Why free pitching is bad for you as well as us.
I’m sure most of you are probably aware of the term ‘free pitching’, but to review it’s basically when a client asks a number of design studios to submit ideas for free, one studio’s ideas are chosen and they are then paid for the work. At first glance you may think well I can see why the design studios who don’t get paid are moaning, but it seems like a win win to me, I get all these ideas to chose from and I only have to pay for the one I like the best, happy days!
However I would like you to consider a few points that I believe show it’s not all good for you the client:
- The majority of these pitches are carried out on the basis of a short brief emailed or posted out to the studios, working from this it’s very unlikely that any of the studios can really get to heart of what’s required for your business running the risk that none of submitted ideas will hit the mark. The brief is an extremely important part of any design job and should be developed by the client and designer together so everyone agreed on a clear direction and end goal.
- If you’re potentially working for free inevitably your going to give that work less priority and devote less time to it then paid work, or in the case of larger studios give the work to more junior members, if this happens with all the pitchers again you’re going to get sub standard designs.
- When commissioning design, especially a new brand for your business it’s not like buying a new kettle, you’re looking to develop a unique brand to conveys all the right attributes of your business to your customers and to do this you need to develop a relationship with your designer so you are both on the same wave length and understanding. Free pitching is not a great way of developing that relationship as you are just picking from a selection of designs rather than discussing the meaning and benefits of them.
Hopefully the above will make you think just a little more when you come to commission a new design project. Go and visit the studio, see if you think you can work with them, are they on the same wavelength, do you like previous work they’ve done, that way you can be confidence that you will end up with a design that works for your business.