Companies are either downsizing or are contracting their work out to freelancers to cut expenses. If you’re lucky enough, you’ll be the one companies select to contract work to. But how do you actually get clients to value you? How do you position yourself where they’ll need your services?
Freelance copywriting has become the trendy field that many people are involved in. On the other hand, many people are unaware of freelance writers out there. It’s a similar trend to swimming for good contractors to work on your home. You need to put yourself in a position where clients will go fishing for you.
Whatever industry you write for, high quality content is what brings you value. Even if clients hire you to write only text, in several ways text alone would have profound effects on copy. But whatever clients hire you to do, what they specify for you to do is what counts.
By researching a company or client you’re interested in, you can position yourself to be their go-to person. The following tips are for you to pay attention to for clients to see you as an expert.
Propose Or Discover What They Don’t Have
If you don’t see any job ads by companies, you may instantly assume they don’t need to hire you. But if you’ve worked internally for enough companies, you hear that they eventually do need someone. You can find out what companies lack by checking their websites, services, sales statistics, if they release them, or personnel.
Even responding to ads, several writers don’t research potential clients to find out what clients are missing throughout their services. A first step is to compare a few companies and discover which ones have the least resources. From there you propose the client of interest what you can do that their competition already has.
You don’t want to tell the company directly what it lacks as it might get offended. But you may suggest or inquire if they need a set of skills their competition is profiting from. Letting the company know how it can stand out in the crowd will open their credibility in you.
Another strategy is to find out the type of specific clients the company is pursuing but without any luck. Your cue is to assist the company in pursuing a strategy to obtain these clients. Most writers fear from asking the company about its strategy. But companies appreciate it when you ask then about their strategies. That gives them the incentive of your interest in the company before you start working for them.
Offer More Than That Hidden Value They Expect
Most freelance copywriters, or job candidates for that matter, only focus on a list of job responsibilities. Clients provide a list of skills they expect from writers. But meeting all those skills are not always enough for clients even if that’s all the lists mention. If clients list landing pages, sales pages or WordPress as requirements, you may add an extra skill or two. You can mention your knowledge of HTML or CSS if they’re not listed on the client’s list of job qualifications.
Nowadays companies outsource various skills instead of retaining in-house staff to cut on expenses. Instead of just limiting yourself to a list of expectations, you may add your own skills or expand on the list itself.
Adding to the list puts you in a position of value in the client’s eyes. For example, if you’re experienced in creating landing pages, specify the type of landing pages. Is it a viral or infomercial landing page? You could mention the landing pages you used to create, why they are no longer popular, and why you use new landing page packages.
Linking your past and current work and explaining the pros and cons tell clients you know how to follow trends. Your value kicks in when you reveal more than what clients expect you to tell them.
The purpose of presenting yourself further is also to express yourself further. When a company is interviewing you, do you not tell them more than the question they ask? Of course! You don’t want to sell yourself short. When you reply to a freelance copywriting ad, you want to include a CV with your outlined skills.
Keep On Learning
When is it that you ever stop learning? Never. Any wise person will tell you that your ability to learn never stops. So I don’t believe in the saying that “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks”. Your ability to learn is yours, and yours alone. You’re the old dog here (no pun intended). That means anything new you learn is a viable value of your skills and you teach yourself new skills.
You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to excel in every skill. Of course, you can’t, for example, say you’re a programmer if you’re really not. But you can mention certain aspects of programming you can do.
About 10 years ago you either had to start your blog from scratch or hire a web developer. Now with more user-friendly technology, WordPress enables you to get started on your own with WordPress including all the complicated fine adjustments. While some online courses and programs are paid for, many online resources are free.
You can at least learn the basics and list them on your resume. That’s where you can take advantage of learning new skills and look goo to the clients. Some highly trained writers are very expensive. It’s like automatically hiring a straight-A student but the C-student has more clout and bravery over a project.
Tell Clients What’s Important
Everything and anything can be important to clients, and clients will tell you what they want. But they will find more value in you if you recommend any tools that benefit them. Perhaps you can recommend a landing page instead of a light box. It all comes down to the split test, which is also something you can recommend clients.
When you buy a new laptop or new software, do you not use only a few features? You don’t learn how to use all of them, especially if you only need to understand a few of them. Some clients want to learn everything about their new product, but then get frustrated when they things don’t work out.
Part of your value is to educate clients of the most important features they need rather than what they want. Clients are satisfied when you offer them a trial of software they need and showing them the best benefits. If you get information on their type of industry, you can pinpoint the beneficial features pertaining to the client.
If you’ve landed enough clients and complied all their weaknesses, you’re on your way to building a profitable list. Their weaknesses are your queue to offer them the technological features clients need. Just like any sales pitch, you’re showing clients the value of product benefits instead of sounding like a machine. Clients often see through your canned script if you’re not being real. But if you show them the nitty-gritty stuff, you’ll be on their long-term list.
We’re talking about learning the basics to gain value. The value can be what you’ve learned to improve your chances of landing clients or how clients perceive you.