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How to Find Your First Customers

<p>Now that the paperwork is done and you have a business name that matches your image, you are now ready to start your journey in self-employment. Whether you are currently working or not, you are undoubtedly excited about this new life, and new opportunities. There is, however, one small detail to take care of: How to find your first customers. There are many ways to achieve this. To learn how, feel free to continue reading the rest of this article!</p> <h3><strong>Before you Start</strong></h3> <p>Before you get started on the web or on phone calls, there are some important questions to answer first. First, who is your target audience? Second, who are your products or services for? Third, what need do you meet? Fourth, have you taken the time to do some market research to know if your offer will be competitive? Fifth, you may need to target a specific group of people to stand out and find your first customers. Try to imagine your typical client. Is it a woman, a man, a young person or an older person? Sixth, do you want to target businesses or individuals? When you get the answers to these questions, it will be easier for you to target the right people with the right channels of communication. Do not forget to be sure to provide exemplary service in your early days to build a solid reputation.</p> <h3><strong>Your Entourage is your Best Ally</strong></h3> <p>Your mother may be your first client, but do not underestimate the power of her network. Your family and friends, besides being potential first customers, can also help you find interesting prospects. Take the time to talk to them and explain to them that you are now a self-employed worker offering a particular service. If they see a demand in their surroundings, they will not hesitate to refer you. Yes, we are talking here about the power of word of mouth. In many cases, your network members will be your best sellers! Do not hesitate to use your entourage when you are looking for customers. In addition, your family and friends will surely be happy to help you.</p> <h3><strong>Try Marketing Campaigns&nbsp;</strong></h3> <p>Once all your cousins know about your new life as a freelancer, it&#39;s time to get on the web! Let&#39;s start with the basics: To find potential customers, you need to have social media pages, a website, and your Google My Business page at minimum. First, who is your typical client? Depending on your answer, you should be on social media platforms that your typical client uses. If you have a younger clientele and are working in an artistic field, social platforms like Pinterest or Instagram will probably be the best places to promote your product. But, if you are targeting a more professional or elderly clientele, LinkedIn or Facebook could be good options for you. In short, be on the same wavelength as your potential customers.</p> <p>Then we strongly advise you have a website. Your website is where you will be found by potential customers through internet searches. This is also a place where you can gather relevant information about your business and recommendations from past customers. If the art of SEO is not your cup of tea, we have an article on the basics to properly reference your website. Keep in mind your typical customer when developing your site. On a different note, you should also take the time to fill out your Google My Business page. If you do not know Google My Business, please note that this is the company listing that appears to the right of Google searches. It is a marketing element not to neglect&mdash;and it&#39;s free!</p> <p>When you are comfortable with these three tools on the web, you can also take a look at the ads that you can do and buy on Facebook and Google. You can also join groups or directories specializing in your field or specialized sites for freelancers to help you find your first contracts.</p> <h3><strong>Go Meet your Customers</strong></h3> <p>Finally, why not take the time to meet your first customers in person? Whether at trade shows, conferences or happy hour, networking events can help you expand your network of contacts. Your potential customers are more likely to remember you if you had the chance to introduce yourself in person than if they saw you on Facebook for example. Arm yourself with business cards (yes, they are still useful even today). Then, practice your pitch. While it may seem scary to meet strangers to explain what you do in life, tell yourself that they are in the same boat as you. These encounters can bring you a lot, so try them! For example, you could offer a complimentary service to another freelancer who could then recommend clients or be referred by one of the participants sometime later. Also, when you have their business cards, do not hesitate to contact your potential customers again to see if you could meet some of their needs!</p> <p></p> <p>In conclusion, we hope you find your first customers quickly. Don&rsquo;t forget to let others know that you are looking for work, get on the right social networks and get out of the house to meet new clients. You can then develop your image and your reputation using the recommendations of old customers. It may be that at first you are tempted to offer a below-average rate, however, try to ask for a fair rate so that you can live off your passion for a long time!</p>

Ariane