New Online Marketplace InPersonDesign.com Allows Entrepreneurs to Book On-the-Spot Graphic & Web Design Sessions with Local Designers
Founder and CEO M.D. Chau got the idea for on-the-spot graphic design sessions in 2014 while standing in the middle of an Orange County jewelry store. After testing the market by forming a different company at the time, he found that both customers and designers were happier with the concept. Now, with easier access to online marketplace technology, he launched InPersonDesign.com with hopes of scaling the idea across the U.S. and worldwide. And, he's doing it all during the COVID-19 crisis.
Fast forward to February 2020. The entire world has been brought to a halt by the COVID-19 crisis. Chau is a principal partner of a growing marketing agency, Apogee United, and working from home in Irvine, CA. Business is tough, as several clients suspended marketing efforts to confront the challenges brought on by crisis. For the past year, he's been thinking more and more about the idea he tested in 2014. Now, with online marketplace technology more accessible, he sees a way to build on that idea and take it to scale. Only one thing stands in the way, a national lockdown brought on by the novel coronavirus. Like many entrepreneurs, Chau has a stomach for risks and loves a challenge. "Why not do it and be able to say we founded the company during an unprecedented global lockdown?" he said. So, he set out to build the online graphic design marketplace, InPersonDesign.com.
Now, with a handful of designers onboard in several cities, Chau launched InPersonDesign.com with the hopes of helping entrepreneurs and small business owners save time and money when it comes to graphic and web design as well as social media design. He also hopes to help designers do what they love with less stress. For a designer, a design project can often drag out for longer than estimated for and ends up costing more than the project was worth. With this concept, they simply trade their time and expertise by sessions. For the customer, their ideas are no longer lost in translation as they are able to direct their designer in real-time. With most designs taking just an hour to complete when designing on-the-spot, they are saving money at a starting rate of $80 per one-hour session. They are also saving time as they would get the final files at the completion of each design session.
With the concept being relatively new to consumers, InPersonDesign.com offers a 100% Money-Back Guarantee to make booking a session risk-free for a customer. If a customer is unhappy with their design session, all they have to do is decline to receive the final files and dispute the booking for a full refund. It puts the onus on the designer to make sure the customer is happy and gives the customer peace of mind with every booking.
"I know the concept will work and both customers and designers will love the experience. I know because we've tested it. For now, because of the COVID-19 situation, a lot of design sessions will likely be done virtually, through video chat with screen sharing," said Chau. "But, I don't think that will be an issue. People are getting more used to interacting virtually, especially now."
As states are beginning to open up across the country, InPersonDesign.com currently have designers available for in person or virtual design sessions in Orange County, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Phoenix, Denver, Dallas and Austin. They're looking to expand into more cities as more designers are on-boarded. While it is an open online marketplace, their internal team does manually vet and approve every design session listing to ensure only quality designers are available for customers to book.
"The customer experience is the most important thing to us. I want InPersonDesign.com to be known for having great graphic designers - meaning, they are skillful, but they are also friendly and easy to work with," said Chau. "So, we always reserve the right to modify or reject a designer listing. A designer has to come on with their best work and their best foot forward. For a customer, their business or project means the world to them. And, we want to make available only the best designers that we can find for them."