Building efficient and long-term relationships with your clients is the key to having a successful freelancing career and a substantial income stream.
Most clients are usually looking for a good freelancer to settle down with and outsource their work to on a regular basis. They actually use a simple strategy to find the best freelancers.
How Clients Find Excellent Freelancers
Firstly, they will offer you a simple one-off job. It could be anything from a job for a blog article to a logo design. This is their way of accessing your skills and quality because most freelancers try to finish these low pay jobs as soon as they can to get back to their high-paying projects, which is a big mistake.
At least two out of three clients you work with will end up offering you long-term contracts if you treat every job you get as if it’s your first ever job and you do your best to deliver high-quality results, no matter how small the job is. Here are 5 effective tactics for building long-term relationships with freelance clients:
- Over Deliver
Clients love it when you deliver more than expected.
As a freelance writer, I always give my best on each article I write to satisfy my client. And, I write an extra 100 words than my promised word-count, just to give my clients a pleasant surprise. As an added bonus, I also send them high-quality images to use with their articles.
Thanks to that simple gesture, I’ve received a lot of positive reviews and responses from my clients over the years.
You don’t have to be strict about your hourly rate or your word counts. Try being friendly and understanding with your clients. You’ll be surprised by the results.
- Learn To Communicate Well
Improving your communication skills is one of the most important skills you must work on as a freelancer.
This doesn’t just mean writing better emails or having friendly Skype chats with your clients. It’s also involves responding calmly when your clients criticize your work and tries to cancel the entire project.
Communication has a strong effect on the human mind and an amazing ability to persuade people. When used properly, you’ll be able to cool down even the angriest client with a few words.
- Send your Clients Personalized Messages
Personalizing your messages doesn’t necessarily mean starting your email with “Hello dear” or “Dear sir”, rather learn about your client and communicate on a personal level
Here’s what you need to do:
- Always do your research to learn a little bit about your client.
- Learn the requirements of the project.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
- Express your personality through careful word selection.
- And write unique pitches to your potential clients to stand out from the rest of the freelancers.
- Keep Your Clients Updated
When I receive large projects, for example an order for 15 articles, I always update my clients each time I finish 2-3 articles instead of waiting until I finish all 15 articles to get their feedback.
This does not only help me keep them happy throughout the project, but it also gives me the time to connect with them by asking casual questions, such as “how’s your weekend?’’.
Always remember to update your clients on the progress of your on-going projects. Let them know that you are actively working on the project, one step at a time.
- Respect Your Client’s Opinion
Don’t make the mistake of assuming you know everything.
I know how bad you feel when someone tells you that you’re wrong and say bad things about your work. I also know how difficult it is to admit to your mistakes. And it’s easy for any freelancer to get angry when a client asks for a revision. But, it’s crucial that you stay calm during occasions like these.
When your client criticizes your work or gives negative feedback. Set your ego aside for a moment and think with an open mind. Look at the situation in your client’s point of view and try to understand their frustration. Then, respond as pleasant as possible. Remember, you’re a freelancer, not a dictator.
Much like any other business, Freelancing is not something you can master overnight. So, just be patient, consistent, and keep improving yourself and you’ll be making more money in no time.
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