For many local marketers just starting out landing that first client can be the biggest hurdle to success. Once you land that first client things typically begin to snowball from there but the trick is making that happen. The first problem most face is the lack of a portfolio or any proof for what they can do. There can be other problems to like lack of funds promote yourself, not being a “social” or “well connected” person and the list goes on.
I’ve been teaching local marketing for years and I always tell people you simply have to do whatever it takes, stick with it and eventually the damn will break open for you. If you don’t have a portfolio that should be your first focus and there are a couple ways you can go about making this happen.
- Offer to work for FREE or even take a small loss if you have to
- Hire a designer, let them know you can bring in a lot of projects and ask to use their work to show potential clients. Most will always agree to this because they want you to bring them business so they are happy to help.
- Partner up with a white label service (google service type + whitelabel/Reseller) that has proven results you can use and show to clients.
The bottom line is do whatever it takes to build your portfolio in the beginning. I used all three of these methods in the beginning and at the end of the day, it worked out for me. It’s important to have a website, logo and business cards as well but don’t get too hung up on those things for long. The most important thing is that you get out there and make things happen.
One of the best things you can do when first getting started is to get referrals from friends, family or business associates. Think about who you know in your life that talks to a lot of business owners, sell them on what you can do and ask them to send you some business! If they have a business themselves, offer to help them out for free or at cost. Get your cards, information and sales pitch in the hands of as many people as possible, something will pop loose.
Once you land that first client do an AMAZING JOB for them. Go above and beyond what they ask you for, do it faster, better or just flat out more impressive then what they expect. This first client can be the key to your next five if you do a great job, build a relationship and simply ASK for referrals.
Also if you are looking for a great way to jumpstart your client base be sure and check out our Local Lead Drop training that literally drops leads in your inbox looking to buy!