If you’ve worked in freelance before one of the things you learn very quickly, and I DO mean very very quickly, is that it is hard to get work and find clients that will trust that you can and will deliver. It’s not easy marketing yourself but there are certainly some do’s and don’ts to keep in mind when getting your brand out there and finding work. Here’s a list to help you find more qualified business as a Freelancer.
Don’t Brag About Yourself:
I don’t care what anyone says to the contrary but no one will work with someone that is arrogant and seems “too proud” to work with. It seems like it would be common sense but too often do I receive emails from people looking for me to work for them and when I respond they start telling me how to do my job; don’t do that.
Tip: Present your accomplishments in a humble way. “I was very fortunate to be featured in … for my (blank) work”. Give enough to establish that you are a Pro but don’t step on any toes (which leads me to my next tip).
2.) Hold onto Your Clients as Long as You Can:
It’s important to remember, no matter how difficult some clients can be, to keep an excellent rapport with them. Your most valuable clients are the ones that give you referral work. Also, roughly 70% of companies said that it was cheaper to retain than attain new clients (oursocialtimes.com). It is very expensive to acquire new clients. It’s common sense that it takes money to make money but why not hold onto a client and use the profit that you made from their campaign to pay for your advertising; or better yet ask for referrals.
Tip: If you need to, don’t be afraid to change your payments to make it seem more affordable. This doesn’t mean a sale price, it means offer payments in halves or thirds but, keep your budget where it is. $500 on the first and $500 on the 15th is more attractive than $1,000 a month.
3.) Sweeten the Pot:
If there’s one thing that clients love more than performance and sales it’s a deal. Reward your existing clients by offering incentives to retain your business. Forbes hit us with the harsh truth that 80% of future revenue will come from 20% of your existing clients. So in reality giving them a one time deal to lock them in will pay off and then some.
Tip: Offer something that makes sense on both ends. Yes, you need to make money, but, the objective is to keep them as a client and reward them for their loyalty. One I like to use is an incentive program. I.e. 15% off of your monthly services and a free analysis for 10 referrals. Something like that will go a long way for both parties.
4.) Be Mindful of Your Wallet When Marketing Yourself:
The single easiest thing to do when marketing yourself for new clients is to overspend. So many people overspend and don’t even know that they are! The Flowtown infographic on Spoken.com shows us that it is around 6-7 TIMES more expensive to acquire new clients through advertising. The best thing i’ve done is trade work for an article placement, social media shout-out, anything that will get some backlinks to my site or my name on someone else’s computer screen.
Tip: It can never hurt to ask. Approach these places that you read articles from and ask them what it would take to have you write a guest post. You might be surprised how easy it is sometimes. Also, well-done social media is free advertising!
5.) Social Media Can be Your Worst Nightmare:
It is so easy to waste time and money on social media with little to no return. Social Media was invented to ENGAGE your clients. It does no one any good to have a stagnant social media page but, what is worse, is having a BAD Social Media page. Kissmetrics shed some light on the truth about Social Media in reporting that 63% percent of Fortune 100 Companies successfully engaged customers on Social Media and that Social Media mistakes turn people off in an instant.
Tip: Over Tweeting or over posting a constant chain of irrelevant information will prompt people to stop following you. Promoting your services on Social Media won’t bring you business; these offers need to be saved for direct response platforms. Don’t follow as many people as you can; because then you have to respond and keep up interaction with all of them. Kissmetrics offers the metric that the number of people you are following shouldn’t exceed your number of followers by 10%. Local SEO can help as well, and is often way cheaper and easier than big ad campaigns (less competition).
6.) Customer Service is King:
Hands down the easiest way to lose business is poor customer service. On average $83 Billion is lost annually in the U.S. due to a lack of customer service (Kissmetrics.com). In that $83 Billion, one customer on average is worth about $280 on a given purchase. So make sure that you keep that in mind when approaching a sale or contract in this case.
Tip: Provide the “V.I.P” experience from your very first point of contact to the last. Or if you’re lucky you’ll develop retainer work and a great business relationship.
Remember to keep all of these tips in mind when marketing yourself as a Freelancer. For more awesome tips and guidance as a Freelancer check out this guide at Invoiceninja.com.https://www.invoiceninja.com/why-freelance-an-epic-guide/