Trying to find new clients after starting a freelancing business is daunting and can petrify even the best salespeople.
I went through this process when I was let go on a Friday afternoon and using these principles, I was able to meet my revenue goals by Sunday night.
Execute on these 6 ways to find new clients and you can start your freelancing business quickly!
Coffee a Day: A Low Effort Tactic to Find New Clients
This is the most powerful tool in my arsenal. Many people think sales is about convincing people to buy from you.
I am here to tell you: that has nothing to do with getting clients.
People buy from people they like and trust. You will never close a deal by trying to sell your services right off the bat, especially as a new freelancer.
The key to building clients is building trust and relationships slowly. The only way to do that is to meet with new people constantly.
If you commit to getting coffee with a new person in your network every single day, you will find clients.
They may need your help with a problem or know someone else who has the problem.
Even if they don’t right away, this is how you build a network that constantly brings leads to you over time.
Reach out to the people you’ve always wanted to know and mention a shared interest.
The key to having as many coffee dates as you can is to focus on building a relationship. People can smell a sales pitch from a mile away.
Ask them about things that interest them, their work, or engage with them on social media.
Join Discussions on Social to Find New Clients
Social media isn’t always about impressions or clicks. Often, it can be a way to consistently engage with your ideal clients and grow a relationship with them before you make an ask.
I have closed a contract by engaging with the first episode of a startup’s podcast.
Make sure you provide engaging comments on your ideal client’s posts.
Show up on their new content consistently and you may make an impression on them.
After all, who doesn’t like attention on something they have spent any of their time on.
By commenting on the posts of your ideal clients, you can show up on their radar and clients just like them!
Ask Old Coworkers to Refer You to New Clients
I make a habit of staying in contact with every coworker I’ve enjoyed working with.
This made it incredibly easy for me to rebound into freelancing after being laid off.
Not every coworker will enjoy working with you, but many may refer you to their new companies.
Once you start needing new clients, reach out to your old coworkers and see if they know anyone looking for your services.
I’ve used the help of coworkers I enjoyed working with to grow my business immensely. It is one of my largest referral sources.
Just make sure you take every opportunity to pay them back for their support and kindness. No one likes a one-sided relationship.
Share your revenue goals with mentors and friends
I’m a big believer in bringing others along the journey with you to your goals. I share my goals with every mentor and friend that will listen to me. Not everyone is interested, but you will be surprised at how many people will support your journey and empathize with the problems you are struggling with.
One of my biggest clients came from telling a mentor about the type of work I wanted to move into.
By sharing your goals with your mentors and friends, you give them an opportunity to help you and give back.
I have found that most mentors desperately want to give back.
You just need to give them the opportunity to.
Build in Public
No one knows what you’re working on behind the scenes unless you tell them.
Make an effort to talk about your business, projects, or interests in public.
When you start posting about the problems you love solving, the people with those problems will approach you.
This isn’t a foolproof plan; however, over time you will attract your ideal clients.
Make sure to record videos about your day-to-day, post on LinkedIn, and do anything that shows your skillset off.
If you stay consistent, ideal clients will come to you.
Interview Your Ideal Clients
The final superpower in my belt that helped me find clients is interviewing them!
You’d be shocked how many people love to be put on a pedestal.
When you interview your ideal clients, you give them an opportunity to look like an expert in front of their industry.
When you offer to make your clients look good instead of asking them for a sale, they lower their guard and you can build a relationship.
Then, you have a 30-45 minute call on Zoom to learn more about them, their interests, and their priorities in their role.
This can naturally turn into the start of a strong relationship that can lead to a sale.
Once you post their interview on social media, they may share it with other people just like them.
Other than scheduling coffee every day, this tip is a foolproof path to build a brand in your industry and generating leads.