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How to get clients directly for copy-writing business?

Discussion in 'Copywriting' started by prince mondal, May 6, 2014.

  1. #1
    I do work as a copywriter on different private marketplaces such as oDesk,elance. But now I am not interested to work on any marketplace. In this situation, I'd like to get my clients directly.
    How can I get them? If I get, how will I get payment grantee?
     
    prince mondal, May 6, 2014 IP
  2. Content Maestro

    Content Maestro Notable Member

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    #2
    If I am not wrong, you are probably pissed off by the poor rates most of the clients offer on these freelance marketplaces. That's why you have lost your interest. Right?
    Take a look here - https://forums.digitalpoint.com/posts/18915245/ and see if the links I have posted there are of any help to you.
    IMO, the only method that can guarantee you a payment from clients you don't know is by asking for a certain amount upfront before starting work. The inputs here will surely help you a lot to handle this - https://forums.digitalpoint.com/threads/signs-of-a-typical-scam-guide-for-newbies.2676738/.
    Hope this helps. Good luck.:)
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2014
    Content Maestro, May 7, 2014 IP
  3. Spoiltdiva

    Spoiltdiva Notable Member

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    #3
    Having a thread on Copywriting forum is a good start. I would suggest creating a thread advertising your services in Content Creation forum also.
    What you need to do is to make contacts here and find out who the editors, publishers, authors, advertisers etc. are. Who on this site out of the tens of thousands of members would require your services?
    Try to make contacts/friends, I have 212 followers on DP because of being active here. Whenever I require anything I can draw from this large pool of contacts. I am *never* without work. In fact I regularly have to farm work out to members here because I have more than I can handle.
    As to payment simply be firm and clear as to what your expectations are. The more assertive and confident you come across as, the more faith your clients will have in you. You of course do need the talent to back all this up with.;)
     
    Spoiltdiva, May 7, 2014 IP
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  4. SCookAAM

    SCookAAM Active Member

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    #4
    It can be frustrating when you're working on these freelance websites. As maestro said, you've probably lost your interest because of it. However, these websites can be a fantastic way to make money if you use them correctly. Like everything in life, there is a process.
    However, it's also a good idea to farm your own clients. That's really where the big money is. You've gotten some good advice so far, and I'll add this:
    1. Pick one or two of your niches and create effective sales letters for companies in these niches. Include samples, live if possible and send out a few dozen.
    2. network, both online and off.
    3. Ask for referrals.
    This is a pretty big subject, so good for you for asking for help. But don't give up on ODesk, you really can make money there.
     
    SCookAAM, May 8, 2014 IP
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  5. GuyV

    GuyV Greenhorn

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    #5
    It depends on a number of factors. Prime amongst which are the question are you any good? And do you want to run a business or just work as a writer?

    Assuming you are good. You either have the option of carving a niche for yourself in a sector you know well, become a voice in that sector and then get good paying freelance jobs direct from the big sites. Or you create a business focused on providing freelance copy writing to a small target audience (say local businesses) and then push yourself into getting noticed in that space (real world networking, ads, emails, etc.). Those are (in my opinion) the most reliable ways to do it.
     
    GuyV, May 8, 2014 IP
  6. wrcato

    wrcato Active Member

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    #6
    Local businesses in one of the best ways to go. The reason is that you are one of them, and not some writer from out of town. You know the local and it is you that can serve their needs best.

    You will need to sell your writing service like a Real estate broker sells million dollar homes... even if your service rate is $80.00 an hour. The best way to do this is to write a letter to the business. That letter is to get your foot in the door.
    I include a post card for the business to send back to me requesting my portfolio.
    Now your portfolio is not going to be online. You will need to take your material to a print shop and make them look professional.
    Also include your phone number for them to contact you for an appointment.
     
    wrcato, Jun 5, 2014 IP
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  7. TIEro

    TIEro Active Member

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    #7
    Trawl forums, apply direct, look for ads, run your own site and include a "Hire me" page, check local businesses, pick them up on those marketplaces and turn them into regulars... there are dozens of ways.

    As far as payment guarantees go, put together a standard contract and make sure you get a written agreement before you start. Get paid through PayPal (so you have protection). Don't work for dodgy clients. Treat your work as a business, in other words. :)
     
    TIEro, Jun 5, 2014 IP
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  8. Content Maestro

    Content Maestro Notable Member

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    #8
    I endorse that. The local market of your area can be a great potential source for getting clients if tapped properly and exhaustively.
    How much business you are able to generate depends mostly on how you market yourself and present your services. But this is for sure that you will hit upon some good clients in your locality if you hunt with open eyes.
    And again the trust factor - since you are not somebody 'out of the world' and easily accessible, people tend to place their trust faster in you.
     
    Content Maestro, Jun 5, 2014 IP
  9. Content Maestro

    Content Maestro Notable Member

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    #9
    Also make it a point to do some background or reference check on the client you are dealing with. If you have sources, try to acquire as much information as you can about him/her. Take a careful and detailed look at the history especially for payment issues. Does this client pay on time? Are there any unforeseen delays? Is he/she clear and precise about communicating the requirements?
    Personally, I would suggest to ask upfront for a part of the payment.
    Also ensure that your client is verified Paypal (or any other trustworthy service you are using to make and transfer payments) buyer and there are no disputes open against him.
    Save all correspondence you have through mail and writing. It comes in handy to a great extent should any issues or conflicts arise.
    Hope this helps.
     
    Content Maestro, Jun 5, 2014 IP
  10. prince mondal

    prince mondal Greenhorn

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    #10
    How do I check client payment without a client profile in any market place? Is there any way?Please suggest me.Paypal doesn't support in my country in this situation what type of Money transfer system should i use? Payoneer, Neteller, moneybookers, western union, payzaa have any milestone or on condition system? So that I can get surety.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2014
    prince mondal, Jun 7, 2014 IP
  11. TIEro

    TIEro Active Member

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    #11
    Not really, no. The best you can do is ask around and try to structure your payment system so that you get paid in parts, without doing too much work.

    That's going to be a problem. No payment processor does milestones: the job sites do that, along with escrow and so on. Without PayPal, you'll struggle to get online clients - everyone is used to paying by PayPal and getting payment protection with every transaction, so asking for money through another processor could be troublesome. Systems similar to PayPal are more likely to work than things like WU (which has no way of recalling the money if the client gets screwed).

    You will probably be better off looking for clients locally.
     
    TIEro, Jun 8, 2014 IP
  12. Content Maestro

    Content Maestro Notable Member

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    #12
    That is hard. Ask for some payment upfront or get paid in parts. Submit your work in password encrypted files. (Use strong algorithms.) Reveal the password only when you have received the payment for that particular work.
    To the best of my knowledge, milestones are currently employed only by freelance sites. Payment transfer services unfortunately do not use them yet. Ask your client to open an account on such a site and deal through it. This will give you some security.
    Just a way I would like to suggest. If Paypal doesn't operate in your country, you can get one of your contacts (whom you ABSOLUTELY trust) from a country where Paypal works to receive your payments. Ask your client to make all transfers to your contact's account and then ask your contact to send the money from his Paypal to a payment service that works where you live. Mind you that some amount will be lost in deductions like transfer fees but you will at least get the money.
    Hope this helps.
     
    Content Maestro, Jun 8, 2014 IP
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  13. TIEro

    TIEro Active Member

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    #13
    I do this for a friend I work with in Nigeria: his bidding-site and PayPal earnings all go to my account, then I send through WU to him. Zero fees with WU (if you do it by bank transfer) and the usual 3% or whatever PayPal takes.

    It's an excellent system, but - as CM said - it takes ABSOLUTE trust to operate.
     
    TIEro, Jun 8, 2014 IP
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  14. Keith Nimble

    Keith Nimble Greenhorn

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    #14
    Job boards, Craigslist, LinkedIn and any number of other sites are a great resource for finding better paying freelance jobs. I would suggest avoiding putting too much faith in one or two clients as we are talking about working over the internet after all. Elance and oDesk can be a part of that stable of clients.
     
    Keith Nimble, Jun 12, 2014 IP
  15. TREYC

    TREYC Member

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    #15
    TREYC, Jun 12, 2014 IP
  16. Content Maestro

    Content Maestro Notable Member

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    #16
    I am not sure if relying solely on Craiglist or other similar classified ads sites would suffice, but you should play safe. It is always better to keep yourself open to other ways too.
    Job boards esp. those we find on websites exclusively dedicated to writers and writing jobs are much better IMO than general freelance sites like Elance, Freelance, Fiverr etc. when it comes to the pay.
    That's what I mean precisely. If ever you happen to lose a source of work for any reason, there should be other ones to back you up. I have experienced that many people promptly switch to other writers when they find that their rates are cheaper. They don't care about quality.
     
    Content Maestro, Jun 12, 2014 IP
  17. TREYC

    TREYC Member

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    #17
    Most definitely, there are tons of different ways to go about finding clients (that's sort of what makes Internet Marketing and content writing in general so fun).
     
    TREYC, Jun 13, 2014 IP
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  18. Jake Rigdon

    Jake Rigdon Greenhorn

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    #18
    Finding a decent client can require more effort than actually performing the work, IMO.
     
    Jake Rigdon, Jun 13, 2014 IP
  19. SCookAAM

    SCookAAM Active Member

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    #19
    In my experience, I have noticed that while there are many talented writers, they're not necessarily experienced at being entrepreneurs. Being successful as a copywriter or content writer, or whatever does require more than just writing well.

    There is an art to achievement, and to finding and landing good clients. I don't care if it's through email marketing, direct mail, advertising, internet marketing or whatever. For those that continually say, for example, that the freelance sites have no good clients and that nobody pays, I can paste into my posts dozens of writers that I'm aware of on ODesk that make $100+ per hour, and actually get paid that amount.

    For my part, I set my rate at $80. Sometimes I get that, sometimes it's $60, sometimes it's $33. The point is, it's up to you to find and to land these good clients. Just because there's a lot of BS on eLance or ODesk or freelancer or whatever, doesn't mean they're not good to use.

    Now, I'm not suggesting these are the end all be all. By no means. But I would submit that is you can make $2K to $3K routinely on a freealnce site, you have the skills to go out into the "real" world and get the big clients.

    This was the whole point of my book.

    The point of this is that there have been many good comments in this thread. And the best ones are those that focus on being a good business person. if you can market and sell, you can make a good living.

    The hard truth is that the spoils don't always go to the best or most skilled at writing. They go to the most skilled at marketing and selling. A mediocre writer who's a good sales person and marketer can make a lot more than a great writer who has no clue on these subjects.

    So, if you want good clients, figure out how to go about it. Squeeze the freelance sites for all they're worth, go out into the community and network, send sales letters, etc. etc. But learn how to become a great marketer / sales person.
     
    SCookAAM, Jun 13, 2014 IP
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  20. Keith Nimble

    Keith Nimble Greenhorn

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    #20
    Freelancer website are good to start, but after that -- you've got to start looking at LinkedIn, job boards, etc.
     
    Keith Nimble, Jun 13, 2014 IP