Client Outreach: How Does it Work?

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Key Points:

  • Client outreach is the process of contacting a potential client or customer.
  • Pick the right communication channel and right time to contact a client.
  • Use catchy email subject lines.
  • Be personal, friendly, and direct.

A HubSpot study suggests that eight out of 10 prospects want to talk to sales reps via email over any other medium, but only 24% of those pitch emails are opened. That’s why drafting a client outreach pitch is so important for freelancers and small businesses alike.

When it comes to your blog or business’ growth, retaining current clients and making new ones is the bread and butter of freelancing or managing a company. Whether you’re using your blog to reach clients or you’re simply sending out emails, this piece of content is for you!

Don’t stop now, keep reading to learn how to outreach the right way!

What is Client Outreach?

Client outreach is a term coined by businesses, freelancers, and other entities to describe the process of contacting a potential customer, client, and/or project/job hiring manager.

Client outreach campaigns can be super valuable for many reasons.

Additionally, you aren’t just increasing any potential revenue, but you’re also building a reputation for yourself in your niche.

You can use client outreach campaigns to gather feedback and even insights into your business strategies for further development.

In simplistic terms, the outreach process consists of you simply reaching out via email, phone, social media platforms, etc. to connect on a professional level. This type of professional outreach is usually done through emails

With that said, here are a few sure-fire ways to land new clients:

  • Regardless of how you outreach, make sure to provide consistent value
  • Focus on your solutions to their problems, (similar to the buyer’s journey)
  • Keep it simple, don’t over stuff your outreach with overly complex jargon
  • Just like blog posts, don’t write long paragraphs
  • Be friendly but be clear about what you want and are expecting
  • Don’t be a shady salesperson because that’s bad m’kay
  • Keep your content digestible, easy to understand, and overall appealing

Research conducted by Fidelity found that a whopping 64% of advisors have made content marketing an essential part of their digital marketing strategy. That means the content you create needs to be perfected. Whether you’re drafting an email, writing a pitch, or publishing a blog post, you need to consider your strategies for each piece you design.

That’s where I come in:

Taylor Swift Meme: hi..it’s me..i’m the content creator, it’s me…

How to Preform Client Outreach?

I’m going to show you exactly how to client outreach set-by-step. I have reached out to hundreds if not thousands of clients over the years. In fact client outreach is an artform in itself and requires a lot of trial and error.

First time outreach is usually the same whether you’re reaching out to a client or a potential customer (warm lead if you want to use a tele-sales term.) It’s all about the first impression.

Be personal, if you have a name use it.

Instead of, “To Whom it May Concern“, “Hello“, or “To Hiring Manager.

Try: “Hey Bob! How are you? I got your email off of LinkedIn and I wanted to reach out to you with an awesome collaboration opportunity. With that said, my name is Sally-Sue and I’ve been a Freelancer since 2015. I think we should connect on a professional level because….(reason)

Sometimes being more authentic as a human being can win over more clients than a standard cover letter template you found on Google Docs.

A great personality can even make up for lack of experience in some cases. Many clients may post projects to find the right fit based on sociability not just experience.

For example, I was once hired by a client for a customer service role based off of my personality. Although inexperienced, the client gave me the opportunity to learn based off of that first impression.

Do this:

Actually, let me just teach you what I’ve learned so far:

  • As mentioned, be personal and authentically you
  • Pick the right communication channel and right time to contact
  • Use the power of social media
  • Make your outreach personal, yet automated
  • Use catchy email subject lines
  • Understand your target audience
  • Ask your existing customers for referrals and use social proof as a starting point
  • Set goals for yourself
  • Respond to comments and replies on your posts (this can lead to a partnership)
  • Work on creating a strong brand presence (so you can be remembered!)

Additionally, here’s how to launch a successful outreach strategy:

  • Write down what your needs are as a freelancer or business
  • Know what your client’s problem is and how to fix it
  • Set your goal and create a list (lists are proven to produce results)
  • Begin brainstorming a strategy (example: collect target emails for SEO agencies who are known to hire freelancers, draft pitch, personalize, and send)
  • Make first time contact and build a client rapport
  • Trial and error (keep track of what works and what doesn’t)
  • Assess your results and adjust accordingly

Client Outreach Template Examples

Without further ado, here are some templates you can use right now:

Emails are only opened at an average rate of 21.33%, so that means sending out more than one without being pushy, suggestive, or overly sales-y can sometimes be a good place to start. Especially if you are following this client on any type of social media like LinkedIn.

A first time contact email could look something like this:

Email

“Hey Bob,

I noticed your success on your recent (insert successful project) and wanted to say congrats! What you’re doing has a major impact on (insert niche). My name is (Batman) and I just wanted to let you know how much I look forward to watching your (blog name/business name/ etc.) succeed.

Best,

(Your name, title, website, etc..)

The key here is to keep your email short and sweet. You don’t need a working relationship just yet or right off the bat. This is just the introduction phase.

After any response or none, you may resend an additional email with something like this:

“Hey Bob!

I hope you’re having an awesome day, I noticed you published a new blog post today and I was blown away! Today I was doing a little research of my own this morning and noticed you might have a need for (insert your service). I could totally help you with that if you ever need anything.

If you don’t have any projects laying around that need completed, do you think you could point me in the right direction to someone who could use (insert services)?

Either way! Keep up the great work and I’m only an email away if I can help out with (insert their business needs and/or goals.)

Best,

Batman

This type of email expresses your interest in your client’s niche and you also provide a solution to a potential problem. The worst that can happen is you won’t hear back or they will say no. In either case, you would just move onto the next. The key is to be friendly, helpful, and open to any opportunities.

86% of business professionals prefer to use email when communicating for business purposes.

Phone prospecting client outreach

I’m a way better writer than I am a talker. Although, I started out in customer service, I have always been shy and laugh when I’m nervous.

Spoken like a true millennial — phone calls aren’t for me. In fact, email usage is highest among adults aged 18 to 29 and 30 to 49 at 80%. Furthermore, 76% of US adults used email or messaging services to communicate with others.

With that said, I can give some real world experience tips for phone call templates but I always found emails work best in most settings:

“Hey Bob,

I hope you’re having a great day so far, my name is Sally-Sue (state any other relevant title on who you are, this goes a long way if warm or cold calling) and I noticed that you published an article today on (insert topic). Awesome stuff, I was calling because (insert how you be a solution or hold value to them.)

Would you be interested in a brief call with me to see how I can help your business grow? It won’t be longer than 15 minutes max. Please let me know when you are free and call me back at (insert number.)””

If you don’t receive a response, try a follow-up call or text. Not many people will take phone calls these days, so keep that in mind. I mean, do you remember the last time you answered an unknown number?

Do cover letters matter?

In 98% of cases, it’s important to include a cover letter for any job or project application. Although, some hiring managers or recruiters won’t always read them. It’s more of just something that is expected in the work world. They expect candidates to submit one even if it’s never looked at.

Although overlooked, it looks super professional on your end. A cover letter can boost your chances of getting chosen and set you apart from other candidates with similar backgrounds and resumes.

Cover letters can be daunting to write especially if you don’t know what to write about. So, here’s a cover letter I wrote that has worked for me in many cases:

cover letter example

Wrapping it Up!

Whew, my fingers are smoking from all that typing!

Finally, that’s a lot of information to digest!

Feel free to share this post for future reference and let me know your experiences in the comment section below.

What challenges do you face regarding client outreach?

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