Everybody needs digital marketing to grow their business, and no thanks to Covid, more and more brands are choosing to hire freelancers for their marketing needs.
If you’re someone who has had a bit of experience in the digital marketing world and is now looking to start your own freelance journey, I have got you covered.
Here is my step-by-step roadmap on how you can become a freelance digital marketer and start attracting clients with just organic strategies.
Follow these steps and you won’t have to spend a single buck on paid advertising.
But first things first, let me be very clear, this is not a get-rich-quick article. All of this takes time, energy, and consistency. You need to show up every day without fail and put in the work.
If you’re looking for a quick fix to your freelancing journey, this article will be a waste of your time.
So here are the steps to becoming a freelance digital marketer and gaining clients organically:
Build Your Own Website
I don’t care what others tell you, building your website will have 10X the returns of the effort you put in.
In addition to owning your own brand real estate, as opposed to social media (which is not technically yours), it will also help you with improving your marketing game as you learn more about digital marketing.
Think about it this way, Rightly Digital started out as a blog. I had zero experience in content writing, website development, SEO, branding, and so on.
But as I started working on my site, figuring out how to make my website and content the best experience for my readers, I ended up learning so much practically that no online or offline course can teach you today.
You absolutely need to create your own website if you want to consistently start earning money as a freelancer without being dependent on social media and other marketing platforms
In fact, because I learned how to create and manage my own website, I was able to offer it as a freelance service for other clients as well.
Besides digital marketing, I also offer WordPress website development freelance services, talk about the advantages of building a website, eh!
Share Educational Content on Social Media
After your website, the next step is to create and grow your social media accounts. But what should be the core of your content on social media? Selling your freelance services? NO!
Give first, sell later. That should be your motto.
Understand your target audience, get to know their pain points, and offer solutions. Educate, delight and people will start reaching out to your with projects.
When people do start reaching out to you, make sure your profile has all the information clearly mentioned.
Making it crystal clear Who you’re, What you do and How you do it, will give your audience the confidence to contact you to get connected.
Publish One High-Quality Article Every Week
You need to constantly be creating high-quality articles in the blog section of your website. These articles should aim at solving your clients’ issues, documenting your freelance journey, sharing key skills and freelance strategies, and so on.
The advantages of this are that your website will start ranking for the keywords you’re aiming for and secondly, you will be positioned as an authority figure within your niche.
A lot of my clients first read my articles and then reach out to me. It gives them confidence that I am someone experienced in the field of digital marketing.
These articles can be then further shared on your social media accounts to drive traffic back to your website.
Set up Your Google My Business Account for Local SEO
Google My Business is a powerful tool to get organic traffic via local SEO. It’s fairly easy to create and get your business verified on Google.
Now the official way is to create a Google My Business Profile and fill in your business details along with the address, and other contact information.
I used my home address in this case although most of my services are not dependent on my physical location.
Once all your information is filled in, apply for verification. Google will send you a verification post via mail. This takes about 6-8 Business Days. You need to enter the verification number that you receive via post in your Google My Business account to get verified.
Hack: Here is a simple hack to get your business verified immediately. Instead of trying to verify your business by creating a profile, just go to Google Maps, and list your business on the map directly as a missing location, once it is listed, just claim that business as your own business, and done – You will get instant verification.
So far, Google does not seem to realize that this hack works, but once they do, I’m sure they will find a fix to it, but until then, enjoy the ride.
Create a Linkedin Marketing Strategy
While I have mentioned marketing yourself on social media earlier, I have purposely singled out Linkedin, because it is one powerful platform to get high-paying clients.
Linkedin is different from other social media platforms because it was created with the sole purpose of connecting professionals with one another.
Due to this, you will find business owners, entrepreneurs, HR managers, and individuals who are looking to interact with freelancers for their services.
However, in order to attract these high-paying clients, there are certain things that you would need to ensure on your Linkedin profile.
Make sure your Linkedin Profile is optimized:
When I say optimized, I mean you have a fully filled-out profile, including your work history, education qualifications, about section, bio, profile image, cover image, etc.
If you need guidance on that, you can use the free tool Resume Worded. It’s a nifty tool that will guide you when creating the perfect LinkedIn profile.
Make Sure Your Connection List is Scrubbed:
If you’re getting on Linkedin for the first time then make sure you add only those people as your connection who are relevant to you and are active on Linkedin.
If you have been on Linkedin for a while now, then it would be a good idea to remove all the connections that are not relevant to you anymore and who are not active on Linkedin.
There is no point because if you have a huge connection list of dead users, this is going to affect your post reach and engagement rate on your profile.
Share Quality Content
Create and share quality content that showcases your skills and talents. Your topics should address the pain points of your clients and offer solutions on how you can help them.
For example, I am a freelance digital marketer and I help clients with Facebook Ads, Google Ads, Social Media, and Content Writing services. The content that I share on Linkedin is related to these topics. I share tips, strategies, case studies, how-to carousels, etc.
When a connection notices my post, they get the impression that I am a thought leader and expert in digital marketing, and this results in them reaching out to me to help them with marketing for their own brand and business.
I personally love sharing educational carousels because it has one of the best reach potentials on Linkedin, and it visually enables clients to understand your capabilities as a freelancer.
Create an Engagement Plan
Just sharing your own content is not enough, you must have an engagement strategy in place, this should be applied not only to Linkedin but to any social media platform.
When I say engagement plan, I mean interacting with fellow content creators and business owners on the platform.
Engage with their post and share your valuable insights in the comments.
In fact, this is also a type of content creation because if your comment is insightful, you will end up getting even more followers just because of your comments.
Join Relevant Facebook Groups
Just like Linkedin, Facebook can be a powerful place to get clients organically. You need to identify groups that have entrepreneurs, business owners, and professionals looking for assistance in digital marketing.
Similar to Facebook, help out the community with knowledge and expertise. When people ask for help, try answering it in the comments. Share educational content that will help community members.
Do not do self-promotion in such groups. This is really off-putting and will get you banned. Only help and share content that educates.
People will automatically start reaching out to you once they read your content. I have got several clients just by giving them solutions in the comments section
Take Advantage of Email Marketing
Email Marketing is a powerful way to keep your audience engaged and convert them into paying clients. The first step is to actually build an email list.
Now there are two ways to build an email list.
Method 1: Create offers, and lead magnets like free downloadables, e-books, whitepapers, etc, and add them to your website. You can also share these tools on your social media channels. This will help you attract inbound leads. Personally, I prefer this strategy.
Method 2: Use cold emailing strategies by scrubbing email ids from Linkedin, email databases, etc. While I personally don’t use this for my business, a lot of marketers do.
Here are 7 sure shot ways on how to get clients as a freelance digital marketer
- Build your own freelance digital marketing website
- Share educational content
- Publish high-quality articles on your website
- Set up your Google My Business Profile
- Create a Linkedin Marketing Strategy
- Join relevant Facebook groups and help the community
- Take advantage of Email Marketing
Was this helpful to you? Let me know in the comments section. Also, if you want to never miss out on my informative carousels, follow me on LinkedIn here
Odell Dias is the founder of RightlyDigital.com where Online Marketing concepts are made easy. He has over 6 years of experience in the Digital Marketing industry, helping brands and individuals alike to achieve their marketing goals. He is known as one of the best digital marketing freelancers for small-to-medium-sized businesses.