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Why You’re Struggling To Find Freelance Clients

5 reasons why you're struggling to find freelance clients

Freelance writing can be a tough gig. Heck, any freelance business has its ups and downs.

When I started out writing, I was so happy to get my first couple of clients, I didn’t care that I was only being paid $10 to write 500 words. Ouch! Not a highlight in my freelance career.

When you’re starting out or going through a quiet period in your business, it’s tempting to take on any work you can get. But, you should not be charging peanuts for your work – you’re worth way more than that!

There may be a few reasons why you’re struggling to find clients. You might be familiar with a few of these scenarios – don’t worry, there a few easy ways to fix them!

The Problem: You’re not pitching enough to freelance clients

Pitching is the process that’s going to guarantee you freelance work. Ideally, you should be sending at least 10 pitches per day. Yeah! that may seem like a lot, but considering you may only hear back from a handful of clients you pitch to, you need to become a one man pitching machine!

As a full time freelancer, regular pitching ensures I have a steady stream of work lined up.

You may get lucky and have the opportunity to take on more work than you can handle – don’t be afraid to turn down jobs if you’re busy. A stressed out freelancer isn’t the best recipe for producing quality work or meeting deadlines.

If you’re wondering where you can find jobs to apply for check out 15 places to find your first freelance client.

The Problem: Your pitches aren’t very good

If you’re not landing jobs, you may have a pitch problem. Most of us have sent at least one crap pitch in our time – Let’s face it! When you’re starting out, you don’t have a clue about these things!

If you’re pitching to freelance jobs sites, check out my free email course below for tips on how to pitch!

What makes the difference between a good and bad pitch?

A good pitch should be;

  • Concise and straight to the point. You don’t need to send a long pitch to a client.
  • Related to the job post – you can use a pitch template but direct it to the genre of work you’re applying for.
  • Send writing samples related to the job. For instance, if you’re applying for a job writing automotive blog posts, don’t send samples of nutrition content.
  • Say how your work is going to benefit the client.
  • Be polite and friendly.

Don’t;

  • Act desperate – never a good look.
  • Use long chunks of text.
  • Use one sentence pitches.
  • Use bad grammar or make spelling mistakes.

Problem: You’re not applying for the right type of jobs

Applying for jobs can be tricky when you have limited experience. But, when you’re starting out it helps to have a specific niche or range of genres you can write for.

Thousands of applicants are potentially applying for the same job, so you need to ensure you stand out.

#Scenario: You’re applying for copywriting gigs, such as writing product descriptions and web copy, but you only have experience in writing articles.

When I started freelancing, I only had experience creating articles and blog posts. I landed my first web copywriting gig (rewriting product descriptions) because I had experience in the same niche (beauty) and I could demonstrate my passion for the genre (via my personal blog). If you’re in the same situation, apply for jobs in the sectors where you have the most experience.

It’s tempting to want to apply for every job going, but your time will be better spent crafting quality pitches for jobs where you have experience.

The Problem: You’re overpricing your services

I’m not saying you should be charging $1/£1 per 100 words. Fuck no. But, overcharging for your services can result in a lack of work coming your way.

I recently did some hiring and you’d be surprised at the range of proposed fees that came my way. I had figures suggested from £7 to £300, and interestingly, the candidate requesting the largest amount had a weak proposal and no specific experience relating to what I required.

You’re potentially applying for jobs with thousands of other candidates, so as well as creating a kick-ass pitch, you need to consider your pricing.

Pricing your services;

  • Consider your service range.
  • Are you going to charge hourly or per project; for instance, if it takes you an hour to write an article of 500 words, you could base an hourly rate on 500 words of content.
  • What do you intend to earn per year (this will also help you to set an hourly rate)?
  • How much experience do you have in your genre?
  • What are your overheads?

Some clients will try to knock your fee down, but stick to your guns. Once you’ve set your fee, try to stick to it. You don’t want to undersell yourself either, so make sure you’re charging what your worth!

The Problem: You’re not promoting yourself!

Promote the shit out of yourself! That’s one piece of advice I’d give to budding freelance writers.

Get on social media and Linked In and start bigging yourself up!

Promote content you’ve written, your services, ask around for freelance work etc.

Having a website also helps – if you want to start a blog, check out my post here.

You don’t need a fancy website, but aim for a cleanish design and, of course, excellent copy and content that will really show off your skills. Potential clients may be checking out your work so link your services and portfolio too – you can find out how to write a services page for your website here. 

 

3 Reasons Why Guest Posting Is an Awesome Marketing Strategy

3 reasons why guest posting is an awesome marketing strategy

If you want to build your creative business or your reputation as a freelance writer, the most effective method is guest posting.

Guest posting is an incredible marketing strategy. With the correct guest posting methods, guest posting on other sites can take your business from stagnant to stratospheric. We’re not just talking about growing your website’s traffic (though, that will happen too!).

If you’re still unsure as to whether guest posting is for you, take a look at these three reasons as to why you need to hop on this awesome marketing strategy.

Pssst! Make sure you grab the free download at the end of the post on how to send a guest post pitch that rocks!

1.You become an authority figure in your niche

Guest posting on websites within your niche allows you to become an authority figure. How? First, you need to create high-quality content. Content with value will demonstrate your knowledge and experience in your specific genre, building your reputation and authority.

People who value your content will then want to know more about you, sending traffic to your website. It’s the perfect method for promoting your services or products, increasing sales and growing your overall creative business.

2. You get exposure to a new audience

Gaining exposure to new readers within your niche is one of the best strategies for growing your email list and promoting your services. Using guest posting will help you to connect with potential clients and customers, as well as building relationships with other creatives within your genre.

3. You’ll have samples for your portfolio

If you’re just starting out as a freelancer, then guest posting is a great way to build your portfolio. You’ll be able to link to your work in your pitches and use them in your online portfolio. If you need references or testimonials, ask the website owner for a short paragraph of feedback, so you can use it to pitch for work.

How to guest post in return for results

Many people underestimate the power of guest posting and don’t end up viewing the results they want.

It’s so important to write a powerful pitch that will convert into a guest post slot, and achieve the desired results you want – that is, building your authority, growing your audience, email list and selling more of your products or services.

You don’t need to be a fountain of knowledge on your chosen topic, but you do need to be able to create content of high value. How to do this;

  • Thoroughly research the website you want to guest post on.
  • Create an outline of a post that will bring something NEW to the site (dont write the full post until you have secured a slot).
  • Make sure its original – plagiarism will give you a bad reputation
  • Don’t just give your opinion – can you back up your content with facts, data, statistics?
  • Avoid linkbait titles
  • Can you demonstrate results – if you’re writing a post on the best methods to save time writing, then can you give examples of things that have worked for you.

Now you have an idea of the type of content your guest post should contain, you’ll want to know how to send a pitch that grabs an exclusive spot on your favourite site.

Get the FREE download sheet below for a precise strategy that will convert into winning guest post slots on your preferred websites.

Finding Your First Freelance Client: 15 Places To Look

15 places to find your first freelance client

Finding your first freelance client can be a tough gig, especially if you have no idea where to look. When I first started out, I knew of two freelancing sites. Luckily, I managed to find my first client in that way. But, I want you to know that you have plenty of options when it comes to finding decent paying writing gigs. Some of my favourite sites are listed below. Here, you’ll find a range of paying gigs, as well as a bonus download of sites that pay for guest posts!

People Per Hour

One of my favourite sites for finding work, People Per Hour is a freelance site where you’ll find jobs for writing, editing, proofreading, social media and design. As well as being able to pitch for jobs, you can create an ‘hourlie’ to sell a service, such as writing an article or proofreading an essay. Clients can then buy your service directly, without you having to pitch.

Tip: competition can be fierce, so regularly search for jobs (changing the order of jobs to show the newest first is ideal) and apply as soon as possible as jobs can be filled quickly. My free e-course here gives some tips on how to apply for jobs on freelance sites.

Upwork

Upwork is similar to People Per Hour, except you’ll find a lot more jobs listed. Most of these jobs are very low paying, but there are some gems to be found. Again, you should regularly search the job listings and apply asap. The site can sometimes be glitchy, however, it’s a site I’d recommend to try if you’re first starting out.

Indeed

Indeed is a site that brings together job vacancies from many other job sites. There aren’t many freelance jobs listed, but its still a site thats worth checking out.

Tip: Use keywords in the search bar to bring up specific results for job vacancies. Try using ‘blogger’ ‘writer’ and copywriter’ in your searches.

Linked In

If you’re planning on becoming a freelancer, get a Linked In profile. As well as finding job listings on the site, you’ll be able to connect with small businesses and potential clients. Make sure you fill out your Linked In profile as fully as possible, including experience and skills.

Pro Blogger Jobs

You’ll find several writing jobs listed on the Pro Blogger website. Not all of them are well paid, and some only pay on how many views your article receives, so make sure you read the listing carefully before you submit a pitch.

Write Jobs

Write Jobs has a mixture of jobs, originally posted from Craigslist, alongside other sites. You’ll also find writing competitions listed too.

Freelance Writing Jobs

This site has just been taken over so expect it to be regularly updated soon. Sign up to The Morning Coffee newsletter and you’ll receive jobs straight to your inbox.

Absolute Write

You’ll find a few jobs listed on the Absolute Write forums. This is a great job board for those who write fiction, in particular, short stories.

Reddit

Yes!Reddit is an underrated site for job opportunities, but they’re definitely on there. Check out the for hire page and hire a writer.

Bloggerjobs.biz Board

There are a few remote positions on this site, as well as those based in a specific region.

Twitter

Jobs are posted on Twitter all the time – finding them is a real problem though! I generally use the #freelancejobs hashtag and #writingjobs

All Indie Writers

There are a range of low paying to high paying jobs on All Indie Writers. Remember to check this site as often as you can and apply fast to land the job you want!

Ed2010

Most of these jobs are full time, based in New York or LA, however, you’ll find a few freelance, remote jobs.

Freelance Writing Gigs

One of my favourite sites, you’ll find writing jobs, proofreading, editing, journalism, blogging jobs, as well as internships.

The Write Life

There’s a lot of jobs listed here via Simply Hired. Worth checking if you’re based in the US.

Now get the FREE download. This is a list of 47 sites that pay you to write a guest post or article. Get the list now!