Ideas to Get More Freelance Work and Generate New Client Leads

Ideas to Get More Freelance Work and Generate New Client Leads

Word of Mouth is The Go

  • Enlist your family and friends to spread the word about your services
  • Send out an email to everyone in your address book, announcing what you do, where you are and what you can offer
  • Ask your satisfied clients for referrals
  • Offer free consultations to new referrals
  • Consider a referral or finders fee

Love Those Clients

  • Get in touch with past and current clients when you have a new service to offer them
  • Get in touch with past and current clients when you have completed a flagship project
  • Start a newsletter
  • Take advantage of every outgoing email by using your email signature as a marketing tool
  • Send promotions for services with your invoices
  • Ask your clients to place a credit on your work in web, video or print
  • Make a calendar featuring your work for clients to put up in their offices to serve as a constant reminder
  • Make a poster for your client to hang up on their office wall

Talk the Talk

  • Go to industry events – conferences, association meetings, seminars
  • Go to events in your client’s industry
  • Sponsor a client event
  • Join your local Chamber of Commerce and get involved
  • Socialize and always have your card ready
  • Do some pro-bono work for a charitable organization with industry links
  • Get involved in social groups you’re connected to (church, school, university)
  • Join an industry organization and get listed
  • Contact people you used to work with and ask them to send you any run-off work they might have
  • Offer to give a seminar to a local business group
  • Practice an elevator speech about what you do and have it ready to go wherever you are
  • Participate on online forums (using the forum signature line)
  • Comment on blogs to draw people back to your freelance site

Promote Yourself

  • Get t-shirts made with your URL
  • Try location based Google Adwords
  • Advertise in a niche magazine or trade publication e.g. a magazine just for cafes
  • List yourself in business directories or the Yellow Pages
  • Research sites your clients are visiting and buy advertising there
  • Advertise in online directories
  • Take out an ad out in a local newspaper
  • Participate in a trade show
  • Holidays are your friend! Send a clever holiday greeting to clients showing your work
  • Promote a free first consulation service
  • Have a gimmick that makes you stand out
  • Give something away for free
  • Place an advert in an industry newsletter
  • Offer branded pens and paper at industry events

Be an Industry Expert

  • Pitch an article to an industry publication
  • Pitch a story to a blog or resource website
  • Offer to speak at industry and networking events
  • Start a blog and publicize it
  • Submit tutorials or how-to’s to websites
  • Get on the radio
  • Write an eBook or Report for your target market and promote it online
  • Enter your work into competitions and awards… and win !!!

Use the media

  • Issue a press release about a story related to your services and try and get it into a local newspaper or magazine
  • Pull a publicity friendly stunt (think Richard Branson)
  • Run a contest which ties into your services


  • Keep an eye on online job boards
  • Check out Craigs List for your city
  • Keep an eye on offline job boards
  • Pin up a little advert on boards in your local area or community

Brrr – It’s Cold in Here!

  • Find out how you could improve a companies business and profits and cold call them with your pitch
  • Mail promo postcards to potential clients
  • Mail fun promotional items to potential clients (calendars, toys, posters etc)

Help Leads Find You

Get in Bed with Local Business

  • Contact your local internet service provider or printing house and offer them a commission if they refer work
  • Establish contacts in larger agencies that can refer their run-off work
  • Keep in touch with freelancers that will offer clients a complementary service to yours and throw each other work
  • Create a local business directory and use it to get to know other business owners who might later need your services
  • Cross promote with other businesses
  • Ask if you can put your business cards or brochure in local stores
  • Rent officespace shared with other businesses or freelancers






  1. Hi womeninpr,

    Great post, it gives me good info. Thanks for sharing.

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