How to Find Graphic Design Jobs in Kansas City

Graphic design is a career that involves creating designs for digital and print media. As a graphic designer, you could be asked to design logos, websites, advertisements, packaging, and more. Kansas City has a thriving design industry, and there are many graphic design jobs available. This article will provide you with tips on how to find graphic design work in the Kansas City area.

What is Graphic Design?

Graphic design is using visual elements like color, images, and text to communicate a message or idea. Graphic designers create designs for things we see every day, both online (canvas) and offline. Common graphic design projects include:

– Logos – Designing logos for businesses to clearly identify their brand. 

– Websites – Designing layout, navigation, color schemes, and graphics for websites.

– Printed Materials – Designing flyers, brochures, magazines, business cards, and other printed materials.

– Social Media Graphics – Creating graphics and visuals for social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram. 

Signage – Designing signs and graphics for offices, shops, buildings, and events.

– Packaging – Designing packaging for products like food items, electronics, cosmetics, and more. 

– Advertisements – Creating advertisements for TV, newspapers, magazines, billboards, and online ads.

Graphic designers need to be creative and have good communication skills. They also need to understand design principles like color theory, layout, typography, and branding. Kansas City offers many opportunities for graphic designers in these areas and more.

Read More: 

How Long Does It Really Take to Learn Graphic Design?

How to Get into Graphic Design as a Hobby

Browse Job Listings Online

One of the best places to look for graphic design jobs in Kansas City is online job listing websites. Browse sites regularly to stay on top of new positions. Some popular sites to check include:

Indeed.com – Search Indeed’s large database of local job listings. You can filter by job type, location, and keywords like “graphic designer.”

– LinkedIn – Browse LinkedIn jobs and also connect with design recruiters and hiring managers in your area. 

SimplyHired.com – SimplyHired aggregates job listings from across the web for easy searching. 

– Company Websites – Check the career pages of design firms, ad agencies, and companies in Kansas City directly for open roles.

When applying online, be sure your resume and online profiles are updated to highlight your skills and experience. Contact information should be professional as well. Always tailor your application materials to the specific job requirements.

Reach Out to Staffing Agencies

Staffing agencies and recruiting firms can connect you to contract graphic design projects or full-time roles. These services specialize in matching job seekers to employers. Reach out to graphic design staffing agencies in Kansas City and let them know you’re open to new opportunities. Some local agencies to contact include:

– Creative Group – Specializes in creative talents like designers, marketers, and developers. 

– Robert Half – Has a Creative Group division focused on placing creative professionals.

– Signature Staffing Group – Recruits for contract, temp-to-hire, and direct hire roles. 

Be proactive when working with agencies. Check-in regularly, meet with recruiters face-to-face if possible, and express your strong interest and fit for available roles. Staffing agencies want to place candidates quickly, so be responsive during the process.

Attend Design Events and Meetups

Getting involved in Kansas City’s design community is a great way to discover job leads and build your professional network. Attend local events to meet others in the industry:

  • KCADC Meetups – Kansas City Adrian Dominican Sisters host design talks and portfolio reviews. 
  • AIGA KC Events – The American Institute of Graphic Arts chapter holds workshops, speakers, and networking socials.
  • Design Conferences – Look for conferences by KC Digital Driven or Capital City’s AAF chapter. 
  • College Info Sessions – Visit local design programs at schools like KCAI for on-campus recruiting.

Meet one-on-one with professionals at these events. Exchange contact details so you can follow up about potential openings or referrals down the line. Participating shows your enthusiasm and drive to graphic design leaders.

Freelance While Looking 

Freelancing allows you to build a portfolio, gain experience, and earn income while continuing your job search. Consider offering freelance graphic design services to:

– Local Small Businesses – Design marketing materials, websites, or branding projects.

– Creative Marketplace Sites – Sell templates, graphics, or services on sites like GraphicRiver or 99designs. 

Freelancing Marketplaces – Pursue short-term contracts on platforms like Upwork or Fiverr.

Promote your freelance services through your online profiles, local business networking groups, and by reaching out directly with a pitch email. Freelancing builds your skills and expands your professional network – which can both aid in landing your next full-time job.

Use Social Media to Your Advantage

Social platforms like LinkedIn, Instagram, and Dribbble let you showcase your portfolio and stay engaged in Kansas City’s design community. Consider these social networking tips:

– Post Process Shots – Give a behind-the-scenes look at your design process and projects on Instagram. 

– Share Case Studies – On LinkedIn, discuss past projects and the creative and strategic challenges you overcame.

– Follow Companies – Stalk the LinkedIn and Instagram pages of Kansas City ad agencies, studios, and brands.

– Join Relevant Hashtags – Use hashtags like #KCdesign on Instagram to be discovered locally.

– Engage Others – Like, comment, and repost design work from Kansas City peers and industry leaders. 

Social media provides an easy way for potential employers, clients, and collaborators to discover your skills and personality. Stay active to boost your professional exposure.

Ask for Referrals from Professors and Colleagues  

Your education and professional network can help uncover new opportunities. Reach out to:

– Former Professors – Professors know local design leaders and may refer recent grads to job openings.

– Classmates Already Working – Classmates may know of unlisted roles at their companies suitable for your experience level. 

– Fellow Freelancers – Collaborating freelancers could introduce you as new projects come up.

– Past Co-Workers – Former employers or clients may share about jobs that open within their organizations or circles.

When asking for referrals, refresh others’ memory of your qualifications. Offer specific ways you could contribute value as a referral, such as skills or portfolio examples. A personal recommendation can go a long way in competitive markets like Kansas City’s.

Build Relationships Through Informational Interviews

Finally, conduct informational interviews to build industry relationships while gathering job intelligence. Reach out to graphic designers, art directors, and creative directors at companies of interest via email or LinkedIn. Request brief informal meetings to learn about:

– Their career paths and advice for breaking into the field locally. 

– Upcoming projects and ways you could contribute value as a freelancer or future employee.  

– Hiring trends, preferred qualifications, and application tips specific to their company culture.

Come prepared with thoughtful questions. Dress professionally and bring copies of your resume if appropriate. Informational interviews help expand your network and expose you to potential opportunities down the line.

With persistence and a multi-pronged search strategy, you’ll uncover graphic design jobs in Kansas City thriving creative scene. Focus on continually improving your skills, portfolio, network, and industry visibility for success in finding your next role. Let me know if you have any other questions!

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