There are over 467 million members on LinkedIn, this makes it a goldmine for finding freelance writing clients. The beauty of LinkedIn is that it’s very business-focused. People are actively looking to extend their networks and find new opportunities on the platform.
LinkedIn is a GREAT place for you to discover prospects who could use your services, connect with them, and start building relationships that lead to writing opportunities.
But with all the information out there on how to use LinkedIn, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. There are webinars, articles, courses and books laying out detailed strategies for connecting with and nurturing prospects.
This article is a little different. After much trial and error, I’ve discovered a simple system that works – a system that will help you find freelance writing clients on LinkedIn – fast.
By all means, read a few books and perfect your LinkedIn strategy over time, but there’s a lot to be gained now by jumping right in and using this system to get you up and running.
Here’s how it works …
Fill Out Your Profile to Reach All-Star Status
LinkedIn has a Profile Strength Meter on the right-hand side of your profile page. There are 5 levels, from Beginner to All-Star. You need to build an All-Star profile, or you’ll seriously limit your reach on LinkedIn.
How to achieve All-Star status? All you need to do is fill out the correct sections of your profile. Here’s what you need:
- A profile picture – choose a professional-looking head shot
- Your industry and location
- Your current position with a description
- At least 2 past positions – it’s fine to use freelance writing jobs here
- Your education details
- A minimum of 3 skills
- At least 50 connections
When you’re writing your profile, make sure you include keywords so you’re easily found when people search for freelance writers. Include links to your website and other social media profiles so people know how to contact you.
LinkedIn also allows you to add content like videos, images, and links to your articles – all great ways for you to showcase your skills and stand out.
Start Building Your LinkedIn Network
There are lots of possible ways to find freelance writing clients on LinkedIn. The most important thing to keep in mind is that your network should consist of relevant contacts.
Be selective when adding or accepting connections, you’ll find your network is a lot more valuable this way.
It’s beyond the scope of this article to discuss all the ways to find clients on LinkedIn – but look out for future articles on WriteWorldwide exploring these methods soon. For now, let’s look at 2 easy ways to start building your network:
Invite your email contacts to connect – this is really easy to do, and a fantastic way to connect with relevant contacts you’ve previously emailed.
If you’ve done any email marketing you’ll find this particularly useful. LinkedIn will find the profiles of people you’ve emailed and give you the chance to add them to your network.
To do this go to My Network on the top navigation bar, look for Add Personal Contacts in the left column, and click Get started. LinkedIn will show you the steps needed to finish the process.
Make sure you work through the contacts one by one so you avoid adding contacts that aren’t relevant. Add relevant contacts with the ‘People you may know’ feature – Linkedin’s ‘People you may know’ feature is a handy tool for quickly growing a relevant network.
All you need to do is click on My Network, then scroll down to the relevant section.
If you want to build your network fast, you can simply click Connect next to prospects who look like a good fit to work with.
Lots of people want to grow their network, and you’ll be surprised how many accept your invitation to connect. If you’ve got more time, try personalising the connection messages for even better results.
Reach out to Your New Connections
Now you’re building your network, it’s time to reach out to your new connections through LinkedIn’s built-in messaging platform. Here’s a script template that’s worked well for me:
Hi <first name>,
Thanks for connecting here on LinkedIn.
As a writer and marketer for <your industry>, I help <type of business> generate more leads and sales with quality content and marketing.
My work has been featured on sites such as <2-3 sites>.
Would you be available for a quick phone call next week to discuss how I can help with content and marketing at <company name>?
Let me know a day and a time that will work for you and we can jump on a quick call.
I look forward to hearing back from you.
Here are links to a few of my recent articles: <2-3 links>
Thanks in advance,
This script works for a few reasons. It’s short and to the point, describes the benefits you can bring to the prospect’s business, displays social proof and includes a call-to-action to continue the discussion outside of LinkedIn.
After sending the first message, I usually wait a week before following up with a very simple note:
Hey <prospect name>,
Just following up on the last message I sent you.
Would love to get a call set up if you’re open to it.
Let me know!
This second message keeps the tone casual and avoids hitting new connections with the hard sell.
My overall aim with this simple system has been to set up 2 or 3 phone calls each week – parts of the system could be tweaked and tested, such as the number of follow-ups and the wording of the message, but for now the system is allowing me to book the number of appointments I need.
My reasoning behind this is simple – I aim to work with a couple of new clients each month until I hit my income goals. With a pretty conservative estimate of 20% of my calls converting into sales, that means I must talk to 10 prospects per month to get 2 new clients.
One more thing … You may be thinking that it sounds like a lot of work to do all this consistently, or you don’t like the idea of talking to prospects on the phone (this is a super simple system, not a super easy system!)
It’s a lot of work, and it’s difficult to develop the skills to convert prospects into customers over the phone. Remember that you’re building a business here. You’ll have to work hard, and you need to build skills you may not be great at yet.
But isn’t it worth it to have a successful freelance writing business?
What do you think of this system? Will you be giving it a try? Let us know in the comments!