How to Get Clients: 16 Highly Effective Methods in 2024

We partner with bada$$ companies that offer products that help our readers achieve their goals! If you purchase through our partner links, we get paid for the referral at no additional cost to you! Read our disclosure for more info.

Starting your own business can be an exciting venture, but learning how to get clients is often one of the biggest challenges for freelancers, entrepreneurs, and small business owners.

Whether you’re just starting out or looking to expand your client base, it’s important to have a solid marketing strategy in place to not only attract but also retain customers.

In the ever-competitive business landscape, acquiring clients is, unfortunately, only half the battle.

The ultimate success lies in turning these one-off clients into long-term customers who will consistently choose your products or services above all others.

You might think, “Okay, let me just get the clients first.”

That’s true but if you’re already putting in the effort to find them in the first place, wouldn’t it be great to make sure that they stick around for longer?

This process of loyal customer creation is as much an art as it is a science, requiring strategic planning, persistent execution, and a deep understanding of your potential customers’ needs and desires.

This guide will not just tell you how to get initial clients, but it will reveal a roadmap to cultivating relationships that breed repeat business.

We’ll explore ten highly effective methods that you can employ as a business owner to ensure that you not only attract clients but also unlock sustainable growth and profitability for your business.

Here is a quick summary of some of the best ways you can find more clients: 

  1. Referral program: Encourage your current clients to refer others through incentives or rewards.
  2. Join job boards: List your products or services on popular platforms like Upwork and Fiverr to reach a wider audience.
  3. Trade shows and conferences: Interact with potential clients face-to-face at industry events.
  4. Collaborate with other businesses: Partnering up with complementary businesses can expand your reach and attract new clients.
  5. Offer free trials or consultations: Give potential clients a taste of your products or services before they commit to a purchase.
  6. Ask for reviews: Positive reviews from satisfied clients can go a long way in attracting new customers.
  7. Social media: Take advantage of targeted ads on social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Twitter or search engine ads to reach specific audiences. 
  8. Email marketing: Start an email list of interested people so you can communicate directly with them.
  9. Utilize SEO: Optimize your website and content for search engines to increase visibility and attract organic traffic.
  10. Paid advertising: Invest in paid advertising on platforms like Google Ads, Meta ads Ads, or social media.
  11. Speak at events: Speaking engagements give exposure to your business and position you as an expert in the industry. 
  12. Webinars or workshops: Host a virtual event to share your knowledge and skills with potential customers.
  13. Value first: Always provide as much value as possible before asking for a sale to help build trust and relationships with your clients.
  14. Client feedback: Use feedback to improve your offerings and show your clients that you value their opinions.
  15. Retention plan: Develop a plan to keep your existing clients engaged and coming back for more.
  16. Local business groups: Join local networking events and communities with other business owners in your area.

Quality vs. Quantity Clients

quality vs. quantity concept illustration

While the natural instinct might be to chase after as many clients as possible, it’s crucial to remember the old adage: quality over quantity.

This seems to hold true for just about everything except Amazon’s business model.

But it rings particularly true when it comes to customer acquisition.

Instead of aiming for a large volume of clients, focus on attracting high-quality clients who are a good fit for your business.

These are the clients that will value your services, respect your expertise, and ultimately, contribute to sustainable business growth.

Quality clients are those who are not just interested in a one-time transaction but looking for a long-term partnership.

They’re likely to buy more, stay with you longer, refer others, provide valuable feedback, and be less sensitive to price changes. This kind of client can become a brand advocate, positively influencing their network to try your services as well.

In contrast, having a large quantity of clients who aren’t a good match could result in higher customer churn, negative reviews, or low customer satisfaction. This can harm your reputation, drain your resources, and ultimately, impact your bottom line.

So, when it comes to acquiring clients, foster relationships, and focus on those who will bring long-term value to your business.

Remember, a smaller number of loyal, quality clients can indeed be FAR more profitable and easier to manage than a large number of one-time customers.

Lead your business growth with a quality-first approach, and the quantity will naturally follow.

Identify Your Target Clients

woman holding a tablet with a happy face graphic to illustrate happy clients

The very first step to learning how to get clients is to identify who your target clients are.

Why? Because understanding your target audience is the cornerstone of effective marketing.

Knowing who your ideal clients are will help you streamline your marketing efforts, making them more focused on attracting the right person and more efficient at converting them.

It allows you to create tailored messages that resonate strongly with your audience, addressing their unique needs and pain points.

Otherwise, you’re just firing shots in the dark and hoping you attract the right people.

Taking time to figure out who your target clients are will also help you figure out where and when to reach them, which will allow you to optimize your marketing efforts even more.

As you can imagine, this is even more important if you’re paying for ads to bring in clients.

Finally, tailoring your marketing messaging to a specific group of people will help you stand out against the competition, provide a better customer experience, and make your audience feel understood.

All of these pave the way for that increased customer loyalty that we spoke about earlier.

So, before you begin employing the strategies listed in this article, ask yourself this question and write down the answer: “Who is my ideal client?”

Set Up a Website

Bluehost web page for hosting

Setting up a website or blog is an absolute necessity before you start scouting for clients.

In today’s world, a website is the new business card.

It’s your little slice of Internet real estate that showcases your company, your brand, and your skills. It’s a platform for potential clients to understand who you are, what services you offer, and why they should consider working with you.

It not only lends credibility to your brand but also allows you to showcase your expertise and positive client testimonials, fostering trust and establishing your authority in the field.

Starting a blog, even if it’s just a few articles, is another powerful tool that allows you to provide value to your target audience through informative and engaging content.

This not only provides you with a way to make a deeper connection with your clients but also improves your brand visibility through SEO, or search engine optimization.

Publishing new articles regularly can also position you as a thought leader in your field, making you the go-to person when a potential client needs your services.

Before you start looking for potential clients online, make sure you create a simple and professional website. Bluehost is a great place to get affordable hosting for your new website.

Go Where Your Fans Are

Finally, before you start digging deeper to look for more clients, consider starting where your fans are.

If you already spend a lot of time on Instagram related to your particular field, chances are many of your potential customers and clients could be there too.

Spend time building and engaging with your community on this platform, and you’ll likely find your people sooner rather than later.

Similarly, if you’re an active member of online communities, that align with your business, then chances are high that your potential clients are hanging out there too.

Whether it’s Reddit threads about sustainable living products for your eco-friendly startup or Facebook groups dedicated to digital marketing where you could offer your expert SEO or web development services to, these niche platforms offer a treasure trove of potential clients.

16 Effective Strategies to Get Clients

1. Set Up a Referral Program

Whether you already have a few clients or you’re starting from scratch, a referral program is an easy thing to set up that can bring in clients passively in the future.

Imagine your current clients – those who appreciate your work, value your expertise, and have faith in your services – spreading the word about your business.

A referral program is just a rewards-based system that incentivizes your existing clients to recommend your services to others.

Teachable referral program screenshot

Most referral programs include cash bonuses or discounts on existing services for every successful referral that turns into a paying customer.

It’s a win-win because your clients get rewarded and you get high-quality leads that often convert better because they come from a strong, trusted recommendation.

This word-of-mouth marketing, fueled by genuine customer satisfaction, often holds more sway than any advertising campaign.

Make sure you clearly communicate this program to your existing clients and provide them with the tools necessary to refer others easily (e.g., email templates, social media graphics, etc.).

2. Post Offers on Job Boards

Job boards like Upwork and Fiverr are popular platforms for freelancers and small business owners to find work and new clients.

Fiverr freelance writer job search screenshot

It’s a great place to showcase your skills and experience, as well as connect with prospective clients who are looking for the exact services that you offer.

These platforms often feature filters that allow clients to search for freelancers based on their skill sets, so make sure to optimize your profile by highlighting your expertise.

You can also look for industry-specific job boards as well.

Keep in mind, however, that these job boards can be highly competitive, so be prepared to put in some work to stand out from the crowd.

This could mean creating a strong portfolio, offering competitive pricing, and providing exceptional customer service.

3. Attend Networking Events

While digital marketing has opened countless opportunities for businesses, there’s still value in attending networking events in person.

Attending events with networking opportunities, whether in your local area, abroad, or online, is an excellent way to get clients.

Not only does it allow you to meet new people and make connections, but it also gives you the opportunity to showcase your expertise by participating in panel discussions or giving a presentation on a topic related to your business.

The quality vs. quantity approach that we discussed earlier also applies here. It’s better to make fewer, deeper connections at community events like this than to collect as many business cards as possible.

Genuine relationships are what usually turn into paying clients. Focus on making connections with those who can benefit from your services and providing value to them through meaningful conversation and helpful insights.

Networking events also give you the chance to build your credibility by sharing knowledge and experience, which can lead to referrals or future collaborations.

4. Utilize Social Media

Social media platforms like LinkedIn, Instagram, YouTube, and even TikTok have become increasingly valuable for businesses to connect with more clients.

These platforms are where people go to find and engage with businesses, so having an active presence on them is essential for getting clients.

Effective strategies for utilizing social media include creating engaging content that showcases your expertise, building a strong following of social proof by interacting with other accounts, and using relevant hashtags to reach more clients.

You can also take advantage of paid advertising options that allow you to target specific demographics and interests.

The key to success with any social media account is consistent publishing and authenticity. Be consistent in posting content and engaging with your audience, and be authentic in sharing your knowledge and building relationships.

5. Collaborate with Other Businesses

Collaborating with other businesses that offer complementary services can be a great way to get clients.

For example, if you’re a graphic designer, you could collaborate with a web developer to offer package deals for clients who need both services.

This not only expands your reach and potential client base but also adds value to your services by offering more comprehensive solutions.

Additionally, collaborating with other businesses gives you the opportunity to tap into their existing network of clients and gain referrals from them.

It’s a mutually beneficial relationship that can lead to long-term, strategic partnerships and a steady stream of clients.

6. Offer Free Consultations

Giving clients a taste of your services through free consultations can be an effective strategy for getting them on board.

This not only allows you to showcase your expertise but also gives the client a chance to see if they’re a good fit for your business before committing to a paid service.

Free consultations can also be a great way to build trust and rapport with more clients.

They give you the opportunity to understand their needs and provide tailored recommendations, making them more likely to convert into paying clients.

To make the most out of free consultations, make sure to set clear boundaries and communicate any limitations upfront.

This will ensure that you’re not spending too much time on free consultations and that they are benefiting both parties involved.

7. Ask for Reviews and Testimonials

Just like word-of-mouth marketing, online reviews and testimonials hold a lot of weight in influencing potential clients.

Ask your satisfied clients if they will write, or even record, a review or testimonial that you can post on your website.

If you’re using platforms like Upwork and Fiverr to get clients, make sure that your clients leave positive reviews on those platforms to boost your profile in the algorithm.

You can also feature these positive reviews on your social media accounts or in other marketing materials like email campaigns to further build trust with more clients.

8. Build an Email List

Having a strong email list is crucial for any business owner looking to get clients consistently.

You can build an email list through your website, social media accounts, blog content, and networking events by offering something of value in exchange, such as a free e-book, access to a webinar, or a free course.

Once you have a few subscribers, make sure to send out promotional emails about your services and other valuable content, tips, and updates about your business.

This will keep your subscribers engaged and interested in your services, increasing the chances of them becoming paying clients in the future.

It’s also a great way to advertise your referral program, share reviews and testimonials, and offer limited-time discounts on your services to incentivize your customers.

9. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

As we mentioned earlier, writing blog articles related to your business and services can be a great way to increase your visibility in search engines.

Make sure that your website and content are optimized for search engines by using relevant keywords, meta tags, and backlinks.

Our two preferred tools for this are Jasper AI for writing content and Surfer SEO for optimizing content.

screemshot of Jasper AI Surfer SEO integration feature

This will help more clients find your business when searching for related services.

You can also consider hiring an SEO specialist to help you improve your website’s ranking in search engines and to even write SEO-optimized content for you.

Related: Top SEO Tools for Optimizing Blog Posts

10. Paid Advertising

If you have the budget for it, paid advertising can be a great way to get clients quickly.

Platforms like Google Ads and Meta Ads allow you to target specific demographics and interests to ensure that your ads are reaching your ideal clients.

Make sure to do thorough research on your target audience and create eye-catching and informative ads that will grab their attention.

It’s also important to track and analyze the performance of your ads to see what’s working and what’s not, so you can make necessary adjustments for better results.

11. Seek Out Speaking Opportunities

Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and seek speaking opportunities at events or conferences related to your industry.

Speaking at events not only allows you to showcase your expertise and knowledge but also helps you reach ideal clients who are actively looking for the services that you offer.

This is a strategy that has worked well for Pat Flynn of Smart Passive Income. He’s a speaker and big supporter of FinCon, a finance conference for bloggers and entrepreneurs.

Fincon conference speakers

Make sure to prepare an engaging presentation and tell the audience where they can find more information about your business and services.

This can be a great way to build relationships with clients and establish authority and credibility in your field.

12. Host Webinars or Workshops

Similar to speaking at events, you can host virtual events like webinars or workshops to find clients.

ConvertKit affiliate webinar email

These online events not only allow you to showcase your expertise and knowledge but also give attendees a chance to interact with you directly.

Make sure that your webinar or workshop is informative, engaging, and provides value to the attendees.

You can also use this opportunity to promote your services and offers and even offer a special discount to attendees as an incentive.

Just like speaking at events, hosting webinars or workshops can help you build relationships with potential clients and establish yourself as an expert in your field.

13. Provide Value Before Selling

Providing value before selling is a cornerstone principle in gaining clients’ trust and loyalty.

Before you ask for a sale or pitch your services, it’s crucial to demonstrate the value you can bring to to the table.

Doing so positions you as an expert and trustworthy professional, not just a salesperson looking for the next commission.

This strategy can help establish strong, long-term relationships with clients, as they see that you genuinely care about their needs and are not solely driven by profit.

This particular strategy applies to ALL of the above methods and strategies for learning how to get clients.

14. Leverage Client Feedback for Improvement

Growth and improvement are a constant cycle in any business, and one invaluable source of insights is your existing clients.

Having a candid conversation with them about their experiences can shed light on areas where you can improve your services and the selling process.

Develop a feedback system where clients can freely express their thoughts and share their experiences. This could be an online survey, a feedback form, or even a one-on-one discussion.

Remember, the goal is not just to hear praises but to uncover the hard truths that will spur your growth.

Ask specific questions about your services – what they liked, what they didn’t, what they found valuable, and what they thought was missing.

Also, ask about their experience with your sales process – was it smooth, were they well-informed, or were there hiccups along the way.

This not only helps you improve but also shows your clients that you value their opinions.

Over time, these improvements will lead to a better client experience, resulting in more referrals and a stronger client base.

15. Build In a Retention Plan

As we said before, getting new clients in the door is only half the battle. Repeat clients will cost you far less time, energy, and money in both the short and long term.

To retain clients, make sure you have a solid client retention plan in place. This could include regular check-ins to ensure their satisfaction, offering loyalty programs or discounts for repeat business, and maintaining open communication channels.

Continuously providing value and excellent customer service will keep clients coming back and potentially bring in new referrals as well.

Remember, happy clients are your best marketing tool and your biggest cheerleaders! So, make sure to prioritize their satisfaction and needs, just as much as acquiring new clients.

16. Join Local Business Groups

While it can often be easier to find clients online, not all of your strategies have to operate this way.

You can join groups and communities of local business owners to connect with others in person and maybe even find some prospective clients.

These groups often consist of businesses and entrepreneurs from various industries, providing a diverse network of potential clients for your services.

Participating in these groups by asking questions, offering advice, and sharing insights can help you establish yourself as an expert in your local area.

FAQs About How to Get Clients

How do beginners get clients?

One of the best ways to learn how to get clients is to identify your target market for these clients and understand their needs and preferences. It’s also very important to make sure that you have an established online presence, including a professional website and relevant social media accounts. Networking, both online and offline, and asking for referrals from existing clients or contacts is a great place to start. Finally, offering a unique value proposition and excellent customer service can set beginners apart from their competitors and attract potential clients.

How do you attract clients quickly?

To find clients quickly, adopt a multi-faceted approach. Prioritize building a strong online presence with a professional, easy-to-navigate website and active social media profiles. Optimize your website for SEO to increase visibility in search results. Utilize paid advertising, focusing on platforms where your target audience spends their time. Leverage email marketing to communicate directly with potential clients. Offer exclusive deals or limited-time offers to incentivize immediate action. Lastly, don’t underestimate the power of personal networking – attending industry events, webinars, and local business groups can lead to valuable connections.

How do I get clients for my small business?

If you’re looking to find clients for a small business, there are a lot of different methods and strategies, depending on what type of business you have and what type of prospective clients you are looking for. Heading straight to industry-specific job boards can be one of the easiest places to start, although they can be competitive. Digital marketing tactics like SEO, social media, email marketing, and content marketing are also very effective for many freelancers and entrepreneurs. Providing exceptional service with a solid referral program can also help you reach new clients without much additional effort on your part!

How do I get my first 10 clients?

The fastest way to get your first 10 clients with a new business is to start out by reaching out to your existing network. Word-of-mouth marketing is still very powerful and how many people get initial clients and reviews. Utilize your personal and professional connections, social media, and even former colleagues or classmates. Another effective method is reaching out to potential clients directly through cold emailing, LinkedIn messaging, or attending networking events. Providing a unique value proposition and excellent service will help convert interested prospects into loyal, long-term clients.


Learning how to get clients can be a challenging but rewarding process.

Let’s wrap up with some key takeaways:

  • Understand your target market and tailor your approach accordingly.
  • Provide value before selling – this builds trust and sets you apart from competitors.
  • Leverage client feedback to continuously improve your services and sales process.
  • Have a retention plan in place to keep clients coming back and referring others.
  • Prioritize building an online presence, networking, and providing top-notch customer service to attract new clients.

With determination and the right marketing strategies, you can build a strong and loyal client base that will support your business for years to come.

So, keep these tips in mind, stay persistent, and watch your client list grow!