Top 7 Ways to Find Freelance Clients Outside of Upwork

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Welcome, my Freelancer friends. I am Mike Volkin lead instructor Freelancer masterclass. And today we're going to be discussing the top seven ways to find freelance work outside of up work. Why am I doing that? Because so many freelancers are relying on Upwork as their main source of income, which can be tough to do. I mean, don't get me wrong. Upwork is great. It's my favorite freelancing platform on the planet. But it's really difficult to sustain long term high ticket clients, just by utilizing Upwork. So there are some low hanging fruits out there and don't get me wrong. There's lots more ways than just seven

To find clients outside of Upwork, I have found no less than three dozen different ways to find clients outside of Upwork. But right here, I'm going to list for you the top seven ways that I think that you can find freelance work outside of Upwork in the easiest possible way, meaning you don't have to be a specialist in any one area. You don't have to be a marketing specialist. You don't have to have a specialist and a specialization in a certain industry. Okay. So let's get to it. The first way I would recommend is to utilize LinkedIn. But there's a Chrome extension called LinkedIn helper. Alright.

Linked helper is a way to automate your LinkedIn recruiting. So what you can do is easily friend and network and message with very targeted people that meet your exact persona of the people you're trying to attract to become clients. Now, one

You get them. The idea here is once you get them in your network, then they'll see your postings you can message with them back and forth freely and start a relationship. It's a very low cost way to not really fully automate LinkedIn prospecting, but do it in a very targeted way that saves a ton of time. Okay. So utilize linked helper for LinkedIn, it's a Chrome extension. And another way that you can get clients outside of Upwork is job listing sites. You know, there's we work remotely Angel list, remote co flex jobs, I mean, just google remote work remote job postings, and you'll see a dozen different sites I list I just listed a couple of the most popular but now true, a lot of these sites are looking for full time work but as I've mentioned in previous videos, what you do is you tell them listen, I'm a freelancer, I have the flexibility to work as many or as little hours as you want. You don't need to carry the expenses and legalities of holding a

employee, and just by those couple arguments there, they're more than likely going to give you work or not more than likely, but they are more than likely to see your point of view and give you work. And the great thing about freelance work is that a lot of people don't really take into account or mentioned that often is that there's a really low barrier to entry for trying a freelancer, when you hire an employee for full-time work, or even part time work, you have to go through the whole process of submitting the paperwork, registering it with the right entities, right with freelance work, it's like, Hey, here's 10 hours of work, tell me what you can do or show me what you can do. Alright, so with these job listing sites, you can say, Hey, listen, give me a shot. I'm just asking for 10 hours of work. And we'll go from there. And a lot of times when I do that, that's just enough to be able to capture their interest. Say, okay, Mike, you know, let's, let's start thinking about some more consistent work here. So utilize job listing sites to your advantage.

Another thing you can do

To find freelance work outside of Upwork is direct response funnels. Now we talked about

an entire class on direct response funnel funnels at Freelancer masterclass. And if you're not a student, go ahead and join, because we go into a lot of detail on this. But direct response funnels are very effective to get high ticket clients I've talked about in the class, my specific example and I've had several but the most recent one is where I was targeting insurance agents and I set up a basically productize something for them. I created this marketing funnel for them, and I gave it a name. I created a webinar and I started targeting them online. So the very goal of a direct response marketing funnel is to set up a paid ad that solves a particular problem. Okay, the paid ad, states a particular problem that a certain industry or a client might have maybe a job position, and that landing page shows that you're the expert to solve

That problem, and it could give that webinar or an Ebook or something that shows you're the expert. And then basically they submit information to either sign up for the webinar or get the Ebook. And that gives you the lead, right? So then you can follow up with them accordingly through drip emails or phone call or a personal meeting, whatever. But that's a direct response funnel. It's very targeted to one specific problem and one specific solution. And all you really need to do no matter what type of industry you're in wedding planning, writing.

Anything I saw a direct response funnel for someone who teaches others how to be paid speakers, all right, there's anything you can think of you can set up a direct response funnel because as a consultant or as a freelancer, you solve a problem for somebody that's the reason why they hire you. So if you can make a funnel around that, and then specifically target your exact persona online.

You know, the stronger the funnel is, the stronger the pain point is, the more you can charge and I use that example with the insurance agent. I was charging $10,000

For a funnel, and I got several orders in and really the great thing about this funnel is, is that when they buy something from you, it's highly repeatable, meaning you don't have to recreate the wheel for every single client, you solve that problem for the client and that same problem that another client has to solve. You go about it the same exact way so that the costs are very low as well.

So utilize direct response funnels. And another thing that you can do to find clients outside of Upwork is cold emails. Now I know you might think this is spam, don't be spamming. I get those emails every single day from people from India, Bangladesh, Pakistan. Hello sir greeting of the day we are top SEO company we can get you guaranteed. I mean, Google SEO rankings, I could just recite these up. I mean, those just go straight into my spam box. And if they don't, I just mark them as spam. I encourage you to do the same. But cold emails can be much more targeted much more personal. Just because you got an email address doesn't mean you have to spend

Somebody. So let's just say you buy an email list, which I don't necessarily recommend, I recommend you get them manually. You could do that through email hunter or some other website you get. If you know someone you want to target and you need their email, I just go to email hunter and type in what company they work for in their name. And they'll give you a probability of what their email address is based on the company structure of emails like first name dot last name at insert company name. com, you know, so just because you have an email doesn't mean you have to spam them. So you write them an email, say, Listen, I've been keeping my eye on your company for a while. I think I can help out here. Do you have any positions available? You have any need for me to do this or that? They might say no, it doesn't matter because now you end the conversation with and by the way, most likely, you're going to get a No, that's okay. Very rarely, I don't think I've ever gotten on the first outreach of a cold email a job just like yes, let's get going. You know, let's, here's some money. There's always a little bit of relationship building, but the

Gonna Say no most likely and what you do say would you mind if I friended you on LinkedIn, that's, that's the only thing you need because now that you have them as a link LinkedIn Connect, you can message them directly in the future they'll see all your posts whenever they get on the LinkedIn. You can target them with ads later on. You've got them in your network now you can begin to develop a relationship which is the whole point of a cold email. Okay, the next thing you do is hit up your personal networks so yes, you've got your social networks etc, etc. But technically the real moneymaker here is in your first-degree network what LinkedIn calls your first degree but it's your personal contact database, the ones that you would most likely talk to on every six months or less via email or maybe they're in your phone you have your their phone number.

I don't personally recommend reaching out to friends and family in fact in Freelancer masterclass, we have a whole class called the friends and family cannot

I am, I guess you could say, in on the side of not doing this but if you're just starting out as a freelancer or you haven't been meeting your income goals, this is a low hanging fruit for us happen to tell your friends and family you're available for work and if anybody they know that needs a writer needs a designer needs to needs to know how to do public speaking going back to that previous example, that you are available for work most likely if you do this consistently, you know, once a month, twice a month to your personal networks a personal message, not a group, BCC where everybody gets or even worse seed you know 99 emails in the subject or in the CC line and just send out a blast email I'm talking about a personal in my Hey, I'm going to talk to you a little while want to let you know I'm looking to pick up some extra work if you know anybody that needs some copywriting please email me something simple, short into the sweet, short and sweet and to the point. If you do that consistently should be able to get about 10 clients a year doing that. Okay, on average, I know

There's somebody who does it full time, that's all they do is network to their personal personal database. Another thing you can do to get clients outside of Upwork is going to events. There are events everywhere. No matter what

city you live in, there are events that have your prospective clients and nothing is better than a face to face meeting. I don't care how advanced technology gets with online meetings and video conferencing face to face meeting, being able to look at somebody in the face, sit down with them, have a coffee, shake their hand, whatever is the best type of events you can go to. And it doesn't have to be something where

the prospects or they're looking to buy something. It could just be a local Kiwanis Club, a local republican or democratic club, it could be anything where your ideal client is. And then you're forming that relationship and then they get inside your personal network. Going back to the previous example I was using. So you just the goal here is to get them inside your personal network. They don't have to be your best friend. It has to be someone who knows you by name and knows what you do.

Okay. And number seven, Quora. Yes, it's a question and answer site. I have a love and hate relationship with but there's a lot of, you know, I'll leave my qualms about Cora added us, but I'll say there's a lot of junk on Quora. But if you set up your core alerts, and you're able to answer questions that people have, you will drive more authoritative traffic to your website, and people will see you as an expert. It doesn't happen right away. But if you happen to hit a question that you answer thoroughly, and it gets upvoted, and that question gets a lot of visibility, and you'll see the stats right in the question, it says, you know, hundred thousand people following this question or then and you're the top answer, you'll get a lot of visibility and I've gotten about I've answered maybe about 200 Cora questions in the last year and maybe a year and a half, and maybe five or seven of them are driving 80% of traffic, so you're going to waste a lot of time, but your authoritative

You're your authority will increase over time and those few percentages of  those questions that just really go viral in your industry and get up and your answers get uploaded, they'll give you a lot of visibility thousands and thousands of pages. So utilize Cora if you don't have an account already. Okay, I hope these tips help Good luck.

Thank you for joining us for freelancing school. Be sure to subscribe and get the latest updates on the show. Go to freelancing masterclass calm to become a master freelancer.

how to find freelance clients

How do you find freelance clients? What are the ways of finding new freelance clients? Ah, that’s the magic question so many freelancers ask. Most freelancers just go to Upwork but that won’t build you a very big freelance business. In this post, I describe 7 other ways to find freelance clients.

We’re going to be discussing the top seven ways to find freelance work outside of up work. So many freelancers are relying on Upwork as their main source of income, which can be tough to do. 

Upwork is great. It’s my favorite freelancing platform on the planet. But it’s really difficult to sustain long term high ticket clients, just by utilizing Upwork. So there are some low hanging fruits out there and don’t get me wrong. There’s lots more ways than just seven. You can start with these seven to know how to get freelance clients. 

To find clients outside of Upwork, I have found no less than three dozen different ways to find clients outside of Upwork. But right here, I’m going to list for you the top seven ways that I think that you can find freelance work outside of Upwork in the easiest possible way, meaning you don’t have to be a specialist in any one area. You don’t have to have a specialist and a specialization in a certain industry. So let’s get to it! 

1. LinkedIn

The first way I would recommend is to utilize LinkedIn. But there’s a Chrome extension called LinkedIn helper. Linked helper is a way to automate your LinkedIn recruiting. So what you can do is easily friend and network and message with very targeted people that meet your exact persona of the people you’re trying to attract to become clients. Freelancers who know how to find freelance work use LinkedIn effectively. 

The idea here is once you get them in your network, then they’ll see your postings you can message with them back and forth freely and start a relationship. It’s a very low cost way to not really fully automate LinkedIn prospecting, but do it in a very targeted way that saves a ton of time. Okay. So utilize linked helper for LinkedIn, it’s a Chrome extension. 

2. Job Listing Sites

Another way that you can get clients outside of Upwork is job listing sites. You know, there are weworkremotely.com, angelist.com, flexjobs.com, and many more. I mean, just google remote work remote job postings, and you’ll see a dozen different sites. I just listed a couple of the most popular ones. A lot of these sites are looking for full time work but what you do is you tell them, ‘listen, I’m a freelancer, I have the flexibility to work as many or as little hours as you want. You don’t need to carry the expenses and legalities of holding an employee.’ 

And just by those couple arguments there, they’re more than likely going to give you work. And the great thing about freelance work is that a lot of people don’t really take into account or mentioned that often is that there’s a really low barrier to entry for trying a freelancer. When you hire an employee for full-time work, or even part time work, you have to go through the whole process of submitting the paperwork, registering it with the right entities, and so on. 

With freelance work, it’s like, Hey, here’s 10 hours of work, tell me what you can do or show me what you can do. Alright, so with these job listing sites, you can say, Hey, listen, give me a shot. I’m just asking for 10 hours of work. And we’ll go from there. And a lot of times when I do that, that’s just enough to be able to capture their interest. Say, okay, Mike, you know, let’s, let’s start thinking about some more consistent work here. So utilize job listing sites to your advantage.

3. Direct Response Funnels

To find freelance work outside of Upwork is direct response funnels. Now we talked about an entire class on direct response funnel funnels at Freelancer masterclass. And if you’re not a student, go ahead and join, because we got into a lot of detail on this. 

Direct response funnels are very effective to get high ticket clients I’ve talked about in the class, my specific example and I’ve had several but the most recent one is where I was targeting insurance agents and I set up a basically productize something for them. I created this marketing funnel for them, and I gave it a name. I created a webinar and I started targeting them online. So the very goal of a direct response marketing funnel is to set up a paid ad that solves a particular problem. 

Okay, the paid ad, states a particular problem that a certain industry or a client might have maybe a job position, and that landing page shows that you’re the expert to solve that problem, and it could give that webinar or an Ebook or something that shows you’re the expert. And then basically they submit information to either sign up for the webinar or get the Ebook. And that gives you the lead, right? So then you can follow up with them accordingly through drip emails or phone call or a personal meeting, whatever. But that’s a direct response funnel. It’s very targeted to one specific problem and one specific solution. And all you really need to do no matter what type of industry you’re in wedding planning, writing.

Anything I saw a direct response funnel for someone who teaches others how to be paid speakers, all right, there’s anything you can think of you can set up a direct response funnel because as a consultant or as a freelancer, you solve a problem for somebody that’s the reason why they hire you. So if you can make a funnel around that, and then specifically target your exact persona online.

You know, the stronger the funnel is, the stronger the pain point is, the more you can charge and I use that example with the insurance agent. I was charging $10,000

For a funnel, and I got several orders in and really the great thing about this funnel is, is that when they buy something from you, it’s highly repeatable, meaning you don’t have to recreate the wheel for every single client, you solve that problem for the client and that same problem that another client has to solve. You go about it the same exact way so that the costs are very low as well. So utilize direct response funnels. 

4. Cold Emails

Another thing that you can do to find clients outside of Upwork is cold emails. Now I know you might think this is spam, don’t be spamming. I get those emails every single day from people from India, Bangladesh, Pakistan. Hello sir greeting of the day we are top SEO company we can get you guaranteed. I mean, Google SEO rankings, I could just recite these up. I mean, those just go straight into my spam box. And if they don’t, I just mark them as spam. I encourage you to do the same. But cold emails can be much more targeted and much more personal. 

Let’s just say you buy an email list, which I don’t necessarily recommend, I recommend you get them manually. You could do that through email hunter or some other website you get. If you know someone you want to target and you need their email, I just go to email hunter and type in what company they work for in their name. And they’ll give you a probability of what their email address is based on the company structure of emails like first name dot last name at insert company name. com, you know, so just because you have an email doesn’t mean you have to spam them. 

So you write them an email, say, Listen, I’ve been keeping my eye on your company for a while. I think I can help out here. Do you have any positions available? Do you have any need for me to do this or that? They might say no, it doesn’t matter because now you end the conversation with and by the way, most likely, you’re going to get a No, that’s okay. Very rarely, I don’t think I’ve ever gotten on the first outreach of a cold email for a job just like yes, let’s get going. You know, let’s, here’s some money. There’s always a little bit of relationship building, but they will say no most likely and what you do say would you mind if I friended you on LinkedIn, that’s, that’s the only thing you need because now that you have them as a link LinkedIn Connect, you can message them directly in the future they’ll see all your posts whenever they get on LinkedIn. 

You can target them with ads later on. You’ve got them in your network now you can begin to develop a relationship which is the whole point of a cold email. 

5. Personal Networks

The next thing you do is hit up your personal networks. You’ve got your social networks like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc. But technically the real moneymaker here is in your first-degree network. LinkedIn is your first degree but it’s your personal contact database, the ones that you would most likely talk to every six months or less via email or maybe they’re in your phone you have their phone number.

I don’t personally recommend reaching out to friends and family. In fact in Freelancer masterclass, We have a whole class called the friends and family cannot bring leads.

I guess you could say, in on the side of not doing this but if you’re just starting out as a freelancer or you haven’t been meeting your income goals, this is a low hanging fruit for us happen to tell your friends and family you’re available for work and if anybody they know who might need your services, then you can leverage that connection to get more jobs. 

Reach out once a month, twice a month to your personal networks a personal message, not a group, BCC where everybody gets or even worse seed you know 99 emails in the subject or in the CC line and just send out a blast email I’m talking about a personal in my Hey, I’m going to talk to you a little while want to let you know I’m looking to pick up some extra work if you know anybody that needs some copywriting please email me something simple, short into the sweet, short and sweet and to the point. If you do that consistently you should be able to get about 10 clients a year doing that. 

There’s somebody who does it full time, that’s all they do is network to their personal database. That guy is on a different level and finding freelance work without that much prospecting.

6. Attend Events

Another thing you can do to get clients outside of Upwork is going to events. There are events everywhere. Attend these events if you wonder where to find clients. No matter what city you live in, there are events that have your prospective clients and nothing is better than a face to face meeting. I don’t care how advanced technology gets with online meetings and video conferencing face to face meetings, being able to look at somebody in the face, sit down with them, have a coffee, shake their hand, whatever is the best type of event you can go to. 

And it doesn’t have to be something where the prospects or they’re looking to buy something. It could just be a local Kiwanis Club, a local republican or democratic club, it could be anything where your ideal client is. And then you’re forming that relationship and then they get inside your personal network. Going back to the previous example I was using. So you just the goal here is to get them inside your personal network. 

They don’t have to be your best friend. It has to be someone who knows you by name and knows what you do.

7. Quora


And number seven, Quora. Yes, it’s a question and answer site. I have a love and hate relationship but there’s a lot of, you know, I’ll leave my qualms about Cora added us, but I’ll say there’s a lot of junk on Quora. But if you set up your core alerts, and you’re able to answer questions that people have, you will drive more authoritative traffic to your website, and people will see you as an expert. I agree, this is not the best way to get clients as a freelancer, but worth giving a shot. 

It doesn’t happen right away. But if you happen to hit a question that you answer thoroughly, and it gets upvoted, and that question gets a lot of visibility, and you’ll see the stats right in the question, it says, you know, hundred thousand people following this question or then and you’re the top answer, you’ll get a lot of visibility and I’ve gotten about I’ve answered maybe about 200 Cora questions in the last year and maybe a year and a half, and maybe five or seven of them are driving 80% of traffic, so you’re going to waste a lot of time, but your authoritative

Your authority will increase over time and those few percentages of those questions that just really go viral in your industry and get up and your answers get uploaded, they’ll give you a lot of visibility thousands and thousands of pages. So utilize Cora if you don’t have an account already. 

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