An insider’s guide to inviting new designers to Dribbble

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Since Dribbble’s inception in 2009, the invite system has empowered millions of talented designers to foster the best creative community in the world.

As new designers are constantly entering the field, we believe that our community is best equipped to identify talented creatives who will make Dribbble an even better platform. In this spirit, each Player, a designer who has accepted an invite to share their work on Dribbble, is empowered to use their Dribbble invitations to bring aboard talent from all walks of life and design disciplines – this makes for a thriving, vibrant, and inspired community. There’s no better time than the present to put your invitations to use and bring deserving designers into the Dribbble fold!

Getting Started

First, how many invitations do you have to share? If you’re signed into your account, take a gander at your avatar in Dribbble’s main navigation. In the dropdown, you’ll see how many invites you have available. You can also head to the Invites section of your Dribbble account settings to get a count.

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Provided you don’t have a laundry list of friends who’ve been hounding you for an invite (if not, be sure to hit up your inner circle to make sure), here’s a quick guide on the myriad of places where you’ll be able to locate designers who might be interested in joining the Dribbble community.

Keep in mind, we want to keep the invitation process authentic and personal—invitations should not be used as a prize giveaway for contests, or trying to gain followers, but rather given genuinely based on your interest in following someone’s work and making the Dribbble community more vibrant. Be sure to consult our community guidelines for rules of the road when it comes to giving invitations.

Scouting Prospects

In the Dribbble community we have both Players and Prospects. Players are full-fledged members, while Prospects are designers who have not yet been invited. While Prospects are able to build out their basic profile and upload a number of limited-visibility Shots, we rely on Dribbble Players to extend invites to those whose work would be an asset to the community.

Drafting is the official process of extending an invitation for somebody to become a Player on Dribbble. The Dribbble Draft page is the landing page where you can browse all Dribbble Prospects awaiting invitations. Have somebody you’d like invite who’s not a Prospect? Use the fields at the top of the page to invite them directly via their email address.

You’ll notice that the page also features search fields, which you can use to filter Prospects by keywords—such as design disciplines—or seek out draftees in your own city or neighborhood by searching via location. You can use any combination of keyword and location to narrow down the pool of current Prospects to find somebody awesome to draft.

Utlilize Your Social Networks

Forget the cat memes and the latest trending hashtags for a moment, friends. Get out there and use your social networks to do some community building. In reality, sometimes all you have to do is to put the word out. It’s easy to work your social media game to seek out folks who might be interested in joining you on Dribbble to share their work—Tweet from the proverbial design hilltops, and often eager up-and-coming designers will answer.

Even if you don’t know somebody personally, if somebody’s portfolio is high-quality, shows promise, or is downright interesting—give them a chance to show more!

Design Groups

Are you a member of a local design organization chapter? Are you friendly with the creative practitioners in your area? Maybe you’re part of a regional Slack group. No matter how formal or informal, you can use your professional and extracurricular networks to see if there are any talented designers who might benefit from sharing their work alongside you on Dribbble. Dribbble can be an excellent bridge that ties your various design affiliations together—it’s a place where you can show off what you do, and continue to talk shop with designers around the globe.

Meetups & In-Person Events

Similarly, in-person events—be it a design-related conference, workshop, or even a Dribbble Meetup hosted in your town—can be excellent venues for seeking out new Dribbblers. While you’re exchanging business cards or Instagram handles with folks, you can always ask if they’re on Dribbble, and if not, if they’d be interested in joining the Dribbble community to keep the conversation going.

Schools + Student Bootcamp Networks

Dribbble is the place where talented designers of all skill levels have an opportunity to share the spotlight. If you’re a design student—in a full-time design program, bootcamp, or workshop setting—your classmates might be excellent compatriots to share invites with as you start showing your work on Dribbble.

Conversely, if you’re a teacher or mentor, empowering students or mentees to post their work amongst a robust design community is an important step to foster burgeoning design talent. Dole out some invites and let new practitioners rise to the occasion!

Underrepresented Designers

Like all healthy communities, Dribbble is most vibrant when a diverse array of experiences, talents, and points of view find camaraderie. We want to make sure that all talented designers have a shot to be part of this community. If you know folks from underrepresented groups or geographies who would like to be part of Dribbble, please help them to become Players—our community will be that much richer for it. Sites like People of Craft or Women Who Design can help you find talented designers from underrepresented groups, and even those who might be your neighbor. Help us make Dribbble an inclusive, lively forum for all designers.

Good luck in your search, and thank you for helping to build the Dribbble platform into an even more diverse, robust community where great designers can showcase their best work and find the best design inspiration. We couldn’t do it without you!


Find more Process stories on our blog Courtside.
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