The internet era not only put the entire world at our fingertips, but also brought about a plethora of new businesses, studies and even dreams. However, the most sought after dream of the internet is going ‘viral.’ Very few succeed in this achievement, mainly due to the fact there is no telling what will go viral, but one of Carimus’ own, graphic designer Hannah Batkoski, found herself capturing what so many hope for thanks to the video sharing app TikTok.
Hannah joined the Carimus team in August of 2018 as a graphic designer with her primary focus centered around branding and digital marketing assets. She began freelancing on the side a year and a half ago to make some extra money after getting engaged so she could save up for her wedding.
After working with a few clients, Hannah decided to brand herself as a design business. Then, Duende Design Co. was born.
“My goal always was to go off and start my own studio, but Carimus has been great in that they were supportive of me doing freelance and building that up while still working there,” Hannah said.
Carimus differed from other design companies Hannah previously worked at. Not only because she was able to create her own company on the side, but because Carimus encouraged her to spread her wings and take the lead on projects.
“They believed in me and they gave me opportunities to take lead on things. Which I feel like made me grow that much more because I feel like the most growth happens whenever you’re being pushed and put into situations that you’re not used to,” she said.
Hannah translated the skills she gained from working at Carimus into her own business. Although she was always sure in her design skills, she found her confidence in communicating with clients grew during her time at Carimus because she was allowed these opportunities.
With more experience under her belt, she learned to understand the needs of clients and to ask questions necessary in gaining the information needed to give them the best product.
Duende did not become Hannah’s full-time business until one of her designs went viral on TikTok. The original viral video currently has 498.7k views and 55.6k likes.
“I saw this trend of people writing their names in overlapping letters. And I was like, ‘Oh, that kind of aligns with graphic design. I’m going to do that,’” Hannah said. “All the ones I had seen, people have just done it in pen and pencil. So I was like, ‘let me take it a step further and actually design it and you know, make it look like a professional logo.’ So I did that and then all those videos started going viral, which was crazy to see.”
The most popular of these videos on Hannah’s page is under the same challenge with the name “Chandler.” It’s currently racked up a whopping 5.6 million views and 829.7k likes, and one person ended up getting the design as a tattoo.
Hannah said she was waiting for someone to get one of the names as a tattoo after receiving multiple comments and direct messages about how the designs were great for a tattoo. She’s even added a section to her website for those who wish to request an overlapping name or word for a tattoo or businesses.
The videos took her TikTok account to 136.4k followers and her Instagram to 4.7k, quadrupling her original following, she said.
Not only did the jump impact her social media, but it brought traffic to her website as well.
“I was averaging probably 230 hits per month of quality users. The month that my first few videos went viral my hits for my website went up to 9,000, which is obviously a huge, crazy jump,” she said.
Before Hannah’s viral fame, she was averaging one client at a time and waiting until another would pop up. Now, she’s booking out months in advance, being completely booked until November. She also continues to receive multiple inquiries about her design services.
This means the hits on her website and growth on social media was able to successfully translate into sales.
Hannah booked eight clients since going viral, all of which informing her they found her through TikTok.
“I have my contact form on my website, and whenever people inquire with me, one of the areas is like, ‘why are you excited to work with Duende?’ And I’ve gotten a lot of responses of people just being like, ‘I can see your passion and how authentic you are in your videos,’” she said.
Now that Hannah is working full-time at her company, she will be leaving the Carimus team. This was not an easy decision for her to make, she said.
“I’m just super grateful for my time at Carimus. I think that I’ve had a really great experience working there and made really great connections and had a lot of opportunities that have helped me push, you know, toward my dream. And I think that it has been a really, really great experience,” Hannah said.
Hannah’s talents and overall presence will be missed at Carimus, the team fully supports her and can’t wait to see where her business goes.
“Hannah has been an amazing contributor to our team in the last two years. Since her first day, she has made an impact on the culture and helped our team raise the bar for creative and branding. We certainly understand the need to take your shot, it’s bittersweet because while we will miss having Hannah on the team day to day, we are excited to watch her succeed in the next chapter of her career,” said Carimus founder and Chief Creative Officer Bryan Martin.
Hannah’s talent and passion for design comes through in all of her work, and the team has no doubt that she will be successful in her new venture.
“I’m excited to kind of see where my new venture goes and follow my heart and have the support of the agency behind me,” she said.
Written by Taylor Sexton
Photos provided by Hannah Batkoski