Landing freelance clients can be hard, especially for new freelancers. Without knowledge of the right marketing channels and approaches, you can spend months pitching your services without results. This post will help highlight some of the most effective tactics and strategies in landing new freelance clients. Some of the best methods include:
1. Cold outreach:
One of the best ways to land new clients is by cold outreach. Cold outreach refers to basically any form of outreach to someone who doesn’t know you; this includes cold emails, calls, etc. For most freelancers, the best cold outreach method is cold email. Unless you have an immediate network of your ideal clients, cold outreach is the best way to introduce yourself and services to clients. You can make a list of your ideal clients and use email finders to get their addresses and you can start your cold outreach campaign.
To maximize your cold email campaigns, you need to track your efforts. A great way to do this is to focus on your email KPIs. Focusing on email KPIs like your open rate, bounce rate, etc. will allow you to see how effective your outreach strategy is and you can use that data to refine your efforts.
The clients that you are reaching out to are bombarded with emails every day. In order to grab their attention, you need to personalize your email and make sure that it is relevant to them. When you’re personalizing the email, you should focus on the subject and the body of the email. The better your subject line is, the better your open rates are going to be. The email body is what will sell them on your services. Make sure you focus on the benefits they get instead of listing your accomplishments.
You can add personalization by doing some research on your prospects. You can follow their social media accounts, give them compliments based on their Instagram activity, LinkedIn profile, etc. This will show the prospect you put in effort to know who they are before you meet them.
3. Value offering
Offering some sort of value to the client in your email is crucial to showing them you’re an authority in your niche and that you can help them. When you have a specific type of value offering, the client is far more likely to respond to your email. Examples of value offerings you can provide include free audits, consultations, recommendations, etc.
Even if you craft the best cold email, a significant portion of the people you outreach to will not reply or open your email. This could be due to a variety of reasons, but the best actionable step you can take is to send a follow-up a few days later. Many studies have shown it takes several follow-ups (around 5) to close a sale. Be persistent and follow-up every few days
4. Improve your online presence:
With freelancing, your online presence is crucial. Clients will typically do a quick search on Google, LinkedIn, etc. This can heavily influence their decision to hire you. It’s best to maintain a professional online presence. When you search your name, the first few results will typically be a LinkedIn profile, social media page and any online publications. It’s important to be aware of what is posted online with your name because it will show up when someone searches for you. You can see exactly what your clients will see by going on an incognito browser and searching your name. If you don’t like what you see, make sure to change it before reaching out to clients.
Some tips to improve your online presence include:
- Creating/updating your website: Having a professional website design is vital to improving your online presence. You don’t need to have a home page like Disney or Apple, but just having a place where clients can learn about you and see some of your work will help dramatically in establishing trust. Your website should have your contact information, a little about yourself and it’s recommended that you publish some blog posts about your work. This can be general blog posts, case studies or something similar. As an alternative, you can create a landing page and list your products/services there, or just use it for lead generation. This will help show you’re serious about your work, and you can start getting organic traffic on Google from your blog posts.
- Using a professional email address: When you reach out to companies, the first thing they will see is your email address. If you’re sending them an email from a Gmail address, they might think it’s spam or it looks fishy. You can set up a professional email address directly from your web hosting provider. Make sure to include your name and company in your professional email address. An example would be “firstname.lastname@example.org”.
- Update your LinkedIn: Your LinkedIn will be the primary source that clients will use to gauge your professional experience. Make sure to have your LinkedIn up to date and include any relevant experiences, education and certifications you have. This can play a significant role in your clients trusting you. In addition, make sure to connect with as many people as you can in your niche. This will help broaden your network and can even result in client opportunities.
5. Guest posting:
Guest posting is one of the best ways to gain exposure to your ideal clients. With guest posting, you write blog posts on other sites about topics related to your niche. To maximize your guest post campaign, make sure to target sites that have audiences that include your ideal clients. For example, if you’re a marketing agency for startups, getting a guest post on TechCrunch can be extremely effective in getting new clients. Since TechCrunch gets a lot of startups to read their content, a well written guest post can generate several new clients for your business.
Some tips you can use to improve your guest posting include:
Targeting high authority sites: Use a tool like Ahrefs or SEMrush to check the domain authority of the sites you want to guest post on. Sites with higher domain rank and authority typically have bigger audiences and you can get a backlink back to your site. The backlinks from these high domain sites will increase your site’s domain authority.
Write lengthy in-depth posts: Unless you have an established relationship with the editors of a site, guest posts are typically one-time opportunities. If you get a chance to write for a great site, make sure your guest post is well-written and shows your expertise in your niche. Writing lengthy guest posts can be difficult. You can use AI copywriting tools like Jarvis to get help writing sentences. This can help improve your content output and improve the quality of your writing significantly. Additionally, make sure all of the content you write is original. Many editors use plagiarism checkers to make sure you didn’t copy any writing.
These are just a few ways that you can improve your chances of landing a freelance client. It’s important to focus on one marketing channel and be consistent over time to generate leads. Following these tips over a long period of time will help generate more leads and ultimately more clients for your freelance business.