how to market as a translator

How a Lead Magnet Can Boost Your Credibility and Market Your T&I Business

How a Lead Magnet Can Boost Your Credibility and Market Your T&I Business.png

Have you ever heard of a lead magnet? I know… it does sound almost a bit "scammy" at first, but I promise it's not. At least, it shouldn't be. A lead magnet is a piece of content you create for your potential clients (or "leads") that is valuable to them and helps them to solve a problem or learn more about a certain topic. Some examples of lead magnets you might find from businesses online these days are digital workbooks, e-books, checklists, cheat sheets, guides, etc. In exchange for the document or file, you give your email address to the provider and join their email list. Lead magnets are usually given in exchange for one's information. This is why you will often see a Call to Action (CTA) with a lead magnet on a website. However, this is not the only way you can use a lead magnet. In fact, I'd argue that it's important to use them a bit differently than everyone else as yet another way to stand out to clients.

As a translator or interpreter you could use a lead magnet in several ways

  • In exchange for someone signing up for an email list on your website

  • As a way of saying "thank-you" to someone who likes your business Facebook page

  • As part of a warm email pitch or a follow-up email to a direct client lead

  • In exchange for feedback or a response to a survey to help you learn more about your target market

  • As a way to add value to an email you'd like to send to existing clients you might not have heard from in a while (Hint: this is highly effective!)

I have created many lead magnets myself. Some gain more traction with clients than others, but it all depends on what your ideal audience wants to learn or know. Right now I'm in the process of developing a few lead magnets as a test in my marketing efforts this year. I'll keep you updated once I have a chance to use them and see how well they work. But the plan is to use this content as an attachment in a warm email to a potential client.

If a lead magnet is something that sounds like it would be worth your time to create, and if you believe your potential clients might find one helpful, you will want to think about a few details so that you can plan to provide content that is both valuable and boosts your credibility.

Examples of effective lead magnets on websites

Here are some examples of a few lead magnets that are both attractive in nature and valuable to the customers they target. You'll see these are for various audiences, of course, but perhaps one of these will give you an idea of a lead magnet you could create for your own leads. Note: these are used on websites, but you can easily provide the same types of resources and send them out as attachments in an email to a potential client!

Source:  Lewis Howes

Source: Lewis Howes

Source:  Amy   Porterfield
Source:  Paper & Oats

Source: Paper & Oats

Source:  Ed Gandia

Source: Ed Gandia

So, how do you create a lead magnet?

Well, first you have to understand your potential client's challenges. You'll want to create something that is valuable for more than one person so that you don't have to constantly create new content. You'll also want to make the content manageable to consume.

Does your potential client base need a checklist that will be useful to them in their work? Would an e-book that is chock full of useful information for their field be valuable to them? Could a guide about something specific in their industry make them want to sign up for your email list or open your email attachment?

All of these things can boost your credibility, and while these are just a few ideas, it is important to understand your audience first to know what will be most appealing to them. Whatever you choose to create, make sure that you make it fitting for your ideal clients. If your target market doesn't spend a lot of time in front of the computer at work, then you will want to make a lead magnet that is brief and to the point. If they (or you) are sensitive to design, then you will want to use a free tool like Canva or hire a graphic designer to make your lead magnet more attractive.

You should also take into consideration the timing of your lead magnet. Make sure that the content you include is valuable at the time you release it. Is it appropriate for your client's particular situation, goals, challenges, etc. Would you need to release it at a certain time of year to be more relevant to them?

You may have to test your lead magnet on a few potential clients to see how well it is received. You could also create two versions of your lead magnet and do a bit of A/B testing to see which version is received more positively and which one might need some extra work.

Let me know if you make a lead magnet and how you use it. Not only is this a great way to show your expertise in a genuine way, but it is a valuable and useful piece of content for those who receive it. Or, that's the goal anyway!

How to Land Your Next Translation Job in Less Than Five Minutes

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Have you ever heard that it's easier to market to existing clients than it is to market to new ones? I completely agree with this statement. It makes sense, right? Existing clients already know us and have some experience working with us. New ones have yet to enter the business relationship, so it's understandable that it would be bit more difficult to market to new clients.

But many times, because we already have existing clients, it can be easy to forget about or neglect them, albeit unintentional of course. One might think, "But I've already landed this client. Why would I continue to market to them?"

This way of thinking and handling existing clients is both a mistake and an easy issue to fix.

I like to stay in touch with my existing clients for many reasons. First of all, it's essential to stay top of mind with them. This can be as simple as letting them know when you have some availability for new projects (more on that in a moment!).

Getting in touch from time to time shows your care for the business relationship. It's also a really easy way to market and keep yourself informed about any changes your client has made since the last time you worked together. Perhaps there is a new contact person. Or maybe your client has a new position or title. It takes no time to send a brief handwritten note of congratulations. In the process of staying in touch, you can also get a good idea of any new projects in the pipeline. This gives you an overall idea of future project-related income as well.

But while I say this is a good marketing habit already, I am just as human as any other translator in the business. At times, I've found that I wasn't doing a great job of staying in touch with some of my best clients, or at least not as well as I could have been. Fixing this issue is really quite simple and doesn't take a lot of time.

I usually like to write to my existing clients with some offer of value. This could be an article I read that I think they'd be interested in as well, something new I've prepared for them that I believe will help them in their work, etc.

But from time to time, I may not have anything new or of concrete value to send them. This happened recently, in fact. So, I decided to test out a method that I read on Jennifer Gregory's blog and in her book. She suggests writing to clients to say hello and them know that you've recently finished a large project and have some availability in the coming few weeks.

I tested this only once… and it took me less than five minutes to write and send the email. I received a response almost immediately with a "I have a few things in the pipeline that we're waiting for approval on first, and then I'll let you know". This type of response is a positive one! I made a note to follow up a week later. But within three days, the client had already responded, offering me a translation assignment worth $1,250. That's an excellent return for something that took me less than five minutes to do!

As my good friend and colleague Emily Safrin puts it, "No fun, big return!" It may not be fun to sit and think of how to authentically craft an email to a client without coming across as salesy or pushy. But boy, when you do it right, the return can be big.

To give you another perspective, I had the tables turned on me recently by a fellow translator. If you've been reading my blog for a while, or if you follow me on Twitter, you know that in addition to being a freelance translator, I also own a boutique translation agency. This translator had applied to work with my small agency about a year ago. At the time, I told him we'd let him know when something came up that fit his language pair and area of specialization.

Well, he followed up with me about a month ago just to say hello and to give me his holiday availability. And lo and behold, his timing was perfect. We had a current project that fit his qualifications and language pair perfectly. And just like that, he landed a project from us that paid out several hundred dollars.

Of course, I knew that he was making a marketing "move" (and a smart one at that!), I didn't mind at all. He was friendly, authentic and didn't come across as pushy or salesy in his message. And it paid off. He's now someone we will call on more frequently. In this process of working with him once, we were able to see that his work is superb, and he's very pleasant to work with. All that just from being consistent and writing an email that probably also took him less than five minutes to write!

So, you see? It very well may be easier to market to existing clients. The key really is consistent and authentic messages, offering value whenever you can. Have you tried this approach before? How did it work for you?