This is the fifth part in our series. I’m going to be talking about each essential stage of freelancing. So this post shares some tips about the fifth stage: optimizing your first client.
We’ve talked about Stage 1: how to choose the perfect freelancing niche…how to determine if you want to be a bookkeeper, a proofreader, a freelance writer, that kind of thing.
We’ve talked about Stage 2: how to build an online marketable skill set to perform services in your chosen niche.
We’ve talked about Stage 3: how to onboard new clients.
And Stage 4: how to market and getting clients.
Now we’re going to talk about what to do when you get your first client.
If you prefer to watch the video, just scroll down.
So if you’ve gotten that first client, congratulations! It’s a huge, huge milestone.
What you’re probably thinking now is, “I need to deliver the best service possible,” which is exactly what you should be thinking about.
But usually freelancers spend all of their time and effort on creating the best service experience possible, on doing the service to the best of their ability.
And that’s all well and good, but there is a part of you that needs to remain clinically detached from the entire process. So think of it like a third party looking over your shoulder and watching the proceedings. Now, that third party is you.
You are conducting the business. You are rendering the service, but you are also watching how this goes about because up to now all of the things that you’ve been doing have been preparatory, have been in preparation for this moment of actually rendering the service that you’re going to be paid for.
It has all been theoretical up to this point. You’ve chosen your niche, you’ve learned the skills needed to succeed in that niche, but you haven’t yet really rendered the service in a way that will get you paid for it until now.
So in this period of time, what you should be doing is watching for any holes in your path, in the steps that you’ve prepared for. Any little things that you’ve missed.
Anything that you think is going very, very well you should make a note of.
Anything that you think you should add or subtract from your services.
I want you to be watching every single step of this from the actual rendering of the service to the way in which you communicate with clients, to the way in which you invoice them at the end of the service.
All of these things need to be watched with a clinical eye because this is where your business is really coming to life, and this is where you can make it even better before you get the rest of those clients.
After this first client is where you update your portfolio if you don’t have one.
This is also where you ask for a testimonial, for feedback. And there’s a particular way of doing this, so don’t just ask for a testimonial just like that because there’s a better way of doing it where you ask the questions and they answer them, and then their answer turns into the testimonial.
So this clinical observation is important for when you get more clients.
What I also would like you to do is imagine if you didn’t just have this first client but nine others like them, how would that affect your organization?
- Do you have an organizational system in place?
- Are you using sticky notes for this client?
- Are you using your memory for this client?
- Where do you have things written down?
I want you to imagine that client times 10 and see if you would be ready for that.
These are the kinds of things that are important to think about in this phase before we get to the final phase in the online freelancing journey.
So if you’ve stuck with me this far, wonderful. If you haven’t, go to my Facebook page, Fruitfully Alive, and check out the other videos.