Get More Clients Fast With These 7 Ideas

How do you get more clients fast? This is the ultimate question and when you’re in this position, you don’t have time to try things that “might” work. You need it to work. Now.

get more clients fast

Let’s dive right in: ideas to get more clients fast

Get more clients fast with these seven ideas. I can’t guarantee they’ll work, but they’ve worked for me so at least it’s a starting point.

Would you like free writing tips? Sign up for my weekly tips & tricks, from one writer to another at robynroste.com/writing-tips.
Click the image for more information, or pop your email address in the form below

1. Reach out to your long-lost clients

This tip only works if you’ve had clients before, but assuming you have this is an excellent place to start. If you haven’t worked with a client for a couple months you can classify them as “cold” and they qualify for this tactic. Go through your cold clients and send them an email asking how their project/magazine/website/etc. is going and if there’s anything you can help them with.

If you had positive experiences with clients in the past and they didn’t call you back for more, it may not be because they don’t like you or don’t have work. Sometimes they’re too busy to reach out…sometimes they don’t think of you…and sometimes they have a project but haven’t got to letting you know about it yet.

Do it!

Extra reading: Overcome the Fear of Marketing Yourself

2. Ask for referrals

Sometimes this can feel awkward but when you need clients it’s time to get over it and as for referrals. Ask your current clients if they have any colleagues who could use your services. Tell them you’re looking to add a few more clients to your roster. Either they’ll tell you they don’t know anyone, they’ll give you a couple leads or they’ll give you more work themselves. THIS WORKS!

Extra Reading: Want to Work from Home? Consider Freelance Writing!

3. Tell your network you’re open for business

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the best way to let people know you’re available is by saying you’re available. Mine your friends and family list for leads. Remember, you NEED clients NOW. You’re in a spot. Lay it out in an interesting, polite way so it’s easy for them to think of you when they hear about someone looking for a writer.

4. Run an ad

I have a friend who does this and swears by it. Whenever she’s looking for a couple more clients she runs a Facebook ad for a week or two to a super-duper targeted audience and gets her money back tenfold. You have to know what you’re doing, and target the right audience, but this can and does work.

If you do want to run ads as part of your prospecting strategy, make sure your pricing includes that overhead!

For extra help on the subject, I co-created the course How to Price Your Work. Setting your prices takes a bit of effort and guts but it will help you stay away from jobs that don’t pay enough. So you can make a living from your craft!

5. Apply to job board postings

Yes there are horror stories from job boards. Yes I would say you don’t get the strongest clients from job boards. However, you’re in a situation where you need clients now and job boards are filled with businesses looking for people just like you. You’ll have to look hard and put out a lot of inquiries but you’ll find clients.

Here are a few suggestions for job boards I’ve found good.

Extra reading: How to Find Great Freelance Writing Jobs

This next one is going to blow your mind.

6. Do a Twitter search

Using a Twitter search (or browse my helpful Twitter list for Writing Jobs) you’ll find real-time tweets from businesses looking for writers. Here are a few hashtag searches you can try.

  • #writerwanted
  • #ghostwriter
  • #hiring #writer
  • #writingcommunity
  • #journalismjobs
  • #writingjobs
  • #remotejobs
  • #freelancejobs

I’ve connected with quite a few awesome clients through Twitter so I’m a fan of this one to say the least!

Extra reading: Get Noticed by Influencers on Twitter Using Lists

7. Write guest posts

I should qualify this with write paid guest posts. Writing free ones is a good long-term strategy but doesn’t work when you need clients now. Different goals.

There are lots of websites and blogs that pay for content although there’s no set rate. But if you need cash flow…this is one way to get ‘er done. You’ll have to do the pitching so get ready to hustle.

Extra reading: Content Marketing Ideas to Keep Your Prospect Funnel Full

So? Did you get some great new ideas to get clients fast?

These are emergency strategies for when you’re in panic mode and need clients quick. Even people with the best referral programs and ongoing marketing strategies run into this from time-to-time (but…not as much).

While these are all effective I encourage you not to try them all at once. You will burn out! Too much hustle is unsustainable. Plus you’ll be hustling so much you may not find time to do the work!


Get more clients fast with these seven ideas. I can't guarantee they'll work, but they've worked for me so at least it's a starting point.

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Get Access to My Free Resource Library

* indicates required
Get more clients fast with these seven ideas. I can't guarantee they'll work, but they've worked for me so at least it's a starting point.
How do you get more clients fast? This is the ultimate question and when you're in this position, you don't have time to try things that "might" work. You need it to work. Now.

How to Create a Social Media Portfolio

Portfolios. In general I understand them—a collection of your work assembled to demonstrate your experience and expertise in an area.

How to Create a Social Media Portfolio

But I’ve struggled with social media and figuring out how to create a social media portfolio.

Because although it’s my work it’s not for me.

Most of my social media experience is creating content and strategies for other people or brands. It’s like ghostwriting. It’s ghostsocialing. (I sure hope that’s a hashtag.)

My mission is to figure out how to present my social media portfolio in a way that demonstrates my experience and expertise but doesn’t break client confidentiality.

Would you like free writing tips? Sign up for my weekly tips & tricks, from one writer to another at robynroste.com/writing-tips.
Click the image for more information, or pop your email address in the form below

How to create a social media portfolio

As I searched the Internet I didn’t find a lot. Most how-to create a portfolio advice is for writing clips, marketing, or how to display your personal social media stats.

All of this is good and useful, but off topic. And I guess I shouldn’t be surprised because it’s a tricky balance.

So I started asking writing friends how they add ghostwriting credits to their portfolio. Short answer, they don’t. They leave it out and just refer to “ghostwriting services” or “x amount of books/blogs ghostwritten for x amount of clients.”

Vague but what else can you do?

But I want to do more for my social media portfolio

The golden rule when you create a social media portfolio:

Show don’t tell

You know you need to do it in your writing but it also is important in your portfolios. But how do you show (or even create a social media portfolio) when your clients don’t love the idea of admitting they don’t run their own accounts?

Or what if you did strategy work with a client, how do you display that?

And what if you worked with a client at one point and their feed looked amazing but now they manage their own and it isn’t so awesome?

How do you show that?

Here are my best ideas for building an awesome social media portfolio

Create a social media portfolio by starting with your services and expertise.

First, showcase the services you offer

The best social media portfolio’s I’ve seen break the services down into bite-sized pieces.

Here are a few tips for creating this section of your social media portfolio.

  • Images are your friend. Find generic stock images representing the services you offer and the types of clients you serve
  • Highlight the services you offer
  • Make it interesting

You can expand on and explain the services you offer, or not. It depends on your target client and what will speak to him/her.

Second, list your clients

Gulp.

I know, we’ve been talking about the situation where you can’t name your clients or you aren’t sure how to talk about them. We’ll just do our best here.

Remember how you listed your services a few minutes ago? These are now our categories for organizing our clients.

So, in my case it’s Consulting, Social Media, Blogging and Platform Strategy.

Divide your clients into categories (they can be in more than one) and make them look pretty.

If you can’t name your client then describe them.

You can list them as a Wellness Company in Vancouver, BC for example.

If you can’t show their logo or brand then find a nice stock image that represents the type of business they are. Now list how you worked with them according to your categories.

Bing, bang, boom.

When you create a social media portfolio you can't always showcase your clients. If you can't, find an image representing their brand/business and describe how you served them.

Here are a few tips for creating this section of your social media portfolio.

  • Describe the types of clients you’ve worked with and the types of services you provided
  • Include links to client websites if you can
  • Include client testimonials where you can

In my mock-up example I haven’t expanded to this point but you can see how more is more here.

However, if you can’t say more due to client confidentiality then a beautiful image and a short description of the work you did will suffice.

Update: Here’s how I’m working around this in 2020

Third, make sure your personal social media profiles are optimized

I’m listing this third but your social media profiles are the first and best part of your social media portfolio.

You don’t need them optimized to create a social media portfolio, but this is where many of your future clients will find you for the first time.

You want to make a positive, memorable impression here.

Wherever they find you.

In a previous training I outlined how to optimize your social media profiles but here are the highlights.

  • Choose a professional/standout profile picture and cover photo
  • Make it easy for people to know who you are/what you do
  • Link to your website
  • Include keywords about your services
  • Be clear on your location/contact info

A few other things to consider when you create a social media portfolio

  • Think about what you want to be hired for. Is it social media management? What about content creation, content curation, platform development, strategy, etc. Curate your portfolio to display that—you don’t need to list EVERY client or every freelance job you’ve ever performed (I mean, you can, but put some thought into it)
  • Things to cover: who you are (about), your mission, what you do, and who you serve (aka who you want to work with)
  • Is there an area you’d like more work in? Highlight this throughout your services, experience, expertise, and even which clients you mention

While I’m still building my social media portfolio, here’s what I’m doing with my writing portfolio on social media.

After I wrote this post, Thema asked this question about social media portfolios

Hi Robyn! I ran across your article about social media portfolios. I am pursuing a career as a Public Relations Specialist but only have the social media pages I curated for my internship to show. Any suggestions on how to create a portfolio with very few work examples?

This is such a great question and while I have answered Thema’s email I also want to provide my general tips here in case it’s helpful.

What if I have very few work examples?

Question: How do I create a portfolio with very few work examples?

Answer: Depending on what type of job you’re going after this answer changes but I can tell you in general what I would do.


First, make sure the curated items you have for your portfolio are presented in a compelling way

As in, make sure they look great and are easy to skim and demonstrate the scope of your skillset.

Perhaps you don’t have traditional clips right now because you’re just getting started. Think about what you CAN present to demonstrate your skills and abilities.

For example, if you’re looking to run a client’s Instagram account, then what are some things you can showcase on your Instagram account to demonstrate your proficiency? 

Do you have a good amount of followers? Then highlight that.

Do you have a posting strategy that generates leads? Unpack that.

Have any of your posts gone viral? Take some screenshots and write a case study on what you did and what happened.

Speaking of case studies, this is another excellent way to showcase your social media portfolio.

Even if you have many examples, breaking some key campaigns into case studies is a great way to showcase your results, your strategic knowledge and your competence.

For more on this specific approach, read How to Write a Case Study.

How to Write a Case Study free ebook

I’ve also turned this case study training into a free ebook, which you can download in my resource library.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Once you’re logged in, navigate to the “Writing” section and look for “How to Write a Case Study for Marketing Ebook.”

Get Access to My Free Resource Library

* indicates required

OK, back to Thema’s question.

Second, work on adding new samples/clips as much as possible 

If you’re not able to get clients/paid work then I recommend writing blog posts (or something similar) to beef up your portfolio and showcase your knowledge.

One of the big reasons I continue updating my blog and improving these posts is because they showcase my writing and expertise to potential clients.

These days, most of the work I do is without bylines and difficult to demonstrate in a portfolio so having regular bylined blog posts is an asset.

Third, networking! Always be networking

Get to know the people who work in the industry you want to be working in. Also get to know the people who work for the types of companies you’d like to work with/for. 

When you know people then the breadth of your portfolio doesn’t matter as much.

True story. Once you’re established, see how many new clients ask for your portfolio. 

I mean, someone you have no previous connection with might want that. Or if they’re from a big agency where that is par for the course. 

But most people will either be going off of a referral from someone they trust or they’ll want one or two samples from similar projects you’ve worked on.

I hope this answers your question! Let me know if there’s anything else to add about social media portfolios.

PS if you want to see how this works in real life, here’s an example from mine. Look for the section in this post titled “Start small, focus your efforts on ‘connectors’.”

How do you create a social media portfolio in a way that demonstrates your experience and expertise but doesn't break client confidentiality? Here are my best ideas for building an awesome social media portfolio.

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Get Access to My Free Resource Library

* indicates required
How do you create a social media portfolio in a way that demonstrates your experience and expertise but doesn't break client confidentiality? Here are my best ideas for building an awesome social media portfolio.
How do you create a social media portfolio in a way that demonstrates your experience and expertise but doesn't break client confidentiality?

You may also like How to Plan a Podcast in 9 Steps

How to Find Great Freelance Writing Jobs

When you’re a new freelancer, finding freelance writing jobs may seem like an overwhelming task. And I understand how finding a gig—any gig—can feel a bit like luck.

How to Find Great Freelance Writing Jobs

Where do you even start looking? And when you find someone looking for a writer, how do you know the job is any good?

The good news and the bad news about online freelance writing jobs

OK, here it is. The good news is, when you Google “freelance writing jobs” you’ll find a lot of postings.

The bad news is, when you you’ll also find a lot of low-paying postings and straight up bad gigs.

Learning to tell the difference is an important part about finding success as a freelance writer.

Finding gigs that pay what you need is another important part.

Would you like free writing tips? Sign up for my weekly tips & tricks, from one writer to another at robynroste.com/writing-tips.
Click the image for more information, or pop your email address in the form below

How to discern a good freelance writing job from a bad one

The first thing to keep in mind is “good” and “bad” gigs are subjective. You need to know ahead of time what kind of job you’re looking for and what type of client will suit your needs.

If you’re new to the freelance world you may not know this yet and will learn through trial and error. That’s OK! But take a few minutes to think about the types of freelance writing jobs you’d like to have.

  • Writing blog posts and articles?
  • Media releases?
  • Business profiles?
  • Journalism?

Think it through and write it down

After you know what type of writing you want to do take a few minutes to figure out who your ideal client is.

  • Are you looking for someone who is hands off?
  • Someone to collaborate with?
  • Do you want to be able to meet in person?
  • Do you want one-off clients or ones you have an ongoing relationship with?

There are no wrong answers here, just what’s right for you. Knowing what types of clients you’d like will help you avoid overwhelm as you comb through the vast array of freelance writing jobs out there.

It will also keep you from applying for gigs that aren’t a good fit for you.

Extra Credit: Platform Building: Smart and Strategic Tips for Writers

Bonus tip: keep a close eye on how the job postings are written. If you see phrases like “looking for hungry writers,” or a value attributed to the quantity of articles they’re looking for rather than quality of writing, these should trigger warning bells in your head.

These gigs are often low paying (pennies per word, if that) and demanding. Even if you don’t have much experience yet, you can do better.

How to figure out what you need to earn as a freelance writer

Even though many writers aren’t numbers people, it’s important to learn how to budget so you know how much income you need in order to reach your goals.

Do a bit of number crunching and determine what you need per month to get by.

Also figure out how much time you have to dedicate to your freelancing. From here you’ll have a good idea of how many clients you can take on and how much you need from each one.


If you’re wondering how to set your prices, I think you’ll like the course I co-created, How to Price Your Work. Setting your prices takes a bit of effort and guts but it will help you stay away from jobs that don’t pay enough. So you can make a living from your craft!

When you look at online postings you may feel like you have to lower your prices or standards in order to get work.

Don’t give up!

There are great freelance writing jobs out there but sometimes you have to know where to look.

Where I look for great freelance writing jobs

I encourage writers to think outside of the box when looking for work. Even when you need to get clients fast you shouldn’t lower your standards.

The main ways I find work are from referrals, networking with other writers and Twitter (really!).

There’s always someone looking for a writer but people have to know you’re a writer in order for them to think of you and reach out.

Job boards are a great starting point for freelancers who don’t have established networks. The good gigs are scooped up quick so if this is your go-to then you will need to check often and apply a lot.

It’s a numbers game so don’t become discouraged if you don’t hear back from many or most of the places you pitch.

Here are a few suggestions for job boards I’ve found good.

Parting words: I’ve learned it’s important to keep looking for freelance work even if you have a full client load. Developing strategies to keep the marketing machine going during busy times ensures you won’t have so many dry spells. And the better your clients are, the less you’ll need in order to reach your financial goals.


Pin for Later

When you're a new freelancer, finding freelance writing jobs may seem like an overwhelming task. And I understand how finding a gig—any gig—can feel a bit like luck. Where do you even start looking? And when you find someone looking for a writer, how do you know the job is any good?

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Get Access to My Free Resource Library

* indicates required
When you're a new freelancer, finding freelance writing jobs may seem like an overwhelming task. And I understand how finding a gig—any gig—can feel a bit like luck. Where do you even start looking? And when you find someone looking for a writer, how do you know the job is any good?
When you are a new freelancer, finding freelance writing jobs may seem like an overwhelming task. And I get how finding a gig can feel a bit like luck.

Marketing Ideas for Writers Who Hate Marketing

It’s not like I haven’t written about marketing ideas or argued why writers need to pay attention to marketing before but it just seems to keep coming up.

Easy Marketing Ideas for Writers

Marketing tips for writers who hate marketing

So here we are again.

But what if you’re the type of writer who just wants to write and have people read it? You don’t want to bother with the muss and fuss of marketing.

Or maybe you’re the type of writer who thinks marketing means selling out.

Are you someone who thinks marketing makes you one of those pushy sales people who alienates friends and family?

I talk about marketing and give out marketing ideas all the time because I believe in its power to transform people’s careers and businesses.

Let’s get something straight: marketing doesn’t have to be like that.

So when I hear excuses like I’m too busy to do marketing or I don’t need to do marketing or I don’t have the money to invest in marketing I think…you don’t get it. None of those things are valid.

If you’re saying any of these things here’s what you mean: you don’t want to do marketing.

Marketing doesn’t have to take a lot of time and it doesn’t have to cost a lot of money.

And it’s fine if you don’t want to do marketing. But don’t expect people to find you.

“If you write it they will come” isn’t a thing. It doesn’t work like that.

Would you like free writing tips? Sign up for my weekly tips & tricks, from one writer to another at robynroste.com/writing-tips.
Click the image for more information, or pop your email address in the form below

End of tough love part. Beginning of marketing ideas part

I wanted to give writers who hate marketing (or are afraid of it) a few easy marketing ideas for easing in.

I do hope these help.

  • Learn how to incorporate your writing into casual conversation
    There is a way to talk about who you are and what you do without coming across as promotional or insincere. Figure this out and you won’t even realize you’re marketing
  • Focus on the benefits your writing offers others
    This is one of those amazing marketing things I love teaching people. Stop talking about YOU and YOUR work. Flip it around and talk about its impact. People don’t care about what you do, they care about the benefit they’ll get from working with you or reading your work
  • Talk about your writing on social media
    Consider your social media platforms as places where you can attract new readers. Talk about your writing in a natural way, like you do with your friends, and see who you can inspire

Just a reminder, these days if you’re a writer hoping to become an author, you need to do your own marketing.

And you need to do it long before your book comes out. No matter if you’re self-publishing or traditional publishing, you are the driver of the marketing vehicle.

If you want to sell books/get an agent/get a book deal/people to read your writing you have to accept marketing as a part of your life.

Other marketing ideas for writers

It's not like I haven't written about marketing ideas or argued why writers need to pay attention to marketing before but it just seems to keep coming up.

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Get Access to My Free Resource Library

* indicates required
It's not like I haven't written about marketing ideas or argued why writers need to pay attention to marketing before but it just seems to keep coming up.
It's not like I haven't written about marketing ideas or argued why writers need to pay attention to marketing before but it just seems to keep coming up.
It's not like I haven't written about marketing ideas or argued why writers need to pay attention to marketing before but it just seems to keep coming up.

6 Unexpected Tips for Better Networking for Freelancers

Networking is an important part of freelancing but it can be difficult discerning which events are a good use of time and which aren’t.

Networking for freelancers: make the most out of your investment

Networking for freelancers

Being at the right place at the right time and meeting the right person could make all the difference to your freelance writing business.

The good news is, there are many in-person and virtual networking events to choose from.

The bad news is there are many in-person and virtual networking events to choose from.

Here are a few ideas and suggestions for making the most of your valuable networking time and energy. And yes, this applies to you even if you’re an introvert.

Extra reading: How to Choose a Writers Group

Would you like free writing tips? Sign up for my weekly tips & tricks, from one writer to another at robynroste.com/writing-tips.
Click the image for more information, or pop your email address in the form below

Tip 1: Have something to say

I’ve mentioned this tip before (in Meeting Your Ideal Client in Person) but it bears repeating. Before the networking event, prepare a few talking points ahead of time. These will change based on the type of people you’re meeting with but here are a few examples.

  • Networking with other freelance writers? Think about industry questions you have or helpful introductions you can make. And why not prepare a few anecdotes about the writing life too?
  • Attending an event for business owners? Revisit your elevator pitch and make sure it’s updated and accurate. Practice it a couple times. Have business cards handy if it’s an in-person do
  • Participating in a writing conference? If you were teaching a workshop you would prepare ahead of time, treat conference attendance in the same way. Figure out ways to maximize your learning time but also your writing time. Prep answers to common questions like “What are you working on these days,” “What type of writing do you do,” etc. And think of a few creative questions to keep the conversation going

Tip 2: Prepare ahead of time

Whenever I attend an in-person event I try and look at the venue layout ahead of time. This is especially helpful when I have meetings or appointments lined up and want to make sure I show up on time and avoid getting lost.

At a smaller event, perhaps at a restaurant, I try and get a sense for how formal/informal it is and how the flow works. As much as possible I like to have a handle on what’s expected.

Something I haven’t done well at in-person events, but something I always appreciate when others do, is having some sort of name badge to help ease networking. Printing branded lanyards help you ooze professionalism and avoid the dreaded question, “Sorry…what was your name again?”

4 unexpected tips for better networking for freelancers

Tip 3: Have swag, if it makes sense

Maybe it’s cheesy. Perhaps even old school. But when I look at my pen collection I see it’s 90% branded swag from businesses.

While I don’t recommend spending a fortune on merch or even putting much thought into it, good swag can go a long way.

When it makes sense, invest in good marketing materials and some pieces of merchandise that you know that people are going to find useful.  

Tip 4: Make connections and follow up

While it’s possible to book a new client or gain a referral in the midst of a networking frenzy, oftentimes the magic happens afterward. When you follow up.

So even if you’re not a business card person, find a way to exchange information. Here are a few ideas.

  • Ask for their email addresses to stay in touch
  • Or, if it makes sense, ask if you can add them to your email list
  • Ask for their Instagram handle (or other social media profile info) and follow them
  • Invite them to a future event they may find fun/interesting
  • Take a photo of them at the event and offer to text it to them (don’t be creepy!)

Once the event is over, start following up with your new connections and/or leads within a few days. This should start a number of productive conversations and may even develop into new clients down the road. 

Extra reading: How to Get More Email Subscribers

Tip 5: Look for extra opportunities 

If the event is a good fit for you and your business, let the event planners know you’re interested in being more involved.

This could include:

  • Speaking at the event
  • Helping spread the word ahead of time
  • Sponsoring a giveaway
  • Volunteering in some capacity
  • Joining the organization

Not only will this raise your profile, but it will also enhance your reputation as an entrepreneur and influencer in your sector, improving your credibility with potential clients. 

Tip 6: Calculate your ROI

While networking events are fun and all, it’s also important to evaluate their effectiveness for your business.

The return on investment calculation is simple. Do more of what works and less of what doesn’t.

Add up all of your costs, including travel, accommodation and time spent and then record the business impact of attending the event. Financial benefits like new clients or opportunities may not show up right away, so keep in mind the true value of the event may not be apparent for some months. Revisit your event ROI report every few months and update it. Give it time, but not too much time.

Networking is an important part of freelancing but it can be difficult discerning which events are a good use of time and which aren't.

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Get Access to My Free Resource Library

* indicates required
Networking is an important part of freelancing but it can be difficult discerning which events are a good use of time and which aren't.