Today’s guest blogger on the topic of warm calls is Martha Retallick of Western Sky Communications. Thanks, Martha!
Dear Dr. Freelance: I have been a freelance proofreader for four years, but want to know, how do I become a copyeditor, too? I have taken a copyediting class, and have asked one client to let me copyedit for them. Am I missing anything? What happens if my current client turns me down? — Shaking in My Boots
Dear SIMB: I think you’re on the right track by taking a class and pitching yourself as a copyeditor to existing clients. Good for you. [Read more…]
Dear Dr. Freelance: I’m an editor rather than a freelancer, but I’m hoping you can provide some guidance on the protocol for referrals. A freelance writer I’ve used is asking for recommendations, but I’d frankly recommend people NOT USE her. In addition to being a poor writer, she’s awful to work with.—Holding My Tongue
Dear HMT: Back in my staff editorial days, one of my pet peeves was when a new writer turned out to be far less talented than his or her clips would indicate. There’s a certain subsector of the writing community that seems to survive on the good fortune of having been edited well and then perpetually parlaying that into new gigs. [Read more…]
Hello Doc: I’ve enjoyed reading your cold-calling tips for freelancers, but wonder if you would break it down even further for newbies like me. For example, who are you calling? No, I don’t want phone numbers, but what I mean is, how do you decide who to call? What do you say?—Trying to think outside the glossies but baffled about where to start
Dear TTTOTGBBAWTS (whew!): You’ve asked an essential strategic question that’s vital to cold calling and sales success. The good news is that a freelancer can construct a high-quality cold calling list with some old-fashioned sweat equity, a bit of sleuthing and minimal expense. But first things first—you need to decide, in a broad sense, what types of clients will provide the best success rate. So, that means: [Read more…]
Dr. Freelance: I totally agree with your recent post about the benefits of hand-written thank you notes. I have a follow-up question that I’m hoping you can advise me on: What’s your position on bringing advertising specialties (logoed pens, coffee mugs, magnets, etc.) to a first client meeting?—A Freelancer Bearing Gifts
FBG: I’ll answer the question of whether you should bring a gift to a first client meeting by way of anecdote. When I started my business, I printed up a hundred or so small notepads with my logo and contact information on it to hand out to prospective clients. They were professional-looking, printed on nice paper…but when I was honest with myself, it wasn’t really a “wow” item. They weren’t terribly expensive, yet I don’t believe I received a measurable return on investment. [Read more…]
Cold calling is surely one of the most polarizing topics in the freelance-o-sphere. Those who love it can be downright fanatical about its strength as a tool for finding new clients and freelance jobs. Those who hate it are equally passionate about it making us no better than telemarketers.
Count me among the former. If business is slow, I can’t think of a better way of uncovering a company that might be in need of freelance writing, editing, graphic design or web services. With that in mind, I wanted to offer some cold calling tips for freelancers: [Read more…]