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I hate to admit this, but I've been that freelancer.

It's such a rookie mistake that, if not corrected, becomes a continual mistake long after you're a rookie.

Part of my mistake was feeling like if I pushed to hard, I'd come off a "pushy sales person." After all, they already expressed interest... no need to push too much and potentially lose the customers, right?

Wrong.

Your suggested change in response may seem subtle, but it's the act of taking more control of the situation to help guide a willing prospect.

They have no clue about a specific solution... that's why they're contacting you. And while they may not realize it, they're wanting/hoping for someone to confidently come back to them with that solution and a feeling that you're the right person whose going to walk them through the process.

Yeah, we've all been there Mike, even me :(

I've had a couple of situations that I was so sure I would get the business, I decided that I'd make the potential client work to get a hold of me - bad idea. One of the two clients I did get, the other one took off...I don't blame her. As freelancers, if we don't take the initiative to get business, someone else will.

I've often avoided calling people for fear of being pushy, but I know of several occasions where I was the buyer and I just got busy so I didn't contact the vendor/freelancer - sadly, they didn't call me back either.

I think it's important to be sensitive to other people's privacy, but I've found most freelancers could be a little more aggressive in contacting potential clients and it wouldn't upset anyone.

As always, thanks for visiting, I hope things are going well for you. Always feel free to stop by - have a great 2011!

Great advice. It's so easy, as a freelance designer, to get caught up so much in your craft that you forget YOU are also the PR person and the Sales Rep. We definitely can afford to let any opportunities slip through our grasp.

Hey, good to hear from you Lakia, hope all is well with you! You're right - too much competition out there to be sloppy when it comes to this. Like most other freelancers out there, sales isn't exactly my favorite thing to do. But no sales = no freelancing :)

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    A very small sample of the actual illustrations drawn for the Being a Starving Artist Sucks, and Verbal Kung Fu for Freelancers book. The illustrations were done by: Matt Hein, Rich Arnold and Carlos Ponce - 3 outstanding designers.