It goes without saying that social media is the biggest and by far the most effective channel to find all the latest trends and happenings, especially when it comes to the world of design and connecting the designer to the consumer. Social Media is THE MOST IMPORTANT and exceptional platform to promote your designs, your brand and your interest in potential customers or clients.
As a designer, your most valuable asset (apart from your skills!) is your portfolio. It’s so important to have a platform to showcase your skills, experience and portfolio – this is ultimately the yoke of your existence. However, finding the right platform (or website) to build and showcase your experience, is just as important. As well as ensuring you reach the appropriate audience to get greater exposure. This can be amplified by making use of more than one platform.
Behance is the mothership of portfolio websites, partnered with Adobe, the creators of the Adobe suites. This is the tool with which designers create their work, and sports the biggest assortment of designers in a vast variety of design fields. As a Graphic Designer, I suggest you sign up to Behance with your Adobe Profile as this then links directly to Adobe Profile site and adds your projects to your digital portfolio.
On Behance, you can also find ads posted for work, join group profile pages and collaborate with team members to enhance your standing even more. The first answer I usually give to a potential employer's question on whether I have a portfolio is, "I have a Behance account" and that is sufficient in showcasing your skill and competency in a well-designed digital portfolio.
What makes Behance so great?
You can download the Behance app to ensure you always have a virtual portfolio in your pocket, ready to showcase wherever and whenever the situation calls for it.
The app downloads and syncs your projects to ensure that your portfolio is displayed even without internet connectivity – and it means your portfolio is always up to date!
Behance also has an awards feature. So, your work can be awarded medals when it’s showcased on other websites or award competitions that take place. With these medals attached to your projects, you can gain an additional amount of viewers as these projects will be linked on other sites. It also pushes your projects onto the featured page further expanding your field of exposure.
As an illustrator, Dribbble is another great site to sign up to as the main focus there is an illustration. Dribbble also sports an impressive range of Graphic Design projects, so if you are a Graphic Designer with a love for vector illustration then Dribbble is the site for you. Compared to Behance’s focus on a more Case Study driven display, Dribbble is more simplistic in its approach to its layout, allowing viewers to consume more in an easier manner.
From a social media standpoint, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are great platforms to enhance the viewers’ navigation to your Behance and Dribbble pages. The intent of posting your work on social media is to give people bite-size bits of your work and shuttle them to your main sites for the full designs and layouts.
Instagram and Twitter are basically like updates to what you are busy with and let people know to be on the lookout for your next project upload to Behance or Dribbble. Facebook allows for the creation of your own page, which can showcase your work and allow people to contact you with potential work offers. Facebook also allows you to create ads and boost your work to a broader audience for even more exposure.
These sites also allow you as a designer to gain inspiration when you hit those inevitable creative slumps, share trending design styles and stay up to date with what is new in the design world.