James Santos is a visual artist and designer. He’s done work for major companies as an employee of a company, but now he’s in the process of becoming a freelancer. He’s proud of the experience he’s gained working for larger clients but now he’s looking to build up his own business. What’s the best way to transition and get new clients?

The best way is to approach potential clients and show them what you can do for them by making samples. For instance, pick a business you’d like to work with. Take a look at what they’re currently putting online, and how it’s working. Is their content valuable, interesting, or funny? Is it something you would share with your own friends and family? Would you choose to follow their account? If not, why not? Jot those things down.

Next, create something that you think they would be excited to share on their social media pages. Then, go in with the things you jotted down, introduce yourself and position yourself as an advisor. Start by saying something like “when people decide to follow a business they’re looking for certain things, such as (mention what you jotted down.) I can help you in those areas, I’ve got a ton of great ideas, and here are some samples of my work.”

James know what he looks for when he decides to follow a page. To him, it’s important that the page by aesthetically pleasing and flows well. You might be looking for other things in a page – I look for entertainment value – but whatever you’re looking for, others are looking for it too. Discuss those points with the business owner, tell them some of your ideas, show them how they can incorporate that into their marketing, and what the results will be.

Major key: Give ideas away for free, but charge for implementing those ideas.

You’re probably thinking “I worked hard on those ideas! Why would I give them away for free?” It’s natural to think that way. But ideas are cheap, just like talk. Someone may have a million great ideas, but without the hard work and effort to accomplish them, what good are those ideas? Your goal is to find someone who recognizes the potential value of your ideas, and more significantly, the value of hiring you to implement them.

Want to see more of James’ work? You can find James at: