You’ve come to the right place!
We at Social Media Pro have trained well over 30,000 social media managers to become business owners and we have helped many of these students find or land their first social media client.
Landing your first client should not ever stress you out to the point of throwing in the towel.
We’ve got you!
Today, we are offering ideas for the best places to find your first social media client!
What Can You Offer Your First Social Media Client?
Before you can work with any new, or first client, you need to answer the following questions about what you can offer this client.
Preparation for that first meeting includes knowing yourself and your own goals well, and understanding your offerings – and your limitations!
- Are your own social media accounts set up and active?
- Do you have a portfolio, or a website?
- What skills do you have that will help you be a successful social media manager?
- Do you have any training, schooling or certification that will help you? Is it listed on LinkedIn and your website?
- What will you be charging?
- Who is your ideal client; who is your avatar?
- What is your preferred niche: will you offer ‘exclusives’ like Facebook ads, organic content creation, blog writing, LinkedIn group management, just to name a few niches.
Once you have some of these questions answered, move onto what you expect from this first social media client.
What Do You Expect From Your First Social Media Client?
I am just going to throw the truth out there.
ALL social media managers at one point had a ‘first client’!
We all fumbled at times, messed up and most likely, under-charged them! We over-delivered, we were scared, felt lonely and overwhelmed!
Just so you know; if you are willing to put in the work to get past that, this is an amazing career opportunity!
The question remains; what do you expect from this first social media client?
If you expect:
- A ton of money, you might be disappointed.
- Experience and a chance to prove yourself, that’s a better prospective.
- An opportunity to show off new skills and help a local business succeed using social media, that’s fantastic.
Have realistic expectations about what you might earn, and what hours you have available to get started!
A Direct Approach To Find Your First Social Media Client
A direct approach includes making posts on social media to celebrate the “start of your new business”, adding your new certification or training to your bio and LinkedIn profile, and yes, asking family and friends for direct referrals!
With these direct referrals be clear about what social media services you are offering, who your ideal client is and ask to be introduced as a ‘social media marketing business’ to their direct connections.
That will make you look and sound legit and reputable! Looking to fellow small business owners as potential clients is a great way to get started.
Alternatively, use your own ‘warm audience’ to prospect. Make a list of all the places you frequent – think hairdresser, bagel shop, pizza place, law offices, sports team, realtor, hardware store, physical therapy – and go in and talk to the business owners or managers! Be enthusiastic, and clear on what you offer and ask for a short meeting.
Inbound Leads Approach To Find Your First Social Media Client
At the same time as putting yourself out there by asking for the referral, make sure you are working on your inbound leads!
Create content for your ideal target audience; how-to videos and blog articles and post those to your social media profiles, along with other content your create or share!
Become that expert in social media to your online and offline community and give, give, give.
What To Do When You Can Not Find a First Social Media Client
- Whine (or wine).
- Beg, steal or manipulate!
Instead, go to your communities and ask questions.
- Get experienced social media managers to tell you how they found their first social media client.
- Find out how these freelancers got started.
- Inquire about their amazing portfolios and how they got their start; who gave them their first break!
If you are not currently plugged into such a community, come join ours!
Best Places To Find New Social Media Clients
This is a FAQ in our industry, so let’s get to it. If you are looking for that first social media client, visit these ‘places’!
- Local businesses (even better if you are already familiar with them!)
- Marketing Conferences because… well, you know!
- Chamber of Commerce Events
- In-person Networking Event (pre-COVID)
- Virtual Networking Events (during the pandemic)
- Family, friends and friends of friends!
- Facebook (groups, local pages, personal connections, messenger)
- LinkedIn… are you seeing the pattern? Use social media to connect to business owners!
- Your Blog!
- Giving swag to local business owners
- Cold emails
- Current work
- Non-profits (volunteer at events, or sit on the board)
- Train, planes and automobiles! (i.e. talk to people and make connections!)
- Craigslist, Upwork, Fiverr or any other job board site.
It comes down to these three things:
- Know what you offer
- Tell people what you offer
- Share how you can make their life better, easier, less complicated, etc
The trust factor is important, therefore it makes good sense to start your search for your first social media clients among people who already know, like (or love) and trust you!
Best of luck finding that first social media client! Once you have that one signed, you're up and running!
I am a Certified Social Media Manager, Strategist, International Keynote Speaker, Organic Specialist and Agile marketer! Blogging is my creative outlet. Running, hiking and skiing are how I recharge. You'll recognize me on stage and online by my always present orange glasses, a nod to my Dutch heritage.