When setting up a freelance business you need to tell people what you do and let them know you are available for work – marketing your new business is essential to help you find and secure clients.
It can seem daunting to know exactly where to start with marketing and tempting to think that you have to spend a lot of money on glossy advertising campaigns, however, there is a multitude of ways to market your freelance business.
Because of their experience with working with freelancers, we turned to the experts from Crunch and they gave us some marketing tips on how to get your freelance business get more traction:
Request client referrals
If you already have clients who are happy with your freelance work, ask them for referrals to their partner organisations and get them to recommend you. You can also ask for testimonials to include in your online and written marketing communication.
Read more>> Referral business
Set up your own website
A company website gives people the chance to check you out, make sure you are genuine and see examples of works that you have completed for other clients – think of it as a shop window into your business for prospective customers.
Make sure your website is up to date and you should also use it to showcase your expertise in your industry area by sharing articles and producing content which will prove useful and of value to your customers such as PDF cheat sheets, e-newsletters and how-to videos.
Send out email campaigns
Send out email campaigns to potential clients – you can look for and target your ideal customers and ideal businesses you wish to work with and send them introductory emails about your business.
You can also use email campaigns to offer special discounts or loyalty bonuses to your regular clients and to keep them updated on any new products or services which you plan to offer them.
Attend networking events
Going to networking events is a great way to market your business and to meet prospective new clients. Even if those in the room don’t require your services, they will all have connections in other places and will broaden your network by association. Building relationships with networking groups can be a great way to secure new work by word of mouth.
Have a strong social media presence
Having a presence on social media is vital for your new freelance business – you need to choose the social media platforms where your prospective clients spend time so that you know your content is reaching the right people and is working effectively. LinkedIn is the most commonly used professional social media, but don’t forget that business people also use social platforms in their spare time so Facebook and other more social applications can also work well for some types of audience.
Read more>> How to Build a Strong Social Media Presence
Create meaningful content
As a freelancer, one of the best ways to showcase your expertise and the value you can offer to potential clients is by creating content which they might find useful, such as guides, articles and free giveaways on your website. They should all contain information which your would-be clients can use straight away to make their lives easier in some way.
If you do have any kind of budget available it is certainly worth looking at running an advertising campaign in relevant publications which are regularly read by your audience, for example, professional industry magazines.
It can also work if you use online advertising such as on Facebook or Google, which will then help would-be clients to find your website and online content much quicker and more easily.
If you want to share your freelance expertise with a broader audience then why not jump on the back of an already established industry blogger’s audience by offering your services as a guest blogger. You can showcase your expertise to a much broader audience than you would ordinarily reach, for free.
Marketing is key to the success and ongoing growth of your freelance business as it’s the only way that clients will find your business and hear about the services that you offer. When starting out as a freelancer marketing and word of mouth are the key elements to business success so it’s worth spending time on all of these activities and more.
Just because you have a limited budget doesn’t mean you can’t get your business in front of the people who need to see it, for example, sending out regular emails to prospective local clients is cost-free but can bring in new business when done effectively.
If you are not a marketing expert then it can be worth outsourcing this work to an expert marketing agency to ensure it is carried out on behalf of your business, so that you can focus on running the business itself, while remaining safe in the knowledge that your marketing is being taken care of.