Business development should be an integral part of every freelancer’s day. After all, everyone wants to grow their revenues.
To most, that means seeking out new clients. That’s valid. But it’s ten times more work than seeking out new projects from your existing clients.
Grow Your Existing Relationships.
A writer once told me the best investment any freelancer could make was spend fifteen minutes each week thinking about new projects he’d like to do for existing clients.
It was blatantly obvious. Wholly brilliant. And largely ignored by freelancers.
We’re always pursuing the next client – when we should be pursuing a better relationship with our existing clients.
What Do You Want to Write?
Adding value to the client relationship is the best way to grow revenues and keep clients.
One path is to offer them more than words. Demonstrate the simple fact that you bring something to the table beyond the ability to write what they ask for.
Invest 15 Minutes Every Week.
What can you do in 15 minutes?
Sit and think.
Think about the client who has a Web site, a viable service and a good customer base, yet no customer success stories. Or no media kit. Or maybe they can’t even get press releases out when something significant happens.
There are opportunities there. But not if you simply call and tell your contact they “need” to do customer stories.
Instead, spend a few minutes researching their competitors. Google a few statistics. And put it all down on a single sheet of paper (or e-mail).
Make a Business Case.
Remember, you’re not selling them a chance to send you a check.
You’re selling them a chance to improve their sales conversion efforts. Or speeding their business development cycle. Or even driving revenues to the bottom line.
Looking for project ideas?
- Customer Success Stories (many clients overlook these)
- White Papers
- Press Releases to local and trade media
- Blogs (see my Engagement Principles blog for ammunition)
- Sales Letter (for their brochure)
- e-newsletters (go turnkey with this, and you’ll be surprised how often they’ll say “yes”)
These are the tip of the iceberg. But they’re a start.
Pretty soon, you’ll recognize opportunities when you stumble across them on the Internet. And suggest them to an increasingly grateful client.
Fifteen minutes a week (maybe 20).
It’s the most effective way to grow your revenues. And cement your relationship with your clients.
Keep writing, Tom Chandler.
[tags]writer, copywriter, freelance copywriter, freelancer, marketing, new business[/tags]