Five Winning Tips to Find Freelance Clients On LinkedIn
By Craig Cannings
Many of us used to treat LinkedIn like a digital resume displayed on a signpost. We thought we could find freelance clients by simply listing our work experience and hoping we’d get noticed.
“Surely someone will see me as they pass by,” we’d tell ourselves.
But this powerful marketing channel is much more than a signpost. It’s a vital, dynamic community.
And with its vast network of professionals, LinkedIn can be an effective way to find freelance clients and grow your business.
The Power of Community
If you’re wondering why it’s such an effective platform, consider these statistics from the LinkedIn website:
– 49 million people use LinkedIn to search for jobs each week.
– 8 people are hired every minute on LinkedIn.
So, with that in mind, let’s explore how to use this platform effectively so you can grow your client base and find freelance work. From optimizing your profile to using advanced search filters — these five tips can help you quickly identify prospects and find freelance clients on Linkedin!
Table of Contents: How to Find Freelance Clients on LinkedIn
Five Tips to Help You Find Freelance Clients on LinkedIn
Tip #1. Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile
For an effective LinkedIn profile, selecting a suitable profile photo is key. Your photo should be a professional representation of your freelancing identity, with high-quality and properly cropped visuals. Ultimately, it should look sharp on the page.
In Freelance University’s (FreeU’s) Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile course, we share the following recommendations:
– Have great lighting.
– Make sure your photo is high-resolution (especially if it’s a smartphone photo).
– Be professional.
– Use a headshot, not a full-body shot.
– Consider using your brand colors in the background of the photo.
Next, when writing your summary, include relevant keywords and phrases related to your niche so that potential clients can easily find you in searches. Also try to use engaging language and focus on what makes you unique as a freelancer.
Highlighting skills and experience is essential for showcasing what makes you stand out from other professionals in your industry. Ensure that the details you include are accurate and current. And don’t forget to share any certifications or testimonials you’ve received.
For example, FreeU students have the option of sharing certificates and badges after they’ve completed a course. They can post them on their website, LinkedIn profile, and other social networks.
And in addition to certifications, consider adding links or documents with additional details about projects or accomplishments that may be relevant to potential clients.
Finally, consider adding videos or photos from past work experiences; this will help give clients a better idea of who you are.
Once you’ve optimized your LinkedIn profile, it’s time to begin networking with potential clients. Let’s explore ways you can do this effectively.
Tip #2. Connect with Potential Clients
Using LinkedIn to connect with potential clients is an essential part of building your freelance business. By joining relevant groups, following companies you’d like to work with, and sending personalized connection requests, you can reach out to the right people and increase your chances of success.
Start by finding the best groups for networking in your industry. Look for ones that are active and have members who are knowledgeable about the topics they discuss.
Once you join a group, become an active participant to build recognition and trust among the members. This will give others confidence when they consider working with you.
Following companies on LinkedIn is another great way to network. You can stay informed about their activities while also showing that you’re interested in what they do. As a quick aside, it is possible you might find more engaged groups for your client audience on Facebook, so be sure to have a look there as well!
Keep track of any job postings or announcements related to projects requiring freelancers so you don’t miss out on any opportunities. Linkedin posts many contract-based, remote positions that might be a good fit for you.
Additionally, if a potential client reacts favorably to one of your posts or comments on something related to their business, don’t forget to stay in contact with them. Connect through private messaging on LinkedIn or email them directly.
And as you gain information about clients and companies, post content with your target audience in mind. In a previous blog post titled “Tips for Using Your LinkedIn Profile to Find Ideal Freelance Clients,” we recommend always asking yourself what kind of posts would provide value to potential clients while showcasing your personality and expertise.
Finally, send personalized connection requests whenever possible — it shows that you dedicated time to each person instead of just randomly adding everyone.
Make sure your request has a short message introducing yourself and explaining why you’d both benefit from connecting. This will go much further than just leaving it blank or using a generic template every time.
Using LinkedIn’s valuable features, you can build connections with potential clients and set yourself up for success. Now let’s discuss how leveraging your network for referrals and recommendations is an effective way to find freelance clients.
Tip #3. Leverage Your Network for Referrals and Recommendations
Leveraging your existing network for referrals and recommendations is an essential part of growing a successful freelance business.
Asking for referrals from existing clients or colleagues, requesting recommendations from previous employers or clients, and sharing testimonials from satisfied customers on your profile page are all great ways to boost your credibility and visibility as a freelancer.
When asking for referrals, make sure you’re specific about what type of freelance work you’re looking for. Don’t be afraid to reach out to former coworkers who may have connections in the industry. Outline the advantages for your contacts in referring you, as it could help build a relationship of trust.
Referrals can also be mutually beneficial if you connect with someone who provides services in a different niche. They can refer you for freelance work you don’t do, and vice versa.
Requesting recommendations from previous employers or clients is another effective way to gain more exposure as a freelancer.
When you receive recommendations, you demonstrate that your work meets the expectations of the industry and deserves appreciation. Express gratitude to those who take the time to provide a testimonial, and proudly display it on your profile.
In an article titled “How to Ask For The All Important LinkedIn Recommendation,” Jay Leonard advises against using the default request for recommendations. Instead, he suggests,
“Your goal is to make it easy for the person you are asking to respond in a timely manner. In your request write a sentence or two about the service they purchased,and the results they gained from your service and benefits of working with you.”
Finally, sharing testimonials from satisfied customers on your profile page can really help distinguish you from other freelancers in the same field. It shows potential clients that people are happy with the services you provide and gives them confidence when considering hiring you for projects.
You can even include links back to any reviews left online so prospects can see what other people think about working with you.
In our previous blog post, “The Fine Art of Asking for a Referral,” we also recommend asking for video case studies from previous or existing clients. You can post these videos on LinkedIn, your website, and other social media platforms.
As you can see, networking to receive referrals and recommendations is a great way to find freelance clients and extend your reach in the industry. Now let’s talk about finding remote jobs on LinkedIn.
Tip #4. Find Remote Jobs on LinkedIn
In our Finding Clients Using LinkedIn course, we recommend three important strategies for researching and finding remote contract jobs on LinkedIn.
First, build a targeted resume from your LinkedIn profile, and update it as needed. In the Jobs tab, you can also use the Resume Builder to upload a resume. Include the work experience, education, and accomplishments that are most relevant to the freelance jobs you’re interested in.
And, as Donna Serdula advises in a previous FreeU Podclass episode, be sure to use relevant keywords as you tell your story.
Next, search the jobs database for remote contract jobs. Keywords with suggested job searches will appear at the top of the screen, but you can also set your filters for the ideal freelance work you’re seeking.
Finally, save jobs you’re interested in by clicking the bookmark icon on the right-hand side of each listing.
You can also set your Job Alerts by switching the toggle to “on.” Once you’ve set the alerts, check the database each morning so you don’t miss out on any opportunities.
Now let’s explore ways to find freelance work by using advanced search filters.
Tip #5. Use Advanced Search Filters to Find Freelance Clients
With LinkedIn’s advanced search filters, you can narrow down your searches by location, industry, service categories, hashtags and more to make sure you’re targeting the right connections. This helps you identify prospects who are more likely interested in what you have to offer.
For example, if you’re searching for clients who need copywriting services in San Francisco, you can find a list and use the “save” feature to bookmark ones you’re interested in.
Once you’ve identified potential prospects, reach out with personalized messages tailored specifically towards their needs and interests — this increases engagement rates significantly compared with generic messages.
For instance, in the Finding Clients Using LinkedIn course, we recommend focusing on the connection first.
Sell the benefit of your services without being “sales-pitchy,” and make sure your message is:
– Highly targeted.
By taking the time to personalize each message (and adding some personality), it shows that not only did you do your research but also that there was thought put into creating it. This extra effort goes a long way in making a good impression.
You Can Find Freelance Clients on LinkedIn!
So there you have it — five tips to help you find freelance work on this powerful platform. Now you can ensure your LinkedIn profile is nothing like a signpost.
It’s an extension of you and your brand and a warm, inviting professional presence that will attract your ideal clients.
Enjoy connecting and learn from each interaction. Be sure to keep up with trends and update your profile regularly so that it’s optimized for success.
And remember that networking is key in this industry. With a bit of effort, you’ll be able to find high-quality leads who are looking for freelancers like you!
Unlock the power of LinkedIn to find freelance clients and grow your business. Join Freelance University today to learn more practical strategies on how to find freelance clients on LinkedIn!