So, you’re new to the world of freelance, or maybe you’ve been here a while, but you are wondering how to land high-paying clients. It’s a very normal route to start small as a freelancer but there are some lucky ones that catch a generous client at the beginning of their freelance careers. However, not everyone gets to be lucky. Good thing there is a way to get high-paying clients as long as you do the work!
Understand Your Industry
First things first, you need to know the industry in which you are a freelancer. Are you an artist or a web designer? Perhaps you are an accountant or maybe a writer? (Maybe you don’t have a freelance field yet? Here are 30 Remote Gig Job Ideas to help you out!) Knowing your industry can better help you identify and find high-paying clients. It would be best if you learned the standard pay and when you are being low-balled.
Find Your Niche
Once you know all of the nitty-gritty of your industry, it’s time to focus on yourself. What is your niche? What sets you apart from the millions of other freelancers out there? Think, why would a high-paying client work with you? Having a niche can help you easily get a one-up from the competition and be noticed by clients who are willing to pay good money for your talents, skills, or services.
Here comes the part where you need to do your due diligence as a freelancer. Finding a high-paying client is like looking for treasure, and many others are searching for it too. You can’t expect this treasure to fall right on your lap, you have to be prepared and do the work.
Prepare Your Portfolio
A portfolio is one thing that you should never be caught without. Pretty much all clients that you meet will ask to see your portfolio. Having none or a bad one will not impress clients. The following are important components of your portfolio:
Even if you are no longer part of the corporate workforce, a resume is still a must even for freelancing. This document contains important information clients need to know about you, from your name to your skills.
2. Career Highlights or Accomplishments
This is no time to be humble, you need to wow clients, especially if you want the high-paying kind! At the same time, don’t just list all of your accomplishments, you really need to pick out the best ones.
3. Previous Projects
One of the best things about working yourself up as a freelancer is you get to build your portfolio. Your previous client may not have paid the big bucks but they can certainly lead you to it. Just make sure the project you did can be shown to other potential clients.
4. Sample Works
Never had a client? Don’t worry! You can always show sample works that you did even without a client. It’s a good way to showcase your skills as well as your love for your work. Think passion projects for models or photographers, setting up their own shoots. Or mock-ups of social media posts for social media managers or content creators. Do it for fun but don’t forget to also show what you can do.
5. Testimonials or Recommendations
Being a freelancer, you might get used to faceless clients. However, high-paying clients might not be too keen on taking a chance on a person they don’t know. So the best thing you can do is to get testimonials or recommendations from your previous clients or even other freelancers you have worked with.
Create Correspondence Templates
So, you’ve managed to attract a high-paying client with your wonderful portfolio, that’s a done deal right? Wrong! These clients will want to talk to you and if you say the wrong things in your email, you can kiss that deal goodbye. If you want error-free correspondences, it’s best to create correspondence templates as early as now. Here are a few you should work on:
Most of the time high-paying clients will have a project in mind and it is up to you to make a proposal. There are even times you need to make a good proposal first before you can show your portfolio to a client. So, make sure your proposal covers the needs or requirements of the client, and way better if you can go above and beyond. Think of the proposal as a trailer to a movie, you show the person what they can expect but not give everything away.
It’s very likely that a high-paying client will require you to sign a contract or request a contract for you. Either way, it’s best to have a contract template that outlines your responsibilities as well as your limitations. Contracts should cover everything about the freelance project, including payments.
3. Acceptance Letter
If you do land a high-paying client, don’t leave it at just that. Make sure you have a template for an acceptance letter.
4. Declining Work
At the same time, you should also have a template for declining work. You can’t just ghost a client no matter how much they are paying you. Ghosting or disrespecting a potential client can come back to bite you in the future, hurting your chances of getting projects.
Organize Payment Procedures
To have the budget to give freelancers high pay, clients must be really good with their finances. And people who are good with finances, are organized with money coming in and out of their business. That’s why, if you want to land a high-paying client, you are going to need to organize your payment procedures. There are 2 important things you need to do:
1. Setup Payment Methods
You need to know the most popular payment methods for freelancers (some industries do have a preference), think PayPal or Stripe. Make sure that the payment methods that you sign up for are accessible to many countries, who knows if your future high-paying client has a different currency than you.
There are times clients will adjust to meet your payment methods, however, some will not budge. They would rather find another freelancer who does have their payment preference of choice than have to register for a new one.
2. Generate Invoice Template
A high-paying client will sooner or later take care of their taxes. With that in mind, they will need invoices.
If that is the case, it’s best to have an invoice template. Better yet, just use an invoice template generator like Kosmo. It already contains all of the details that you or your client may need, such as the due date, currency, invoice number, and company names.
Having the proper invoice shows that you are a legitimate and responsible freelancer, which is bound to attract or impress serious and responsible clients (who are hopefully paying their freelancers fairly).
Know Where to Get High-Paying Clients
Now that you are armed with all of the tools for how to get high-paying clients, here comes the part where luck can be involved as well as smarts and a lot of perseverance. Here are 3 things you can do to find prospective high-paying clients:
Search Online Job Platforms
There are dozens of online job platforms today and you can get better chances of “winning” by trying to apply for as many jobs as you can. However, this doesn’t mean you just click and click. You also need to read the fine print and see if the price for the freelance work is already indicated. If the price is low and it says “negotiable” you can always try your luck but don’t count on it.
Make sure that the jobs you are applying for are relevant to your work and see if the client is actually “legit.” Sometimes, there are job postings where the pay is very high and yet there are barely any details on the client or the actual work to be done. If it’s too good to be true, proceed with caution or don’t at all.
Also, you need to be very hard-working and consistent with your job searches. Good projects with high-paying clients are pretty rare and can be snapped up easily. If you miss a day of looking at online platforms, you might end up missing your chance at a high-paying client.
Join Social Media Groups
Don’t discount social media groups, there are high-paying clients who would rather spend on freelancers than pay fees on online job platforms. There are groups on social media that focus on certain industries with the purpose of finding clients or finding freelancers. It wouldn’t hurt to join these groups and check out available jobs and at the same time, scope out your competition.
Finally, it pays to make connections whether with clients or fellow freelancers. You don’t necessarily have to be friends but you’ll show that you are easy enough to work with and that you can deliver.
Fellow freelancers who have way too much on their plate can refer you to a high-paying client or pass on a project to you that has a good fee. If you maintain a good relationship with a client, they can also refer you to others who can offer bigger pay. At the same time, clients who like your work may inevitably give you more projects with higher pay-offs if you continue to impress them.
Pointers on How to Land High-Paying Clients
You are now ready to look for that rare high-paying client, here are just a few more tips that can help you land them once you are already communicating with them:
Be Clear and Concise
There’s nothing that annoys a high-paying client (or any type of client for that matter) than a freelancer who does not clearly state what they can or can’t do. If you keep changing tasks and responsibilities, you’ll end up with no clients. Also, keep everything short and sweet as saying way too much can lead to miscommunications.
It’s important to stay consistent, both with how you work and how much you charge. If you keep changing your asking price, you might irritate a client who is ready to give you something worthwhile.
Some clients are fine with just chatting or exchanging emails with you. But don’t be surprised if a high-paying client wants to meet you in person or do a video call. These types of clients want to know who they are dealing with, and see if they can trust you.
Always be prepared by being presentable, and doing a bit of background research on their company or business. It also helps to do practice interview questions for freelancers.
If a client says you need to do a task that is well beyond your skill level, you have to be honest about it. High-paying clients will not appreciate someone who overestimates skills but won’t be able to deliver in the end.
If you want to land high-paying clients you got to put in the work. Don’t be disappointed if you don’t get one right away. Remember that freelancing is a journey and each step of the way should be able to teach you something and help you improve. In the end, your experiences will be the next stepping stone toward a high-paying client.
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