With the growing instability of social media platforms, it’s become even more apparent than ever that we shouldn’t rely solely on social media for our business marketing. There are many ways to market your business outside of social media, and we’re going to look at eleven ways to market your freelance editing business.
In this episode, you’ll learn the following:
- 01:34 – A friendly reminder that we don’t own our social media accounts
- 03:30 – The best way to get your name out there
- 08:14 – How to ensure that you don’t end up on page 20 of a Google search
- 11:14 – Which marketing tool gains you access to another person’s audience
Algorithm? What’s an algorithm?
If you take nothing else from this episode, remember this: we don’t own our social media accounts. Social media companies can change hands, they can change their algorithms (which is a constant battle trying to figure out how to get our content in front of the right audience), the sites could go down, and a host of other things that are completely outside of our control. As much as social media can be a fantastic business tool, we should never rely on it 100% in our businesses.
Talk to everyone you meet
A great way to get your name out there is to tell everyone you meet that you’re an editor—the cashier at the grocery store, the barista you see every morning on your coffee run, your next-door neighbor. You might be surprised by how curious people get when you tell them you’re an editor. This sparks conversation and can lead to people referring you to others. So get out there and start talking!
Listen to the full episode to hear my nine other ways to market your business without using social media. And until next time, keep learning, keep growing, and know that you’ve got this!
To listen to the full episode, tune in and subscribe on your favorite podcast player. Be sure to leave a review and share with other editors who could benefit from joining our community!
The Modern Editor Podcast – Episode 14:
11 Way To Market Your Editing Business Outside Of Social Media
Tara Whitaker: [0:03] Welcome to The Modern Editor Podcast, where we talk about all things editing and what it’s like to run an editorial business in today’s world. I’m your host, Tara Whitaker. Let’s get to it.
Tara Whitaker: [0:18] Hello, welcome to today’s episode. We are going to be talking about eleven different ways that you can market your business that do not involve social media. Now, this is not a social-media-is-bad-or-wrong podcast episode. But rather, it’s a conversation just to get you thinking about other ways that you can market your business that might be more in alignment with your personality, or your values and/or your goals. So, I think right now—more than ever—we need to be taking a closer look at how we’re promoting our businesses, what tools and strategies work best for us, and who we are supporting. And some of these methods might not be up your alley; that’s totally okay. Just take what works for you and leave the rest. I wanted to give a good variety in here. So, for some introverts, some of these might not work, you know, things like that. So, take what works for you, leave the rest. So, we’re going to touch on eleven different ways. And these are in no particular order. And I do want to say one thing that sort of prompted me, among other things, to do this episode. And if you take nothing else from this, just remember this: we do not own our social media accounts. We don’t. We know that social media companies can change hands, they can change their algorithms, they don’t share how their algorithms work (so it’s a constant battle trying to figure out what’s going to work and what’s not), the sites could go down, and a host of other things that are completely outside of our control. So, as much as social media can be an amazing business tool we should never rely on it 100% in our businesses, because of those things I just mentioned and a whole other variety of reasons. So that’s what we’re gonna talk about today—alternative ideas outside of social media. So, let’s dive in.
Tara Whitaker: [2:20] Number one—and I’m going to give a shout-out to Erika for what I’m going to talk about with this tool or strategy, and that is word-of-mouth and referrals and repeat clients. So, I was talking to Erika, a lovely Freelance Editors Club member, the other day. We’re talking about marketing and social media and wondering how many editors actually get their clients on social media. Now, this is going to range from, you know, how long you’ve been in business to what social media platforms you’re using. So, it’s not an all-encompassing result here. But I posted a poll on my Instagram account, which, I know, we’re talking about off social media, and I’m posting this on Instagram, but just roll with it here. But I asked editors where they got their clients, and out of the 23 that responded, 18 (which is 78%) said they got their clients from word of mouth or referrals or repeat clients. And I do think that that is indicative across the board. Outside of social media, the respondents and in the industry, we know how important word of mouth is and getting those referrals. And it just reiterates that we need to get our names out there. And the best way to do that is word-of-mouth and referrals.
Tara Whitaker: [3:39] Now, there are some editors who offer referral incentives. So, if you refer someone to another editor, that editor will give you a cut of the project fee. I personally don’t do that, but I do know of other editors that do. Or there are communities out there, like the Freelance Editors Club, where we have a referral database that members can join, and there are no incentives involved. We just share jobs with each other that might not be a good fit for us or are not in our wheelhouse. So, we have that built into the club.
Tara Whitaker: [4:15] And this is going to lead into my number two, which is to tell literally everyone you meet you’re an editor. That’s how we get our names out there (one of the ways). And, you know, you can take this however you want—you can talk to the cashier at the grocery store, you can talk to the barista as they make your cup of coffee. I mean, you can tell anyone. I wouldn’t recommend just walking up to some random stranger and just saying, Hi. I’m an editor, but you know what I mean. Make it a little more organic and natural. You can, of course, go to networking events. I mean, just simply saying you’re an editor, I’ve found, sparks a lot of curiosity. People want to know, what does that mean? What have you edited? What, you know, what do you do? So, I think just saying those simple words, “I’m an editor” can really spark great conversation.
Tara Whitaker: [5:05] Number three: share your business cards or some fliers around your town. Again, with coffee shops, these are great for this, or local small businesses love to have, you know, one of those billboards up where you can post your fliers. Always ask permission, of course, before you do this, but it’s a great way to build a reputation in the community because I know we’re all online. But we do sometimes forget that we do have a local community as well.
Tara Whitaker: [5:32] And to go along with that, number four: swag. Everyone loves swag. You can wear a shirt with your business name; you can have magnets or stickers or pens or pencils. I mean, you know how many things you can stamp your name on or your business name. And it’s a great conversation starter as well. Again, ask permission if you’re going to leave them somewhere. But something small, something inexpensive. You don’t have to spend a bajillion dollars on it. But a good example that I like to share is when I was in college, I was on my campus programming board, and every time that we had an event, we wore our bright green shirts and huge letters on the back that said, “Ask me about tonight’s event.” And, of course, people are going to ask about it. They’re like, what is this bright green shirt and these huge words? But even if they didn’t ask, they learned that when they saw that shirt that something was going on that day. So, it’s kind of brand recognition. And it’s just, again, sparking that conversation to get people talking to you and to let people know what you do.
Tara Whitaker: [6:40] And again, to go along with this, number five sort of goes with number three with the business cards and flyers—you can work with your local library or a local bookstore. Maybe you could cohost an event or, again, with the flyers or the business cards, you can leave them there, or some way of working with them that would get you into your local community would be amazing.
Tara Whitaker: [7:03] Number six, you can have a freebie that leads into your email newsletter. Now, we just did a training on this inside the Freelance Editors Club about lead magnets (which is another name for a freebie or an opt-in). But it’s essentially just something that you offer on your website that helps your ideal client, and it gets them onto your email list so you can continue to serve them. Now you might have heard in the online business world out there that, you know, we don’t own our social media accounts. But we do “own our email lists.” Now, of course, we’re still using a service for the email list, so it can go down. And you know, we’ve all had that happen. But we can control when we talk to them—to our email list—the content we put out. We’re not fighting with an algorithm, you know, any of that stuff. We are in complete control of how we speak and who sees those emails, right? So, that is a great way to market your business. We also talked about email newsletters, too, which is a completely different podcast episode topic, so we’ll just leave it at that for now.
Tara Whitaker: [8:14] Number seven is SEO, which stands for search engine optimization. Now, this is where you can use keywords that your ideal clients are searching for online so that your website shows up in those search results. For us, a lot of it is going to be editor, editing, romance editor, fantasy editor, you know, etc. And again, that could be another podcast episode as well. But it’s a great way to get your website showing up on Google (or whatever search engine you’re using) so that you’re not buried, you know, 20 pages deep when someone is searching for an editor because chances are nobody’s going to page 20. Right? We’re only checking the first couple of pages, if that. So, that’s another great tool.
Tara Whitaker: [9:01] Number eight is your email signature. This is a super easy way to promote your business. You can find very simple templates on Canva that, you know, are pretty that have your picture, if you’d like, and your name, your business name, your social media profiles (yes, I know, we still add those), you know, your website link. And you could even add a short little blurb about what you do, or maybe you offer free consultations, and you post your booking link for that or, or you post your freebie in your email signature. That’s a great place to put that, too.
Tara Whitaker: [9:40] Number nine: you can pitch yourself to podcasts or start your own. Podcasts are continuously growing by leaps and bounds because, again, it’s a way for people—business owners, content creators, what have you—to put their content out there in a way that they can, for the most part, control, right? Again, we’re not fighting an algorithm or seeing who’s seeing what. It’s pretty, we’ll say “fair,” (we’ll put fair in quotes). But lots of people listen to podcasts now. They’re great for on the go, they’re great for multitasking. They’re great for accessibility. So, either starting your own, which is near and dear to my heart, or pitching yourself to other podcasts, is a great way to get your name and your business out there.
Tara Whitaker: [10:35] All right, number ten: you can speak at events or conferences. Now, this might not be for everyone. But speaking gigs are a great way, again, to talk about your business. They don’t have to be, you know, these mega conferences with millions of people. They can be very small; they can be local events at your library, your bookstore; they can be editing industry events. I mean, the sky’s the limit. But speaking is a great way—I keep saying great way. When I get this transcript, I’m going to count how many times I said great way. It’s a lovely way to get your name out there.
Tara Whitaker: [11:14] And last but not least, number eleven is you can collaborate with other editors or other business owners to team up and offer something to your clients. It could be some sort of special offering. Maybe it’s a package of some sort or cohost a webinar, create a workbook, create a course, anything! Because then, once you collaborate, you are getting access to that other person’s audience and vice versa. So, you’re broadening your reach, so to speak. And you’re still serving your potential clients.
Tara Whitaker: [11:51] So, there you have it. There are eleven ways that you can market your business that do not involve social media. And the list is by no means exhaustive, but it’s a great starting point. It should help you get the creative juices flowing, get your mind going on what you can do outside of Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, etc., that, you know, might feel more natural to you, might feel more in alignment. And we talk about marketing all the time in the Freelance Editors Club. So, if you are interested in joining our community, please check us out at tarawhitaker.com/club or feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I’d love to chat with you more. So, until next time, keep learning, keep growing, and know that you’ve got this!
Tara Whitaker: [12:42] Thank you so much for tuning into today’s episode. If you enjoy The Modern Editor Podcast, I would be so grateful if you left us a review over on iTunes. And as always, you can head to tarawhitaker.com to connect with me and stay in touch. We’ll chat again soon.