If you do a quick search for “How to Find Copywriting Clients”… there are tons of strategies and advice out there. When you first start, it may seem overwhelming. Maybe you’re brand new to business and don’t know where to start (been there!). Or maybe you’re an agency copywriter who wants to go it alone… That’s cool. Regardless, your goal is probably to make money ASAP so you can make this copywriting business your full time gig.
If you’re feeling stuck in the early days, I can promise you that it gets easier! The trick is finding a lead generation process that works for you—one that plays into your strengths and brings in those dream clients.
Here’s 3 ways to find copywriting clients as a newbie.
This is one that a lot of newbies start with. Did I start here? Nope LOL. I was too shy to tell people what I did for YEARS. There are a TON of copywriters who just tell their friends, family, and locals what they’re doing… Word spreads and pretty soon they find copywriting clients—they end up booked and busy.
I would definitely recommend telling people what you’re doing! Versus the alternative that I did… It took me a few years to post my website on Facebook (awkward) and growth in the beginning was VERY slow.
However, this shouldn’t be the only tactic you try. Eventually, your network might get tapped out. Unless you’re really good at networking? Regardless, it’s always a good idea to have a well-rounded approach to find copywriting clients. Especially if your business grows—you might outgrow the “friends and family” vibes in your business.
Aside from friends and family, attending networking events (online and offline) is also usually a good idea… If you pick the events well. I once landed a $16k project just from talking to the right person at a networking event. I was the new girl there—both new in town and it was the first time I attended this monthly event. It was a pretty good way to kick things off.
I also want you to be protective of your time though if you attend a lot of events. You need to be selective about where you go, when, and how often. You don’t need to show up EVERYWHERE. And you don’t need to agree to every single coffee chat.
This is where a TON of people start. It’s where I started… And spoiler alert: I hated it. 🙃
Cold pitching literally made me cry. I wasn’t bad at it. I landed some gigs. But I was aiming so low that it felt like a total waste of time.
Don’t let my personal experience scare you though. Some people have huge success stories from cold pitching. Entire businesses built on the strategy, booking 5-figure gigs, long time client relationships formed. I’m very happy for those people even though I am not one of them.
The idea with cold pitching is that you pick and choose who your dream copywriting clients are, then you actively go out and find them. Connect with them. Offer to fill gaps in their copy and marketing efforts. Show them why you’re the best person to solve their problems.
Cold pitching for copywriting clients is a science and an art form. But a positive of this tactic is that you can start today without any other marketing collateral in place. You just need to research your dream clients and start a conversation with them.
My take? Don’t find copywriting clients. Let them come to you. After freelancing for years for very little pay, I realized that I didn’t want to pitch for clients anymore. I wanted to attract people who wanted to work with me because of me. I wanted to align on our style and values, and stop the feast and famine cycle.
So I did it.
How? I created a conversion focused website and brand messaging to match.
In the early days of freelancing, I didn’t have a website. Then when I built my first website, it was actually just a blog with no real strategy. But the day that I started to take myself seriously and developed an actual messaging strategy, everything changed.
I got clear on who I wanted to reach, why they needed me, and how I would reach them. I put together a website that guides leads from the homepage to my calendar, converting them without me having to do the heavy lifting with every single one. Over the years, I refined my pipeline further and further. Now? My proposal close rate for 2022 was 90%. That’s HUGE. And I credit my streamlined pipeline to those numbers. My sales calls are truly fit calls, where we are both deciding if this is a good fit.
If you’re a newbie copywriter and you want to find copywriting clients, I typically recommend doing 1 of options 1 and 2 (or both) to get clients ASAP. But also focus on building the foundations that will support you long term… Like that conversion focused website.
I often talk about these foundations as the BUILD stage of your business. When you’re just starting out, it’s a lot of time spent setting things up. Not just to find copywriting clients right now, but to build a profitable and sustainable business long term.
If you want to get started on your BUILD stage, check out 4 Steps to Profit. This is my free, 4-day course that teaches you how to do things like position your business in a saturated market, start selling the value of your offers, and stake your claim on the internet. Learn more and enroll here.
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