When you are looking for freelance(I prefer to think of them as freelance writing opportunities), do how well to you know your potential clients? Rather than simply applying for writing gigs without thinking about whether the opportunity is a good fit for your skills and abilities, why don’t you take some time to get a clear idea about who your clients are, or could be?
Here are some questions to get you started:
- What kind of business does your client operate?
- Do they have an online or brick and mortar presence, or both?
- What kinds of writing needs do they have now?
- What else can you offer to help your client expand their client base or improve the service they offer to existing customers?
Along with the type of writing that a prospective client needs or wants, to get a clear idea of who they are you will need to think about what they value. When I hear people who hire freelancers talk about the writers they work with, a word that comes up often is “reliability,” followed by “flexibility.”
No matter what kind of writing you are doing, being someone who the client can count on to show up and do the work is of prime importance. Many people can share stories of hiring freelancers who simply abandon projects without finishing them. You may know that you are someone who will stick with a project to the end, but unless you make a point of telling your client that, they don’t know.
Another part of knowing your clients is figuring out what their goals are. A corporate client will be on a different track than a non-profit organization. You can even break this idea down to think about how your contribution can help your client reach their goals. You want to present yourself as someone who can become a partner with the client for that specific purpose.
Once you have a clear idea of who your clients are and what they want to achieve, you can focus your search for freelance writing jobs on people and companies who fit the profile you have come up with. A targeted search means you are more likely to find clients who are a good fit for what you can offer as a freelance writer.