It’s not about how many clients you have, it’s the quality of the client. You want to attract clients who have bigger budgets so that you can raise your rates and get out from that hamster wheel.
Where is the money
First is to know where the money is coming from.
I love music, I love listening, playing and exploring new bands.
I also like the design, the aesthetic of metal and hard rock music.
Though new bands often don’t have the budget to spend on their marketing or website development.
That’s often left for beer.
So I wouldn’t want to go after them as an ideal client.
However since I enjoy the creative arts, folks who sell services, sell products (both digitally and physical), makers of all shapes and sizes who already build their businesses online.
Well those are folks could be potential clients.
Go get them
Once you’ve established where the money is, it’s time to go out and get the work.
They won’t automatically find you and come knocking on the door. You will need to prospect.
This means having finding people to have conversations with, sending emails to, and have Skype calls with.
Once you’ve established yourself with some sort of track record, which I talk about in episode 140 - How can I start freelancing as a web developer?, the prospecting becomes easier to do.
You’ll start to see that more clients come to you. But that does take time and that’s why prospecting is so important.
Put up the velvet rope
Sure clients with bigger budgets want their solution delivered to them with great success, but they also want to feel like they are spending wisely.
This means, putting up a velvet rope, or as I call it a Project Brief.
Even if you initiated the conversation, have them fill out an application. This velvet rope not only shows that you have been down the road before, but it also gives the perception that you don’t just let anyone be a client of yours.
There is a bit of psychology here where if there’s a gated community, us humans want to be in it.
Then as that client progresses through working with you, delight them in unexpected ways.
Send a welcome packet. Send them personalized notes and cards. Send them unexpected gifts that relate to their business.
These tiny gestures go a long way in the good feeling of spending a lot of money.
Walk the walk
The final tip here is a bonus one, but it’s important.
You want to walk the walk. Meaning, have your energy and your language reflect that of what’s attractive to those higher budget clients.
For example: if you are going after large corporate brands in the finance industry, you best dust of that suit and tie and not show up for a face to face meeting, or even a video call in a t-shirt.
Start a Freelance Business
More episodes in this topic:
What are the costs involved in becoming a freelancer?
Is the income from freelancing reliable?
What payment structure should I do?
How do you build a good freelancing profile in the field of web development considering the competition?
What are skills you can learn fast and have high freelancer value?
How to start freelancing?
Should you do free work to build a portfolio?
What is freelance?
How can I start freelancing without experience?
What does it take to be a freelancer?
Why did you start freelancing?
What is the very first step to work as a freelancer?
How do you set the boundary of work you do and work you don't do?
What are your client red flags?
What should you be able to create as a web developer before starting in your freelance career?
When starting out freelance, should I just be a generalist to get my feet wet, or should I go for that niche?
As a developer, should I throw my projects on Github or build a site from scratch to grab attention?
What can I use for social proof when starting as a freelancer?
How can I start freelancing as a web developer?
Should I use my name or create a business name when starting?
Should I call myself a “freelancer” (definitive answer)?
Why should you not be a freelancer?
How do you collect online payments as a freelancer
How much money do I need to make?
Why is hourly billing bad?
Why is hourly billing good?
What are the biggest mistakes a freelancer can make?
How to adapt and change to the WordPress climate?
How to budget as a freelancer?
What is your marketing plan?
What is your sales process?
What do you do to position yourself as an expert to leads?
How do you balance your time for sales and marketing?
How do you get high-quality clients?
Should I offer my services as a web designer/developer or specialize first?
What do you do again?
What is the best freelancing website?
What do you do for a follow-up sequence for leads?
How to attract clients with big budgets?
How not to be annoying in sales?
How do you convince someone to sign a contract?
What to say when a client is late on a payment?
Best of Season 3 - Get out of the comfort zone
Best of Season 3 - Building Relationships
S06 E12 - Undercharging, Targeting the Wrong Audience, and What You Should Do About It with Alex McClafferty
S03 Bonus - Tom McFarlin on Blogging, Balancing Work and Family, and Building a Business that Lasts
S09 E11 - Differentiation, Reputation, and Pivoting From the Top-Down with Peep Laja
S01 E11 - Kai Davis helping freelancers get more clients with outreach