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DTP Book5 ways to get clients
for your digital business

“As the game changes, so must the players.”
—Barbara A. Fanson, author
Start and Run a Desktop Publishing Business

Where do digital artists and social marketers find work in the new, digital industry?

Digital artists or social marketers are looking for clients in the same place desktop publishers are looking. Though desktop publishers want to produce artwork that will be printed, and digital artists want to produce communications that will be distributed electronically, they’re both looking for the same client. A paying client.

Start with smaller businesses that may not have a digital specialist on staff. You could write and design email newsletters or promotions and send them out. You could design a cover page for a social media platform: Facebook, LinkedIn, a blog, or whatever. You could provide social marketing with timely posts on their social media platform. Are you capable of editing videos for YouTube or photographing products for Instagram? Are you familiar with layout software programs and the printing industry? Make a list of all the services you could offer to a business.

Now, how do you “tell” those businesses about your business? What is the best way of promoting your own business?

Increase online exposure
Firstly, increase your own online exposure. Do you have a blog or social media platform for your business? Be sure to add tags for search engines. It’s good practice and you need a portfolio or web addresses to show.

Do you need a web page?
Secondly, do you have a web page? What better way to show prospective clients what you can do. Some social media edutainers have found that they don’t need a web page because they already have a blog, a Facebook page, or other social media page.

Print a leave-behind business card or brochure
Thirdly, do you need a business card, brochure, postcard or print newsletter to leave behind? You never know where you might meet “the next client”. You need to hand out a printed piece so prospective client doesn’t forgetyour name, phone number, or email address. It Business Carddoesn’t have to mass printed. Just print 10 copies on a good colour printer or photocopier on nice paper or card stock.

Network. You never know where you might meet “the next client”. In the park, at a meeting, a skating arena, church, or your child’s school event. I met one of my biggest clients after church during coffee time—I didn’t even drink coffee!

Author Barbara Fanson recommends memorizing a 15-word introduction about yourself to use when networking. “Hi, I’m Barbara Fanson. I specialize in email and print promotions.”

You can tell by the other person’s reaction whether they’re interested in your business or not. If they don’t seem interested, move on. If they are interested or they work in administration at a company, reach into your left pocket and pull out a business card. “You need your right hand to shake hands, so put business cards in the other pocket,” adds Fanson.

Mail a promotion
Mail out direct mail packages or postcards to prospective clients. There are two types of snail mail promotions: addressed and unaddressed admail. You could search the Internet to get the name and address of a local business owner that you would like to work for. Send him at least 2 things in a business envelope: a letter of introduction and a business card. You could also add a brochure, newsletter or post card.

Digital Digest PicIf you wish to target a small industrial or business area, you could produce a postcard and have the post office deliver them to a specific postal or zip code. An unaddressed admail does not need an envelope or specific names. Get prices from the post office before you start. Ask how many businesses are in that area so you know how many postcards to print. The post office can also provide design and printing services, in addition to distribution.

In the next few issues of DigitalDigest, we’ll be exploring email promotions, social media content, marketing ideas, and design tips. To subscribe to DigitalDigest, our e-newsletter: DigitalDigest Subscribe

Barbara Fanson is author of Start & Run a Desktop Publishing Business, published by Self-Counsel Press. You can order the book and CD for more promotional ideas and how to run your freelance business: www.self-counsel.com

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