Thoughts on branding, design, writing and life by Kevin Potts. Established 2003.

A Serendipitous 1-Up

After working hard to get my online portfolio up to snuff, optimizing the site for search engines, I get a new project from a Fortune 100 client out of the blue. Sweet.

1-Up mushroom from Super Mario Bros

Sometimes, things just come together. It’s hard enough to freelance as a designer — and harder when not all your clients provide a steady stream of work — so when that bonus project comes in out of nowhere, it’s like scoring a 1-Up in Super Mario Brothers. Not a game-changing event, but it sure makes going forward a little easier.

I have been working hard at fleshing out my personal domain, and about three weeks ago finally moved a good portion of my work to the portfolio section. At one point there was just web design work, but I have since included logo and identity design, icons, illustrations and PowerPoint.

It’s hard to find a good designer that understands PowerPoint, so I made sure to include five of my strongest pieces so potential clients understood I made this service a priority. In addition, I have been working hard to get better search engine ranking through incoming links and keyword optimization. (At one point, searching for “Kevin Potts” brought up as the first result. Yikes.)

About two weeks ago, I received an e-mail from a lady inquiring if I still did PowerPoint. I promptly responded with an enthusiastic “yes,” referred her to my site showing the freshly uploaded PowerPoint examples, and asked her how I could help. Well, it turns out she works for a Fortune 100 company (!) and needs some help giving a particular slide some visual kick. Well, heck, no problem, send it over.

So after two NDAs, a W-9 and the rough slide, I sent back a revision, which was a big hit. Not only are they going to use it in their upcoming presentation, but I had a face-to-face meeting with them last week and it turns out they have a much larger presentation they would like me to tackle. Sweetness.

On the way out of our meeting, I asked my contact how she found me. “Google,” she says. “And we are very excited to find a local designer who gets PowerPoint.”

It’s nice when all the pieces come together. Online portfolio + SEO + clients looking for mad PowerPoint skillz = awesome serendipity. It’s a nice 1-Up after working hard to get my site exposure.

(OK, stupid analogy, but I wanted to use the illustration of the mushroom. Sue me.)

commentary + criticism


wrote the following on Monday November 28, 2005

Kick ass man… good luck with this gig. I’m on my way now to your personal site to check out dem PP skillz.


wrote the following on Tuesday November 29, 2005

And there was me thinking you’d been hired by Nintendo. and yeah, it’s a cute image! Well done!


wrote the following on Thursday December 22, 2005

Thanks for bringing back some wonderful memories of my brother kicking me in the shins after I beat the 8th level in SMB.

That’s great news to hear that all this hard work pays off.

Hey… nice check box too! (This is not spam). ;)