We started Umbrella simply because we wanted to do things our way. Our way is very simple; a client talks to you and you give them what they want, when they want it, by the least complicated route.
Of course its never quite that easy so here are a few things we have learnt along the way.
Clients are generally not interested in hourly rates, daily rates or consultation charges. What really matters is the delivery of the idea they discussed with you at the outset. To see it on time, on budget and well executed is everything, in effect they want to see the job properly and professionally completed.
There are big brands, little brands, quirky brands, difficult brands and the occasional bloody minded genius. Each and every one of these needs to be dealt with in a way that respects their position in the market and what they want to achieve. You cannot apply formulas to service!
We need to make profit (sorry to shock you!) as then we can run a good business, employ good people and invest in good gear. If we do this it is always the client who benefits. This also means there are no nasty surprises, no client wants surprises!
Sometimes great ideas take a while to come to fruition. We have worked with a number of brands and, as little acorns, they could not pay for expensive design teams. When we see good ideas were happy to invest our time to help the idea take shape. Our biggest oak trees have come from the smallest acorns.
We spent many frustrating years listening to people who told us how to do it, how to run a design business, how to find clients. In short all of them were wrong. The only good advice I can give anyone is to do it your way, learn from your mistakes and keep on going. In the end you'll get there!