As a freelancer, it’s your responsibility to win your own business. You will need to liaise with clients and provide quotes for projects while ensuring you deliver work on time and to an exceptionally high standard. As such, you need to be at the top of your game to attract new clients and bring in enough work to sustain your lifestyle.
However, it’s super competitive out there, and we know it’s not always easy to win business when you’re competing against so many other freelancers. Here are twelve essential steps you need to follow to dramatically increase your chances of landing a gig.
1. Quote Sensibly.
When you’re preparing a quote, you need to make sure it’s sensible. Sensible means it should be well considered, researched, and carefully thought out. Don’t just pick a random figure and submit it as part of your estimate. Putting together a sensible quote that presents good value for money to your client will increase your chances of winning the gig.
2. Communicate efficiently.
Communication is so important when you’re trying to win business. Clients want to know that you’re professional, reliable, and contactable, so you need to make an excellent first impression. The best way to do this is to communicate efficiently by making sure you respond to messages in a timely manner and ensure your grammar, spelling, and punctuation is accurate. There’s nothing more off-putting to a client than poorly thought-out messages when they’re searching for a freelancer.
3. Be transparent.
It’s so important to be transparent about your pricing before you quote for a piece of work. Hidden prices aren’t going to do you any favours and will actually lose you clients over time. You can always add optional gig extras to your quote so your client can see how much certain things will cost before they work with you. Transparency is vital if you’re hoping to win business from returning clients.
4. Develop an inviting profile.
First impressions are so important when it comes to freelancing. The first thing potential clients are going to notice is your profile. Make sure you have a professional photo, as well as a clear description of the services that you offer, as well as details of your experience. If your profile isn’t inviting and professional, most clients won’t give you the time of day.
5. Prove your ability with testimonials.
Before employing your services, many clients will want to see proof that you’re capable of doing the work you say you are. As such, it’s an excellent idea to share testimonials as part of your offer, to show potential customers that you have experience of delivering a similar project. This will give them confidence in your abilities and will bolster your offer.
6. List your key skills.
For a customer to offer you some work, they want to know that you’re capable and qualified. As such, you need to list the core skills that will help you deliver the project to a high standard. When listing your skills, where possible, include details of any qualifications you have from relevant institutions, as this will help to build trust with your clients and will indicate that you’re capable of delivering the project to a high standard.
7. Be online and available.
The more you’re online, the more likely you are to win gigs that you quote for. Clients will often contact you with questions about your estimate and will want to negotiate with you. If you simply submit the quote and go offline, you aren’t likely to get the work, as the client will want to see that you’re online and available to be contacted regarding the work.
8. Be realistic.
It’s equally as important to be realistic about your availability and workload. For instance, don’t tell your clients that you can be contacted 24/7, as this isn’t sustainable. What’s more, if you have a busy workload, be sure to factor in your other assignments when quoting for new work, as you don’t want to over promise and under deliver. Customers appreciate it when freelancers are realistic about their workload and are clear about delivery timeframes.
9. Offer expedited delivery options.
Sometimes clients are in a rush to get their work done before a particular deadline. If this is the case, they will look for a freelancer who offers expedited delivery as part of their gig. Clients are happy to pay for expedited delivery, so you should make sure you include it as part of your gig extras and be willing to offer it if it’s required.
10. Read the brief carefully.
When preparing a quote for a piece of work, make sure you’ve read the brief carefully. If you miss out important information or don’t specifically offer what the customer has requested, you’re unlikely to get the work. Spend time reviewing the brief and prepare an offer that meets all of the necessary requirements.
11. Know your capacity.
As a freelancer, it can be tempting to take on as much work as you can get, as you’re never sure when it might dry up. However, it’s important that you know your capacity and don’t take on too much. If you’re not honest with yourself about your capacity, you will end up biting off more than you can chew, and as a result, you will upset your current clients, which will affect your ability to win future projects from them.
Putting together an excellent, professional profile is vital if you’re going to land a gig. Many freelancers create a personal website where they showcase the various work that they’ve taken on for clients in the past, which is an excellent way of building trust with new customers. If they can see the work you’ve already completed, they’re much more likely to offer you work going forward.
We appreciate that winning gigs from new clients isn’t the easiest thing in the world, and freelancers often face tough competition to secure work from new customers. As such, we hope these twelve steps help you to work on your offer and increase your chances of success when trying to land a gig. As you gain more experience as a freelancer, this process will come easier to you, and you will be able to learn from previous projects how to perfect your offer in the future.