Digital Freelance Freedom

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How to Consistently Register More, High-Value Recurring Customers

Why did you become a digital marketing freelancer? Was it for the love of copywriting, developing explosive graphics, developing cool apps that change the world? Research demonstrates the number one reason freelancers do so because of perceived freedom; you want to be free from the confines of corporate organisations that could potentially rob you of your creativity and or force you to develop things you’re not aligned with in addition to draining your time.

Passion

One of the most critical ingredients in registering more high value, recurring customers is your own passion. The level to which you attract and maintain these clients is directly proportional to the passion you have for what you do and in how you communicate possibility for others. No one wants to work with black holes. When you have a passion for your craft, it ceases to be work. You love getting up every morning to begin another adventure.

Habits and Tools

A popular business myth is, ‘build it and they will come.’ Because you are a freelancer, it is even more important to have automation and supporting systems on your distribution channels for communicating your passion. It could be social media, your website, one of the many freelance opportunity sites or hybrids thereof. Daily consistency in sharing your passion is key. Rather than going for writing the most inspirational, creative post, opt for regular documentation of what is happening. In this way, you are sharing a bit of your life, which is how your customers ultimately want to connect with you. Here are the Top 7 tools for automation and creating depth of value for your customers:
  1. Wholesale Digital Service Provider – have a wholesale digital service provider that you can cross and up sell services to your customers. If they want graphics or a website, ask if they would like SEO with that. If they want articles, ask if they would like FB ads and PPC with that. While you are creating more value for your clients, have it as part of your business and sales process to ask for referrals. If they value you enough to use your services, they value you enough to provide a referral. Make it easy for them to do so by providing an online form that will get the relevant information you need to provide WOW-service. Wholesale digital providers usually have social media management services in addition to creating and managing ad campaigns. They also tend to provide real-time and periodic white label reporting you can give your clients so they can know how they are improving.
  2. Online Project Management tools – My goto tool is Basecamp for external contributions and Agile CRM for internal projects. Basecamp enables all stakeholders to see in real-time the status of a project and next steps. Agile CRM is a multifunction CRM that includes project management features as well as a host of others. It packs the enterprise punch of more popular CRMs without the higher cost.
  3. Later.com – Instagram automation and scheduling tool. This is essential for your own brand recognition as well as for your clients. While this is Instagram specific, there are other tools available for multiple channels. Instagram currently has the highest conversion rate of any of the social media channels with the greatest growth potential.
  4. Answerthepublic.com – provides comprehensive keyword research that is invaluable from a marketing and PR perspective. If you are in business, your first role is a marketer and then sales. All of your articles and content needs to be keyword aligned, including longtail.
  5. Inbound Marketing + Customer Relationship Management – Very few CRM’s come close to the value of delivering comprehensive online business automation that Agile CRM is capable of. It even includes help desk functionality so you can take questions out of email and put them as part of a system that ultimately creates your FAQs and support system. It is only $200 a year compared to spending $300 a month with other CRMs.
  6. Web Hosting – One of the best value hosting offerings globally, it includes, cpanel, real-time scaling and some of the best technical support of any provider. It also has an exceptional affiliate program which creates more opportunity for you to generate more on-going income for yourself. Site Ground was built for WordPress and has the cloud, dedicated, shared, reseller and enterprise hosting options.
  7. Sproutsocial.com – social media channel inbox with analytics that allows you to manage and respond to all of your social media channels in one place, including sending responses to each message. Sproutsocial.com is also highly effective at providing social media best practices training and they have connected with some of the most powerful brands in media.

Full Self Expression

Many times, clients have an idea of what they want but it doesn't align with their core needs. Do you give them what they want and hope they figure out they should have gone with a different option, or do you tell the truth. Sometimes, it is a little of both. If you can speak from the context of what their highest needs are, it is easy to position the options which will give them the experience they are really after. This is also the way you coach them in working with their customers. Your clients have not come to you because they want graphics or whatever superpower you have. They engage you because you have a solution to their problem. If you can bundle leveraged services in conjunction with your white label services provider, why wouldn’t you when it gives them what they really want faster and with more value than they could achieve on their own. Practice telling the truth, seasoned with grace from the context of your niche and you will always have an overflowing of new customers and referrals reaching out to you. Play a game to see how wide and deep the level of services you can provide your customers. In many cases, you can double your revenue with existing clients.As a freelancer, time is important. You will want to focus your efforts on the aspect of your craft that no one else can do as well as you and that you #love. Everything else needs to be outsourced and or automated. If you do not have time for face to face networking, create supergroups comprised of 10 – 12 members who have a mandate to deliver leads for you. This can be created and maintained as part of a collaborative system that includes automated lead generation for all members. However you network, ensure it is in the pond where your niche congregates.

Summary

The more you build systems that can run your business, the more you can focus on the aspects of your life where you experience the most pleasure and joy. As you scale, it can be appropriate to hire a virtual assistant through your white label digital services provider. The 4-hour Work Week is not a myth when you develop masterful systems from your passion. When you’re ready to create your systems, contact me for a complimentary discussion on what can be possible. 
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