I often tell my clients that running your own business is more about the journey than the destination and that marketing your business is a verb.
Running your business is a rinse and repeat process. The best way to get new clients is to have a simple engagement strategy. Here are 6 things I did to get my first 3 clients that you can easily do yourself.
1. Start helping people now for free.
I reached out to several non-profits (which I still continue to do for free), as a way to build up my own credibility and social proof. Not only are you doing good but you are elevating your expertise and honing your skills.
2. Reach out to someone directly who you’d love to work with.
Offer complimentary conversations to your customer muse. Invite them to a free conversation. I knew several people who were starting their own business and found sharing our experiences as a way to help me understand my ideal clients problems. I was able to find my niche and figure out quickly what I was good at and make that part of my own business solutions.
You can later ask to continue working with them on a paid project or ask if there is anyone they know who would benefit
3. Put on a speaking event or workshop
Holding workshops or events that collaborates with similar experts allows you to share your knowledge locally or virtually and showcases your expertise. This one can be a little nerve-racking especially since it might mean pushing yourself out of your comfort zone. You can start off small and hold a live virtual webinar or IG live and talk to your audience.
4. Hook up with a tribe leader.
Piggyback on someone else's popularity. Find someone who inspires you and has a similar audience. Comment on their posts and interact with their larger audience. Invite them to guest post on your blog or newsletter.
5. Send a follow-up email to people you've talked to in the past.
Reach out to make sure you achieved what they expected. Keep yourself at the front of their mind. You can even be bold enough to ask them why they didn't choose you and learn from their feedback.
6. Create a lead magnet and build an email list
Think about what problem your clients need to solve right now. What is the one thing they need help with and solve that problem? A lead magnet is a great way to ask your audience to take a simple action and swap their details for your solution. It is also a good way to show them what it would be like to work with you. Make sure your lead magnet fulfils the initial promise and gives them actionable value.
When you start gaining traction and start getting your ideals clients the next step is to keep that momentum.
1. Make a list of where your last clients came from and hang out.
Understanding your ideal clients is the best way to attract more. Find out how they found you and their customer buying journey. If they saw an advert on Facebook or found you through a referral, use that information and double down on those activities.
2. Ask new, current, and past clients for referrals
Ask for referrals as your project is nearing the finish. If your client is happy they are sure to want to tell others about you. Make it part of your "graduation" process.
3. Over-deliver with your current clients.
If they're getting great results with you - your current clients won't mind telling their network about you. Do more than expected. Your clients should never feel like just any other customers. Personalise their experience and make it memorable.
Attracting new clients is probably the hardest part of your business process. There's no one size fits all solution. Rather try a few and see what works for you. Keep track of your successes and come up with your own 6 things I did to get my first 3 clients list.
At CUCO we help entrepreneurs, thought-leaders, business leaders and team executives communicate their Big ideas and Key business messages that win over their clients and get their audience to lean in.
Plan and deliver memorable presentations and pitches that take your audience on a compelling journey. Make an impact, inspire others to take action and spark conversations.