Most effective methods of print/online advertising????
Thread poster: Ron Stelter
Ron Stelter  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:43
German to English
Dec 18, 2004

I was wondering if you could recommend any good places to be listed (online or print) which would definitely increase the exposure of my business. Obviously, it would be easier if the clients would be looking for you than otherwise. Of course, it would be preferrable than the cost wouldn't be exorbitant. I know I am always somewhat skeptical because often you pay for a listing somewhere in a translation database or fee-based directory and it delivers very little in the way of results.

I would assume that most people looking for translation services would first of all turn to their Yellow Pages-whether online or print-or some similar listing. Are there any other good ones? SuperPages, etc. I would like something where you knew you would definitely be getting a lot more inquiries.

Any good sites in Germany, Austria or Switzerland would be helpful as I work with German>English. As I work mainly with legal contracts and marketing documents, I had wondered whether being listed on certain online legal web sites or business web sites might be helpful.

Any other input helpful. For example, how do you think most people look for translation providers? Online or from print sources? Do you think most companies choose a translator from persons who sent them a resume or search for the translator themselves? Ask for a third-party recommendation?

To be honest, I really don't care so much whether the work is from agencies or from direct clients. I just have heard that a lot of translators seem to get contacted instead of having to do all the contacting themselves-which is how I seem to have to get most of my work.

Thanks. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.



[Edited at 2004-12-18 20:45]


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Ron Stelter  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:43
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
Yellow Pages not so promising??? Dec 18, 2004

This other Proz forum listing seems to find the Yellow Pages not very helpful at all. But I do know one translation agency owner who talked about the enormous amount of advertising he did-and he seemed to have an enormous amount of work. (I don't know where he advertised, though.)







Ron Stelter wrote:

I was wondering if you could recommend any good places to be listed (online or print) which would definitely increase the exposure of my business. Obviously, it would be easier if the clients would be looking for you than otherwise. Of course, it would be preferrable than the cost wouldn't be exorbitant. I know I am always somewhat skeptical because often you pay for a listing somewhere in a translation database or fee-based directory and it delivers very little in the way of results.

I would assume that most people looking for translation services would first of all turn to their Yellow Pages-whether online or print-or some similar listing. Are there any other good ones? SuperPages, etc. I would like something where you knew you would definitely be getting a lot more inquiries.

Any good sites in Germany, Austria or Switzerland would be helpful as I work with German>English. As I work mainly with legal contracts and marketing documents, I had wondered whether being listed on certain online legal web sites or business web sites might be helpful.

Any other input helpful. For example, how do you think most people look for translation providers? Online or from print sources?

To be honest, I really don't care so much whether the work is from agencies or from direct clients. I just have heard that a lot of translators seem to get contacted instead of having to do all the contacting themselves-which is how I seem to have to get most of my work.

Thanks. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.



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Ron Stelter  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:43
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
agency advertising Dec 18, 2004

But I do believe that agencies must really do much more traditional advertising than freelancers in order for the Fortune 500 companies and the like to even be able to find them.


Ron Stelter wrote:

This other Proz forum listing seems to find the Yellow Pages not very helpful at all. But I do know one translation agency owner who talked about the enormous amount of advertising he did-and he seemed to have an enormous amount of work. (I don't know where he advertised, though.)







Ron Stelter wrote:

I was wondering if you could recommend any good places to be listed (online or print) which would definitely increase the exposure of my business. Obviously, it would be easier if the clients would be looking for you than otherwise. Of course, it would be preferrable than the cost wouldn't be exorbitant. I know I am always somewhat skeptical because often you pay for a listing somewhere in a translation database or fee-based directory and it delivers very little in the way of results.

I would assume that most people looking for translation services would first of all turn to their Yellow Pages-whether online or print-or some similar listing. Are there any other good ones? SuperPages, etc. I would like something where you knew you would definitely be getting a lot more inquiries.

Any good sites in Germany, Austria or Switzerland would be helpful as I work with German>English. As I work mainly with legal contracts and marketing documents, I had wondered whether being listed on certain online legal web sites or business web sites might be helpful.

Any other input helpful. For example, how do you think most people look for translation providers? Online or from print sources?

To be honest, I really don't care so much whether the work is from agencies or from direct clients. I just have heard that a lot of translators seem to get contacted instead of having to do all the contacting themselves-which is how I seem to have to get most of my work.

Thanks. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.



[Edited at 2004-12-18 20:39]


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Kim Metzger  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 01:43
German to English
Most effective methods of print/online advertising Dec 19, 2004

Ron Stelter wrote:

I was wondering if you could recommend any good places to be listed (online or print) which would definitely increase the exposure of my business. Obviously, it would be easier if the clients would be looking for you than otherwise. Of course, it would be preferrable than the cost wouldn't be exorbitant.



I don't know if you've thought of this, Ron, but you're advertising your skills right now. Lots of clients visit these pages every day. Good luck.

Kim


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Ron Stelter  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:43
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
I'm just looking for suggestions Dec 19, 2004

I am not here to advertise my skills. I'm just looking for ways to improve my business-which I think is a common aspiration of most freelancers. My business has improved through the years, but there is always room for improvement.

Kim Metzger wrote:

Ron Stelter wrote:

I was wondering if you could recommend any good places to be listed (online or print) which would definitely increase the exposure of my business. Obviously, it would be easier if the clients would be looking for you than otherwise. Of course, it would be preferrable than the cost wouldn't be exorbitant.



I don't know if you've thought of this, Ron, but you're advertising your skills right now. Lots of clients visit these pages every day. Good luck.

Kim



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Anjo Sterringa  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 08:43
Member (2003)
English to Dutch
+ ...
Advertising Dec 19, 2004

But you ARE advertising now! I sometimes get inquiries for (legal) translations from Dutch, and then they turn out to be from Deutsch - I now know of someone I could recommend!

I don't think it is worth it to advertise in something like the yellow pages as a freelancer - you might want to join up with some colleagues (with different language pairs and/or fields in which they specialise) for a better "ROI".

It's not only where you advertise, but also what you advertise. Have you ever thought of specialising in more than just contracts? I get to translate the odd contract, but the technical projects I do are normally larger projects. After translating a contract I am always more than happy to translate something 'completely' different!

So my suggestion would be: broaden your skills, or at least: advertise them. I know that is probably not what you want to hear though...
Merry Christmas!
Anjo Sterringa


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Clare Barnes  Identity Verified
Sweden
Local time: 08:43
Swedish to English
+ ...
Yellow Pages... Dec 19, 2004

I've just cancelled my advert in the Yellow Pages as it didn't pay for itself. A good website is a promising start, but (at least in Sweden) businesses don't seem to search for translators themselves, they ask around and see who others recommend. Most of my business has come to me by word of mouth - ask your clients where they heard of you and you'll have some idea of which publicity methods work.

I've found the most effective publicity is simply to walk into places that might need my services, explain who I am and leave a business card. I don't particularly like doing it, but it works - they have a face to connect to a name and they're more likely to recommend you to others even if you've never worked for them. (My most recent client found me through someone I've never even heard of, let alone worked for...).


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Ron Stelter  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:43
German to English
TOPIC STARTER
ACtually Dec 19, 2004

Actually, as I know very few people who've even gotten one job via Proz, you can rest assured that I would not try to advertise in this forum.

anjoboira wrote:

But you ARE advertising now! I sometimes get inquiries for (legal) translations from Dutch, and then they turn out to be from Deutsch - I now know of someone I could recommend!

I don't think it is worth it to advertise in something like the yellow pages as a freelancer - you might want to join up with some colleagues (with different language pairs and/or fields in which they specialise) for a better "ROI".

It's not only where you advertise, but also what you advertise. Have you ever thought of specialising in more than just contracts? I get to translate the odd contract, but the technical projects I do are normally larger projects. After translating a contract I am always more than happy to translate something 'completely' different!

So my suggestion would be: broaden your skills, or at least: advertise them. I know that is probably not what you want to hear though...
Merry Christmas!
Anjo Sterringa


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Austra Muizniece  Identity Verified
Latvia
Local time: 09:43
Member (2004)
English to Latvian
+ ...
there's one here :) Dec 20, 2004

I've got at least 10 good jobs and several regular clients through ProZ.com, but I assume that the reason is the rarity of my native language - Latvian, not the exposure manner. I am sometimes a bit surprised about the differences of opinions regarding the use of ProZ.com as an advertising tool...

Ron Stelter wrote:

Actually, as I know very few people who've even gotten one job via Proz, you can rest assured that I would not try to advertise in this forum.

anjoboira wrote:

But you ARE advertising now! I sometimes get inquiries for (legal) translations from Dutch, and then they turn out to be from Deutsch - I now know of someone I could recommend!

I don't think it is worth it to advertise in something like the yellow pages as a freelancer - you might want to join up with some colleagues (with different language pairs and/or fields in which they specialise) for a better "ROI".

It's not only where you advertise, but also what you advertise. Have you ever thought of specialising in more than just contracts? I get to translate the odd contract, but the technical projects I do are normally larger projects. After translating a contract I am always more than happy to translate something 'completely' different!

So my suggestion would be: broaden your skills, or at least: advertise them. I know that is probably not what you want to hear though...
Merry Christmas!
Anjo Sterringa


[Edited at 2004-12-20 09:07]


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Alison Schwitzgebel
France
Local time: 08:43
Member (2002)
German to English
+ ...
As a freelancer, everything you do is advertising your services.... Dec 20, 2004

Networking, networking, networking. I believe that that's the best form of advertising there is.

I place a print ad in the program for a local festival every year. I haven't had a single call as a result. But it's a worthy festival and I believe in supporting it.

I have a small advert in the Yellow Pages, but that's only because it came free with my telephone number. What has it brought me? Two phone calls - one for Bulgarian/German and one for Italian German. But I'll keep it, coz it's free.

I'm a member of the German translators' association - the BDÜ, and I get a couple of calls a year from customers who have found my name in the BDÜ database.

I also get jobs through proz. Some by bidding, but most from people who've found my profile and like what they see.

Anytime a new customer phones me up I ask them where they got my number from. That way I know what kind of advertising pays off.

However, I find the the bulk of my customers through good old-fashioned networking. Just letting people know that you're a translator (of course it helps to hang out with the right kind of people). I used to work in investment banking, and have some great contacts from my former colleagues. I used to run with the Hash House Harriers, and that again brought me some excellent customers. Powwows are a great way to meet colleagues who sometimes pass on work when they have too much to handle. Nothing can really beat good old word-of-mouth advertising.

I also find myself in the very fortunate position of having a regular stock of customers who keep on coming back, and ultimately that has to be every translator's goal. It takes far more effort to find new customers than it does to keep existing ones - as long as keeping your existing customers happy doesn't entail too much work!

HTH

Alison


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