7 reasons Email Marketing is important to promote your freelancing efforts
I love doing freelance work. As a software developer, you never know what type of work you may end up doing. Some of the work can be challenging but rewarding. However, somethings are just a right pain in the arse. Like how to promote your freelancing work.
Being you own boss, deciding whether to work from home, the local coffee shop or shared office. Managing your time and workload the way you want, are just a few of the many bonuses freelancers have. I read somewhere that 20-30% of the workforce in Europe and the US are freelancers. AMAZING.
It’s not all cool projects and working from Starbucks though. One of the studies I found said that almost 1 in 2 freelancers find it hard to find clients, even though the are extremely skilled in what they do.
I believe this is a flaw in the education system, all the way up to University level education. They teach you the skills to be able to work to a high standard in your chosen profession. What about the marketing and sales skills that you may need in the real world?
Lack Of Skills That Your Need
I, myself, are a prime example of this. I’ve gone through school, college and University. Gaining a degree in Computing Science. There was not one module or course about sales or marketing! What happens if you don’t want a traditional corporate job? Anyway, rant over, I digress…
Most freelancers work comes in the form of referrals from their contacts or existing clients. What happens if that drys up? The are sites such as UpWork or Freelancer. These are extremely competitive and can be a what Seth Godin talks about as “A race to the bottom”.
When I first started toying with trying to transition to a freelancer, before my entrepreneurial ambitions kicked in. I met a friend of mine who has worked as a freelancer for a good number of years now.
He runs Mike Moore Design, we chatted about using sites like UpWork. He said that many clients on these sites will perceive your knowledge and skill set to be far lower than it actually is. Undervaluing you and your ability to produce amazing work.
Don’t get me wrong. These sites can be great if you are early in your career and haven’t gained much knowledge or experience. However, they don’t provide sustainable work due to many factors that I won’t go in to.
Email marketing, the best way to contact clients
I may sound like a stuck record. However, I believe email marketing is still the best way to contact potential and existing clients. Yes, social media and things like Messenger are a great way to reach people. Normal businesses have teams of people managing all these communication methods.
As a freelancer you don’t have the time or luxury of being able to go deep into these platforms. You need a tried, trusted and manageable way to reach people. That’s why email marketing should be the first (sometimes only) weapon in your freelancing arsenal.
You need to get addicted to email marketing if you are a freelancer. It is tough and time consuming, I know, I’ve been there.
Personally I don’t like third party email platforms or similar tools like CRM’s. They entice you in the door, make you move everything over to their systems. Then, suddenly they start charging you a fortune or change their pricing model. Fleecing their customers for every penny because they have gone public and are at the demands of share holders. Sorry, second rant over.
Here are 7 reasons why using email marketing will help promote your freelance business.
Build up your list of leads
An email list is the heartbeat of any email marketing campaign, not just for freelancers but for online businesses. Come to think of it any business.
A list of leads that you own and manage, should contain the names and email addresses of people who have visited your website. Who have then ‘subscribed’ to your email list, if they have subscribed they have basically told you that they want to hear more from you.
Email marketing is tried and tested
I’ve already touched on this. Let me give you some stats to back up my argument.
First, it’s one of the oldest marketing strategies that is still in use today. Email is still one of the most used forms of digital communication. Even more so when it relates to business communications. I write this post in 2020. This year it is expected that 4 BILLION PEOPLE will be using email this year. Let me say that again, 4 BILLION PEOPLE using email. If that isn’t a reason to adopt some form of email marketing, then I don’t know what else to say.
Email marketing has also been proved to convert more leads to customers than any other marketing strategy. Studies suggest that emails are 5 TIMES more likely to be seen than a Facebook post.
On average email marketing give you a 3800% return on your investment. That means for every £1 you spent, you will get £38 back. Money well spent, don’t you think.
Increase your brands awareness
If you want to get more clients, growing your audience (in this case your email list) should be one of your top goals.
Email is the most direct and personal way to reach potential clients and existing/old customers. When you consistently send emails containing high-quality content. People on your email list are more likely to share that email or information with others.
By getting more people to share your content, you help spread the word about you and your business.
People are more likely to want to work with someone they trust. For them it’s less stressful and potentially far more productive.
Trust is not something that will just happen. You have to build and develop trust with people over time. Emails that contain high quality content can be a great way to build credibility.
Collect customer feedback
Feedback isn’t just limited to constructive criticism. Testimonials and positive feedback from previous and existing clients is a great way to get new clients. This helps to mirror “word of mouth” marketing, which can be used on your website. Social proof is one the biggest ways to show your value. Do you read Amazon reviews before buying a product? This is social proof.
The easiest way to gather this is by creating an email marketing campaign that requests feedback from your existing and previous clients.
Charge premium prices
I know, I know, I’m repeating myself.
Not all clients are willing to pay premium prices for the projects they want completed.
When using online freelance platforms, it’s amazing how many people and companies think they’re doing freelancers a favour by paying them as little as $3 for a 300-word blog post!
Email marketing can help get you in front of people who are willing to pay a higher, more fair rate. I know it’s scary, however, there are loads of customers out there willing to pay you what you are actually worth.
Keep in touch with previous clients
Email marketing helps you extend your business relationship with your clients long after the project’s completion.
By staying in touch, and subtly reminding them about your other services, you may find an old colleague reaching out about a new project.
You never know what they may have planned. Even if they aren’t planning on starting the project soon. Dropping them an email to keep in touch will keep you in the forefront of the clients mind. If you don’t do this, someone else will.
There you have it. Our 7 reasons why using email marketing will help promote your freelance business.
Thanks for reading.