The Key to Making Sales Without Being "Sales-y"
Editing has always been a passion of mine, but it took a lot of time for me to confidently monetize it.
This wasn't because I was worried that I wasn't good enough, or that I didn't have enough time and resources. It simply came down to a fear of selling.
After so many years of editing my friends and family members' writing for free, the thought of charging someone for my services just seemed weird and frankly a little frightening.
Ultimately, I pushed past my limiting beliefs and I'm so glad I did. Because guess what? It's entirely possible to sell without coming off as slimy or aggressive. Here are my tips for doing it successfully.
Spread the word to stay top-of-mind.
When it comes to promoting your services, there's no need to scream from the rooftops.
When relevant, mention your business during a conversation with a friend or co-worker.
For instance, I had a co-worker who mentioned that her boyfriend was looking for a new job. I casually mentioned that I offered editing services for resumes if he was interested, and she reached out.
Once you start getting comfortable with simply talking about your business, finding prospective clients becomes a lot easier than you ever imagined.
Grow your professional circle.
Research upcoming networking events in your niche, and start working them into your schedule.
These types of events are designed for making professional connections, and can be a great way to get your name out there. (Virtual events included!)
Facebook groups are another great resource for finding gigs if you're like me and offer a freelance service.
My favorite Facebook groups for finding work are Freelancing Females, Female Digital Nomads, and Digital Nomad Girls Community.
Periodically, I'll browse each group for new opportunities and respond to those that I can speak to.
Even if you're just starting out, get in the habit of keeping track of all your earnings to-date.
This will help you gain insight into where you're having the most success, and which tactics aren't moving the needle.
By prioritizing efforts into your success areas, you can take your sales game up a notch.
In addition to tracking your progress, staying on top of your earnings is a good way to avoid any mistakes down the road.
Tax filing can be especially tricky, so it's important to ensure that you're not overlooking anything.
One commonly misunderstood factor is sales tax nexus, which refers to the connection between a business and state or taxing jurisdiction.
Keeping a tax calendar can help ensure that you're staying compliant within your business.
Stop working for free.
When people reach out to you for support, they are doing so because they value your knowledge and trust your expertise.
Recognize this as a sales opportunity presenting itself to you.
So instead of going out of your way to help an acquaintance that you haven't seen in years, offer to share your rates.
Here's a general script I stick to:
Hey X! Thanks for reaching out. I'd be happy to share more details on my service and rates to see if there's an opportunity for us to work together. Let me know your thoughts!
Because at the end of the day, the simplest advice is also the most valuable: You'll never sell successfully if you keep handing out free favors.