Many freelancers know that effective marketing is crucial for their business growth as well as their wallet. However, it can feel overwhelming to think of different ways to market a business while providing quality services and creating incredible products for customers. In addition, some freelancers feel that marketing is an always-morphing field that they can never understand or master. Fortunately, marketing your business can be an uncomplicated, fun, and rewarding journey – you just need to know a few tricks to get you started. In this article, we showcase 7 effective marketing ideas for promoting your services and products in your own unique way so you can gain more customers and multiply your income.
Why Marketing Matters for Your Business
Your Ideal Audience Can Find You
How would people who are looking for just what you have to offer find you if you didn’t go out there and show to the world what your business is all about? It is indeed true that word of mouth is still a good way for others to learn about you but it is a very limited strategy. Marketing your business to the world, especially online, will open you up to an extremely large pool of potential customers. Even though the internet world can feel saturated with ads, there are many ways including targeted search engine optimization (SEO) and creating unique free content that can help you overcome the downsides of marketing.
You Can Create a Powerful Brand
With many different social media channels at your disposal, you have the power to show off your uniqueness through high-quality written content with your unique tone. You can also dazzle your website visitors with a captivating logo and color scheme that would attract your customer niche. But branding is not all about a beautifully designed website and social media images, it is also about how you engage with your audience, the value you bring to them through your content, and how you nurture them throughout their time with you. Our effective marketing ideas for selling your products and services will allow you to put your best foot forward so that your audience can find you and enjoy what you have to offer.
You Can Create a Community Around Your Business
The more people can see your content, the more you are likely to connect with an audience that truly loves and respects what you do. In essence, you can build trust with your customers, create more authority in your field and, most importantly, inspire and help others.
There is a high probability that you and this audience have a lot in common and can start a conversation on topics you all enjoy. You can easily communicate with them and they can communicate with each other through social media post comments or your blog comment section – engagement that creates a wonderful sense of community. A thriving community can have a powerful positive impact on your audience and they can become your loyal customers for the long haul.
You Can Sell More of Your Services and Products
Whatever your motivation to have your own freelance business, at least some part of it is to create a sustainable income for yourself so you can live a better life. Effective marketing is essential to attract enough clients or to sell a sufficient amount of products so that you can meet your financial needs. It can also help you make passive income if you repurpose your existing content into profitable digital products.
7 Effective Marketing Ideas for Promoting Your Services and Products
1. Create an SEO-Optimized Blog
One of the best but not so well-kept secrets in marketing is blog Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Once you publish your blog, search engine crawlers check it for specific keywords and content. They then rank your website in search engine results according to their algorithm. The higher you rank on the search engine list, the better chance you will have for people to find your business and engage with it.
Use SEO for Higher Search Engine Rankings
How can you use SEO to appear higher on search engine results? The first step is to see what kind of content your ideal customers are searching for. You can go on Google or other search engine websites and start typing out some possible topics in the search engine box. Google and other search engines will automatically show you a drop-down menu of suggestions. These suggestions are keywords that people are searching for the most and you can use them as ideas for your blog post topics.
Choose the Best SEO Keywords for Your Article
Alternatively, you can use SEO platforms such as Semrush and Ahrefs (more expensive but have many capabilities) and Ubersuggest and SE Ranking (less expensive and simpler) that can help you find the best keywords for the topics you would like to write about. These platforms allow you to plug in possible keywords and see if they are good to use based on how many people are searching for them and on their difficulty ranking high in the search engine results. These platforms also give you suggestions on other related keywords you can use that may be a better fit for you.
A best practice is to pick keywords that are highly related to your topic, have a ranking difficulty of less than 30, and have as high of a search volume as possible. When adding your keywords to your blog, make sure to add your primary keyword (shorter, more general phrase) at least 3 times in your article but be wary of adding it too many times (6 or less is sufficient most of the time) because search engine crawlers can see this as “keyword stuffing” and penalize you for it. If you find other keywords that are unique to your content and longer (secondary keywords), it is best to use each only once in your blog.
For more information about SEO and how to best choose your keywords, here is a wonderful SEO best practices article that will help you improve your SEO skills.
2. Offer Free Downloadable Content (a Lead Magnet) on Your Home Page
When people visit your website, it is a good idea to offer them a piece of your high-value content for free that shows off your wisdom, personality, and how exactly you can solve their problems with your services and products. The best way to do this is to offer a downloadable file called a lead magnet just below the heading section of your home page. This lead magnet will allow you to capture your visitors’ email addresses so that you can connect with them in the future through newsletters, nurturing emails, and your service and product offers.
Ideas for Your Lead Magnet
A lead magnet could be a short ebook you’ve written around a topic you know well, an educational video you’ve made, or a workbook you prepared that helps your potential customers get started on improving their lives right away. If you are a creative, the lead magnet could be an exclusive piece of digital art, a graphic design template, or a short tutorial on how to paint with oil paints.
Your lead magnet can be anything that your website visitors can easily download and that can be very useful to them. To get inspired and started, here are some more examples of lead magnets that you can create for your audience.
3. Participate in or Organize Webinars, Interviews, Seminars, Conferences, and Panels
Sometimes the best way for people to find out about your business is for you to put yourself out there and talk to others about what you do. It could be a YouTube interview with someone well-known in your niche or a larger online event highlighting thought leaders in your specific field.
For instance, if you are a holistic health practitioner, you can participate in a conference that helps people heal from chronic illness. Here, you can share your knowledge and expertise and you will also get a chance to give your website address and social media handles. These events tend to have many interested participants so it is a perfect opportunity to connect to your ideal audience and introduce them to your services and products.
You can also organize your own online or in-person event where you can invite your peers in your niche community to be your guest speakers. In this way, you will have access to a whole new audience and will be able to create a sense of authority, trust, and community in your particular field. Once you create your event, you can sell your tickets on websites like Eventbrite and Ticketbud which will help you organize and streamline the whole ticket registration process.
4. Take Advantage of Affiliate Marketing
One of the most powerful but least-utilized ways to market your freelancer services and products is to become affiliated with other businesses in your field, especially the ones with a larger audience than yours.
The first step is to research businesses that you like and that could help you sell your offerings. For instance, if you are a custom jewelry business, you can reach out to other retailers that provide custom jewelry and ask them to link to your website or your online shop. If they like your jewelry, you can make a deal with them about how much they will profit from you if someone buys your jewelry through them.
Usually, the affiliate will take 30 – 50% profit from each sale of your jewelry. This commission may seem high but considering that you won’t have to spend time and money on your own marketing, it is a great way to be exposed to a new audience and earn money. In addition, the customers that get to know your services and products through an affiliate can find you online and start buying directly from you, allowing you to earn 100% of your asking price. For this reason, affiliate marketing is truly a win-win situation for both you and the affiliate.
5. Be a Guest on a Podcast or Blog
Nowadays, podcasts have become an extremely popular way for people to get informed and create much-needed conversations around important topics. People are attracted to this medium because it is in a conversation format that helps the listener or viewer get to know the guest in a more personal and holistic way.
In addition to helping us get to know the guests more personally, the host encourages them to share more about their business, the services and products they offer, and their contact and social media handles. This information is also added to the show notes. Not only do the podcast guests have access to a whole new audience, but this audience can also share the podcast with others in their network, multiplying the guests’ exposure.
A great suggestion is to have all your services and products in one place in an online shop that can be easily shared so that your customers can have a streamlined and positive purchasing experience. Squills, a freelancer app that lets you create an elegant online shop, landing pages, and much more is a wonderful place to start.
Guest blogging is another excellent way to get exposure to a whole new audience, gain more authority in your field, and get involved in your community. All of this exposure will help you and your business be more seen and appreciated.
You already may know a lot of people in your niche who are providing similar services and products. They may have been doing their work for much longer than you have and now they have a much larger following. You can reach out to these business owners and ask them if you could write a guest blog for them on a topic appropriate for their business and one that both of you like.
By writing a blog on another website, you will receive a backlink to your own website. Backlinks are great for SEO because they signal to search engine algorithms that you are associated with someone who has high authority and that your website should be placed higher on the search engine results.
6. Partner with Ambassadors and Influencers
How Can Ambassadors Help You?
If you already have loyal customers and fans of your business, you can recruit a few as ambassadors to spread the word about you through their social media channels, blogs, videos, and word of mouth. For example, if you sell T-shirts with designs you created, you can ask your audience to wear the T-shirts in their YouTube videos and social media photos for a fair exchange (you can give them free T-shirts, an endorsement for their own business, or pay them for their services).
How Can Influencers Help You?
You can also find influencers online who already have a large following but don’t necessarily know you yet. To find influencers that are right for you, start searching on Instagram, YouTube, and TickTock for people who are creating content that matches the topics of your business and have at least 1,000 followers. Make sure to look through your connections and search for relevant hashtags to find more influencer leads.
Once you find influencers you like, contact them with a few questions to see if your purpose and values match. After you establish a common ground, send them an attractive offer (fair exchange or money compensation) if they collaborate with you.
Influencers will help you with marketing by featuring your services and products in their content. They also give their audience information about how to contact you or order from you. Usually, they highlight your business in a fun and engaging way that helps convert their audience into your customers.
There are also other ways to collaborate with influencers. You can organize a live social media event with them or they can invite you on their podcast so that you can create excitement around your business and your different audiences can interact.
7. Offer Discounts and Giveaways
Even with offering high-value free content and using clear and powerful calls to action, people can still hesitate to make a purchase from you. Sometimes they just need a little push to make that final decision, be it to sign up for your yoga class or buy your singing course. People respond well to urgency and a feeling that they will miss out on something if they don’t act quickly.
Offering your audience a discount on your services and products or giving away a session or a product for free in a contest will greatly motivate your audience to engage with you and buy more from you in the future. Your potential customers will not only be able to sample your offerings but they will also be able to get to know you personally and decide if you are the right fit for them.
Ideas for Discounts
One of the best ways to introduce discounts to your audience is through social media. A great strategy is to coincide a discount with a holiday (Valentine’s Day, Christmas, Woman’s Day, etc.) or a season (Summer Sale, Winter Savings, etc.). Don’t forget to still include an effective call to action in your discount posts.
Another great way to reach your audience with your discounts is through emails and newsletters although you will be only able to contact people on your email list. Even though this is a smaller group of people, they are probably more familiar with your business and you personally and are more likely to act on your discount offers. The title of your email or newsletter is very important and can make or break your discounts email marketing campaign. To become better at creating attractive titles, here is a great tutorial on how to choose the best title for your emails and newsletters.
Ideas for Giveaways
Nothing excites an audience more than a giveaway of an awesome service or product you offer. People are not only more likely to engage with you but also do what it takes to enter the contest. Make sure you have a clear call to action for what it takes to qualify for your contest. In your call to action, you can ask your audience to add you on all your social media channels, introduce you to their network through tagging, or share some of your content and offerings.
You can also ask your followers to write a story or make a piece of artwork that they can enter into the contest. Once you choose a winner, create an exciting post about his or her experience with your service or product. The follow-up with the contest winner can help you create even more buzz for your business and allow you to expand your audience.
There is no need to struggle as a freelancer, especially with money, when you can use proven online marketing techniques to attract your ideal audience that very much wants what you have to offer.
Some of the most effective marketing techniques for attracting your kind of audience is blog SEO optimization where people can find you through search engines such as Google and Ecosia. Once they are on your website, having a strong call to action for a free downloadable lead magnet will help you capture your prospective customers’ emails so you can build an email list.
With a robust email list, you can give your potential customers more value and introduce your discounts and freebies by sending them engaging emails and newsletters. This correspondence will help you attract more interest in your business and eventually gain more sales.
Effective marketing also allows you to create a community around your business and establish yourself as a powerful brand that people come back to again and again. Putting yourself out there by participating in podcasts, webinars, and conferences will help you achieve a more aligned and loyal following.
There are other powerful tools that can make your marketing efforts simpler and easier. For example, having all your services and products in one place in an online shop allows your customers to see all that you have to offer and they are highly likely to purchase more of your services and products in one shopping session. Having a landing page for your online shop will also make it easier for you to share what you offer with others. You can find both of these tools and more through the Squills freelancer app which you can start using right away for free!