Now, guys, I get asked the question all the time, how do I find clients when I’m just getting started? And guys, I get it, it’s tough when you’re just getting started as a freelancer or you’re,
you’re just trying to find clients. It can be difficult. It can feel like you’re this little bitty fish swimming around in this big, big pond, right? And how do you get the right exposure? How do you market yourself? How do you, how do you get yourself out in front of the right people? So let me tell you what, as a freelancer who’s been doing this for 15 years full-time, but has been freelancing for 30 years, I can tell you that it’s a lot less complicated than you think. And I’m gonna share some tips with you today that will help you get clarity on how you can build a strategy for yourself for finding clients. Now, when I get started here today,
I want to share with you a couple of things. Number one, your success as a freelancer has very little to do with your, your marketing ability, okay? And I say that we look at marketing as this, this very forward facing, you know, almost kind of a bragging type of a mentality. And let me tell you this, guys, when I was getting started in business, that was something that really tripped me up. I felt very uncomfortable putting myself out there and bragging about what I could do. Now, at the end of the day, you have to do that. You have to put yourself out there. But I think a lot of us get gun shy and are afraid to really do what we need to do to get ourselves out there.
Because either one, we’re, we’re introverted and we’re scared of getting out in front of people and drawing attention to ourselves. We just want to do the work and really not be out in front. Maybe we’ve got a, an issue with, you know, social media, and that’s just something that we don’t, that, that we don’t play well with. At the end of the day, guys, I think we have to understand that we have to put ourselves out there. But I think there’s a way to do it in a way that’s non-salesy and not slimy. And especially if you’re a person who’s introverted or maybe a person who doesn’t like self-promotion,
I think what the, I’m gonna share with you today will be a breath of fresh air for you. Also, I think what I’m gonna share with you today will be exactly what you need if you’re just getting started as a freelancer, if you don’t have any clients, all you need is the simple framework to get started. Now, one of the things that I’ll say before I I start the training today is that you need to at least know how to solve some business problems.
Okay? Now, maybe you’re a graphic designer and you say, well, Matt, that’s what I do. I I’m a designer, I design things. Well, the first thing you need to reframe is yes, you are a designer, but when you’re working in the business world, you need to position yourself as a graphic designer who can do blank, okay? And in that blank, you need to insert the business problem that you can solve. So I have actually kind of reframed how I think of myself. I am a graphic designer. I’m a creative, but I have reframed my identity to be a creative problem solver, okay? Or a visual problem solver. I go into situations with clients who have a real business need.
Most oftentimes, they’re trying to find more clients. They’re trying to establish a brand so that they can promote themselves and their business. They want to make more money. That’s what they’re in business for, guys, aren’t we the same way? Aren’t we trying to find more clients and get more exposure for us as business owners? So in some, in some ways, we need to kind of take our own medicine. But what we’re going to be doing is we’re gonna be interacting with clients, and we’re gonna find out what business problem that they have that we can solve. Maybe it’s a branding problem. Maybe they need a brand created for them. Maybe they have a website problem and they need someone to create a website for them.
Or maybe they need a, a fresh logo, a logo, refresh, whatever it happens to be, okay? Find a problem that you can solve for your clients. And that’s where we’re going to start. Even if you have no clients right now, you have to get to the point where you understand the specific business problems that you can solve. Now, what I’m going to share right now is a framework called the client snowball. Okay? The client snowball framework is a repeatable process that you can use to attract new clients to yourself over and over and over again. So the client snowball process works like this. So the first thing that you need to do in the client snowball framework is you need to get a sale.
Now, when I say get a sale, what I mean is you need to find someone with a problem that you can solve. I know when I was getting started off as a, a young freelancer, I was looking for clients too. Now, clients that paid me money seemed to be kind of hard to find, but you know what? It seemed like there was always people asking me to do stuff for them.
And that was kind of how I found out that I actually had this gift. I could share, people would find out that I could do something and, you know, graphic related or drawing related or illustration related, and they would say, Hey, Matt, I, can you help us with this brochure? Or can you help us with this logo?
Now, these might not be people who had a big budget, but they did have a real problem, and they had a problem, and they came to me to help solve that problem because they knew that I had skills that they didn’t have. And guys, this is where the magic really happened. People have to understand that you have the ability to solve a problem.
Now, when I say at the beginning of the client snowball process is get a sale, I’m going to say that as you’re just getting started, that sale doesn’t necessarily mean for money, okay? And I’ll explain why that is in just a minute. What you really want is you want to find a person to partner with whose problem you can solve really, really well. That’s where you’re going to start for you, that is going to be your sale to find this person that you can do some work for, even if it’s free or for reduced cost, okay? And I’ll show you why it’s gonna work in just a second. So we’re going to get this sale, we’re going to get this relationship started with this customer who has a problem that we can solve.
All right? We’re going to start working with them. And the next thing in the process that we are going to do is we are going to, we are going to serve this client, and we are going to help them get results. Okay? So here’s the step two, all right? We start with the sale, all right? And then we move into serving.
We’re going to actually use our gifts, talents to do the work of solving their problem. And we’re gonna, and we’re gonna, we’re gonna dive into it, guys. We’re gonna, we’re gonna do what it takes to solve the problem for our client. We want that problem to be obliterated. We want them to get the results as a business owner that they’re looking for.
That’s hugely important. It’s important that we focus on the client problem and make sure that what we do for them solves the problem that they have. And I’ll tell you why that’s so important. Because guys, when they have, when they have a problem, they’re concerned less about the real, the artistic side of what we’re doing for them. Yes, that’s really important.
But at the end of the day, they need a solution that works. If they’re trying to find more clients and they work with us, and we help them get more clients mission accomplished, we have helped to solve the problem. Now, what happens when your client gets the results that they’re looking for? They’re happy When you help a client get the results they’re looking for, guys, they’re really happy. You just helped them do something that they couldn’t do themselves. And at this point in time, they’re incredibly grateful. Okay? So in the client snowball framework, the next step that we’re gonna do, as soon as we help them get results, then we are going to help them tell a story. We want to collect a story from our client.
And this story goes something like this. You guys are probably familiar with what a testimonial is, and testimonials are great because those are really other people sharing who we are. Here’s the difference. This is why I want to share why a story is different than a testimonial. A testimonial is about us, and I talked earlier that as, as some of us are a little bit reticent to share and put ourselves out there, because we don’t like that exposure, we don’t like that talk that’s pointing back to us. The self-promotion, okay? It feels salesy, it feels slimy. We, we feel uncomfortable when other people are talking about us. Okay? That can be a testimonial, and testimonials are something that we’re really familiar with. But I wanna change the way we frame this, and I want us to collect the story from our clients in such a way that the story is all about the results that we get for our client. So in other words, client could say, I really liked working with Mat. Mat is great. I recommend working with Mat. That’s a testimonial. A story is, because I worked with Matt, I was able to do this, fill in the blank. The problem we solved in my business, because I worked with Mat, I was able to get some things done that I couldn’t do on my own. Now see, there’s a big difference in the way we frame that. One is a testimony about me. The other is a story about my client and the things I was able to help my client achieve.
Now, why is that important? Well, for, for one, we want to be able to share these stories, and that is number stage number four. We want to share the story that we collect from our client. Now, a, answering this question, is it easier to brag on yourself or is it easier to brag on your clients? Guys, one of the things that opened the door for me was when I understood how this works, I can talk about the work that I’ve done for my clients and the results that they have received all day long, because I’m not talking about myself. I’m talking about the the results that I was able to help my client achieve. And one of the things that I love to do is I love to brag on my clients.
So when I get a story from them, I’m gonna share it. I’m gonna share it in my emails, I’m gonna share it in conversations that I have with prospects. I’m gonna share it in my social, I’m gonna share it on my website. I’m gonna tell that story wherever I can because that story has incredible power. And here’s where the power comes in, my friend. When you tell a story about what you have done for a client and the results that you have received for them, any other business owner that sees that story is going to, is going to connect. And they are going to say to themselves, okay, I have a similar problem. I have a similar need in my business. And it looks like Matt was able to help this business owner get the result they needed.
So if I’m looking for a resource, if I’m looking for a designer who can help me do this in my business, looks like this business owner had pretty good experience with Matt. In fact, they got great results. So I’m gonna give Matt a look. Guys, let’s look at it this way. When you go to Amazon or to any other online shopping site to go make a purchase, and you’re looking at a product for the first time, and you’ve never had any experience with it before, and you don’t know if it’s gonna work, like they say, what do you do? You go to the review section, you look and see what other people have said about that product. You read their te their, their messages, their stories, their testimonials about what their experience is with that product. Some of ’em are gonna be great. Some of the people are gonna leave great reviews about how that product worked for them. There may even be a few bad reviews in there. But when I go to shop on a site like Amazon, I read the reviews. I wanna see what people who have already bought the product say about it.
Does it really work like it’s supposed to? Is it really worth the money? And based on the culmination of the stories that I read, I am then getting more courage and more trust to make an investment, to give Amazon some money to get that product. When clients see the stories of the work that you’ve done to get results for your clients, you’re building that trust.
You’re giving others a chance to see what it’s like to work with you. Not just are you a nice person, but what kind of results can you help them achieve? So when you do that, when you share those stories, those lead to more sales. So we start with the sale, and then we serve our client. We help them get results.
We solve their pain point, okay? It goes away. They’re happy. We want to tell their story. We talk about that story. We talk about what we did and how we got results for our client. It’s not about us. It’s about the clients that we served. And then we get that story. We’re gonna share that story. We’re gonna put it on our website.
We’re going to put it in our social, our LinkedIn page, our Facebook page. We’re gonna put it in our footer. We’re gonna put it in a lot of different places where people can see what others have said about the work that we’ve done for them. Then people who have a similar pain point, have a similar problem, are going to see the results that we’ve gotten for them, and they’re gonna say, okay, if Matt can get that kind of result for them, maybe he can get that result for me. And they’re gonna reach out and they’re gonna give them a re a, an opportunity to connect with you and to get more information. And guys, that is the client snowball. It works in a circle. And if you do, if you’re diligent to collect the story, get the results, collect the story, share the story, then you’re gonna see more clients come into your business. And the great takeaway here is that as you start to collect these stories, and I tell everyone in my Ignite membership, guys, you need to be story collectors. You need to be collecting stories.
And you know what? You can get a great story from a pro bono client. You don’t need to. They don’t need to share in the story how much they paid you or didn’t pay you. All they need to share is the results that you got for them and how you were able to make their business problem go away. That’s how you can take a pro bono client and make them an active part of your marketing because you can then tell their story and share that story with others.
Would you like to learn how to find perfect clients? Even if you’re just getting started as a freelancer? Then I want to invite you to download a copy of my client Snowball framework. Get your copy email@example.com. Do you want to get started as a freelancer, but not quite sure where to begin? Then be sure to check out the Freelance Blueprint, a free resource that I created just for you.
Inside the Freelance Blueprint, I share a detailed roadmap that you can follow to help you build a stable and profitable Freelance business. Grab your copy of the Freelance Blueprint right now. Just go to Freelance ceo.com/blueprint. Hey, just a second. Before you go, I wanted to say thank you for tuning in. I hope you found something here that’s valuable to you and your business.
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