Freelancing offers you maximum flexibility to choose the projects that best compliment your skills, passions and interests. Without a doubt, this is one of the most distinct advantages of becoming a freelancer.
However, in this economic climate the ability to only choose the projects that most attract you must take a back seat, and you should rather spend your efforts on presenting yourself professionally to all clients and projects that come your way in order to ensure that you maintain a constant project flow and income.
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This makes the task of submitting a proposal and presenting your services professionally more important than ever. The need to convince potential clients of your skills and to stand out from the competition will be absolutely vital to your chances of succeeding as a freelancer, but what are the most important aspects of landing those lucrative projects?
Creating the perfect project pitch.
First Impressions Count
If you are a member of an online job platform, then you may receive many notifications of potential jobs that fit your skills, however with all of these job opportunities the first approach to the customer will be crucial to your success. You mustn’t treat the potential project as simply another project.
You should instead create a truly original proposal and send a unique offer to the customer. This is vital as it is likely that many other freelancers will also be submitting their proposals to this project, meaning the customer will be inundated with offers. So the trick for you is to stand out and catch the attention of the client.
Here are a few points that you should include within your application:
- Outline how your specific expertise is relevant to the project. For example, if the project requires the skills of a web designer, then specifically list your experience and previous working history in this specific field.
- Take time to suggest a concrete outcome to the project to let the customer know that are already visualizing how the project will turn out.
- If needs be, contact the customer for further details of their project. This will both enable you to submit a higher quality application and will also signal your passion and interest for the project.
Treat the Client as a Human Being
The most obvious sign for a client that you have not taken the time to submit a personal application would be if you were to simply address them as “Dear Sir/Madam” in your proposal. Try to, therefore, personalize your application and refer to a specific contact name within your message. Also, right from the start, you should be addressing the client on an empathetic level where you are showing your genuine willingness to assist them with their project.
The best way to show your dedication to results and to the needs of the client, is to create an open field of communication in order to ensure that the client has complete transparency in your service. If you think there are aspects of the project that are unfeasible, then notify the client in your application and signify your willingness to propose other alternative solutions via email or on the phone.
Convincing the Client
Sometimes, no matter the professionalism of your approach to the customer, potential clients are much more likely to be convinced of your expertise if you offer them a portfolio of your skills and previous work. However, make sure that your portfolio is characterized by these aspects:
- Make your portfolio as diverse as possible and include a broad range of previous projects. For example, include a mixture of sites on which you have worked upon including eCommerce, social and private websites.
- Include testimonies from previous satisfied clients within your portfolio. This will bring a human factor to your work as the potential client will be able to trust the word of others who vouch for your skills.
- Include certificates and other examples of your hard earned qualifications. This will also help to assure the client of your technical skills in the required field.
All in all, you need to convince the client that you are willing to be a collaborative partner and a guiding professional for their project. You need to display your willingness to assist, advise and most importantly deliver every step along the way, and that you will bring your passion and dedication to making their project a success.
This entails you going above and beyond to signal your suitability for the job, and if this means taking more time to personalize your offer, then this will not be time wasted when you find yourself with a satisfied customer offering their project to you.