Singapore and we engage remote designers from the Philippines. All designers from Philippines who join us will be paid from about US800 per month.
Supervisors are paid more minimally at US1000 per month for now. We do frequent trainings on improving their design craft as well as on personal development and self-improvement. These are included as paid sessions as well.
For now there’s no overtime because we believe they have to have their own time after work hours. So far our open office hours are Mondays to Fridays 9AM to 6PM Singapore time. We don’t encourage them to stay after 6PM, but they sometimes do out of their own will, and we will pay them those extra hours.
In future, we are looking to work with designers from other countries, to provide them with more jobs and also to give customers round the clock support. We would also like to increase their pay progressively in time to come as we grow.
We also have a progression plan in place where we monitor designers’ performance, overall as a designer, team player and leader of their team. Good performance will be rewarded with bonuses like pay raise, day-offs and more perks as a form of recognition and encouragement.
Worry #5: Clients asking for too many changes
Understand this is not anyone’s fault. Some of our clients need to test their designs to churn out reports on what’s working well in their marketing campaigns. Hence, they tend to ask for lots of changes all the time. It may seem overwhelming, but this is a usual workflow for each designer.
Here’s a typical workflow:
One client sends the design brief to his designer. His designer creates at least two options, deliver to the client. Next, the client comes back to his designer with changes, on top of that, he is tasked to create another two versions with different colour options and he creates and delivers. Then client comes back to him again to ask for another two options with different fonts. This goes on every other day.
There is no issue at all when clients are asking for too many changes so long their time allows us to work on them one request at a time.
If clients need to work on more designs at one time, there’s no issue either. The client can opt for more designers. We have some clients who engaged as many as 3 designers with us. While Mike does the landing page design, Tim works on their FB Ads, etc and Jane works on the presentation deck all at the same time for one client every month.
That’s the advantage of working with us because we are growing a team to support one another to produce the best for you at the fastest speed possible.
How would you know for sure what I’m saying is true? Try us to find out!