Everybody starts off with no clients. Let’s start there. Everybody also starts off with the same question. How the hell do I get clients? How the hell do I get clients when I have no experience, no case studies and no social proof? It’s tough, I won’t lie, but i’ll show you exactly what I did. I’m not saying this is the only strategy out there but it’s the one I took and it worked well for me. So let’s get started.
Know Your Field
The first thing you must do is to know your field inside out. This is going to be essential for the next stage. Some people suggest that you should wear many hats. Learn; SEO, Google Ads, Facebook Ads and everything in between. I don’t think this is the best strategy off the bat. In fact, it just spreads your time out, making you okay at everything. Whilst I agree that you need to be okay at everything. It’s not the best use of your time at the beginning.
Hear me out.
When starting, you should pick one topic that you are both naturally good at and find engaging to learn about. For me, that was Google Ads.
You then invest ALL of your time to get that skill to a level where you can provide great value to clients. Now, you must truly believe that you can get great results. If you don’t, then that will come across when talking to the potential client. Focusing on one thing enables you to reach that threshold much faster.
Once you get this one skill to a high level you can then start to invest time developing other skills and becoming a ‘T-Shape Marketer‘.
Choose a Niche
So, now you have selected a skill and should be investing your time into learning this. Your next step is to choose a niche.
Again, many people suggest not picking a niche and just going after all types of client. This is not what I did. See, when you are starting off from zero, you have no credibility. It is going to take much longer to build up credibility for an entire service e.g. Social Media Ads than to build up credibility for a specific industry e.g. Social Media Ads for fashion e-commerce websites.
See what I mean?
Remember, this is by no means the only strategy. But, in my opinion, it is the fastest way to start getting clients that you actually want.
So now you need to choose a niche. Your niche should be a sector that is something you have an interest in, something that works for the chosen skill you opted for in the first section and something that is not overcrowded.
Don’t be afraid to narrow down your target market. There is 100% enough out there for everyone. If you are aiming to become a laptop entrepreneur, for example, you only need a handful of clients to be self sustaining. If you want to grow a multi-million agency then yes you’ll have to diversify, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. This is about getting the very first few clients remember.
Start Engaging in Your Niche
Now you can start hustling, putting the hours in and building up your voice in the community. Here’s what I did. I went and joined every Facebook group I could find that was related to my industry. I hung around and looked to see which ones actually had my target clients in.
I then chose a few big ones to focus on.
Now, I started posted 100% free content with absolutely no strings. No asks. No shady marketing BS. Nothing. Just give all of your knowledge away for free.
Why does this work? Here’s why. Because you’ll notice marketers joining these groups on a daily basis. They post one or two times and then swing their right hook asking if anyone wants ‘free audits‘ or ‘free marketing for a testimonial‘. These tactics stink. They’re overused and business owners can smell that from a mile off. These people get ignored, fizzle out and disappear from the groups in 1-2 weeks.
Don’t be one of those.
Instead, you are providing free value on a consistent basis. After a few months you’ll start to become more recognised in the groups. People will know who you are. They will trust you. And quite rightly so. You have been a person that was there to help, no faking it, you make sure that they know you care.
I’m not saying pretend you care about helping them with their business. Actually do care. People recognise that.
Be Patient and Clients Will Come
Before you know it, you’ll start to get people directly messaging you through messenger asking for help. It is literally as simple as that. And do you know what’s so powerful? They messaged you. That makes the sales process almost non-existent.
When you talk to the business owner, they already want to work with you. And if you did what I suggested in stage 1 and 2, you’ll have the knowledge and skills to actually get great results.
So, How Do I get My Second Client?
As you progress and become one of the key members of the group you’ll have a steady influx of new contacts, an even more steady influx of referrals and a trusted platform to share and grow your agency on.
Be patient and the clients will come. If you rush into it and try to push too hard before building up that credibility then you’ll be setting up to lose.
So get going and define your skill and niche and start engaging in your niche communities today.