When it comes to home based businesses, there are two types of clients - the right clients and the wrong clients. When you have the right clients the world seems wonderful, work seems exciting, and you don’t dread checking your email. But, if you have the wrong clients, you suddenly start checking the “Want Ads” for jobs. Since you don’t want to do that, and you obviously want to keep working as a freelancer, the answer is to only work with the right clients. But, how can you be sure that you’re attracting the right clients? Hint: It’s not about luck.
Determine Who Exactly Your Ideal Client Is: Write down what your ideal client looks like. What motives them? What keeps them up at night? Are they results-focused on money-focused? All of these questions can help you determine the type of client you want to attract. As a freelancer you should focus on clients who have a specific need, who care more about results than price, and who are willing to hand over the work to you and focus only on deliverables - i.e. no micromanagers.
Set Your Prices High: Instead of trying to compete on price, compete on value. Price your value instead of trying to match your competition or freelancers who want to compete on price. Remember that your prices set an expectation in the minds of your audience. The higher the price, the more perceived value they have for your services. If your prices are currently low, raise them right now. Don’t be scared; you’ll attract clients who are successful instead of struggling, which will give you a much better type of client.
Do Not Lower Your Prices: When you get to the negotiation phase, never lower your prices. You can add more value into your work for the price, but don’t lower it. You’re not selling a commodity; you’re selling a specialized skill that took you a lot of time, money and training to be able to offer it professionally. Do not under value yourself. No matter what your competitors charge, you should stick to the value you set at the beginning. Lowering your prices only sets you up for failure and resentment. Let your clients know that you never cut prices or corners.
Set Up a Client Screening Process: Your potential clients need to go through a process that qualifies them before you ever speak to them on a call. Set up a client questionnaire that will not only help determine what type of client they are, but also help them clarify what it is they want from you. Clients who know what they want are a lot easier to work with than clients who have no idea what they want. Plus, if they are willing to go through the questionnaire, that is a good sign they’re going to be willing to use your processes and your systems.
Determine Your Potential Client’s Motivation: Most business owners literally guess about their clients’ motivation, and due to this are often wrong. When you can figure out what truly motivates your clients, you’ll be able to improve on your client screening process exponentially. The truth is, the only real way to qualify a client is to know what gets their engine burning. Put these into your client screening process and you’ll start figuring it out.
Focus on Results: The more value you can provide, the better. What your clients really want is results. If you can prove the results, your clients will be clamoring for more at any price. Determine a way to prove the results of your work, and then submit that information to your clients on a periodic basis with notes on what more can be done (at a price) to improve these outcomes even more.
Place a Premium on Value: You’ve likely heard the phrase, “under promise and over deliver”. It’s excellent advice and something you should focus on doing. The more you can do that, the more your clients will perceive your work as top-notch and excellent - no matter the price. Each month that you work with your client, always figure out a way to do a little something extra that you didn’t list in your duties just to give them that wow factor.
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About the Author: Doreen Dilger is a Certified Manifest Method Coach, Certified Life Coach, Author and Founder of Women Empowering Women Now.