The "Scariest" Step on the Path to B2B Success

Lane Sennett here with the next step on my path to freelance success …

Marketing my freelance business was one of the most daunting steps on my journey to the writer's life.

But I'm not scared anymore. And today, I'll show what changed things.

There are many self-marketing ideas for freelancers out there. When I started out, I used three specific ones that matched what potential clients in my niche were involved in and I felt comfortable using to promote my services:

  • Writing and posting blog articles on my site — I wrote about how to fix the problems I found with technology websites.
  • Sending warm prospecting emails — I followed Ed Gandia’s formula for a friendly, helpful introduction of my capabilities and services.
  • Posting on LinkedIn to answer questions — this one was easiest because there are so many questions asked on LinkedIn. Contributing helpful tips and answers gets your name out there for others to see you as an expert resource.

If those techniques did not produce results, I had a list of at least five more to work through in priority order like a free report download on my website, joining and contributing to other online forums and groups, sending out a direct-mail letter about my services, joining the Chamber of Commerce to network, and attending an industry conference in my niche.

I started prospecting for clients by thinking like my preferred clients’ customers. They would be my ultimate audience if I found writing opportunities. What resources does this audience use to get answers, and who do they consider a trusted source of information and recommendations?

Just like researching your audience before writing a sales letter, use the same approach to find out how your prospective clients are found by their customers.

  • Start with keyword research, summarize what you find in a table.
  • Review the sources. (One particular website kept coming up in my search results.)
  • Read the content of the top two or three sites in-depth. (The one I found even had a list of all participating vendors — that was a ready-made email prospect list!)
  • Survey the vendor or participant sites and create a list of tips to help them improve their websites and marketing. (Like adding calls-to-action, list-building downloads, or video.) Write some blog articles with valuable content which will appeal to these clients.

I outlined five blog articles and started to write following Rebecca’s formula for a good article (you can find it here). The first article I wrote was about the lack of attention-getting headlines on most of these websites.

My next step was the BIG one! I contacted a blog publisher to see if they would use my article about how to create benefit-based headlines as a guest blog.

In my last article for the week I’ll tell you what happened next. Tune in tomorrow to find out …

This is a huge step to take on your path to the B2B writer’s life, so if you have any questions or comments please ask!

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Published: April 11, 2013

4 Responses to “The "Scariest" Step on the Path to B2B Success”

  1. Love this idea Lane, thanks! I've been looking at ways to change up my marketing & will definitely use this.

    Julia BorginiApril 12, 2013 at 10:20 am

  2. Thanks, Lane. This really starts to put the pieces together. We are writers, but we are really marketers of ideas. How we present these ideas will vary depending on the project and the client, but the fundamentals remain the same.

    ScottFApril 12, 2013 at 5:47 pm

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