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Thursday, May 19, 2011

In-Person Prospecting: One Reader's Approach

Just because you're not into phone prospecting doesn't mean you can't engage in courageous self-marketing as a writer. In person networking through professional organizations, Meet-Ups and trade events in your specialty area are another great way to get your face out there.

Here's how one brave freelancer used a community event to approach marketing pros in her niche:

I was at a street fair recently, and a community hospital was exhibiting. I had tried to reach them with a letter of introduction, and didn't get anywhere. I asked one of the people working at the booth if they were from the marketing department, and not shockingly, they were. I said I was a medical writer and asked if they needed or used freelancers. The guy couldn't hand me his card fast enough, asking who else I wrote for. He said to follow up with him the next day, which of course I did by 9:30 a.m. We'll see if it turns into anything, but it was a very easy way to approach a potential client. I'm going to try it at future street fairs!

One huge advantage of prospecting in person: marketing research shows that clients are far more likely to hire someone they've met in the flesh.

Note: if you're actively cold calling, prospects will often dish about live networking opportunities in your area. As someone relatively new to Fort Collins, I've found this to be a huge windfall.

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