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When you are just starting out in the freelance world, you have to justify every expense to yourself, because you likely aren’t making a ton of money, and every penny counts. So why set up a freelance business email when you can just keep using the same email address you’ve had since middle to conduct business?
Don’t do it.
For one thing, your old email address might be something silly, immature, or just a bit ridiculous that may not be putting your best foot forward when it comes to reaching out to clients.
But freelance business email is about more than just the domain name you use. It’s the way you present yourself, a strategy to employ, and the main source of communication between you and your clients.
With that in mind, let’s talk about some resources that can help you make the most of your freelance business email opportunities.
6 Freelance business email templates
Crafting the perfect email takes time and thought. Luckily, you don’t have to do it on your own. Below, we have created a series of freelance business email templates to help you get started. Just be sure to customize each template to your needs, include details specific to the person you are contacting, and don’t be afraid to change things up when it makes sense for you.
The Cold Pitch
Freelancers often find themselves on the hunt for new clients, but it can be unnerving to reach out to complete strangers, asking them to hire you. Use this template as a starting point:
I recently discovered [your company] and I am so impressed with your [product/content]. I especially like [use a specific detail you found on their site].
My name is [name] and I am an expert in [details about your skill set]. I have done work for [brands/companies] You can see some of my work here [website or portfolio link].
I think I can help you [specific example related to their business objectives]. Do you need help with any upcoming projects? If so, let me know what they are and we can move forward with a paid test piece. If you have questions or would like to set up a time to talk, please feel free to get in touch.
[Your contact information]
Check out more cold pitch email templates from Millo here!
The Follow Up
When clients don’t respond, an email is often needed to prod things along. You don’t want to come off too rude, but you do want to get results. Use this template to guide your freelance business email:
Hey [Client Name],
As you know, I sent over the [draft/completed project/invoice/etc.] on [specific date]. I wanted to bump it to the top of your inbox to ensure that I get [feedback/approval/payment/whatever you need to move forward, you might use a bullet list here if there are a lot of action items] by [specific date or time], so that we can move forward as planned.
I am enjoying working with you and look forward to continuing the process.
[Your contact information]
Everyone is busy, and when you’re scheduling your freelance life, it is important to remember that both your time and your clients’ time is valuable. Setting up meetings or phone calls is sometimes simple, and sometimes not. Pro tip: use an online meeting scheduler, and be sure you test it out before sending it to clients.
Here’s a freelance business email template to get the conversation rolling.
I am making progress on [project details], and I would like to meet with you to go over [questions, details, next steps, etc.]
I value your time––let’s plan on keeping our conversation to [x amount of time].
Please click here [don’t forget to insert the link!] to find a convenient time slot.
I look forward to speaking with you!
[Your contact information]
Freelancers often rely on word of mouth to generate the best type of clients. You can put your freelance business email to good use by reaching out to happy clients and asking for referrals. Millo already has a great referral generation email template here, but there’s another option below if you’re looking for something a little more abbreviated:
Hi [Client Name],
I am so happy to hear that you were pleased with the latest [project detail] that I sent your way. It’s always nice to get great feedback.
I hope everything is going well with [personal detail you know about the client].
I’m reaching out today to see if you happen to know any other companies that might benefit from my services. I have some openings for additional work coming up, and I’d love to help out some other clients as awesome as you.
If anyone springs to mind, send me their contact information and I will take it from there!
As always, let me know if there is anything I can do for you.
[Your contact information]
The Job Application
Some freelance jobs are found through a traditional job search, and you may need to write a freelance business email as part of applying for that position. Typically, job postings ask for very specific materials, but you can use this introduction email template as your opportunity to create a great first impression:
Dear [Mr./Mrs./Ms. Last Name],
Thank you for the opportunity to apply for [position title]. My background and
qualifications would be a perfect fit for what you are looking for. My unique understanding of [the field you are applying in], comes from [relevant experience or project examples].
I am confident that you will not regret giving me the opportunity to work closely with your team to advance the goals of [organization name].
I am available for an interview at your convenience. Thank you for your time and
consideration. I look forward to hearing from you.
[Your Phone Number]
What about when you do great work for a client, but the project ends and then you don’t hear from them for a while? Sometimes all it takes to rekindle that relationship is writing a concise, professional freelance business email to remind them that you’re around. There are a variety of strategies for reconnecting, but here’s one idea:
Hello [Client Name],
It’s been awhile since we worked together––how is [service you provided] working out for you?
I wanted to let you know that I now offer [new service you can provide, discount you are offering, some sort of value add]. Can we set up a time to talk about how I can help you [achieve a specific goal]?
[Your Phone Number]
5 Freelance business email tips to follow
Every time you send a freelance business email, you are communicating who you are, your level of professionalism and what your clients can expect.
With that in mind, it is critical to create the type of emails that will showcase your expertise by following these tips:
1. Proofread. As a writer, this is my number one piece of advice. Everyone makes mistakes, but if your emails are riddled with typos, it will be difficult for anyone to take you seriously. Read and reread every email you type before you hit send.
2. Be Confident. One mistake that a lot of people make when sending freelance business emails is not sticking up for themselves. Freelancers are business owners, period. You deserve to be treated like a professional as long as you are acting like one. Set clear expectations, ask for the things you need, and don’t apologize for things that aren’t your fault.
3. Be Friendly. While confidence is important, don’t confuse it with rudeness. Civility and kindness are just as much a part of being professional as standing up for yourself is.
4. Keep it Short. Consider how many emails you get in a day. It’s frustrating to have to read through a lot of details you don’t need or sift through too much small talk to find the information you are looking for. Say what you need to say and leave it at that.
5. Subject Lines Matter. Not only do subject lines help your emails get opened, they are useful in conveying information and to fall back on later if you need to search for an old message. Put some thought into what you put into your freelance business email subject lines.
Where to get a freelance business email address
Ready to graduate from a generic email to a freelance business email address? It’s not as difficult (or as expensive!) as you may think. Here are three options to consider:
If you haven’t heard of Hectic, it is a suite of tools built with freelancers in mind to streamline workflow, keep track of communications and important documents, and just simplifying the self-employment life. A pro plan (around $12/month) comes with access to a custom freelance business email address that you can manage through their software.
While not specifically made for freelancers, Google Workspace is a tool used by businesses of all sizes. The starter plan (just $6/month) allows you to create a custom freelance business email address, and also gives you access to video calls and extra storage space to help manage your business.
Zoho has a variety of options and tools to help you grow your business. For just $1/month, you can set up a freelance business email, although that plan comes with limited storage, so as you scale your business you will likely need to upgrade.
All of these tools make it easy to setup a custom freelance business email, so there is no excuse to continue using a generic platform.
Get your freelance business email started today
Email is possibly the most important tool for modern freelancers. All the project management software and all of the fancy tech equipment in the world come to nothing if you can’t properly communicate with your clients.
Do yourself a favor and take your freelance business email seriously. Set up a custom address that reflects your business in a professional way, use templates to set yourself up for success, and spend the time necessary to send out emails that showcase who you are as a freelancer. Following all of these tips is a quick win and will instantly up your credibility as a professional.
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