Getting Clients:
Three AWAI Members Share Their Secrets for Success

From Denise Ford:

One thing that seems to get an immediate response is to identify non-profit organizations in a field that you LOVE (for me, it's the arts) and contact local groups about doing a spec for their next fundraising letter. They are always understaffed and have small budgets. Usually, you can beat their control … and get a fee … AND a referral for your next assignment.

From Edith Nee:

I tend to take a personal approach to getting clients.

I just got a job rewriting the entire website for the foundation of the largest hospital in California. This was the result of calling the right person and talking to him before sending out samples of my writing.

I've also approached some associations to write articles for their publications. The Non-Profit Federation (branch of DMA) has accepted my proposal for an article for the upcoming issue of their journal. It'll be free advertising for me. Hope I'll get some clients out of this effort.

From Janet Wisner:

Here are three effective, no-cost methods I've used to get clients …

  1. Peruse the Sunday employment section under "marketing," "writer," and "editorial." You're not looking for a full-time job, you're looking for the companies that are offering the jobs. Submit a resume to them with a nice marketing cover letter outlining your services. Many of these companies use freelancers, but they don't advertise that fact. Even if they don't use your services immediately, they will have your info on file for possible later jobs.
  2. Practice public relations. Always keep in touch with the contacts you make. If you do a job for someone, keep the lines of communication open. Make a lunch date … send a holiday gift (something that keeps you in mind for later jobs).
  3. Sign up for e-zines in your industry. My favorite is writersweekly.com – free weekly job/market listings in an easy-to-read and access format.
The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

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Published: December 17, 2001

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