Where To Find Clients When You Are a Freelance Developer?

Where To Find Clients When You Are a Freelance Developer?

Whether you are already a freelance developer or want to start your own business soon, sooner or later you will be faced with one of the biggest problems( like [pii_email_bc0906f15818797f9ace]) of the freelance worker: finding contracts. Where to find clients when you are a freelance? In this article, I offer 10 ways to find new contracts .

# 1 – Solicit your entourage

To get off to a good start in your freelance activity (or bounce back during a slack period), the simplest solution is to call on your network .

To do this, put everyone around you to help: your family of course, but also your friends, your former colleagues and classmates, and even your former teachers. One of them might need your services, or know someone in this situation.

Inform your network of your area of ​​expertise. Specify what type of clients you are looking for. You can also ask them to share your website link on their social networks, and even leave you a recommendation on Linkedin .

Leave several of your business cards with them so they can distribute them if the opportunity arises.

# 2 – Approach businesses

If you are wondering where to find clients, be sure, door-to-door sales are the most popular method.

The principle is simple: it is a question of contacting (by email, phone, post or face to face) companies in order to present your offers and services to them. This in the hope, of course, of convincing them to call on you.

We will have the opportunity to come back to this subject in more depth in future articles. Nevertheless, here are some tips for prospecting well:

  • Make a list of the companies you would like to work for;
  • Deduce your core target  and create one or more personas to represent them;
  • Write sales pitches specifically addressed to these personas  ;
  • Contact these companies (and others like them) to offer them your services. To do this, refer to your sales pitch and optimize your chances of responding by offering a personalized solution;
  • Start them again after a few days if necessary.

Be careful, however: with the new GDPR standard , you cannot create a database containing emails from prospects who have not implicitly given you their consent to contact them.

Note that you can also use the Sales Solutions service offered by LinkedIn to put you in direct contact with the managers of the companies you are targeting.

# 3 – don’t overlook job boards

When they wonder where to find clients, freelancers don’t often think about it and yet job boards are a real breeding ground for potential contracts . In IT in particular, a very large number of companies are struggling to recruit because the demand is so high.

Read also : Will the freelance replace the developer on a permanent contract?

Identify companies that are recruiting , then contact them to offer them your services as a freelancer. Some of them might be tempted to call on you while they wait to recruit.

Job boards usually offer to send you alerts when new ads are posted. Do not hesitate to use this tool to save time!

Note that on these same sites, it is often possible to filter by type of contract . While many opt for the classic internship / CDD / CDI, you can also find some freelance contracts.

# 4 – Find a freelance partner

Where to find new customers and contracts? What if you “partner” with another freelancer?

Find someone you trust who has skills that complement yours. For example, a freelance developer can collaborate with a web designer or a freelance writer.

The idea is to call on others when we find a new mission, and even, why not, to approach companies together in order to gain credibility.

Do you receive a request for a quote that you cannot provide? Rather than accepting all the assignments and taking the risk of rushing the job, do not hesitate to redirect your prospect to your partner. The latter will not hesitate to return the elevator to you when the time comes!

I myself have used this solution several times, and I have always found the collaborations very rewarding. Be careful, however, to select the right freelancer  : nothing is worse than seeing your “partner” lack professionalism when carrying out the project.

To choose your freelance partner, do not hesitate to put yourself in the shoes of a recruiter  !

# 5 – Take care of your portfolio

Did you know ? The portfolio is the best freelance salesperson!

While it is entirely possible to be successful in finding clients without a portfolio, things are much easier when you have a quality site to present to your prospects. And if it is well referenced, tens, hundreds or even thousands of people will go there every day.

But in order for your site to attract traffic and, most importantly, convert it, you will need to get involved. Modern and quality design, clear and incisive texts, original illustrations, prominent call to action buttons , examples of achievements, customer testimonials, blog regularly updated with new content …

Having a quality portfolio is a lot of work in the long run. Do not hesitate to reserve a time slot each week in your schedule.

To read also  : Freelance developer: find missions thanks to your portfolio

Where to find clients when you are a freelance developer?

# 6 – think about guest-blogging

Do you have a portfolio but little traffic? Have you thought about guest-blogging  ?

As the name suggests, it is about contacting the owner of a blog and offering to publish one of your unpublished articles there . You will, of course, take the opportunity to slip in your freshly written article a link to your own site.

A win-win arrangement!

In order for this operation to be profitable for you, it goes without saying that your article must be of high quality. The blog target and your article must also correlate with your own target  : no need to publish a comparison of the best raclette machines if you sell mobile applications!

# 7 – be active on social networks

Today it is difficult to do without social networks for your professional activity . As you can imagine, it’s not about posting selfies or recounting your moods, but about establishing your brand image .

Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn… All of these networks can truly become your allies. As long as you know how to use it well!

For example, on LinkedIn you can join thematic groups. Post relevant comments there to help other people and prove your expertise. On Facebook , create a page for your business and unite a community around your brand. Use Twitter to monitor and share your results. Use YouTube to post video tutorials and give your business a modern look. And so on !

Be careful, however, because social networks are very quickly time- consuming … Restrict your activity to those who are most likely to be frequented by your target.

# 8 – No, forums are not dead!

It is true that since the rise of social networks, many forums have been losing speed. But some of them are still very active, and might even help you find your next assignment .

Take a few hours to select the forums that would be most likely to be frequented by your target . Keep only the most active of them (no need to waste time on desert forums, unless they are particularly well positioned on key queries).

Register on the forums of your selection and create a detailed profile, not forgetting of course to leave a link to your portfolio in your signature. Then spend an hour or two each week posting to these forums .

Obviously, the goal is not to flaunt your privacy, but rather to demonstrate your expertise by helping and advising members of the community for free . Some of them may one day need a professional… and will not hesitate to call on you if you have made a strong impression on them!

# 9 – Opt for freelance platforms

These platforms are a must-see place for many freelancers . When I started my activity as an independent developer 10 years ago, they were really very useful to me (and still are occasionally today).

There are many platforms. Some are open to all freelancers, others are specialized in a particular field such as FreelanceRepublik , which is reserved for developers and project managers . And not just any of them: the best!

General operation varies from platform to platform. Sometimes it’s up to the freelancer to contact the project leader, sometimes it’s the opposite. Sometimes even freelancers are put in competition with each other.

Finally, some are paid (subscription, commission…), others, like FreelanceRepublik, are free for freelancers .

Use our comparison of freelance platforms to find out which one is best suited to your profile!

# 10 – Dare the advertising campaign

Sometimes to earn money it is essential … to spend it! While television or radio advertising campaigns are very expensive, the Internet remains accessible to all budgets.

Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram… The majority of social networks allow you to broadcast ads . You can also consider buying sponsored links from Google so that your business appears in search engine results on targeted queries.

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Christophe Rude

Christophe Rude

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