Updated: May 14, 2020
“How do I get clients?” is a very common if not the most common question asked by new businesses and freelancers. Without the experience of what works and what doesn't, you may feel lost and hopeless in finding this answer. No worries! We've done all the trial and error for you and shaved down our list to the 10 methods we've used and applied for clients to get proven results: #1. Actively Take Part in Facebook Groups
It seems people have been passing the idea around that “using Facebook for your business is outdated.” Understand that this idea is mainly because Facebook page posts have a small organic reach due to the recent algorithm changes (apparently, it's now 2-5% of likes) which makes it easy to feel almost pointless. Facebook PAGES may not the best organically, but Facebook GROUPS can still be an amazing way to locate clients and help scale your business.
Joining relevant Facebook groups that your target audience may be hangin’ out in, can help you scale your business quickly. Here's an example: let's say you’re an aspiring graphic designer, it would make sense to join Facebook groups that are geared for bloggers or small business owners, because these people are more likely to need your services. However when you get in to the group, do not be spammy or self-promoting, try to be incredibly helpful when you're asked questions in the group. If you do this right, fellow group members should take notice of your informative expertise and will WANT to check out your Facebook profile (which we hope is already linked to your Facebook business page and website). That's all there is to it!
#2. Write Informative Blog Content Catered to Your Target Audience's Needs
This is one of our favorite and non-spammy methods to get clients to reach out for your assistance. Writing blog posts that will compel your ideal client to read, can be one of the most effective methods to get clients online. Is your business a personal stylist business? How about sharing tips with your audience about your opinion on the most attractive styles for different body types. Do you have a copywriting business? Write a blog post about essential things to have when creating an immersive “About” page. These blog posts won't just pull them to your website, it will also allow you an opportunity to show the knowledge you can provide them if they choose you. It’s almost like you're selling without really selling if that makes sense? You get the opportunity to showcase your skills and insight without the need to force anything on your blog readers. In addition, you should also have a link embedded somewhere in your blog that can direct people to your business' service page.
If you need help writing an informative blog, let us help you! Click here to schedule a free call with a content writer - see what we did there 😏
3. Perfect Your Present Client Work Process to Get More Referrals
Take a moment to think and literally write out (on paper if it helps) what your current client process is, and find ways to optimize it. Try to really be as specific as possible and try to streamline your client work process so all of the steps flow. Getting your process right and making everything as super smooth and easy as possible for you and your clients, will increase the chance that a client will choose you again or refer friends or peers to you. Chances are, If they loved working with you so will their friends.
Here’s a great example of an effective client workflow:
Send initial email >> Set up phone consultation (if needed) >> Send invoice with terms >> Send questionnaire (after invoice payment) >> Proofs/revisions (3 sets) >> Send final invoice (If broken payments were set up) >> Send thank you email
We recommend also sharing your process with the client you are taking on, so they know how things work and are in the loop of what stage of the process they may be at. The less puzzled and in the dark your clients feel, the better your chances of having them recommend you.
4. Create an Engaging Social Media Presence
Social media is a great way to build trust and expand your reach. In our experience, we’ve received a good amount of clients by sharing funny content and past work on Facebook and Instagram. The key is to also just be normal and social — not a sales-person. You should of course also add business posts into your usual posts. Share business blogs, or behind the scenes images/videos whenever possible without over doing it. Clients tend to choose business dealings with real people, so providing personality coupled with your business info, will foster a necessary kind of trust that should encourage them to reach out to work with you overtime.
Social media marketing really helps build hype and excitement, even more so when you include other REAL people. As an example, if you share a photograph from a recent wedding gig you shot, it would be wise to tag the newlyweds and talk about how great the experience of you shooting their wedding was. This really primes your social media followers and may get them thinking, “Wow I want them to shoot MY wedding, as well!” Need help running an effective Facebook or Instagram strategy that will get you a lot of shares, likes and follows? Let us help you! Schedule a free consultation click here
5. Follow Up With Old Potential Clients That Never Hired You
Chances are, you probably have some old emails from past prospects who inquired about your service but never followed through. Follow up with these prospects by shooting them an email. Here's an example:
Hey (prospect name)!
Just checking back in to see if perhaps you were able to look into my services and maybe had any questions? I would be happy to help. Maybe we can set up a quick phone call some time later this week? Thank you so much (name)! Have a great day.
If you’re really feeling courageous and want ways to improve your business model, you may even want to try emailing the people who didn't follow through and ask them what made them decide not to hire you and your business. This of course is very vulnerable and revealing, however it can be truly one of the best and effective methods to improve your business. Here's an example of this:
Hey (name), Thanks a lot for considering my service recently. Although we weren’t able to work, I’m really glad that we were at least able to connect! As a new business owner, I’m of course looking for ways to improve my business and finding a way to enhance future client experience. If you’re open to it, I’d really love to hear what made you decide to not book my services? I understand that this might be a strange question, but I would really really appreciate any honest and constructive feedback!
6. Follow Up With Your Past Clients and Ask if They Need Any Additional Assistance or Service
Have you ever followed up with any of your past clients and asked if they would like any extra assistance? We strongly suggest doing it. Just shoot these clients an email to check in and see how things are going and ask if they need any extra help. Often times, they will, but may not have thought of you or even known you offered a service they need. That extra nudge will move you at least closer to the top of their to do list.
7. Utilize Facebook Ads
We've ran countless Facebook ads so believe us when we say that they can definitely be a very effective method to reach your target customers for an affordable amount of money in comparison to a lot of forms of marketing and advertising. Facebook also gives you the ability to make sophisticated audiences to showcase your ads to. This means you can customize the targeting options by picking everything from audience location and gender to even which pages these audiences “like” on Facebook and other interests they may have. If you setup the right ad, you can generate a lot of new potential clients. Take it from us, Facebook ads has been a game changer for even our business.
Don't know how to setup a Facebook ad? Have us do it for you by scheduling a free call to discuss click here
8. Create an Email Marketing List and Keep Your Subscribers Engaged
Creating an email list may be one of the best and most essential things you can do to help your business thrive. Growing your email list gives you a way to stay in touch with not only your email subscribers but also past clients, in a direct way that not too many other ways can. Everyone won't check out your social media accounts or even your website everyday, however it’s very probable they will look at their email. Which means you can “talk” to your email subscribers any time you feel like. This is good for sharing business offers and promoting your business.
Setting up an email marketing list and newsletter, is really great for keeping your business in the forefront of potential customer's minds. If you show up in their email inbox every week with helpful tips and really good advice, they will remember you whenever they need to hire anyone that does what you do. At The True Marketing Agency, we specialize in creating effective and targeted email lists. Schedule a free call to discuss how we can help you and your business click here
9. Partner With Non-competing Agencies
Partnering with relevant agencies is a really great (and frankly under-rated) way to get new clients. We’ve used this strategy to build partnerships with agencies that send us at least 1 new customer per month. We found agencies that partner usually pass on their work because:
The budget may be too low
They may have no interest on taking on the project
They may not have the availability
They don’t have the required skills or expertise
Normally when agencies (or even other businesses in general) turn down a potential client, they will refer that client to a fellow company in their network. That’s why you should reach out to be in their network. We reached out to 10 SEO agencies with a short but personalized email offering a chance to partner and take on any clients that need any type of service they cannot do and we would return the favor in terms of SEO. We received responses from 6 of these agencies, and set up a quick call with each to elaborate further. We recommend trying to speak to the person in charge, since they are more likely to be focused on building a relationship with other businesses. Are you an SEO company? Maybe a Wordpress website developer? Coder? App builder? Or maybe any company you think would be great with us? Please schedule a free consultation with us to discuss how we can help each other by clicking here