Marketing for Freelancers: 7 Ways to Sell Yourself
A good marketing strategy is what separates successful businesses from the failures. Freelancing is no different.
Just like an auto repair shop that invests time and money in promoting itself is going to surpass one that just sets up shop and hopes for business. So too will your freelancing business succeed more if you do more than twiddle your thumbs and wait for clients.
But marketing for freelancers doesn’t always come easy. You’re a master of your service, for sure. But that doesn’t mean you know how to sell yourself. So to give you a leg up on the competition, here are 7 tips that will help you improve your marketing game as a freelancer.
#1 – Add Marketing To Your Schedule
As a freelancer, it will often feel like you have more to do than time to do it all. For this reason, marketing for freelancers often gets put to the wayside in place of higher priority tasks. But, if you want to grow, you can’t neglect it forever.
A good way to stay on top of it is to actually add marketing to your calendar. Whatever your freelancing schedule looks like, pencil in self-promotion or other marketing related activities that will help you acquire new clients, keep the current ones happy, and land more sales.
#2 – Sell Yourself Daily
Following up on the previous tip, a lot of freelancers find it helpful to make marketing part of their daily routine.
Wake up. Workout. Eat breakfast. Send pitch emails.
Or… something like that.
The idea is that if you make marketing a regularly scheduled activity, it will just become a habit rather than a chore. Even if you plan on spending just 15 minutes per day marketing yourself, you’ll probably have an advantage on 99% of the rest of the freelancers in your niche.
#3 – Establish Expert Authority
Marketing for freelancers primarily has two goals in mind:
1. Get in front of potential clients.
2. Convince them that you can do the job.
Establishing yourself as an expert in the field is all about that second goal (Although, done the right way, it will also meet the first goal too). The gist is that if you can make your potential customers see you as knowledgeable in the services you offer, they are more likely to hire you than go looking somewhere else.
But how do you do that?
There are a lot of ways. Obviously, you have to actually be an expert (don’t try to fake it). But don’t let that intimidate you. Expertise is relative. As long as you are significantly more skilled at what you do than your potential clients, for all intents and purposes, you are an expert.
So, assuming that you meet the expertise qualification, here some simple ways to establish that authority:
Add value in online forums. Whether it’s a Facebook group, Reddit thread, or discussion board–you want to find out where your potential clients are talking and meet them there. Don’t spam them with sales pitches. Just help answer their questions based on your real experiences.
Publish case studies. People love examples. And a case study is the ideal way to share one with potential clients. If you offer SEO services, for example, you can publish a detailed case study about how your strategies helped you improve the rankings of your own website.
Create video content. Modern audiences love video. It’s easily digestible, engaging, and highly shareable. If you can create videos that solves real problem that your ideal clients are having, odds are they’ll start sharing it with colleagues. And, when they are finally ready to hire a professional to do the heavy lifting for them, they’ll know that you are just the expert they need.
#4 – Get In Front of the Right Clients
So how do you get yourself in front of those clients to actually establish your authority in the first place?
Social media is a great way to start. In addition to countless groups devoted to your clients’ industries, you can also create your own business pages and accounts to start sharing your content on. Cold email is another proven strategy. Of course, it’s not for the thin-skinned, and definitely tricky to get started with.
A really simple way to start getting in front of clients is by posting your services on a freelance marketplace where potential customers are already searching for your services. Freelancers love using Legiit for this because not only does it include a wide range of different service categories, but it’s also got a very active Facebook community that makes it easy to land in front of clients.
#5 – Learn Copywriting
If you are selling your services through a freelance marketplace or your own website, understanding how to write copy that sells is essential.
Good copywriting gets in the head of potential clients and shows them why they need to hire you. It’s literally the difference between making a sale or not.
The good news for you is that we’ve already put together a complete guide on How To Write a Service Description That Sells.
#6 – Find Your BIG Client
Set your sights high. Every client is worth something, but some clients are worth more than others.
If you can acquire a client who has a large following or a lot of connections in their industry, you are going to see your sales skyrocket.
This is because word travels. When you do good work, people talk about it. The bigger the client’s network, the more referrals you are likely to see if you deliver consistent, high quality work.
#7 – Manufacture Your Own Luck
Success in business is just as much about luck as it is about anything else. In fact, one study found that luck is more important to success than talent.
But luck isn’t just about hoping for things to go your way. Every opportunity that you create for yourself is another chance for luck to smile upon you.
A really simple analogy is playing craps. For sure, every time you roll the dice, you are more likely to lose than to win. But if you never roll the dice, your chance of winning is 0%.
When it comes to marketing for freelancers, you can manufacture your own luck by getting out there day in and day out and putting your best foot forward. Every pitch you make, every email you send, every piece of content you market, and every time you add value. These are all opportunities for the dice to roll your way and push you further towards success.