Hiring design agency vs freelance graphic designer in Auckland. Which one is right for you?

Insight – 14/08/2021

If you’re a looking to rebrand, get a new website designed, or just looking to make some updates to your existing marketing material, you’ve probably asked yourself, should I hire a freelance graphic designer, or just hire a design agency?

What are the benefits of getting graphic design agency, when you could pay a freelance designer that could probably do just as good of a job for less than a third of the price?

While searching for the right people, you should ask yourself. How much do I need help with, what is my budget, and who will give me the best results? In this case, we’re going to review the differences between working with a creative agency and hiring a freelancer.



Type of project

A freelancer is usually specialised in one or two areas, although a lot of freelancers provide broad graphic and web design services. Where an agency employs a group of individuals with different sets of skills. When a design agency receives a new project, it becomes a collaboration of expertise and knowledge in marketing, branding, copywriting, web design, digital, SEO, design and more.

So if your job is a simple design work, it is best to choose a freelance graphic designer. Plus, it will also cost you less. However, if your job is complex, such as a full branding, web design or advertising campaign project, work with a design agency that has the right set of necessary skills and people to deliver across platforms. With a design agency your work is allocated to a team of experts and each specialist handles an allocated task. The project comes together efficiently and faster.

A freelance graphic designer focuses on their expertise which is design. However, when a design agency takes your project, the team will take into consideration marketing and branding before starting the design process. They have the time and capability to implement the best practices for all areas of your project.


The number one reason to hire a graphic designer freelancer over an agency is cost. You can pay a freelancer half of what you would an agency for the same job. With a design agency, you have your project manager, which means one point of interaction, who will manage every aspect of your project for you.

At Studio Nine we are somewhere in the middle. We offer full graphic design services with a much bigger flexibility than a traditional design agency at more affordable rates, while still delivering work that is both beautifully crafted, leaves a lasting impression and resonates with the target audience. We believe that many unnecessary expenses in the creative industries can be cut out thanks to a better processes without sacrificing quality.


Working with freelancers and design agencies have multiple similarities. Both are timely, efficient with their projects, and produce outstanding work. Freelancers are extremely flexible and can work weekends, whereas agencies tend to stick to a Monday-Friday work week. Some agencies, like us, actually hire freelancers to help out when there’s an influx of work. After all, they are extremely helpful when you’re in a pinch!

To summarise, good design is an investment. A design agency offers a much broader set of skills than any freelancer can offer. Choosing to work with a freelance graphic designer or a design agency will depend of the importance of your project. For a branding or website design, work with a design agency as design skills won’t be sufficient to effectively complete this project. For a small project, flyer or brochure, work with a freelance graphic designer and ensure your marketing representative manages the content.

The biggest mistake entrepreneurs and business owners make is choosing cheap and inexperienced graphic designers on freelancer websites to launch their business without defining their marketing strategy. Your brand defines the value of your services and products. It will attract or repel your prospects. Effective branding is crucial for a successful brand launch.

Another thing to keep in mind is that working with large agencies doesn’t mean better results, as most of them outsource to smaller creative design agencies like us. Why? Because of the volume work they receive or simply to make larger profit margin. Their core team focuses on the major projects and they use partners, contractors and freelancers to manage the other projects. Our boutique creative branding agency focuses on creativity, customer service excellence, building long term relationships and results.

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