Sure-Fire Ways to Find Your Next Client

It’s a horrible, sinking feeling when one of your regular clients tells you he/she will be canceling your services.  Maybe it’s because the family is moving or maybe it’s because the husband or wife just lost a job.

The reason really doesn’t matter.  What does matter is that you are now in a bind.  You need to find someone to replace them ASAP because losing even one regular client can put a big dent in your monthly income.

If you don’t find someone else soon, you may have to work part-time at something else just to keep the money coming in or you may have to rely more heavily on other family members to keep things financially afloat.  If only you could easily find someone to replace the client who just left, your worries would be over.

Below are some of my top tips that will make it a whole lot easier for you to know where to find your next ideal client.

Tip #1:  Ask the client who is leaving for a referral

Asking for a referral may sound like something obvious for you to do, but you would be surprised at how many personal chefs don’t ask for one or forget to ask.  I know one personal chef, let’s call her Jan, whose client sent out an email to all of her friends telling them what a wonderful personal chef Jan was, and in no time, Jan had more clients.  Asking for referrals is often a quick and easy way to get more business.

Tip #2:  Service a specific, accessible group of people who value what you offer

Servicing a specific and accessible group of people who also value what you offer is critical because if you know who your ideal clients are and you know where to find them easily, you will have a lot less trouble keeping your calendar fully booked.  To make this point clear, let me share with you an example.

If you are a personal chef who is a generalist which means you serve any kind of food to any kind of person, you won’t know where to go to find your next client because they could be anywhere.

In addition, your message about the benefits of your services and who you are looking to serve will be vague making it more difficult for people to refer others to you or even for them to get excited about what you are offering.

Now let’s assume you have a specific group of people who you serve, and you easily know where to find them.  One such example might be women entrepreneurs.  Women entrepreneurs congregate because they do a lot of networking.  You’ll know where to find them and if you craft your marketing message with this group specifically in mind, you are much more likely to get a client.

Tip #3: Build a newsletter list or blog following

Although this strategy doesn’t necessarily bring you business immediately, it will become a great source of potential new clients for you over time as you build your relationship with your list.  The key is to service your list in an effective way.  There are ways to stay in touch with your list that bring you clients, and there are ways that don’t.

The point is your list should be filled with people who already have an interest in your services and who are responsive.  By responsive I mean that the people on your list open your emails, click on links, take you up on promotions and attend your events.  Once you have built a sense of community with your list, and they like you and your services you can bet you will find someone who wants to work with you.

What I love about inviting people to join a newsletter or blog community is it’s a way for you to stay in touch with people who may not be ready to hire you when you first meet them, but they will be ready to hire you sometime in the future.

Your name needs to be top of mind when they are finally ready to use your services.  By keeping in touch with your list on a regular basis and by sharing valuable information that your list wants to have, you do just that.

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