5 Types of Clients to Avoid

We’ve all met them, haven’t we? Those clients who assume a freelancer is a minion at their beck and call; never satisfied with anything; technologically challenged; and not really sure about what they want in the first place. We work for them if we really must, but if we knew how to read the warning signs since the first discussion with them, we would have certainly not accepted the job. But how can we identify the top 5 pest clients? The descriptions below will help you in the screening process.

The Just-One-More-Change Client

They never provide the full specifications of the work from the beginning. They give you an outline saying that they don’t want to hamper your creativity with too many details. That sounds very flattering at the beginning. But as the projects is near completeness (in your estimation), the small requests start pouring in. Just one little change here, one tiny variation in colour there, let’s try another font here, and so on. If not dealt with firmly, the client will turn this project into your magna opus – a work that never ends, and never gets fully and adequately paid.

The Don’t-Tell-Me-You-Can’t Client

This client has no idea about technological limitations. However, they consider themselves computer savvy just because they can send an e-mail and open a website. You will never convince them that you can’t put an animated gif on their business card. You don’t want to. You are lazy. You want extra money. But if you were a little more dedicated to your task, you could make it happen.

The I-Know-What-I-Like-When-I-See-It Client

They really give you no input for your work. You keep sending them drafts, and all they say is try a bit more. In frustration, you finally ask for a clear feedback. “I don’t know exactly what I want, but I’ll know when I see it”. This is so widespread, because the client assumes that you can read their mind and design according to some abstract idea that they can’t put in words.

The Use-This-Photo-From-Google Client

They don’t understand the concept of copyrights, or if they do, they simply believe no one will notice they’re using unlicensed images on their website. These clients will send you tons of materials found on Google Images, or videos from Youtube and ask you to incorporate that into their website/ presentation/ e-brochure. Most frequently, they will call you a few months later and ask you to take that image out because they received a Cease & Desist letter….

The I-Pay-You-After-Delivery Client

They approved the final design and ask you for the full-size PSD file, or to transfer the website on their server. And then they pay you. They can’t understand why it’s so difficult for you to comply with this simple request. Possibly, they don’t know that you’ve been through this before and never got paid, or went through a legal hassle to get your money. An honest client will not delay payment once they’re satisfied with the work. If they do, then you’re well within your rights to refuse delivery. One out of two, you will get the payment or lose the client, but get to keep the work to be presented to another client.

Of course, these are just a few examples. We are sure you met more types of clients that you wouldn’t work for again. We’d like to hear some of your stories on this topic.

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Ionut B
Digital Art Director with an innovative creative thinking able to translate ideas and concepts into useful and memorable interactive marketing campaigns.

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