Starting out freelancing can be pretty tough, you spend weeks learning your skill, build out a website, create a proposal template, write up a great Upwork profile and start applying for jobs. I did the exact same and waited for my first client to come knocking but they never did.
It wasn’t till I took a hands on approach I got some success.
So I started browsing Gumtree and found an ad for data entry role. 3 or 4 months ago I would have snubbed my nose to it but it was all hands on deck now. The data entry role was for a part time role for inputting product information in a website.
The plan was simple to get my foot in the door and UPSELL.
You can easily do something similar…
- Offer a free trial of your services
- Write a free article or blog post
- Do a free audit of their website
- Write up a review on Google or Facebook
All you want to do is start that conversation and build that relationship.
The morning of the interview I did some research on their web presence and competitors.
Preparation was key, don’t leave things to chance. When you are prepared to can act confidently and be able answer any questions from clients.
First thing was to make sure they knew I could add more value than doing data entry. Once they knew this they could relax and we discussed their current pain points and what they actually wanted.
I noted three things from the initial meeting….
- Their biggest concern was putting their new site online and losing online sales as they didn’t know why the old site performed so well.
- The new website build had been going on for over 8 months and 3 employees before me had failed in getting it live.
- They had a neglected blog that needed some TLC and I had permission to do what I want with it.
After this first meeting, we agreed I would come in assess everything and show them what I can do. We also set a follow-up meeting with the owner for the following week after the assessment.
Identify Clients Pain Points
First thing was to find out why the old site was performing so well. After some backlink research, I discovered that over 60% of backlinks were from a niche specific forum recommending their products.
Secondly, looked into the backend of the new website and made a list of any changes the agency needed to make so I could customise it accordingly. Presented this in a word document where I prioritised issues by effort vs impact.
Thirdly, the blog. The blog was just a subset of their main product. I put up a WordPress site on one of my old domains and used all the content from the original blog. Then I went the extra mile I integrated WooCommerce and added just one product so I could demo the full cycle from purchase to cart, to check out and show it optimised for every screen size.
On my first day I had answers for their concerns and a demo website for their revamped blog.
Boom my First Big Website Client
Over delivering was key and addressing their pain points immediately.
Key Notes on Landing My First Big Web Client
- Just get in the door any way possible to show them what you can do for them
- Apply for jobs anywhere you can Facebook, Message Boards, Local Listings
- No job is too small and will lead onto more jobs if you are good enough
- It is awesome when some put’s their support behind your plan!
- Go extra mile it will pay off in the long run, do it right!
- Have confidence in your abilities, all the client wants to know is that you can do the job!
Do you have any advice for landing that first freelancing client?
If so comment below I would love to hear more tips.