Local video clients may feel few and far between. But there are plenty of great ways to attract clients in your area that are highly relevant and willing to pay. In this blog we’ll be breaking down ten surefire ways to attract new clients that are in your local area. They require creativity, tenacity, and ongoing work, but will result in your best clients yet!
Reach Out to Local Brick-and-Mortar Businesses
Local restaurants, gyms, repair shops, and bakeries probably don’t do a ton of marketing. Maybe some local fliers, but probably nothing as crazy as a video for social media. Pitch your services to your local businesses directly the next time you’re in. Many will brush aside the idea of doing a video as they won’t see the value in it, and most probably haven’t even considered the idea of doing something professional like that.
Reach Out to Online Businesses that are Locally Based
Many of your local businesses may be online-only and you might not find them by going around to brick-and-mortar stores. Look on social media for companies based in your town and reach out to them. If they operate online then they may be more open to working on a digital video. They will already be familiar with the online content landscape, at least a little bit, and might appreciate your professional portfolio.
Keep Tabs on Local Events
Local events, whether its private events like weddings and birthdays or public events like festivals and fairs, usually need video coverage. Some of these won’t be the most cinematic and they might involve long hours, but a paying client is a paying client! Looks for these opportunities and jump on them, as many of the event coordinators will already have a videographer in mind. If your friends and family know that you’re a videographer seeking local clients, they may be able to connect you with people they know who are putting on events and need a videographer.
Run Online Ads
Digital advertising is incredibly powerful and allows for a high level of targeting. Through ads on Google, Facebook, and more, you can target people specifically in your local area, and even people that meet a certain demographic. If you’re looking for wedding clients, you can target people who are in a relationship, or interesting in wedding services. Ads are a powerful tool when you know who you’re looking for. Finding clients online is one of the most common ways in the modern, remote world. Experiment with different methods to find out what works for you. Ramit Sethi shares some excellent tips in this article for finding new freelance clients online fast.
Leverage Local SEO
Local SEO is the art of using search engine optimization for a local business. We actually wrote an entire guide to local SEO, so give that a read for a more detailed breakdown. Generally, you will want to optimize for a keyword phrase such as “Boston video production” or “videographer in Boston”. When someone needs a video done, they’ll go to Google to find someone who can do it for them, and optimizing your website with SEO is a surefire way to show up in these specific search results. Just make sure your portfolio is set up first!
Ask Former Clients
Former customers can be a great boon. But reaching out to these former customers can be a double bonus. If they had a good experience with you, they could have further need for your services. But if not, you should ask them if they have any friends or family who do. Chances are, someone knows someone who is getting married, is running an event, or has some other need for video services. Just checking in with these people is a great way to find local video clients!
Contact Agencies and Consultants
It’s likely that most marketing agencies and marketing consultants already have a video freelancer on call for services. But there’s nothing wrong with cold-calling these marketers to see if they need your services. Getting in with an agency could open you up to ongoing work. The smaller the team, the better, because they’re not likely to have an on-staff videographer. Some of their clients will need video, and you are the one that can provide it. You don’t get the benefit of taking those clients for yourself, but you do get to have access to a wider variety of clients on the agency’s terms.
Create Awesome Content
Creating content is always good advice, because you never know what could come of it. However, there is a certain value in creating content when it comes to acquiring local video clients. You’re already a video expert, so upload some videos to YouTube about how to find a local videographer, things to consider when hiring a photographer, and the best places to take photos in your city. This content can also be the first steps in creating gated content where potential customers give their email in exchange for an exclusive guide or cheat sheet. Then you can send an email newsletter to them and continue to inform them of your services.
Offer Some Free Services
Obviously you should know your value, but a free lead magnet can be a great time investment for making money later. We mentioned digital lead magnets in the previous section, but in-person events are great as well. Teach a photography or videography session for a school or library or offer to do a free promotional video for a local charity. This volunteer work can give you a great sense of pride but will also get your name out there and in a good light. A member of that local charity may know a person at a larger local company that needs video services – you never know until you try!
Understand Your Local Clients
Something to keep in mind throughout all of these steps is that you should understand what your potential local clients are looking for. If your town has a great wedding venue, you can focus on wedding videography. If there is a thriving music scene in your city, you can focus on targeting musicians and venues. On that same note, don’t bother marketing toward technology companies if there aren’t any technology companies in your local area. Understanding your market can make finding local video clients much easier, and it will feel less like a wild stab in the dark.