There is nothing more valuable to a freelance writer than repeat clients. Without a nice list of repeat clients, it would be almost impossible to feel successful as a writer, but the question is, how do you generate these clients? The following ten quick tips will help you to find and keep great clients who will order from you again and again.
- Organize Clients – When you get a new client, make sure to keep all the information about them well organized. Keep track of when you last worked for them, how much you charged them, the topic you wrote about and other important details. Every few months, shoot them an email asking if they need any additional content. As their business becomes more successful, they might start needing content on a regular basis.
- Offer Discounts – If you have a client who makes an order every once in a while, but can’t be considered a ‘regular client,’ offer them an incentive to normalize their work. Something like 10% off your prices if they order 5 articles per month, for example, can be very attractive to many clients.
- Update Your Contact Information – If you ever change your email address, website or any other details, make sure you let everyone you have ever written for know. You never know when someone will need something written, and if they don’t have your updated information, they will find someone else.
- Ask for References – As the old saying goes, birds of a feather, flock together. If you’ve got a great client who regularly gives you work, ask if he could refer you to other people. The chances are, this individual will know other successful people who could benefit from your writing. Incentivize this through discounts or even free content.
- Always Market Your Services – You can’t get a repeat client if they don’t start out with their first order. Applying for jobs on freelancing sites like eLance or oDesk, for example, can be a great way to meet new clients who will be able to give you the ongoing work you need in the future. Even micro-gig sites like Fiverr can be the introduction you need to build a long term relationship.
- Deliver As Promised – Few things drive clients away faster than a writer who doesn’t deliver on time. If you commit to a specific due date, do everything in your power to meet that commitment. If you know you can’t deliver on time, contact the client as soon as possible and explain the situation. Do everything you can to keep that customer happy!
- Reply Immediately – If you get an email message from a client, reply as soon as possible. Even if you don’t yet have the answer they need, let them know that you got their message and are looking into it. This will help keep the client comfortable so they aren’t tempted to go find another writer.
- Establish a Friendship – This isn’t always possible, but if you find a client, who seems to enjoy chatting, take the time to befriend them. Just think of it as part of the marketing process. Another benefit to this is you will have a better insight to the client, so you can tailor your writing to their specific needs.
- Refer Other Services – Establish relationships with people who offer other services, and cross promote. If, for example, you know someone who can offer high-quality SEO services. Make an arrangement to recommend them to your clients, if this friend will do the same for you. This not only benefits you, but also your clients who will get a trusted service provider. Just remember, however, that you’re putting your name to this other individual so don’t recommend someone you don’t believe in.
- Just Ask – If you’re ever in need of more work, don’t be afraid to ask for it. Emailing your list of clients and letting them know that you’re currently available for a job is a great way to re-establish contact and possibly turn them into a regular client. If you’re particularly slow, offer a faster than normal turn-around-time to impress the client, and they will be making more orders in the future.
Building a list of clients who will regularly have work for you is essential for the long term success of a freelance writer. Don’t make the mistake of sitting back and hoping that these types of clients will just appear out of thin air. Freelance writing can be very competitive, and if you’re not out there fighting for the best clients, someone else will.
As always, if you have any questions about this article or anything else related to writing or learning to make money online writing, please comment below or email me at Michael@writeformoneyonline.com.