The cold call. The freelancers last weapon. The key to initial success, in my experience. Don’t make it cold. Warm it up first.
So way back I designed a series websites for a wide-ranging base of clients that have no obvious correlation. A good few of these jobs came about with an informed cold call. Even the most basic of research warms it up (still surprising how rare this technique is) …simply, learn 2/3 core objectives that the site is trying to deliver or obtain. Real niche sectors help (less competition and more nitty-gritty under the bonnet). Once you’ve got this info you can make the call and actually discuss an aspect of the website that the ‘potential’ client can relate to. This is the refreshing alternative to simply telling them everything you can do. I’d bore myself. (note: this won’t be a long blog post).
Better still, and more fun. Target sectors that interest you. Hobbies, sport etc.
Lastly, look for typos. I spotted a typo in a future clients brochure. I gave them a ring, I spoke to reception, who passed me to the Marketing Manager. We discussed the typo (with thanks), the conversation lead to lunch (what I did as a freelancer - gotta get this in!) and 4 months later a website and a new brochure.
If work is slow, do some warm calls.