As a freelancer, your schedule and the amount of money you make is, in most cases, up to you. Of course, the downside of that is that you’re solely responsible for finding yourself work, and if you don’t, you only have yourself to blame.
But what if you’re doing fine, and just want more? More clients, more money, more work, whatever you want more of, it’s out there. The clients are there, you may just not be doing the right things to make them notice you. If you’re having trouble landing new clients, or just want to improve your conversion rate and turn “good” into “great,” check out these tips:
1. Look For It
If you’re not finding work, it may be that you’re looking in the wrong places, or it may even be that you’re not looking at all! Reading some blog posts and then scanning Craigslist every morning doesn’t count – you need to be taking real steps to land jobs. Narrow down your target demographic, figure out where they’re looking, and then get your name in front of them.
2. Appear Organized
When you’re talking to a new client, you need to be sure that you’re coming across as someone who knows what they’re doing. In the freelance world, you can always be sure that there’s someone else who’d be happy to land the job you’re trying to get, and you can also be sure that your potential client knows it.
Know what you want to say going into any interviews or conversations, and make sure you have all relevant information easily accessible. If you can’t answer a question, reply with a “let me get back to you” instead of fumbling around looking for an answer. Just be sure you get back to them as quickly as possible.
3. Solve Problems
When someone is looking to hire you, they’re not going to be interested in your credentials very far past “can they do what I need them to do,” so don’t approach the hiring process with a generic list of everything you’ve ever done. Instead, make sure that you know what the client’s problem is, and be ready to explain why you’re the best person to solve it. A robust resume may look good when you’re applying for a full-time job, but when you’re performing a specific task as a freelancer, keep the focus on what you’re being hired to do.
4. Add A Personal Touch
This tip really comes in two parts. The first part involves learning everything you can about your potential client before talking on the phone or in person. If it’s clear that you’ve done a bit of research on their company, it will set you apart from the people who simply reply to ads with form letters and hope someone responds.
The second part involves feeling out the way your new client likes to communicate. Are they talkative and open about their lives? Feel free to open up and share with them when you’re on the phone. Are they straight and to the point, never bringing up anything that’s not part of the job? Keep it that way. Until your client gives you a reason to do otherwise, stick to the style of communication that they seem most comfortable with.
5. Be On Time
Punctuality is an excellent quality, and the importance of it can not be stressed enough. If you say a call is happening at noon, be ready at noon. If a project has to be done by Tuesday, have it done. If you can, have it done on Monday, just to be safe. Not only will this make the client happy, it will greatly increase your chances of being hired in the future, especially if your recommendations from past clients continually mention that you’re always on time.
Do you have your own strategies for finding freelance work? Share them in the comments section below!