I’m constantly being asked by other freelance writers how to market their services to land more clients. There are so many ways to market these days that it’s ridiculous. It can also cause paralysis analysis because you don’t know where to start or what’s more effective.
Conversation with a «Marketing Genius»
I was talking to my sister about this one day. She’s a writer too (mostly of her own fiction works these days) and I said, sis, give me an idea for marketing a freelance writing business. As an aside, my sister has a degree in Advertising & Communications, so she’s a good go-to source when my marketing well of ideas runs dry.
So she says, «Give me a minute.» About ten seconds later, she says, «How about telling everyone you meet what you do. Sometimes it’s simple stuff we overlook that works the best.»
I pondered this and thought, «What a great idea!» Why?
3 Reasons Freelance Writers Should Tell Everyone What They Do
1. People are Fascinated by Writers: They truly are. I’ve been a freelance writer since 1993, and it never fails to amaze me at how curious people are when I tell them I’m a writer. It almost always starts a conversation.
How can this work to your advantage? Well, number one, you could give them a business card and ask them to pass it along if they know of anyone who can use your services.
You’d be amazed at how many people know someone who’s trying to write a book and need some help with it; or who just got a blog and needs someone to submit regular content; or whose nephew is in college and needs some help having a paper edited.
And more than likely, as you’re the only «freelance writer» they know, they’ll think of you and be only too happy to pass your info along.
2. It Reinforces What You Do: Many freelancers — especially newbies — are nervous about their career choice. Will it work out? Can they make a go of it? Will they have to find full-time jobs again, etc.?
The simple act though of saying — every day — «Hi, nice to meet you, I’m Mary. I’m a freelance writer. What do you do?» reinforces what you do.
Say it five or 10 times a day, and subconsciously it’ll sink in — and make you CONSCIOUSLY do what you need to do to make freelancing work.
3. Success by the Numbers: I had an old business mentor tell me once that marketing success is by the numbers. In other words, if you make enough «touches,» you’re going to get sales. Every successful salesperson will tell you this.
By telling everyone you meet — from the kid who bags your groceries, to the mailman, to your neighbor — you’re making touches. And eventually, it will pay off in a writing job.
I’ve landed jobs while working at beachside cafes in Jamaica, by having conversations on airplanes, and conversing with friends on Facebook — all because someone asked (or I volunteered) that I was a freelance writer. It started a conversation — and it led to writing work.
Bottom line — you never know where your next freelance writing job opportunity is going to come from. So get social by spilling the beans about what you do — offline as well as on.