Is there such a thing as the perfect client?

As a creative web agency, clients hire us to actualize ideas ranging from creating the next Foursquare, Groupon (or in some cases, a combination of the two), or just to revamp and modernize a company’s site.

We’re hired to bring concepts to life and provide art direction to sometimes-vague descriptions and lavish visions. But don’t get us wrong, we live and breathe this and have been lucky to have worked with truly amazing clients over the years. But is there such a thing as a “good client” verses a “bad client?”

There’s a reason why Clients From Hell, a hysterical collective of client horror stories, has become so popular. At any agency, you’ll get mixed responses.

But not all designers think “bad clients” exist. From Doejo-er and information architect Timur: “There are no bad clients, there are just bad designers/developers. When a client comes in with little to no experience, our job is to set the agenda and make the sailing smooth and enjoyable.”

Well said.

Other Doejo designers and developers weigh in on what makes the perfect client verses, well less-than-ideal clients: 

The perfect clients:

  • Are prepared, passionate and patient. – Rachel
  • Trusts us and our creative talent, sends presents, says ‘Thank you.’ – Elizabeth
  • Come to us with a passion for what they want to accomplish and realizes this is a partnership—and that they have chosen us as the authority. – Garrett
  • Pull the trigger on an idea and run with it; are easy going and communicative. – Kristina
  • Give feedback that is specific; know how to use Basecamp; know how to use a computer – Adam
  • Knows what they want – Zhenia

Less than ideal clients:

  • Start off as impatient and quick to be irate with communication problems – Rachel
  • Say, “I’d prefer to see all fonts changed to comic sans” (it really happened to me); don’t meet their own deadlines; Clients that are friends, ha. – Elizabeth
  • Are unengaged; do not believe in the importance of the project; is unresponsive. – Garrett
  • Are indecisive and impatient; who think that we can just go “bleep bloop bleep” into the computer and things magically change in seconds – Kristina
  • Use buzz words; and say “this needs to pop more” – Adam
  • Hires us and $&%# on our advice. [They should just] let us do what we do best. – Nysa
  • Wants you to do design work for free, thinking they only pay us if project is successful – Zhenia
Filed in: Doejo