Making Time for Potential Clients

What’s the secret to making time for potential clients, especially if you’re time and energy are already maxed out?

Businesses do many things to reduce friction for customers, such as building automations, writing FAQs, offering a wide variety of payment options, and so on. The idea is that if I want to buy a widget and I can do it without having to interact with a human, that saves me time/hassle and the company money. 

dark ocean water with coral with text overlay about what indie authors look for in editors.

Limitations for Freelancers: Making Time for Potential Clients

But as freelance editors, we’re not selling widgets. Sometimes we don’t want to reduce friction. Sometimes we want to increase it. 

Editors sometimes report to me that they have difficulty converting prospective clients. I listen to their process and basically it amounts to something like SEO drives the customer to the website, the website answers all the customer’s questions, the customer submits a questionnaire about their ms, and the editor replies with a quote and a booking schedule.

But no one books. 

That’s because the prospective client has never actually interacted with the editor, has never gotten a sense of them as a person, and has never had a reason to feel like they’re putting their faith in the right person. 

Sometimes, my best piece of advice for an editor is to be less efficient. Let the client acquisition process be a little messier. 

What people need to know right up front is

  • whether you work in the genre(s) they’re writing,
  • whether they have the budget to hire you, and
  • what, in general, your credentials are. 

That’s it.

The rest – here’s how I work, here’s how to book, here’s my next opening, etc. – can be shared later, once the client has reached out to express interest.

how to start your editing business.

Tips for Editors & Writers

  • Query Letter Basics

    Both editors and authors need to learn query letter basics to help with the best possible chance of book publication. Query Letter Basics For Editors & Authors If your author-client is interested in trying to have their novel published by a traditional publisher, you may be asked to look at the author’s query letter (also…

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  • Keys to Effective Manuscript Assessment

    Here are my top tips for an effective manuscript assessment without having to read the entire manuscript to provide a quote. Use these questions to help you assess a manuscript in order to provide an editing quote—without having to read the entire manuscript first. In general, a developmental editor may be able to edit five-to-ten…

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  • Editorial Terms and Their Meanings

    Here’s a rundown of basic editorial terms and their meanings to help you understand editing terminology. When I talk about the author’s work of addressing areas of concern, I call it revision to distinguish it from what an editor does, which is editing. Most people writing and speaking on the subject don’t distinguish between the two but since…

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