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Re: Guiding clients to give better direction/feedback

Ace Contributor
Kendra C Member Since: Feb 18, 2019
1 of 5

Hello Upworkers,

I am looking for advice on how to get clients to give better direction for revisions.

For the clients who say "I'll know it when I see it"   or  "You're the artist, can you come up with something else?" or the "I don't know, I just don't like it"


I try to ask what elements specifically they don't like, or if there is anything that they do like about what I have sent them.


What are your tactics for getting direction out of clients that don't know how to give it?


Community Guru
Lila G Member Since: Dec 4, 2017
2 of 5

Hi Kendra - that's a tough one especially when they can't provide an answer to why.

I am in a practice of constantly evolving design and what I can tell you from lessons learned is just keep calm (breath, I know how frustrating it can be) and keep further discussing. When it comes down to this, it better to discuss over the phone and dig more into their perspective. I just ask a bunch of questions and the answer is hidden within all of the answers. There is a vision in there and sometimes it's not what they hoped it turned out, and that's ok. So this where you as a creative should recommend and provide options.


Hope that helps,

Community Guru
Phyllis G Member Since: Sep 8, 2016
3 of 5

I'm not in a creative field but when I've been on the client side of one and having trouble articulating whta I wanted, it has been productive when the creative asked me to bring them a handful of such things I that I liked. I understand the frustration of dealing with people like me!


Nothing helps somebody quit dilly-dallying and make up their mind like a ticking meter. For a fixed-price contract, specify the number of draft rounds/revisions and stick to it. If they need unlimited revisions/directional shifts, insist on an hourly contract.


Community Guru
Preston H Member Since: Nov 24, 2014
4 of 5

Yes, there is no need to guide clients to provide better requests for revisions as long as this is an hourly contract. Clients may ask for as many revisions as they want, because they are paying for your time.


Otherwise, if you have fixed-price contracts, you need to get smart about them. Need to have a statement in agreement that there the contract includes 1 request for a revision, at which point the task is concluded, and additional work can be handled using an hourly contract.


Or something along those lines.


A fixed-price contract is not intended to be indentured servitude.

Ace Contributor
Kendra C Member Since: Feb 18, 2019
5 of 5

Yes I always ask that clients send me "inspiration pictures" so that I can be on the right track.


As for revisions, I always state how many they get. But, if that client can't tell me what to correct, I can't exactly make a revision. I mean, I could guess, but that's playing roulette.


Luckily these clients don't come around often!