In the digital field, most trades can be done remotely. Whether you are a community manager or a graphic designer, your deliverables are digital files. To realize and transmit them, you do not need your presence at the customer. Our recent study of freelancers in 2018 shows that 87% of clients entrust freelances to teleworking assignments. Know that the same goes for prospecting: the majority of freelancers are now turning to specialized sites to find assignments.
Relational ease will never replace talent: knowing how to sell is one thing, satisfying the customer is another.
You think that having the sense of contact is essential to start freelancing? That it is better to be an employee when one is too shy? Think again, it's not necessarily true! When you work in a company, your good integration into the team is a fundamental criterion of appreciation and your relationship to others can be decisive. This also involves spending unnecessary time at the coffee machine with colleagues you do not really appreciate ...
In the world of freelancing, your relationship takes a much more effective dimension: you must focus on managing your client portfolio (current and future ...). And if you are shy, know that this is also the case for many customers! Like you, some contractors do not have much relational ease, and therefore prefer online exchanges (messaging, e-mail, etc.) rather than endless phone calls punctuated with annoying silences.
Finally, if you specialize in writing, graphics or software development, your clients will expect from you skills that are specific to your expertise ... before judging your speaker skills. In other words, it's your talent that counts above all, knowing how to sell is just the icing on the cake.
For some, IRL networking (ie in the real world) is experienced as a particularly painful constraint. Going to lunches, strolling through trade shows, squatting the bar of an evening dedicated to freelancers ... All this displeases you or worse, scares you? Whether it's lack of self-confidence or just being introverted, going against your nature will often be counterproductive. Clearly, if you force yourself, they will see it.
Fortunately, the web allows you to find customers, not just small ones. Even the big boxes of the CAC 40 do their research of talents online. And mirroring, it has become the main sourcing tool for most freelancers, especially in the digital and communication sectors.
However, on the Internet too, habits die hard ... Our uses of the web (and even more applications) are often limited to a few social platforms that we consult frantically (Facebook in the lead) on the lookout for the latest notification . If your first customers can be among your circles of friends on social networks, this source will necessarily dry up sooner or later. So anticipate now by exploring more specialized platforms, to sustain your business.
For this, it is of course essential to register on most freelance platforms but especially to ensure that your profile is visible. Our tip: Every morning, make a habit of connecting to your favorite platforms to apply for mission offers before others. This optimizes your chances of being contacted by customers who want an immediate response from an available freelancer.
Be curious, explore new sites and experiment with all the prospecting tools to get an idea of their quality.
Convincing a client to trust you verbally is an exercise in persuasion perfectly mastered by salespeople and telemarketers. To have some patter and to know how to sell oneself when one is freelance is certainly useful, but unfortunately not enough. It is still necessary that your profile has "hit the eye" of the prospect to make the process of contacting you.
In marketing, it is customary to describe the package as a "silent seller" product. In addition to providing information about the item, it encourages its purchase. In a self-service sales environment, such as a supermarket (where the consumer is autonomous in his choices, especially to put the article or not in his cart), the role of packaging is central. On freelance platforms, your profile plays exactly that role. It informs, but must at the same time encourage contact.
The best advertising is a satisfied customer. While most consumers check customer reviews on the Internet before buying a product, why would it be different to choose a freelancer? Your future customers will be very sensitive to the recommendations published on your profile. This is the principle of word of mouth applied to digital uses.
Of course, apart from your e-reputation, other techniques of online sales can be implemented, especially on your own site, in order to recover leads (contact details of prospects): registration to your newsletter, downloading content expert, etc.