In a perfect freelancing world, clients are a plenty and you don’t even have to dip a hook for them to bite. Your business never runs dry and everyone is singing you praise. Well, that is, if we live in that ‘perfect’ setting. Everyone knows that the core of generating success in terms of profit when it comes to freelancing is through generating leads. Whether you do it online or offline ( or both ), is not really the question. There are new tools, fresh channels for you to properly qualify your prospects and in the end, it’s really all about marketing your message right. How do you make an impact?
Here’s the ugly truth: No matter what so-called marketing gurus may have told you otherwise, there is simply no miracle, magic, or formula here. Generating leads is all about understanding who your target market is, how you will be able to solve their pain points and how you can create + build a relationship with them over time. We have blogged about the topic of Lead Generation countless of times because we believe it’s crucial to your success:
From a Freelancing Nobody to a Lead Magnet
Content Marketing as the New Freelancing Advantage
How Freelancers Can Maximize the Power of LinkedIn
The New Rules of Marketing Yourself as a Freelancer
How Freelancers Can Use QR Codes to Attract Clients
How You Can Get More Clients with Social Blogging
and we don’t just stop from here. We will always be on the lookout on how you can ensure that your supply of clients will always be full and your cup of profit is filled to the brim.
How to Generate Quality Leads for Less
1. If You Build VALUE… Valuable Customers Will Come
Whether you build content or curate content about your expertise, don’t just do it because everyone else do. Think of the benefits.. like, how can your blogging solve problems that your target clients face each day. And if you’re running out of ideas, you can check out these 25 Content Marketing Ideas for People Who Don’t Like to Write!
2. Always Start With WHO You Know
You may be the best and yet, everyone seems to be the ‘best’ at what they do. Look into your list of past clients, friends and other business contacts. You may even run an incentive program for repeat business.
3. Build a List of Buyers with Budget
The first mistake I had when I started freelancing was taking every project that knocks on my door, regardless of pay rate. Maybe, I needed to build a portfolio of clients but then, this practice hurt me in the long run. The truth is, as a freelancer, you run a business and not a charity.
4. Get in Touch with Real Decision Makers
You have to know just who you are pitching for and what position they have in their company. Because if you don’t target these decision makers ( Upper management, CEO’s and those C-Level executives ), you might be waiting in vain for the green light.
5. Raise the Bar
People love freemiums and all those free offers. But when many are sending out free junk, your target clients may not be tempted to sign up for your newsletter. You can compile your past blog posts into a free ebook or make a free infographic. The options are countless. Unless you offer something better, you might just as well be left out because they can get these freebies elsewhere.
6. Timing is Everything
You may qualify a prospect who you believe will be most likely to hire your services and yet, you forgot to do your research. You can always check out telltale signs if they need your service, from industry news to company blogs – which leads us to the next item..
7. Create a Demand for Your Expertise
Ever heard of rebranding? They say it’s all in the package. You may offer the same service like person ‘x’ does, but the way you present it will define you from the rest of the crowd. Ponder on this: How can you make ten times the impact with your personal brand?
8. Harness the Power of Surprise
With the advent of social media comes creative ways of self-expression. The next time you apply for a job, wow your client. Go beyond the makings of a generic cover letter, even a custom-made one. Try making a short video why you’re the perfect fit ( and you don’t have to invest in all that fancy video-editing software ).
9. Make Time for Alliances
Or simply, team up with those freelancers whose business complement yours, because the next time a big, fat juicy project lands their way – your name is on the ‘hire me’ list. Call it reciprocal relationship, strategic partnership or mutual collaboration. It works all the time!
10. Build Relationships… Fast
Clients hire because they need a service. They buy because they see the benefits in what a freelancer provides. Yes, you can network and get to know new people who can be a good potential client.. but you have to set the ambiance and make them decide to hire you fast. Because like it or not, relationships don’t pay the bills.
In other words, generating the right leads takes a great offer and a compelling reason for them to hire you right now. Leverage your website, your blog, your online portfolio, social media networks – which are all available to you for free ( or for a very small fee ).
As they say, ‘When there’s a will, there’s a way…’ and there’s a lead.
p.s. care to share a few lead generation tips to our readers? Thanks much xoxo..