Bio: Jessica Sanders is an avid small business writer touching on topics from social media to telemarketing. She writes for an online resource that gives advice on topics including credit card processing for lead generation resource, Resource Nation.
The author’s views are entirely his own and may not reflect the views of FreelanceCopywritersBlog.com. If you are interested in producing a Guest Post for this blog, please get in touch with your ideas.
When you’re a professional freelancer, you run a business of sorts. You find ways to reach out to potential clients, rack up references, and put your work out into the world with your name on it. Like a company, this builds your brand. Between providing high-quality work and building relationships, people get a sense of who you are.
Once you’ve built your brand, though, you want to use it to your benefit. Like any other business, you need to market yourself and your brand to build larger client base. Lucky for you, the internet is full of opportunities for personal marketing. And don’t worry, it won’t cost a penny.
1. Start With Your Brand Audience
Before you can begin marketing, you have to assess what your brand is saying about you. This can depend on what you write about, who you cater your work toward, etc. To begin, consider what your audience will be.
- Topics: Are you an expert in your field? Do you write strictly about food, business or design? If that’s what you most associate with as a writer then that is what your marketing should illustrate.
- Clients: Do you write on various topics for specific clients? If you cater your writing to the female crowd, but write about everything from careers to parenting, then that will be important.
- Relationships: Do you pride yourself on the long term writing relationships you have with clients? If you touch on various topics, but have a solid group of people that you exclusively write for, then that will be a beneficial aspect in the placement of your marketing efforts.
2. Pick Where You’ll Represent Yourself
Once you’ve decided what your audience is, you’ll want to be present where they are. If you cater to business men in their 40’s, you don’t need to have a strong presence on Pinterest.
LinkedIn: If business people are your main client base, this will be a good place to start. As the professional social network, it gives you an opportunity to reach the crowd you are hoping to attract.
- Business people are busy, and LinkedIn cuts through the fluff of photos and comments, getting straight to your capabilities as a writer.
- If you rely on recommendations, this is a great place to show that off.
Blogosphere: As a freelance writer, you most likely already have a blog. Although you are adding great content frequently, marketing your brand will have more to do with your theme and design.
- Each color represents something different, and is an integral part of how long people spend on your blog. Consider this when designing and choosing your theme.
- While you write fresh content, consider including a page giving examples of previous professional work you’ve done.
Google+: This up and coming social network was made for freelance writers. Google+ is the perfect combination of LinkedIn and Facebook.
- Use the portfolio section to link to all your previous work. If you’ve done a lot, this will look great for your experience. It’s also an easy way for potential clients to check you out for themselves.
- Use the photo section to tell who you are without worrying about tagged photos from last weekend. “Pictures and references to traveling signaled openness to new experiences and adventurousness, while the number of friends you have indicates extroversion,” according to a Northern Illinois University study.
Pinterest: The biggest social network of 2012 is quickly becoming a great way to focus your branding. If you write for women’s magazines and blogs, this is a great place to direct clients.
- Have a work specific account, and create your boards around topics you write on.
- Link to relevant work in the caption of your pin. Photos are a simple way to represent your brand and your writing, not to mention fun for your clients to look through, while still being advantageous for you.
3. Finally, Get Yourself Out There
Now that you have your brand out in the wild jungle of the World Wide Web, you have to spread the word. While creating your accounts and profiles will do wonders for your marketing, you should always be looking to grow your client base and audience.
- Email: Create a personal signature for your emails. You can link to all your accounts, allowing those you are pitching to the opportunity to see your work before even responding. This can be the difference between hooking the client and missing an opportunity.
- Twitter: If you already have a Twitter account, consider getting one for your business alone. Here you can create a following that is strictly work related. Tweet about new blog posts and articles that have gone live.
- Blog: Your blog is not only a good spot to place content, but perfect for getting potential clients to check out more of your stuff. Get follow buttons for your Pinterest, Twitter and Google+.
Without spending a penny you can create a full blown marketing portfolio. Keep your brand constant throughout each platform, giving onlookers a good idea of what you have to offer and what you’re all about. The key to your personal freelance brand marketing is to direct potential clients to all the places you know will best represent what you and your business is all about.