Each of us often has only one specialty, or some talent in just a few. We have our strengths, but also have our weaknesses. This is one thing that can be a downside to freelancing — often times, the full-service, larger agencies have us beat. Should our one-person shows start offering the full range of services for our clients, or at least expand them, to expand our portfolios?
What is full-service?
While partial service may be only providing one aspect of the client’s solution, e.g. just their website (design and development services) or just their print advertising (graphic design specialty), a full service solution may include the following:
- Web design
- Web/application development
- Mobile design
- Content strategy
- Content writing
- Marketing strategy and consultation
- Print advertising and strategy solutions
- Idea generation and direction
Full-service takes the lead in a project
The primary difference in being a full-service solution vs. only offering your specialty is that you are no longer simply a “hired contractor”, expected to do as you are told. Full-service has more say in the direction of a project, start to finish. There is more of an expectation of expertise, as the client says, “You now how to grow my business, so let’s hear your ideas and plans, and then we’ll have you implement them the way you need to.” This is opposed to, “Here’s our idea, here’s the people we’ve worked with so far, now here’s your job — do it this way.”
The downside to full-service
If you’re a freelancer though, you are just one person. You can’t possibly expect to do it all successfully. Nobody is perfect at the Jack of All Trades method, in all skill sets across the board. So what if you want to start offering a full-service solution to your clients? What if it is something that appeals to you?
- Create a team, big or small, and divide the specialty skill sets, as well as offer a platform for brainstorming.
- Find outsourcees, or temporary team members per project. Be the full-service solution, but find others to handle the workload under your own direction.
- Be a full-service solution for you clients on a smaller scale, for smaller projects, if you have a decent understanding of all skill sets required.
Would you consider being a one-man or one-woman “full-service agency” for your clients? How would you pull it off?