While job boards are one way that I’ve found freelance writing clients in the past, I like to reach out to people directly. Many people looking for bloggers or writers don’t know where to start. They’re not too sure about using job boards or don’t want to pay money for them—some just don’t have the funds for it or don’t believe the boards are worthwhile.
Pitching directly can help to open the conversation about how you can help the person/website/company directly. It’s not just about what the client believes they need but about what you can see they need.
I know what you’re wondering: how do you find these freelance writing clients to pitch to? Here’s how I start.
Before we start, I’m going to assume you have a niche. If you don’t, then you need one and I’ve shared how to determine your writing niche in the past. You’ll want to read that first.
Google search businesses and websites in your niche
Do a Google search for the websites within your niche. This does keep the search quite broad, but it’s a way to start. You can delve as tightly niche-focused as you want to help with this process.
When I’m searching for brands in the parenting niche, I’ll often start with a specific age group. I look for companies that focus on baby or toddler years and then expand through ages. I also look into companies that focus on a specific element of parenting, such as working from home with children or sleep training. By narrowing down the search, it’s more likely that I’ll come up to websites that need my help.
I don’t instantly start pitching to these websites. I’ll look at the blog they currently have, get an idea of the content they’ve already developed, and determine if they really need a blogger for hire.
Then I put all the websites in a Trello board. I can easily go back to see content in the future and develop pitches for each site slowly and concisely.
Search for businesses and freelance writing clients on social media
Take your search away from the search engines and move onto social media. Look at businesses that are just growing their social media following and page. As a freelance writer, you may be able to help with this area.
If you’re not a social media fan, you can at least check out their website. If they’re just starting out on social media, they may just be starting out with their website. Could they do with some help on blogging or writing their website content?
Like with Google searches, I put the details into a Trello board. This allows me more time to research before I start pitching.
The Essential Guide to Freelance Writing: How to Write, Work, and Thrive on Your Own Terms
Don’t forget to talk to family and friends
Discuss your business with your family and friends. You never know where your work will come from.
I once got a client through chatting with a friend. She introduced me to a guy who’d taken over a bar and he had no idea where to start with marketing and social media. We were able to set up some time to run through options and we worked together for a month. It wasn’t in my niche, but it was good exposure (and he paid my rate) and he could let others know about my skills.
You may find out that your friends have started businesses. They may need help with their content strategy. I don’t always like to mix business and friendship, but sometimes it can pay off. This is an area that I’m picky with, though.
Find places to guest post
Why not take a look at other websites looking for guest posts? Some of these may not pay, but they can be good for your social proof. We’ll get onto that in a few blog posts time but social proof is necessary.
You can find websites like this through Google. Just type in “[your niche] blog + write for us” or something similar and you’ll come up with a list of blogs that offer the chance to guest post. Some of them will pay, too!
You’ll be able to keep a list of all the blogs you’ve found in Trello. You don’t want to pitch to every single one you find, as you’ll need to weigh up the ones that are more beneficial for you than others.
Network with other freelancers
I get a lot of potential clients contacting me directly. One thing I definitely don’t do is accept them all. Not only would I have way too much work (yes, this is a bad thing for quality and my mental health) but I’m not necessarily the best writer for their needs. They may not be in my niche or offer my rate.
But I don’t just turn them down. I have a few writer friends who I’ve networked with in the past and passed on their details.
Other writers have done for me in the past, too.
Networking with other freelance writers is essential. This is sometimes the only way you learn about who’s looking for work, whether they’re reliable freelance writing clients, and if there are potential jobs coming up in your niche.
When marketing, don’t just try to convince people to hire you. The aim is to get to know other writers and help them in other ways. You could offer advice, tips, or share answers you’ve found about similar situations. It’s these helpful moments that will keep people remembering you.
Tell people you’re looking for freelance writing clients
Don’t just sit there silently searching. If you’re for hire then let people know! I’ve seen a lot of people on their personal Facebook profile put up a small image to let their friends they’re are looking for work.
I don’t do it on my private profile, but I have done it on Twitter and on Facebook pages in the past. This is a good way to just get the message out and let people know they can contact you for more details.
Are you ready to get out there and pitch? Finding freelance writing clients to pitch to isn’t as difficult as it once seemed, is it?
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