Learn three ways freelancers are losing out on new sales and higher profits and how to flip the script to build better relationships and get more clients.
When consulting with freelancers and agency owners, I am frequently told that closing more sales, landing new clients, and increasing profits are priorities. I am also given lots of reasons why these same freelancers and agency owners don’t have time to implement comprehensive sales and marketing plans.
But here’s the thing: You don’t need a giant, comprehensive sales and marketing plan.
You simply need to take advantage of opportunities to connect with your target market and build relationships. Right now, there are people who need what you are selling. Yet most freelancers and agencies lose money each day because they aren’t picking it up off the table.
Below I share three ways you’re losing out on new clients, new sales, and higher profits…
1. Prospects Are Not Engaged
When it comes to doing business online, it is all about website traffic. All efforts invested toward social media, blogging, search engine optimization, advertising, link building, and article writing have the same two end goals in mind:
- To get more qualified website traffic
- To increase onsite conversions
If visitors are not ready to buy immediately, you need them to take action by opting-in to your email marketing list, usually in exchange for a free giveaway. By subscribing, they give you permission to contact them with future marketing promotions and you grow your database of prospects who told you they are interested in your products and services.
If you are not actively capturing your prospects’ information for future marketing, you are squandering an opportunity to convert that prospect who wants to work with you into a customer.
2. Prospects Are Slipping Away
Once a prospect has opted-in to your email list, there is an expectation that you will be contacting them based on your original sales pitch. This is your time to shine.
- You know they want to hear from you.
- You know they want to know more.
- You know they see your offer as valuable.
These are qualified leads. By keeping in touch with them regularly, through email marketing, direct mail, text, social media, telephone, and even video, you position yourself as an expert and go-to resource. By combining relevant, personal, and valuable information with a killer call to action, your rate of conversion from lead to customer will skyrocket.
3. Existing Prospects Aren’t A Priority
As a freelancer, entrepreneur, or small business owner, you always need to be scouting for and engaging future customers, but at the same time, you can’t forget those who matter most: your current customers. Your current customers are prospective future customers. They are already committed and invested in you. The relationship has been created and you must nurture and build that relationship. After investing valuable time and money to convert that client, the worst fate would be that they then never hire you again.
You need to use your marketing to engage and retain your clients:
- Promote their business and link to their website with case studies and testimonials.
- Add a customer feedback form to your website. By responding and taking visible action on suggestions you show customers that you value their opinions.
- Show your appreciation! Send them a handwritten message on a branded note card, a small gift around a holiday, a branded bookmark, a special customer-only discount on a service or products. Make them feel special.
- Give them props in your social media chatter. You know it is helping your business. Help them out too by giving a shout out and linking to their website.
It’s Not About You
Existing clients and prospective clients are about one thing more than anything else: themselves. They want to feel wanted, important, and special, they want to know what’s in it for them, and they need to see a clear benefit. Through your email marketing, relationship nurturing, and client highlight efforts, you can turn a prospect into a lucrative client and a client into a valuable brand evangelist.