You’ve Landed Your First Client, Now What?
I still remember the day I got my first freelance writing client, I was super excited. I had no idea what to expect but it was exhilarating to know that someone trusted me enough to hire me to fulfill all of their content needs. This could literally make or break my career as a freelance writer so I wanted to make sure I performed above and beyond.
As I began to sit back and reflect on what exactly I wanted from my first client I began to ask myself several questions: what do I want to gain from this experience? what do I want to give? How do we collaborate and the list went on and on. After several days of contemplation I realized that I had to use my first opportunity as the model of how I wanted to operate my business moving forward and here’s how I hope you choose to function moving forward as well:
Clear and Concise Communication
Communication is key. I repeat communication key. As a writer your job is to communicate your client’s message through written copy and if the two of you can’t get on the same page, your relationship is doomed from day one. Make sure you communicate with your client exactly what you need for each project and most importantly always submit drafts to them to ensure they’re 100% in favor of whatever it is you have written.
Under promise and Over Deliver
I never make promises I can’t keep. In most cases I can turn around a 500 word assignment in less than 24 hours; however, I don’t always share that with my clients. In most scenarios I will share with them that I can turn a project over in 2–3 days and when they receive it in 24 hours they are blown away. This often ultimately ends up to a more consistent client work load.
Boundaries are key in every relationship. When your new client hires you always make sure you let them know you’re open to suggestions but also let them know you also take your work seriously so any recommendations you make are in the best benefit of not only you as a writer but also your client’s brand.
Offer Great Customer Service
Many people assume this is a no brainer but great customer service is more than just words. Great customer service is going above and beyond to make your client feel like the VIP they are. One of my greatest and most repeated clients I have ever had was one who was just amazed by how willing I was to go above and beyond for him even if that meant doing a last minute assignment on the weekend. While I do not make a habit of this it has helped prove to my clients that I take their work seriously.
Now that you’ve landed your first client, what’s next? The goal is to always make sure that your first client isn’t your last client. Unless it’s Bill Gates of course :-).