This admonition also belies the fact that Sagmeister does not actively create self-promotional materials to gain business; rather, he uses his design work to promote himself, creating posters for talks that he gives in New York and around the world, such as the one shown here for the Viennese museum, MAK. He considers these projects to be client work, because he does not pay for the materials or printing, yet he is able to render something new that is associated with both him and the talk he is giving. These posters actively add value to Sagmeister, whether the viewer associates them with the man or the studio.
In addition, Sagmeister participates in design shows but has never created work solely for this purpose.
Sagmeister CD design work is prolific. He often asks the client for a hundred or so finished CDs to send to friends and clients—sort of a self-promotional gift. "We send them out to get work and also to friends at other labels. But we basically send out the CD and a letter, so that people in the street know what we just did. That's been working quite well for us. Because we try to design packaging for music we like, most of the CDs we package have good music."