Never lose out on future prospects again with this detailed guide.
Freelancing is not an isolated profession.
As a freelancer, you’re the owner and face of your business. You’re the only one responsible for marketing your service to attract new clients.
Whether a guest post for a company’s LinkedIn page or email marketing through your website, becoming a successful freelancer means becoming the most effective marketer.
In this article, we’ll cover some details and actionable steps to market yourself as a freelancer and attract better clients.
Step One: Define your Target Audience
Knowing where your potential clients spend their time every day is crucial for your freelance Business. The key is to identify these places and try to be present there.
To increase your chances of being hired, understand your client’s perspective. Start by asking these essential questions:
- What services are necessary for your target client?
- What goals does your target client want to achieve?
- Are the services you provide valuable enough for clients to pay for?
- What solutions can you offer to meet your client’s needs?
For instance, if you are a freelance SEO writer, look for Facebook groups where bloggers learn about increasing website traffic. Share posts that add value and showcase your expertise to potential clients.
It makes you stand out and helps promote your freelance business organically.
Step Two: Build Your Brand
You’re the embodiment of your brand.
When executed well, your personal brand as a freelancer serves as a resume that can foster trust and relationships with others in the industry and potential clients.
For freelancers, it goes beyond a logo and encompasses -
- your client communications,
- the tone of voice,
- work processes,
- attitude, and more.
Establishing a recognizable brand identity can set you apart from competitors. It positions you as an expert while still being relatable, as people are drawn to the why behind what you do and not just the what.
To effectively promote yourself using social media, it’s important to utilize each social media platform to its fullest potential:
As a professional network, LinkedIn should be treated as such.
- Use a professional headshot and complete all fields with a short description of your services and relevant work experience.
- Follow companies to track job openings, join groups for potential job alerts, and request endorsements from previous clients or employers.
- Don’t hesitate to share your story on LinkedIn in a way that promotes your services. You can read more details here -
Join groups for freelancers in your niche so you can network and find job opportunities.
Utilize hashtags and geo-tagging features to attract clients from specific locations. Sharing content from other freelancers in your industry can also help build professional connections and increase exposure.
Despite the 280-character limit, Twitter can be an excellent platform for sharing news about your business, interacting with potential clients, and staying up-to-date on industry trends. Following relevant hashtags can also help you discover job opportunities.
Step Three: Develop a Marketing Plan
Content marketing is the most important digital marketing strategy for freelancers. Having a website that showcases your portfolio and services is fundamental. Guest blogging on industry-related websites can drive traffic to your website and build credibility.
A portfolio is the best way to market yourself as a freelancer. Your portfolio should showcase your best work and demonstrate the diversity of your skills and clientele.
Each element of your portfolio should be treated as a story highlighting your role in the project, the skills and technologies you used, and how you fulfilled the client’s requirements. You can use third-party portfolio sites or include links to your portfolio on your website.
Update your portfolio regularly to reflect your evolving skills and capabilities is critical.
- Approach case studies by writing short stories about challenges you have solved or businesses you have helped.
- Use snippets of your work by including excerpts instead of the entire project.
- Take screenshots of your work, such as spreadsheets, research documents, apps, social media posts, or anonymized Google Analytics campaign results.
- Create visual representations of your successes by using diagrams, charts, or graphs.
- Include testimonials from former colleagues or clients to vouch for your skills. Make sure to make any quotes or testimonials visually appealing.
- Use relevant work samples in your portfolio, even if they aren’t paid work.
Step Four: Network and Build Relationships
Although freelance networking can be frustrating, it is essential to a freelancer’s marketing strategy. The right contacts can open doors that would otherwise remain closed.
The independent nature of freelancing can make forming relationships challenging, but there are ways to make it easier.
Approaching strangers can be daunting, so start networking with people you know. Begin with your friends and family and then expand to your alum network. Remember that helping out fellow freelancers is vital as it can lead to reliable colleagues who offer support when the workload becomes too much.
You can join co-working spaces to build genuine relationships and connect with people who have complementary skills. You can build trust and increase your network by referring clients to other freelancers.
Over to you…
As a freelancer, establishing yourself as an expert or influencer can seem impossible in the first few years. There are simple steps you can take to promote your business and attract new clients. The steps we discussed in this article are -
- Build a social media following,
- Create a website where clients can learn more about your services,
- Blog regularly about your niche.
Your work continues even after you deliver your services. The key to retaining clients and building long-lasting relationships is to follow up and keep in touch. This loyalty can lead to repeat business and referrals to other potential clients.
Remember, there’s no one-size-fits-all strategy for retaining clients as the freelance industry constantly evolves. You must adapt to the dynamic client landscape.