Mastering the perfect pitch for freelance jobs is a bit of an art form, one that can sometimes feel like an impossible task.
What exactly are you supposed to include, anyway?
While the official verdict may still be out on that, a few things are certain: You don’t want to come off as too desperate or ‘salesy,’ but you also want to convince a prospective client that you’re the perfect fit for the project.
Striking that balance is key, and we have a few tips to help you do just that, ideally resulting in more gigs, more confidence in what you have to offer clients and a stronger brand presentation to future customers.
If you’re tired of having your pitches be ignored, or you simply need to improve your pitch game this year, I’ve got you covered with five key tips, below.
1. Explain Exactly Why the Gig Caught Your Eye
Although this may seem obvious, let’s break it down a bit further.
First, I know you sometimes just need to bring in a bit more cash, but there’s got to be a reason why this particular contract sparked interest – start there, then dig deeper to personalize.
Always address why you want to work with both the specific client, as well as why you’re interested in the gig itself. In other words, skip the “to whom it may concern” and attempt to find an actual human being’s name, if at all possible. Next, be sure to include specific references to the company’s latest work or initiatives they’re working on to give your pitch a more genuine, personalized feel.
What to Avoid: The generic email along with the cut-and-paste your cover letter to every job prospect routine isn’t going to cut it if you want to be considered for quality freelance jobs.
If you can’t take the time to write a decent pitch, what does it say about your work ethic for the job itself? Not much…
2. Go into Detail on Why You’re A Match for the Job
Business can be a bit like dating sometimes, with pitches being your 5-second profile intro. It’s time to come out strong and show them why you’ll be a great professional fit.
Think about all the other applicants who may be applying for the gig, too. After all, there are said to be almost 54 million freelancers in the United States alone.
Now, think of how you can set yourself apart from everyone else.
Again, skip the boring cover letter approach and go deeper. Chances are, most people will simply outline 3-5 of their professional traits (i.e. their great work ethic, time management skills and attention to detail) in an email and attach their resume, so go above and beyond when you’re outlying why you are, without a doubt, the best candidate for the gig.
Does your ghostwriting style match the CEO’s personal tone? Do you also have a penchant for puns? Is the brand focused on local marketing in your hometown? Have you had previous success with a similar project?
By doing your research on the organization, you can tailor some of the skills you learned in previous freelance jobs to be a major benefit to their team.
What to Avoid: Making your pitch entirely about yourself.
Instead, focus on how you can align your professional skills set to help further their company’s mission and grow their brand’s presence in a meaningful way. It’s about them (or you and them and the work you’ll do together), not you, in a great pitch.
3. Clearly Outline Your Rates for Freelance Jobs
Don’t make a client guess what you want to be paid – especially if they’ve specifically asked for your rates in the job posting. That just means you’re not following directions!
The more information you can provide them upfront, and the less you require them to follow up with you for additional information, the better. The goal of your pitch should be that they have absolutely all the info they need from you to make a hiring decision.
That means, you’ll need to be confident about your worth as a freelancer. Yes, some clients may pass on you based on your rates, but being firm about what you want will help you find quality freelance jobs in the future.
What to Avoid: Being unclear or inconsistent with your rates. Know what your pricing structure is before applying to any freelance gigs, and stick to it! Be sure you do your research so you’re charging what you’re worth.
4. Offer Something of Value… for Free
I know this one sounds a little intimidating, but stick with me. After all, we do live in the age of freemiums.
Going the extra mile with your pitch will pay off, even if it seems like more work than you’d ideally like to be doing upfront. Offering something of value, like a discovery call, free PDF copy of your book, video tutorial or other informative or meaningful pieces of content will help set you apart from other applicants and let your prospective client know that you stand by your work.
What to Avoid: Be sure you’re not giving away so much value that they don’t need to hire you for the job. By creating a general, but quality piece of content, you’ll establish yourself as an expert, impress potential clients and not create too much unnecessary work for yourself.
5. Provide Oodles of Links to Your Website, Online Profiles & More
It’s vital to look the part in order to snag the job.
This means presenting yourself professionally online and showing off all the places your work has a presence on the internet. Creating an online portfolio is incredibly simple (just Google it and several free resources will guide you on how to get started) and also necessary to showcase your work to potential clients for freelance jobs.
Depending on what your service offering is, there are many ways to do this – creating your own website, posting designs on Instagram, selling prints on Etsy, etc.
What to Avoid: Trying to be in too many places and therefore not doing any of them well. It’s far better to nail your branding in a few key places that make sense for your brand than to have 15 social media sites that haven’t been updated in 9 months.
Land More Freelance Jobs by Perfecting your Job Pitch
Crafting the perfect pitch for a new freelance gig doesn’t have to be paralyzing. By following a few surefire tips and going above and beyond researching your prospective client and their company, you’ll set yourself apart from other applicants and land more gigs.
Just be cognoscente as you build your brand online, whether that’s through your online portfolio or the value exchange on your website, that you’re presenting your brand and pitches professionally (Spera’s software for freelancers and small teams can help with the latter point).