Acquiring clients can be challenging, to say the least, especially if you are at the beginning of your career.
Whether you are a graphic designer, a UX/UI design expert, a web designer, or an illustrator, it can take weeks, even months, to get hired by a company.
You can certainly raise your chances of finding a job by signing up on freelance websites, such as Fiverr, Upwork, or Toptal. However, you need to consider that approximately 1.57 billion people in the global workforce are freelancers, and most of those people are searching for work on some type of freelance website. So, a newcomer like yourself might experience difficulties grabbing the attention of (the right) clients.
So, if you have been trying to acquire new clients but your efforts didn’t yield the desired results, maybe it’s time you turn to more creative ways.
To help you land the gigs of your dreams, we have curated a list of ten quick and easy tips that will help you get clients online. Here they are:
Define your ideal clients.
No matter your job title, you can’t provide your services to everyone. That’s why the first step towards partnering with clients is defining who your clients should be.
When doing so, we advise you to be as specific as possible.
Define your potential clients’ needs, industries, company sizes, income levels, demographic details, etc. Once you have completed a list of traits potential clients should have, you can share on your website the type of organizations you are interested in working with or have been working with. Not sure what we mean? Here’s an example: if you prefer to work with the fastest growing, innovative startups funded by top investors, you can write something along the lines of “Helping innovative startups grow even faster”, followed by a list of companies you have partnered with (if there is such a list).
Once you know to whom you should provide your services, you can start tailoring and pivoting your services to match your potential clients’ needs.
Build a business personality.
If you are an experienced designer that doesn’t really pay attention to how you are perceived in the industry, it’s time you take the matter into your own hands. The same goes if you are an industry newcomer一you need to start building your brand now if you wish to get clients online.
To start, we suggest you develop quality content in various formats to demonstrate your skills and expertise. Next, add this content to your website, social media, and all industry-related platforms (such as Dribbble, Behance, etc.). Once you start uploading more frequently, you can sit back and watch your work being viewed repeatedly; once you hit a certain number of views, the clients will reach out to you.
Pro tip: Create valuable content for your clients on Instagram using different formats. You can share your projects and the behind-the-scenes moments using the carousel, Reels, and Stories.
Be ACTIVE on social media.
As mentioned in the tip above, you must build a solid social media presence. And you can do so successfully by demonstrating that you are more than your profession; you are just a normal human being.
So, when it comes to social media posting, add equal parts of your professional and personal life. Share your business milestones, success, hobbies, interests, and partners. It goes without saying that you shouldn’t share anything you are uncomfortable with.
Promote your services on Twitter.
Many people ask for recommendations on Twitter. And you can be the one to answer those questions and tweets, offering your knowledge and services.
If you want to give this tip a go, try searching for keywords and hashtags related to your industry, such as “graphic designer”, “web designer”, etc. You can even type “hiring” and your job title in the Twitter search bar. And if no one is looking to hire you, you can always answer industry-related questions and, if there is room, add a link to your portfolio. It’s that simple.
Create a compelling portfolio website.
Creating an online portfolio is a great way to get clients online and capture leads.
Because it is an easy-to-edit collection of projects demonstrating your skills, expertise, and work ethics.
A compelling online portfolio includes four to six projects on the Work/Portfolio page so that you can showcase project variety without being too detailed and overwhelming readers. Use a personal brand project if you don’t have enough projects to show off. Also, don’t forget to describe the creative process behind each project, followed by objectives, concepts, and workflow.
If you are unsatisfied with your current website and content, perhaps it’s time for an update. Check our collection of portfolio WordPress themes to find the template that best suits your business needs.
Add a Testimonials page or section to your portfolio website.
Social proof is living evidence that you provide high-quality services.
So, when you recognize that a client is satisfied with the outcome and the project is completed, ask them to leave a review. A review doesn’t have to be a long, in-depth explanation of your partnership; you need a two- or three-sentence testimonial to include on your website. In return, let your clients know that you will mention them (and link them) on your website’s Work or Portfolio page.
Create blog content.
After reading this tip, you might start thinking, “Who has the time to write blog posts when you are busy trying to get clients online?”. And you’re right. Blogging can seem like a waste of time but trust us; it’s not.
Think of blogging as selling without selling.
Blogging is an excellent way to show off your skills and demonstrate to your clients what they can expect when partnering with you. It is a way to show off your professionalism without shoving your expertise down a reader’s throat.
We strongly believe that including a blog in an online portfolio can raise your chances of getting hired so much so that we created a list of five reasons why you should add a Blog to your portfolio website. At the end of the article, we mentioned a few tips to help you write blog posts quicker, so be sure to check the article out.
Optimize your portfolio website.
If you are a web designer, you already know about the importance of SEO; you can get a lot of new clients if you invest in Search Engine Optimization. However, if you are not familiar with optimizing your website for search engines, we suggest you look into four types of SEO that can be crucial for your business: on- and off-page, technical, and voice search SEO.
If you don’t want to get technical right away, a good place to start is to research keywords that describe your business and add them to your website.
Take clients at no cost.
If you want to make a move that will make you famous or, at least, more approachable, try doing pro bono work.
Sure一no one likes to work for free一but ethical actions can give superb results. So, try providing your services at no cost for a couple of months to get a few partnerships. Upon completion of each project, ask for clients’ feedback working with you. We guarantee the clients will be more than happy to give you their honest feedback, which you can then include in the testimonial section of your website. You can even create a case study and publish it on your website’s blog and relevant communities to show off the process.
Remember the importance of word-of-mouth marketing.
The power of word-of-mouth marketing should not be discarded. If you are professional and have developed soft skills, the clients will multiply all by themselves, all through word-of-mouth marketing.
But before you start relying on this type of marketing to get clients online, think about what makes you different from all the other designers. Is it your method of work? Is there something specific about how you communicate with clients? Whatever it might be, be sure to add this unique value to your website and follow it through when you are working with companies. Satisfied clients will share your outstanding quality when asked about your work and competencies.
Are you ready to implement these tips and get more clients online?
Now that you have gone through our list of tips to get clients online tell us: were you familiar with any of these tips? Which tips do you want to try immediately? Let us know in the comments.
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