Does it feel like no matter what you do, your website still won’t bring in enough client leads?
Maybe you feel like you are shouting into the void or talking to a brick wall most days.
You’ve tried making small tweaks to your website. You’ve even created more educational blog content and made a commitment to show up on Instagram every day but to no avail.
Nothing is producing the results you’re hoping for.
Today we’re kicking off our “project inquiry” series with resolving this exact need in your business — attracting more inquiries.
There could be a few reasons why you are no longer receiving project inquiries.
01: LACK OF CLARITY OR URGENCY IN YOUR MARKETING
Wouldn’t be nice if you could sell more of your services by only showing a few samples of your work with a simple “contact now” button at the bottom of your website?
While that sounds nice, it takes more than a beautiful design portfolio to convince website visitors to reach out. If you are struggling to attract client leads, there may be an area on your website that isn’t clear.
Have you outlined your full design process so clients can see how you get from a design concept to the final product?
Have you broken down what is inside each of the packages you offer?
Have you shared your design philosophy and the way you like to work with clients?
These are common things designers forget to address on their website, but there could be other areas of your website and marketing platforms where you need to improve your clarity and urgency.
If you want to attract more project inquiries but creating a marketing plan has you hiding behind your hands, I have a 75+ page workbook to guide you through the step-by-step process of marketing your freelance business.
I wish I would have had it when I got started! It would have helped in moments where I didn’t know what platform to focus on and how I should be marketing my business in slow seasons.
A small investment of $19 for the Freelance Marketing Plan can help you create a solid foundation to start attracting hundreds or thousands of dollars in client projects. It will help you gain clarity around your niche and ideal client, strengthen your messaging, and give a marketing calendar so you can plan with intention.
02: NEED TO RETHINK YOUR PRICING
There is an age-old debate in the design biz community about including your pricing on your website or not. I’ll be honest, things can get really heated around this topic!
If you show your pricing on your website, it allows people to see exactly what the investment is so they can decide for themselves if it fits their budget. However, if your pricing is custom and personalized to every project, this may be difficult.
If you don’t show your pricing on your website, you may attract more client leads but will they be the right kind of leads? If you have lower budget options, this may be a fine strategy but it might not be a good fit for designers who want to position themselves with mid-level to premium pricing.
Considering you may want to include your pricing on your website, I recommend starting with a “starting at” price so people who are below your minimum budget can self-select themselves out. That way, you don’t have to worry about spending time answering emails and calls from prospective clients that don’t fit your budget range.
However, if you don't post your pricing on your website, you need to create a plan for how to handle the increased inquiries that aren't the right fit. Possible strategies could include offering a lower tier package, providing design templates, or charging for initial strategy calls before you book projects. Just keep testing to see what works best in each season of your business!
03: TALKING MORE ABOUT FEATURES THAN BENEFITS
One of the biggest mistakes new freelancers make is detailing every design element that their clients will get inside a package but never addressing the true benefits of each item.
I’ve seen this time and time again with my lovely SWD students before I review their services page. Our clients don’t necessarily care about eps files, but what they DO care about is how your services will move the needle in their biz.
You may offer a primary logo, secondary logo, and submark, but how do those things change your client’s business? How can they use these design elements to create a consistent and cohesive brand?
To take it one step further, what are the benefits of investing in design?
Does it allow them to save time when creating their own marketing materials because their templates are consistent? Do those free hours translate into more time that they can be with their family or prioritize business projects they love?
As a designer, you must take a deep dive into what your ideal client is motivated by and the true reason why they want to make an investment in their design.
What does design mean to them? What does design do for them?
Answering those questions will help you add more benefits to your website copywriting, which will create an emotional connection with your audience.
Whatever you do, don’t give up!
You may feel like throwing in the towel when your project inquiry stream runs dry, but don’t let this season discourage you.
Reinvest in defining your marketing strategy and make tweaks to your website that will allow you to attract more project inquiries from dream clients. Don’t be afraid to get specific in order to attract the right people.
Stay tuned for next week — where I’ll dive into why sometimes more inquiries doesn’t always equal better :).