It’s now three days since I first called the doctor. No return call Monday, and the second I went off to the pharmacy (ironically) yesterday she called. I’m taking meds I know will make me feel deathly sick again, but until she changes things up, I’ve no choice. I’m taking anti-nausea meds, but who knows how effective they are over the lifespan of this prescription? All I know is this stomach is tender to the touch and I’m fed up with being sick. Really. Fed. Up.
A writer friend of mine is looking to ramp up the number of clients he has, and he wondered out loud yesterday how to do it. For starters, he was on the phone to me asking if I knew of any leads. That’s brilliant, actually. Reach within your current circles and you’ll never know what may be there untapped.
So what would you tell a writer who wants to build or expand on client work, or even gain some quick cash avenues? Here’s what I’d say:
Start in your current circle. This is where my friend does it best. He’s good on the phone anyway, and he knows plenty of people. Reaching out to current and past clients and colleagues and asking for referrals is a super way to build out quickly.
Magazine work. Don’t start with the top markets unless you’re used to working with them. Instead, go slightly lower on the food chain and locate those niche magazines or consumer mags most open to freelancers. Get queries out now and move on to the next client potential, which is:
Past clients. What are those people you worked for last year doing now? What can you help with? What is missing from their current lineup of projects that you can suggest?
Crossover client potential. You’ve written enough healthcare articles to fill a book (hmmm….yet another potential). Why not send similar ideas to business or human resources magazines? You simply adjust the focus.
Letters of introduction. Look, if you’re after new clients who pay what you’re worth, put enough work into it to attract them. A good letter of introduction sent to a client you’ve researched is more effective than blanket mailings to random client lists.
Social media. In the past two weeks I’ve had four inquiries about work from Twitter and LinkedIn. Best part – I’ve not had time to go on either one for any length of time, so these came from getting my name attached to the right hashtags or business groups. Send out a few tweets. Tell people you’re available and you’re damn good. Update your LinkedIn status. Interact with clients and win their trust.
Ask for referrals. You’ve pleased enough clients to ask. Just go back to them and say “Thank you again for the trust you’ve placed in my services. Do you know anyone else who may need a writer or editor? Here’s my CV.”
How do you ramp up the client work?