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If you’re looking for a way to start earning some extra money, start a side business or create a full-time income, you may want to consider these freelance marketing strategies.
Here’s the current status quo:
- The majority of businesses around the world use social media to market their products and services.
- Companies of all sizes are starting to recognize the importance of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) in the growth of their business.
- Email marketing remains one of the most effective methods for lead generation.
However, while these are all crucial to the success of a business, companies often lack the resources to hire full-time personnel to fulfill all their requirements.
Instead, they hire freelancers who:
- Can offer flexible access to their expertise
- Cost them less than hiring a full-time employee
- Will require less supervision
- Provide high-quality work
- May be located anywhere in the world
That is where you come in! While helping them reach their targets and fulfill their requirements, you may also be able to:
- Work from wherever you want
- Expand your network and take on a number of great clients
- Control when and how long you work
- Create a six-figure income
If you’re interested in becoming a freelance marketer but not quite sure of how or where to start, don’t fret! To help you out, I’ve come up with a quick-fire guide to get you started.
Below are some timeless freelance marketing strategies you can employ to get your best start as a freelancer.
However, before we dive into the juicy strategies, let’s cover the freelancing basics…
What Is Freelance Marketing?
A freelance marketer provides skills and expertise in the form of a service on a flexible schedule, often for numerous clients at a time. Some examples of popular services provided on a freelance basis include:
- Content writing
- Search engine optimization
- Landing page creation and design
- Paid ad creation and management
As a freelance marketer, it’s also your job to connect with businesses and convince them to hire you. This means you need to reach out and connect with potential clients in some way to start landing gigs.
This could be done in numerous ways, from direct email outreach to networking events and joining online communities.
Without further ado, here are some freelance marketing strategies to help you start your freelance marketing business:
1. Identify Your Freelance Niche
Determining your niche isn’t as difficult as it seems. All you have to do is identify your most profitable skills. That means focusing on that one thing you’re naturally good at, or noting down some skills/areas of interest and honing in your expertise enough to where you can provide a service.
When you niche down on the service you provide, you’re making it easier to market yourself because your offer is clearly defined. And you can charge more because you specialize in your chosen field of expertise.
Finally, it goes without saying — try and avoid niche’s where you possess zero interest or desire to learn more. If you do, you’ll feel like you’re swimming against a current the entire time.
Here are some potential roles you could be good at:
Copywriting or Content Writing
Copywriting is the art of marketing writing to sell, which means you’ll be writing text with the intent of marketing products and services. When copywriting, you’ll mainly be working on ad copies, sales pages, email campaigns and landing pages.
Meanwhile, when you are writing content, you will be writing informative pieces which can either come in the form of a blog, a script, an article, a whitepaper, etc.
Community Management involves creating and maintaining a company’s brand social media presence by creating and posting content on their social media accounts.
Search Engine Optimization
Search Engine Optimization is the process of driving traffic to a company’s website and helping them rank higher on Google (or any other search engine) for relevant keywords by creating and improving relevant content.
Visuals are vital to successful marketing campaigns and memorable brands. Graphic Designers are in charge of creating infographics, logo’s and a variety of other visual elements for a business.
Further narrow down your niche by identifying who exactly you want to target with your services. Identify your client’s industry, estimate how much they are making monthly and most importantly, try to identify their niche.
Use these pieces of information to identify how exactly you want to market yourself.
Are you a Content Writer for Fintech startups or an SEO consultant for mid-size tech companies? Maybe you’re a copywriter for local auto body repair shops? How about a graphic designer for beauty startups?
Once you’ve chosen a niche and identified a profitable market, you’ll be ready to find some clients!
2. Be Creative In Finding Your Clients
Finding your first few clients is no easy feat. However, this doesn’t always have to be a painful process.
Instead of trying to start out with big clients, try reaching out to smaller businesses who would be more open to working with a new freelance marketer (though you don’t need to explicitly mention this 😉 ).
You may also opt to check out freelancing sites like Upwork, where you can bid on projects to start earning some cash and build your portfolio.
However, you should avoid becoming too reliant on such sites as they can be super competitive and bad news for your bottom line.
Instead, try to reach out to clients in online communities, message boards and websites where you can network. On top of these freelance marketing strategies, you may also do it the old school way and connect with people you know personally for referrals and small projects.
3. Aim to Get Referrals
Speaking of referrals, they are one of the best ways to land more gigs with new clients. More than relying on referrals from your family and friends, it would be beneficial for you to ask your clients for referrals.
This direct and simple way of getting clients does not only add a few names to your roster of clients, it also makes it easier to get more clients by increasing your existing client base.
Once you’ve built up a good client base and solid reputation, you can start charging more for your services.
How to get referrals, you might ask? All you have to do is impress your clients and give them reason to pass your name along to their friends and colleagues.
Here’s an email template you can use to generate client referrals.
4. Be Flexible With Your Rates
Figuring out how much to charge can be difficult, especially when starting out. After all, there really isn’t a standard everyone in the industry adheres to — and this doesn’t just apply to our freelance marketing strategies, it’s freelancers in general.
However, If you’re just starting out, don’t be too afraid to work for free! Take it as an opportunity to expand your network, secure testimonials and gain some experience to add to your portfolio. When you do start charging for your services, don’t be afraid to mix it up and find the right pricing model for you.
Your pricing model will depend on the type of work and structure of your projects. You won’t know what works best until you research your niche and figure out what’s working for other people.
You could charge hourly. Per project. On a monthly retainer. Or even percentage of profits generated. The possibilities are endless!
For most freelancers starting out, charging hourly is the most common pricing model.
You may also want to consider employing some tricks to raise your freelance marketer value.
5. Be Sure To Meet Your Deadlines
Let’s be real. An average freelance marketer who constantly meets their deadlines is infinitely better than an amazing freelance marketer who misses every single one.
Yes, providing high-quality work is just as important, but you must consistently meet your deadlines. By doing this, you demonstrate that:
- You are a professional
- You respect your client’s time
- You’re reliable and trustworthy
By consistently creating high-quality work and completing projects on time, you open doors for further work and more referrals from your clients.
6. Utilize Top Sites To Find Freelance Marketing Jobs
As mentioned above, as someone who’s new to freelancing, you may want to start by looking at sites where you can find freelance marketing jobs. Here are some quality examples:
Any beginner in the world of freelancing starts by bidding on a project on Upwork. As the most popular freelance site in the world, it is no surprise that there are millions of people registered.
Upwork accommodates many different kinds of projects across a slew of industries and verticals, making it a great place to start for all types of freelancers.
Upwork also takes pride in its built-in work diary and online workspace, making it easier to keep track of your hours and collaborate with your clients. It is important to note that Upwork charges a processing fee on all payments made to freelancers on the site.
If you’re a new freelancer, you’ll quickly realize that finding new clients is a full-time job in itself. Thankfully, there’s SolidGigs. They hunt the web for the best freelance jobs, and send them directly to your inbox every week. No more filtering out the bad apples and wasting your time.
Additionally, they have a huge library of resources (including videos, scripts, etc.) to help you be a better freelancer — and of course, get more jobs!
Freelancer offers thousands of freelance jobs on its website, making it much easier for you to find and bid on a project you think would be a great fit for you.
However, they charge $0.87 to $27.91 monthly, depending on the membership plan so this is something to bear in mind.
This site enables you to showcase your work much easier with a detailed design portfolio which potential clients can easily access and look through.
Moreover, Freelancer allows you to prove you’ve got the skills with certification exams and contests against other freelancers which you can partake in.
If you’re more of the creative type, Fiverr could be for you! Most listings on this site are for freelance writers, filmmakers, producers, designers, photographers and many more.
The site is an online platform with more than 3 million jobs posted every year. And finding a job is not at all difficult. All you have to do is browse the site catalogue in various categories to find one that is suitable for you.
All transactions include a service fee of $2 for projects that cost up to $40 and 5% on anything that costs more than that amount.
Here are some Fiverr freelancer reviews that you may find useful.
If you’re looking to focus on design, 99designs is a freelancing site you may want to consider. You’ll be serving clients and competing with designers from over 192 countries.
Like Freelancer, 99designs also hosts competitions for freelancers to help them prove their talents, thus helping them gain more clients.
Freelancer fees for a private project on 99designs cost around 10% of the total project price.
Guru helps freelancers find online projects based on their experiences. Being a member of Guru helps you gain access to different types of jobs posted daily.
It also offers a daily job-matching feature, which ensures you are able to catch all the good opportunities.
The site also offers features that make the management of all your work and projects quick and easy!
7. Go the extra mile to impress prospective clients
This principle is universally applicable in the field of freelance, business and even traditional careers.
Think about it: What can you do to go the extra mile when it comes to landing top-quality freelance gigs?
Find a way to show, instead of tell. Find a way to demonstrate your expertise instead of selling them. Why? Because anyone can say they have skills, but not many can demonstrate those skills to a high level.
If I were applying for an SEO manager gig, instead of sending the hiring contact an email about my previous experience. I would prepare a comprehensive SEO report, outlining the challenges and potential next steps the business could take to reach their goals.
The principle of going the extra mile can be applied in a number of ways. Ultimately, it links back to the core reason companies ask for so much experience/expertise for relatively simple work — they just need to know you can do the job. They don’t care about anything else.
How To Become Successful At Freelance Marketing
Freelance marketing is a business. So you must treat it like one.
Instead of looking at things as a typical freelancer (often undercharging and working themselves to the bone), be proactive and start looking for ways to consistently attract high-quality clients. Use these freelance marketing strategies to find a system that works. Rinse and repeat.
Find ways to build your credibility and make customers think of you when they are in need of the services you offer.
Being a freelancer, it is also very easy to mesh work and pleasure. Since you’ll most likely be working remotely, it’s worth setting boundaries for work and play.
These boundaries can be physical spaces and time commitments assigned for work during a typical day.
Balance is key here. You want to work with great clients and earn a high income but at the same time you need downtime so you don’t burnout.
Finally, you must remember that the success of your freelancing pursuits are down to you. So you must treat this with the same mindset you would if you were opening your own cafe. Be prepared to put in some serious time and effort at the start so you can get the ball rolling.
Once the ball is rolling, you’ll have the momentum you need to keep going and keep growing.
Think You’re Ready To Use These Freelance Marketing Strategies?
Are you ready to go for it?
Don’t worry, you never feel 100% ready. You just need to take the leap and see what you can build on the way up. If you don’t try, you’ll never know what you could’ve created.
Hopefully these freelance marketing strategies have encouraged you to take the next step.
To finish, I’d like to mention that everything is a process. You will make mistakes along the way and even feel like giving up sometimes. But if you focus on taking small steps forward everyday, you’ll be pleasantly surprised when you look back in a month and see how far you’ve come.
You already have the skills to get you going. Just remember to keep going, and soon the hard work will pay off!
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