Freelancers and small design companies do not have large marketing budgets. There may be a few dollars here or there to spend on Google AdWords, Facebook ads or perhaps a small print campaign, but by and large we survive on one things: referrals.

When someone begins his/her freelance design career, all we have are referrals: from our friends, schoolmates, even our parents and family. As we land our first clients and complete our first design jobs, it’s important to realize the importance of referrals and think about how to maximize them. The more clients we get, the more opportunity for referrals, which brings in more clients, and so on. It grows exponentially and, if you take steps to ensure you get more referrals, you may not have to spend a cent on advertising. Ever.

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