Despite having the motivation and knowledge in your field, there’s one task that will decide whether you get held back or thrive, “How do I find new clients”. Finding new clients during this pandemic isn’t the easiest of tasks, but if you follow the points below, you’ll be headed in the right direction.
How flexible should I be when looking for work?
The workforce is now “On-Demand.” Due to the rise of digital talent platforms, and how they are creating a new marketplace to high-skill freelancers, it’s a great time to get involved. Diversify and try your hand at a new niche in your chosen field.
Being able to adapt to unexpected demands in the workplace is the new normal, for both freelancers and businesses. Sudden surges in work, urgent problems, and unpredictable events will keep happening until the pandemic we are living through, is completely under control.
Should you be noticing a big slump in work, one option could be to find a job on the side to keep you going until the market picks up again. This doesn’t have to be in the same industry as you are in. Think of this as an opportunity to try something new. Many people couple Teaching Online with Design for instance. There are many online side hustles that you could temporary do.
Should I be prepared when looking for clients?
Have an online portfolio/CV ready to send. Be active on social media and set yourself up on multiple freelancing platforms such as Upwork, People Per Hour and Fiver. You never know who’s searching for you online, or who will randomly invite you into a project. Opening different doors will allow for different possibilities of potential clients finding you.
Another part of being prepared is knowing what the competition is up to. This includes everything from pricing of services to how clients have discovered and approached them. Also research on how you can differentiate yourself.
Steps to take when meeting potential clients
- Research the company and every attendee. Remember names.
- Set a goals and objectives for the Meeting.
- Plan the Agenda to support your objectives.
- Be on time, if not earlier.
- Have a backup, incase everything goes wrong.
- Plan follow up communications, show gratitude.
- Setup the next steps.
Do I need to cold call and email clients?
Cold calling and emailing can feel demotivating. But if you don’t have any clients, you can’t work. The most important piece of advice to remember when cold calling/emailing is that you’re reaching your target audience.
Put together a list of the clients that you want to work with, cater your portfolio/CV to them and start contacting. Do you due diligence ahead of time and make sure that your pitch explains what you could do for them. And, make sure that you’re talking to the right person. Linkedin is made for networking, utilise the platform and don’t be shy.
Google maps is also an excellent way to find potential clients. Working with local companies while travel is restricted, maybe one of the best routes to take. Maybe you could find a local company that needs a new website designed.
Shall I spend more time updating my brand?
Being current is probably the best way to land new clients. It’s a good idea to have completed profiles on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.
Keep your software skills sharp and check out the many webinars on platforms such as Eventbrite. These help you keep up to date, with whats happening in the industry.
Face-to-face meetings are still a preferred method in establishing a relationship with a prospective client. Remember, it’s the relationships formed with people that gets you work.
Branding is super important for businesses of all sizes, so never disregard the importance. It’s not just visual.
Is considering to team up with other freelancers a good idea?
Contacting other freelancers and partnering up may help land bigger jobs and create a better outcome for the project than doing so alone.
Also explore teaming up with different people in different fields such as designers, copyrighters, marketeers etc. Everyone brings something different to the table.
Is it time to catch up with existing contacts?
There’s nothing better than getting that word-of-mouth referral. Friends, family, and former colleagues can help you land that next client. You can even sweeten things up by offering a one time discount.
I am going to leave every project on good terms!
To find new clients during Covid is hard. There is so much negativity floating around at the moment, It can be challenging to not absorb it all up. This doesn’t mean that you have to take everything you get given. It also doesn’t mean that you can’t fire a client when thing aren’t working out.
When things come to an end, keep up the strong and positive impression by delivering top quality work in a punctual manner. Be professional at all times because your brand can be destroyed a lot easier than it can be built.
Be thankful for the work that get given. And, stay in touch with everyone. They may refer you to a colleague. You may need connections later on, for one reason or another. Don’t burn bridges.
Know Your Value
We are all unique and this makes us valuable. it’s important to know your self-worth and where your skills stand in comparison to the marketplace. Not only does it allow you to develop confidence when dealing with challenging clients, but it can also give you an idea of how much to charge for your services.
Many companies and agencies are struggling as well, and because of this, budgets may have been cut. It’s also worth noting that if you are working at a very reduced rate, the client may not respect everything that you are doing as much as he or she should. You have to use your own judgement on these matters. But be mindful.