The Nigerian creative space is filled with tales from creatives about being underappreciated within the industry. From being paid with exposure to not getting paid at all, these Nigerian creatives share their worst client experience.
Quincy, Graphics Designer
So, I had this conversation with a client who happened to be a former boss. He needed me to do branding for him and when I sent him the quote, he told me the design was just something small I can do on Canva. I didn’t believe my ears, I just stopped answering his calls. He should go and do it on Canva by himself.
Tiffany, Choreographer And Video Editor
I told a client my rates and every time they got back to me, they tried to slash it by half till it was practically nothing. A particular client called me for “business lunch” and ended up toasting me for over an hour and even tried to follow me home. I was extremely disgusted.
Folajimi, Copy Writer
It was this one client that came with the flimsiest of briefs. We had like 2 meetings in which I practically begged them to properly explain what they wanted but they kept on repeating what they put in the flimsy brief. They didn’t know what exactly they wanted and just wanted me to keep writing different things until they saw something they liked. Clueless clients who want to waste your time because they think you have so much of it are the fucking worst.
Leroy, Graphics Designer And Videographer
I worked for a club before. I had a deal with them to do graphic designs every day and get paid at the end of the month. There was a verbal agreement and I began working, rookie mistake. Towards the end of the month, I was called to make a video for the club. They assured me of a bonus so I went. I didn’t sleep that night cause clubbing is a night time activity. After working so hard, they refused to pay me. Days turned to weeks, weeks turned to months, I even started begging them to pay me, nothing worked. They used all my designs and my video and left me stranded.
Rume, Digital Artist
Last year, a brand offered me 10k a month for remote design work. When I declined, the man who reached out kept insisting that I can’t decline. He said my beauty was the reason he couldn’t increase the pay, that people will suspect him of having a crush on me if he did so. All because of 10,000 Naira. Another terrible experience was with a man who commissioned me for a painting. He got upset that I wanted to meet in a public space. After he started sending sexual gifs on twitter, I told him I wasn’t interested in the job again because he was harassing me and then I blocked him. Two months later, he sent me money, since he already had my account details, to do a commissioned painting for his wife. I wanted to throw up.
Anyaoha, Event Planner
Somebody really popular on Twitter contacted me to plan his wedding. We spoke over the phone, I contacted people, made a whole quote and gave him everything he needed to know about the costs. After a while, he began to avoid my calls and texts with stupid excuses. Days after, I saw his wedding pictures on my timeline and I was shocked. He didn’t pay me a dime but he used my expertise to have the wedding done either by himself or with the help of someone else. It really affected my business. I had to shut it down for a while.
Kelvin, Software Engineer
In 2020 I decided to collect a gig from one Nigerian woman. I was to make two websites for her company, one was supposed to be Nigerian facing and the other UK facing. They told me that they had limited time for the UK site and I should come up with the barest minimum in the least possible time. They even gave me another website to get the content from.
I was done with the site in 32hrs and these people said they needed unique content (after giving me a website to get content from). I don’t create website content I only develop the websites. The person that gave me the gig knows this but they still decided to act irrationally.
It’s been two months of back and forth now, telling me they want to review, I’ve not blocked this particular site now because of some reasons, but the sad thing is I still haven’t been paid fully for work done on the site.
I have too many experiences of how Nigerians make you work too much to get the best but end up owing you or asking you to refer you to a bigger brand site (that was done by teams with a large budget).
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