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Poll: What is your best source of new clients?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 04:29
SITE STAFF
Sep 19, 2005

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "What is your best source of new clients?".

This poll was originally submitted by Lorenia Rincon

View the poll here

A forum topic will appear each time a new poll is run. For more information, see: http://proz.com/topic/33629


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xxxSoftlingua
Local time: 17:59
Norwegian to English
+ ...
new client Sep 19, 2005

The best source for new client is Satisfied existing client, most of the time I got new client through old satisfied client.

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Javier Herrera
Spanish
Other Sep 19, 2005

It's a pity there wasn't an option for "all of the above". I don't have a single main source. I don't have a website, but every other mentioned source works for me, that's why I voted for "others". From my experience, no marketing tool should be overlooked.
J.


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Özden Arıkan  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:29
Member
English to Turkish
Interesting that 'own website' rated so low Sep 19, 2005

Despite all the advice we read in the forums. Is all my regret in vain, then, that I've been so lazy at preparing my website?

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Dan Marasescu  Identity Verified
Romania
Local time: 13:29
Member (2003)
English to Romanian
+ ...
Website Sep 19, 2005

Xola wrote:

Despite all the advice we read in the forums. Is all my regret in vain, then, that I've been so lazy at preparing my website?


The thing is that the website is not that important for first contact. But if a new client spots you on ProZ.com let's say, or in any other way, it helps if you have a professional website. It is a second impression and can determine a client to pick you and not someone else.

I agree that the results are surprising though. ProZ.com scored higher than I expected (that's good) and contacting the outsourcer scored lower than I expected.

Personally, I'm not sure if it's ProZ.com or contacting the outsourcers.

Dan

[Edited at 2005-09-19 18:07]


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Ralf Lemster  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:29
English to German
+ ...
Networking Sep 19, 2005

Hi all,
Good question indeed!

I find professional networking to be most effective. This means that I regularly attend meetings and conferences also attended by potential clients. Word of mouth is extremely important, but you've got to give it a little extra push sometimes.

Best regards,
Ralf


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Lorenia Rincon  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 06:29
Member (2004)
English to Spanish
+ ...
All of the above Sep 19, 2005

It is really interesting to read your comments. I think you are right, I forgot to include: "all of the above".

To my own surprise over a year ago when I went Platinum, my membership paid for itself in less than a month and the investment has been more than worth it. Not only have I been able to meet more new clients, but I have met great friends and colleagues from all over the world, and when I need help with words or phrases or when I need advise, there is always someone there to help me.

And... with respect to the website, I also think it is a great tool too impress new and potential clients.


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Timothy Barton
Local time: 14:29
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
The website Sep 19, 2005

A website should not be underestimated. A client may well find you through Proz.com, but they may well judge your aptness for a project by looking at your website. At the same time, most people wouldn't find my website without my Proz.com profile, which scores much higher in Google.

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gad
United States
Local time: 07:29
Member
French to English
Without a doubt, networking Sep 20, 2005

Ralf Lemster wrote:

Hi all,
Good question indeed!

I find professional networking to be most effective. This means that I regularly attend meetings and conferences also attended by potential clients. Word of mouth is extremely important, but you've got to give it a little extra push sometimes.

Best regards,
Ralf


Just ask any experienced successful freelance translator, and you will likely hear the same answer. I know one person who is extremely successful because this person marketed and networked even when there was no "need" to, and is now reaping the benefits.


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Özden Arıkan  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 13:29
Member
English to Turkish
Networking in my case... Sep 20, 2005

...does not and can not come first, if we don't count networking over the internet, of course, because the language of the country I live in is neither my source, nor target.

I checked mailing agencies, though, but I regret that this was not a multiple-choice poll, because actually I am not sure whether it's contacting agencies or Proz.com that comes first for me.


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Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 13:29
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
Proz.com has been the source of good clients Sep 20, 2005

I'm in the lucky position that I don't need a lot of new clients!

I work about half the time for just one agency, my former employer, and in fact don't have time for a lot of new clients! This means that I don't spend time looking for them: they find me.

However, when I was starting out freelance because my employer could no longer occupy me full time, another really good client found me through Proz. com, and several others have followed.

Since then I have in fact had to say 'regretfully, no' to clients with fine Blue Board ratings when I simply don't have time within the deadline. Then it's good to know someone in your network (including Proz.com) who may be able to help, and others have referred jobs to me too.

[...edited...]

So yes, Proz.com will help you,
- b u t y o u m u s t u s e i t p r o p e r l y !

Happy translating!


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Orla Ryan  Identity Verified
Ireland
Local time: 12:29
Am sticking with Proz! Sep 20, 2005

I used to have my own personal website, but I deleted it after a year as my Proz and T/Cafe sites were getting WAY more hits and customer queries. So there you go.

Agree with Christine in that a translator should not expect Proz or any other translation directory to do all the work for them. It is worth taking time to write out your profile properly and present yourself in a straightforward, professional manner (as opposed to overenthuasiatic newbies who think they can translate any old language and any old subject!).

On a side note, do Proz delete empty profiles after a period of inactivity?


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Henry Dotterer
Local time: 07:29
SITE FOUNDER
I recommend "all of the above" Sep 20, 2005

In my opinion, none of the methods listed should be neglected; all should be used--in a targeted fashion. For me, as a freelance translator, networking via associations in my fields of specialization was most valuable. I met my highest paying clients that way, even as I stayed on top of the fields.

As for maintaining one's own website, it is important, not only from the standpoint of reinforcing the impression made via ProZ.com, but also as a source of search engine traffic. Linking from your profile to your website, and vice versa, will increase the traffic you get to both.


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Sam Berner  Identity Verified
Australia
Local time: 22:29
Member (2003)
English to Arabic
+ ...
I second that Sep 25, 2005

Lorenia Rincon wrote:
To my own surprise over a year ago when I went Platinum, my membership paid for itself in less than a month and the investment has been more than worth it. Not only have I been able to meet more new clients, but I have met great friends and colleagues from all over the world, and when I need help with words or phrases or when I need advise, there is always someone there to help me.


Same experience here: became a Plat, and was paid 6 grand in 3 months from the date. And it has been rolling like mad ever since. Met heaps of wonderful translators, and the Kudoz saved my skin more than once on a tight deadline.

Just to imagine that it took me a year to decide if Proz was worth it before I dipped my toe in the hot water

I am trying to repay the debt by promoting Proz wildly and madly at every opportunity, whether I am doing workshops, or mentoring or networking. The least I can do, really.


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Edward Potter  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:29
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
I guess I should clock in here Sep 25, 2005

Hello everyone,

In last year's Proz conference I gave a session on "How to Meet Clients Via Proz.com". I do my share of outsourcing and am in a position to give this perspective. There are many on this site who know instinctively what to do. In a nutshell, it is all common sense and can be summed up with one word: professionalism. The very name of this web site is an excellent one - we all should strive to be professionals.

Apart from this site, a professional translator will continue to seek customers from other sources. Get a good business card, a good web site, lots of friends in the field, and smile. Pump a percentage of your earnings back into your image and advertising. Be an eternal optimist, even if there is no reason to be one.

Prosperity to all!


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