So you’ve broken free and become a freelance marketer. This career choice offers you plenty of freedom, but now what? Do you know how to get social media clients regularly and start bringing in a paycheck?
Getting started is tough; there’s no way around it. However, with a little skill, some patience and plenty of dedication, you can be on your way to success as a freelancer.
The examples and ideas we’ve set out are simple and affordable. We don’t recommend doing all of them at once, but instead, choose the ideas that best suit your personality and goals. As you implement new steps, you will see the progress occurring.
1. Learn Your Field
It’s very difficult to become successful in anything unless you know the ins and the outs of the business. Thankfully, today’s digital age provides vast resources, right at your fingertips.
You can utilize Google Academy for Ads, HubSpot Academy, Facebook Blueprint and many other avenues to develop your marketing skills. The more you know, the more successful you can become.
While a four-year degree is often nice, it’s not the only way to get ahead. What matters the most is what you can do. Your portfolio will speak wonders for you, and clients won’t care about your education.
In fact, gaining practical experience is often better at teaching than any college ever has been.
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Once you have your experience, it’s time to begin marketing yourself. You can leverage freelance digital marketing to benefit yourself as well as your clients.
With the platforms available to you, there’s no limit to what you can accomplish.
If you are trying to figure out how to get social media clients, start with Facebook. Small businesses are all over the platform. Sure, the organic reach isn’t always what you would hope for, but Facebook continues to have a comprehensive advertising platform that boasts of success. Start by running a few ads targeted at your potential clients.
You can also join some groups throughout your target industry. Participate in the groups and start building value to what you offer.
It isn’t difficult to get Twitter followers nowadays, and Twitter is a great place to start figuring out how to get social media client. As you connect with these people, you can leverage the platform to market yourself and your services. Twitter offers some amazing ways to advertise and is often a successful platform when looking for new clients.
It’s not difficult to network with other professionals on LinkedIn. As a freelancer, you will find a vast amount of connections out there that will get your business up and running. You can also use LinkedIn jobs, which allows you to get freelance clients without a lot of effort.
If you are looking to reach the Gen Z generation for new social media clients, you need to get your brand onto TikTok. This is one of the quickest growing social media platforms and relies heavily on influencer marketing and authentic content from marketers. The best way to attract new clients on the app is to use trending hashtags and create creative and useful content.
3. Search Job Sites Online
You can build an entire business out of simply using freelance job sites. Here are a few we recommend that you start with.
What makes SolidGigs different than some other sites is the tools the platform gives to users. Not only do they deliver the top jobs available straight to your inbox, but you also have the chance to take in a library full of tools and education to become better in your field.
Quick Sidenote: Have you heard about Hectic? It's our new favorite tool for freelancing smarter, not harder. Client management, project management, invoices, proposals, and lots more. Hectic's got it all. Click here to see what we mean.
FlexJobs opens up the world of professional listings to freelance marketers. Because all of the jobs are screened, there’s very little chance that you will get involved in a scam.
Upwork has grown into one of the most popular freelance platforms on the market. You can find an opportunity in every sector, including freelance marketing.
More than two million freelancers trust PeoplePerHour. If you choose this platform, you want to add your previous projects to your portfolio and allow new clients to see what you’re capable of.
With Fiverr, you post your skills at a flat rate. Then, others look for you and hire you accordingly. The key to success with Fiverr is marketing yourself, which you should already be quite good at.
4. Start Your Portfolio
All of these sites are a great way to build your business, but you have to have work to show prospects. If you haven’t gotten your first gig yet, there’s nothing to showcase.
Sadly, most freelancers don’t want to hear this step, but it’s crucial to getting started. You may need to take on a few clients for free.
Now, we aren’t suggesting that you get nothing in return. In exchange for your free work, you are going to highlight the job you do in your portfolio.
You can use the job sites above to offer your services or you can talk to some local clients you know. It doesn’t matter who you do the work for; it just matters that it’s done.
Once you offer your freelance marketing skills for free and build a small portfolio, you will have more success in learning how to get social media clients. In fact, if the work is outstanding, many clients will be knocking down your door to get to you.
Don’t let the free work scare you. Instead, embrace it as a chance to build your portfolio and learn new skills.
5. Start Networking
Networking has always been, and will continue to be, the lifeline for all freelancers. It might seem intimidating at first, but meeting new people is the key to moving ahead. Here are a few ways you can leverage networking to grow your client list fast.
Attend Local Gatherings
If you live in a major metropolitan area, the options available to you are endless, but you can find plenty of opportunities in smaller regions as well.
Look for dedicated networking events, but don’t stop there. You also want to attend company events that are seeking press, or hoping that people will join their team. During these events, you can make countless connections that will pay off in the future of your business.
Make sure you have a professional set of business cards and spend time perfecting your sales pitch.
Join a Co-Working Space
It is easier to sit at home and work from your bedroom, but that makes it much more difficult to network with people and gain clients.
Instead, consider joining a co-working space. These larger offices are rented out by employees in a variety of fields. You can rent a desk just for the connection it brings. Enjoy a cup of coffee while getting to know the person beside you.
While it’s important to be respectful of everyone’s time, you don’t want to go to the office space and be a hermit. Put yourself out there and learn what the others are working on.
Even if these people don’t need your services right now, they may know someone that does. As you build stronger relationships, more people will hire you.
For some people, the thought of meeting people can be terrifying. If this describes you, there’s still hope. Join some online forums and make new connections.
Just be cautious about how you use the online forums. Several of them have rules about business promotion and you don’t want to get in trouble.
Still, you can sign up as a participant and share your knowledge to establish connections.
6. Utilize Email Marketing
Any part of a solid social media marketing strategy includes email outreach. You want your message to show up in the inbox of prospective clients. With email marketing, you are guaranteed to show up in front of your target audience.
When you create your website, add a pop-up builder that collects email addresses. You can provide a discount or some free content for the sign-up. As you build your email list, you can target these customers with your services.
When you attend your networking events, you can also collect business cards and email addresses. Then, follow up with these prospects by crafting an engaging and eye-catching email campaign.
As you send out regular newsletters, you keep this audience interested and you stay in front of them. When the time comes from them to hire a freelance marketer, they will remember you.
7. Create Your Brand and Website With Purpose
When you are creating your website, you need to make sure it portrays your competency. While your hands should be involved in the finished project, don’t be afraid to hire a professional for guidance.
In fact, if you don’t have professional photography skills, this is one area of your website you don’t want to sacrifice. You might also consider employing a professional graphic designer to give your brand the edge it needs.
Before you design your website, consider the target audience. You want the website to be attractive to the clients you hope to attain. If your audience is professional business executives, then creating a fun and lively site may not be the way to go.
8. Curate Content Regularly
Not only does posting new content help you to stay on top of the search engines, but it also provides relevant information for your clients. Once people land on your page, you want them to keep coming back for more.
Let’s face it; B2B marketing is not an easy process. You have to build a reputation and clients might watch you for some time before actually hiring you.
By creating a solid content strategy, you give them the information they need to choose you for the job. Build brand trust and your reputation at the same time while staying in front of your target audience.
Sit with a calendar and map out your content strategy over the next few months. Make sure you include seasonal content and special events that might be searched.
9. Work with an Agency
Working with an agency might seem counterproductive to freelancing, but it provides a great way to build relationships. Agencies are always hunting for new people to outsource work to.
As you are getting started, having an agency bringing you the business helps to make you profitable. They do the sales; you simply perform the work. Plus, agencies have access to larger clients than you would on your own.
Many successful freelance marketers find the key to continued income is having a mixture of independent clients and agencies.
As you build your portfolio, you have to be careful about sharing the work you’ve done with the agency, especially if you have signed a non-disclosure agreement.
To get started:
- Make a list of local agencies you could work with.
- Send them a message with a link to your portfolio.
- Make sure you include your rates.
- Ask to meet for lunch or a cup of coffee to discuss working together.
- Follow up with a phone call.
It may take several tries before someone agrees to meet with you, but don’t give up. You will find an agency that is excited at working with a fresh set of eyes.
10. Keep Improving
No matter what stage you are in, as you learn how to get social media clients, you want to keep improving. Continue taking more courses and adding new tools to your arsenal. With every step you take, you only become better and add more value for your clientele.
You also want to work on improving your sales pitch. Your pitch sells your services and should always be updated.
Whether you are working on your in-person or your email pitch, it makes sense to experiment with a variety of options. See what brings in a response and what turns people off.
Continue to keep the pitch short and to the point. Let your work speak for itself.
While creating a marketing plan is always wise, you don’t want to get stuck in this step. If you continue to strategize, you will never get your first client.
Instead, the time to act is now. By reading this article you have hopefully learned how to get social media clients, so all you need to do now is choose one or two of the steps we showcased to get started.
By putting one foot in front of the other, you place yourself out there to start your freelance marketing career. Soon, the work will snowball and you will be looking to add to your team. Who knows, you might even consult other freelancers in the future about how to get started.
Every big venture starts with a small step, and today is your day to begin.
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