Have you ever opened an inquiry email that you were so excited about, and then as you read on you realized that it was a totally random project that you didn’t want to do? You probably wondered how that person got your name and why they were reaching out to you.
This happens all of the time after you start niching down with your services, but if you’re getting a lot of inquiries like that, then it’s likely that what you’re doing online isn’t attracting the right clients with your ideal projects.
You don’t want to waste all of the time you spend marketing yourself on clients that aren’t the right fit for you, so today I’m sharing 4 ways you can make sure that you’re attracting the right clients.
Know who you’re targeting specifically
A lot of designers want to target anyone and everyone with their design services. If you’re doing that, don’t feel bad. I’ve certainly done it, too, because it seems like the obvious way to make sure that you can keep getting plenty of projects on the schedule so you can keep making money. However, it should be a no brainer that when you’re trying to target anyone, you’re going to get inquiries for projects that you may not want or may not enjoy doing.
Instead of trying to be a designer for everyone, you’re going to want to pick a specific target market. It may seem counterproductive at first, but it’s going to help make sure that you’re spending time doing the right things to attract those clients. A good place to start is to think about the projects you’ve worked on that you’ve enjoyed the most. Are they all similar projects? If so, you’ve found who you want to target specifically.
A good example of this would be if you’re a website designer and you’ve enjoyed creating websites for wedding photographers, then you’ll want to start targeting more wedding photographers.
[clickToTweet tweet=”Stop wasting time targeting everyone. Use these 4 steps to start attracting the right clients” quote=”Stop wasting time targeting everyone. Use these 4 steps to start attracting the right clients”]
Curate your portfolio to include similar projects
Your portfolio does not have to contain every single project you’ve ever done. In fact, it definitely shouldn’t include every project you’ve ever done because your very first design projects probably aren’t as strong as those that you’re doing now. When you include every single project you’ve ever done, it’s harder for people looking into working with you to know exactly what you do as well as what you want to do.
Having too much variety in your portfolio can scare off the right clients because they may not totally understand what type of work you even do. So, instead of including all of your projects, you want your portfolio to have the projects that best represent your work and are the closest to the projects that you want to do more of. When potential clients can look at your portfolio and know exactly what type of work you do, they’ll be much more likely to inquire with you when they have a similar project for you.
If you want to take quick action on this, once you’re done reading the post go take a look at your portfolio. Take out any projects that don’t represent the type of projects that you would be excited to do more of.
Share content that shows off your expertise
Having a blog and social media accounts are a great way to help attract potential clients; however, it’s just as easy to attract the wrong people by what you share on these platforms as it is to attract more of the right people.
When you’re creating content for your blog and social media, you want to make sure that a good majority of your content shows off your expertise. Yes, you can still talk about personal stuff (in fact, I think there’s a certain amount of personal content you should share), but you have to make sure you’re also sharing helpful content to make sure that the people following you and reading your posts actually know what you do. Be intentional with the content that you’re putting online.
A great way to make sure your content is attracting the right clients is to show off your work when it launches. Share a blog post with all of the details of the project. Create a graphic to share on Instagram and Pinterest. You can also write blog posts that talk about why what you do is important for your target market.
[clickToTweet tweet=”How to start spending more time attracting the right clients so you can work on projects you enjoy” quote=”How to start spending more time attracting the right clients so you can work on projects you enjoy”]
Network within the niche you’re targeting
Now that you know who you’re targeting and have a plan to make updates to your website and content so that you can more easily attract the right clients, you want to start getting your name out there. However, you don’t want to start spending your time anywhere online.
You want to work on getting your name out there in the niche that you’re targeting. The right clients for you may never hear of you if you don’t at least meet them half way. A good place to start networking with your target market would be finding Facebook groups that have those people in it. You can also search for online or in-person events that your target market will be attending.
For example, if you want to be a brand designer for ethical make-up companies, and you’re networking with food bloggers, you’re getting your name out there in the wrong niche. Instead, you could try to network with bloggers that those companies you want to work with my partner with and go to events for those companies and people who support ethnical make-up brands.
Are you attracting the right clients?
Do you get a lot of inquiries from mostly random people or do you get inquiries for ideal projects? Share with me in the comments, and let me know what you do to make sure you’re attracting the right clients.
Feeling stuck with your design business?
I have totally been there. I remember the first couple years of running my business felt like I was constantly trying to figure things out, from pricing my services to finding clients and how to attract more clients. It was a never ending game of Googling and reading blog posts from my favorite business owners.
If this blog post helped you, then my Coaching for Designers services may help as well. I’m currently booking beta coaching sessions with designers who are looking for help with their business – whether it’s with clients, their website, their systems or something else. These sessions are just $77 and include a 1-hour Skype call to talk about what you’re struggling with and how to get past it plus actionable tips to keep going with your business. Because they’re just the beta sessions, though, I only have 3 more spots open!
If you’re interested in learning more, hit that button below to inquire with me!