Let me tell you, I have made more of these mistakes in my writing business, than you even know. I started this not knowing that people actually did it for a living! I mean, sure I read the articles on my Facebook feed, or my Twitter. I for sure pinned things on Pinterest, but never, ever thought that it could be a lucrative gig.
So, let me help you! Here are some mistakes I have made, that hopefully, you do not.
Not Personalizing my cold pitch
When I first started to learn to pitch, I pitched and pitched and pitched….the same letter. Sure, this was an okay idea, except nothing was personalized.
How to personalize
When you send your letter of introduction (sign up for my newsletter above and get my free one ), personalize it. “Dear Sally Smith, I visited your website www.blanksite.com, and I love what you are doing!”
That gives them a personal touch from you. Showing them you care about their websites and want to be a part of the team.
No Follow up
After sending my mass amounts of pitches and cold call letters of introduction, I never followed up. After doing a little experiment the other day, I followed up with 5 out of the 5 clients I sent letters of introductions to, after hearing nothing from them, and that day I got responses!
Give your potential client time to read your emails, but always follow up!
Don’t say you’re new
I am guilty of this, and I am sure it turned my potential clients away. When introducing yourself, don’t say you are new at this. I know it is hard to say you have no experience
You only pitch when you have no work
Bad idea, I’ve done this too. When you are slow in your business, ofcourse you will pitch more, you have to. When you have work, you also have to pitch! Try to set time aside each week to do this. There is nothing worse, I’ve been there, than to not have any work because you haven’t been hustling like you should!
You have no website
I had a wordpress.com website when I first started. Clients never came, but it was a free option. Clients have to be able to find you. Establishing a website is important to get yourself out there! You may have clients refer you to their colleagues, and you want to present them with a nice website. When I established my website, I was torn on the name. You shouldn’t do a website that is not a .net or .com. You want to make it easy for clients. I understand the cost is there, but it is a worthy cause! My sister, Brittany, over at Homesweethyatt, builds awesome websites (like mine), on the platform squarespace, which is a great place for the non html person to add to the site. It is very easy for me to understand.
You have no samples
At first, I remember, it was VERY hard for me to provide samples of my writing for clients. Try to write guest posts for people. Start a blog to show you like to write. Do whatever you need to, to get together some samples for your clients. I love contently.com to display my work.
Mistakes happen to the best of us. I hope my tips help you in your freelance business not to make the mistakes I did.
What mistakes do you regret when you first started out?