With so much competition out there, freelance designers are always looking for new ways to stand out from the crowd. Some designers have used free resources to build their reputation. While it may seem counterproductive to give away resources that you have created, there can be significant benefits that make it worth your time. In this post we’ll take a look at 7 examples where giving away freebies has been beneficial to the business and career of designers.
Free resources like Photoshop brushes, textures, vectors, icons, and PSD files are in high demand because they can help designers to save time and create impressive results. Those who provide the free resources can also benefit from this interest even though they are not charging anything for the resources. The designer can benefit from added exposure and name recognition, from traffic to their site or blog (and possibly increased ad sales), and from the opportunity to promote their other products and services to these new visitors.
Let’s take a look at some specific examples of designers who have helped the design community, and themselves, by distributing free resources.
Jay Hilgert is a designer and blogger that has used freebies to boost his profile within the industry. Jay’s blog Bittbox is one of the best resources for design freebies. Over the last several years Jay has distributed freebies such as Photoshop brushes, textures, vectors and fonts. Each week a new free texture pack is released, and the Bittbox Photoshop brushes are some of the most popular brush sets found anywhere (the watercolor brushes have been downloaded more than 1 million times). Currently, Bittbox release freebies from other designers as well, but Jay’s freebies are what established the site’s reputation.
As a result of the Bittbox freebies, Jay has a successful blog and is recognized as a creator of high-quality graphic design resources.
Chris Spooner is a designer and blogger. Chris launched Blog.SpoonGraphics four years ago and it quickly became popular with readers because of Chris’s tutorials and freebies. Chris’s vectors, icons, and Photoshop brushes have been used by thousands of designers around the world. The freebies helped Chris to become recognized as the highly-skilled designer that he is.
Chris is a great example of how freebies can help to build a successful design blog. There are thousands of design blogs out there, so standing out is not easy. Releasing high-quality freebies is one way to help build a strong reputation.
WebTreats provides free resources like patterns, textures, and PSD files. WebTreats uses some subtle advertisements and promotions on their site for their GraphicRiver and ThemeForest items. The freebies draw people to the site and then they have the opportunity to purchase the premium items.
Grant Friedman is the owner of Colorburned and editor of Psdtuts. Through Colorburned Grant has released freebies such as vectors, Photoshop brushes, and Illustrator brushes. Grant’s resources have also been released on other sites like Psdtuts and Vectips.
Rafi from GraphicsFuel
GraphicsFuel is a blog that gives out design freebies like PSD files and textures. At GraphicsFuel Rafi promotes his services for PSD layouts and banner design. The freebies allow him to reach a greater audience and his blog has some subtle advertisements for his services that send some business his way.
What’s Your Experience?
Have you used freebies to build your profile? If so, please feel free to share you thoughts and experiences in the comments.
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