How Regular Designers Can Benefit from Dribbble?

“Every designers’ dirty little secret is that they copy other designers’ work. They see work they like, and they imitate it. Rather cheekily, they call this inspiration. “ - Aaron Russel

Have you been drafted to Dribbble yet? If yes, then you know what it is like to be a member of one of the most respected and influential communities of designers in the whole interweb. Dribbble is a social network for designers, or “Twitter for designers” as they call themselves. Within this website you can observe works of other designers, share yours, receive constructive criticism, like other works, leave comments and so on.

Basically, Dribbble demonstrates us all the benefits of the invite system. Being a closed social network this website currently counts nearly 90 000 registered users (called spectators) and around 15 000 active users (players). Numbers aren’t really impressive considering the emerging trend of creating gigantic communities with millions of users. The Dribbble’s case perfectly demonstrates how the quality can beat the quantity. It was easy to grow larger community (project was launched in 2009) but they didn’t do that and now reap the fruits of their wisdom.


Invite, Share, Discuss

As it has been mentioned above, in order to become a member of Dribbble community you must be invited. There are few different ways to get invitation. First is asking for an invite on other design communities or social networks like DeviantArt, Tumblr, and Twitter etc. Second one is looking for possible invite giveaway – sometimes Dribbblers give invites for free on their blogs or social accounts. Third one is being drafted to Dribbble player status (you can sign up to Dribbble without invite as a spectator which means you’ll be a silent lurker without actual possibility to be an active community member).

“What’s with all the basketball references? Water Polo didn’t work as well. And we in Salem, Massachusetts are Celtic people.”

I think that this explanation would be more than enough for those who have no clue why design community contains such categories on their website as shot, bucket, draft, playoff etc. For instance, submitted screenshot of project is called a “shot”, “being drafted” means getting an invite, users are called “players”, “rebounds” mean the ability of submitting shots in reply to another shot. You’ll get used to basketball references in a few weeks, believe us. If you want to know more about the rules of the Game and other information concerning Dribbble feel free to visit this page.

The Benefits

Yes, any social media activity must have clear purposes and you’ll agree that it would be rather unwise to spend your precious time without having a master plan behind it. As a wise man once said: “One thing you can’t recycle is a wasted time”. So, here are the possible benefits that you can achieve by entering Dribbble community and supporting it with your active collaboration.

  • Feedback
    Being a player on Dribbble gives you an opportunity to stay updated with recent design trends, communicate with other designers, receive their valuable opinions concerning your current works, and observe their projects. The most important profit that you gain while using Dribbble is an objective criticism which must be used for further improvement of your designing skills and clearing up the drawbacks of the current project.
  • ParityIt would be important for young designers, design students and other rookies that might not have the opportunity to be equal with their mentors. On Dribbble you can argue with users without a fear of being crushed with uncorroborated evidence of someone else’s authority. Surely, it helps young designers acquire the confidence and have faith in their creative skills.
  • JobsDribbble offers many job offers and openings for designers, so there is a great chance that after spending a month or two on Dribbble you’ll receive an interesting job offer. Also you can always use this design community to find a solid web designer by analyzing his comments, works and potential. Don’t forget that to be noticed by design agencies you should reveal your activity by updating your works, posting comments etc.
  • PopularityCertainly, popularity of your Dribbble account gives you a number of important results. You achieve extra karma points to your designer’s reputation. You can be mentioned on your followers' other social media accounts as the influential designer. You can even position yourself as an expert in current design trends and give valuable suggestions in web design sphere.
  • Invite holderHaving possibility to send Dribbble invites would also bring you some small but important benefits. You can promote your blog or other social media accounts by making a giveaway or contests whose point would be to win one of the Dribbble invites that you have. Also you can popularize your Dribbble account by drafting your spectator-followers into players.

Surely, it is hard to play in the team of professional web designers but without at least trying you can’t grow and gain success. The elite club of web designers prefers open-minded, hard-working and socially active players that want to grow and share their experience with colleagues. If you are one of those seeking designer souls that need a gulp of fresh air you must get yourself to Dribbble, believe us.

Edward Korcheg

Edward is a professional technical writer who is also passionate about making stunning designs in Photoshop. You can find many useful tutorials in his collection of articles at MonsterMost.

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