When I first started out as a freelance writer, I had no idea where to find clients. So I did what any millennial would do: I turned to social media.
But I didn’t use the platforms I was used to (at the time, Facebook and Instagram were the big ones). Instead, I used LinkedIn.
LinkedIn is designed for business networking, which makes it the perfect place to find clients who need writers. All businesses need content, and many of them turn to freelancers to get it.
If you’re a freelance writer, LinkedIn can be a great resource for finding high-paying writing gigs. Keep reading to learn how to find freelance writing clients on LinkedIn.
(Psst! Want to follow my exact strategy and swipe my cold pitch templates? Grab my 13-page FREE “LinkedIn Lead Machine” guide for freelance writers!)
Create an Impressive LinkedIn Profile
First things first, you need to build a profile and presence that’s worthy of attracting the right clients. A lot of freelancers are flaky, so your first step is to show that you’re different. You want to be seen as a professional who is reliable and can get the job done.
Follow these steps to create a LinkedIn profile that stands out as a freelance writer:
Step 1: Headshot
Use a professional headshot as your profile picture (that means no selfies!). Professional doesn’t have to mean expensive. You can have a friend take a photo of you from the waist up. Wear non-distracting clothing in front of a plain background. And make sure the photo is well-lit.
Step 2: Headline
Create a catchy headline that immediately tells people what you do (ex: “B2B Freelance Writer specializing in Mental Health”).
A lot of people scroll LinkedIn on their phones, so you want your headline to be easy to read. Keep it short, sweet, and to the point. See how this one is cut off before “specializing in Mental Health?” That’s because LinkedIn only displays the first 50 characters of your headline. So make those characters count!
Keep in mind, your “About” section (which we’ll discuss below) appears further down the page. Many people won’t make it that far. So your headline is super important for compelling the RIGHT people to keep scrolling through your page to learn more. It could be the single most important thing that helps you find freelance writing clients on LinkedIn.
Step 3: Banner
Your LinkedIn banner is the header image that appears at the top of your profile, behind your headshot and headline. This area is prime real estate! Many people don’t bother to upload a banner, or they just use an image that’s bland and uninteresting. But your banner is a powerful tool to help you find freelance writing clients on LinkedIn!
Make your banner work for you by using it to showcase your writing skills. Use Canva’s LinkedIn Banner templates to create a visually appealing header image that’s relevant to your niche or industry.
And then take it one step further by adding text that calls out:
- Your audience
- Their pain points
- How you solve their problems
Keep it succinct, and make sure the text is easy to read. You want people to be able to scan your banner and immediately understand what you do, who you help and how they can learn more.
You can see what my LinkedIn banner currently looks like here.
The goal of my banner is to:
- Showcase my niche (the skilled trades, home services, construction, etc.)
- Show the benefits of working with me (get more customers and find employees)
- And a link to my website (so they know how to learn more or get in touch)
Step 4: About Section
In the “About” section of your profile, write a few short paragraphs that sums up what you do and who you help. Keep in mind that an “about me” should actually be “about them” — meaning, your ideal client.
Use this space to show off your writing skills and give a taste of what it’s like to work with you. Write in a conversational tone, as if you’re speaking directly to your reader. And be sure to use keywords that are relevant to your niche or industry.
If you have a portfolio, don’t forget to include a link. And always end with a call-to-action so people know how to take the next step in hiring you.
Step 5: Experience
Make sure you leverage any prior experience, skills, and education that are relevant to the niche or industry you want to write for. Not sure what I’m talking about here? Check out this post on the best freelance writing niches and how to pick one that’s right for you!
In your experience, be sure to include niche-specific:
- Prior work experience
- A degree in a related field
- Any other relevant experience
Remember, you’re trying to show off your expertise and authority. So the more experience and credentials you can list that fit the industry you want to write for, the better!
Step 6: Skills, Endorsements & Recommendations
LinkedIn also has a “Skills & Endorsements” section where you can list relevant skills and have people endorse you for those skills. This is a great way to show off your writing chops and attract clients who are looking for someone with your specific skillset.
You can also ask past clients or colleagues to write you a recommendation. These recommendations appear on your profile and act as social proof that you’re a great writer who gets results.
Side note: If you DON’T have any past clients or recommendations, that’s OK! I still don’t have any recommendations on my profile and that has never stopped me from landing clients. Here’s a blog on how to land that first client (it includes tons of info on picking a niche, building a portfolio and more).
Once you’ve got a professional looking profile, it’s time to start the process of attracting and connecting with clients.
Grow Your LinkedIn Network to Build Trust
The reason LinkedIn is such a powerful platform for beginner freelance writers is because it gives you instant access to a vast network of professionals.
You can use this to your advantage by reaching out and connecting with people who work in the industries or niches you want to write for.
But LinkedIn only allows you to connect with what they call 1st and 2nd degree connections – people who you either know directly or who are connected to someone you know. So you need to start growing your network. By having a large and engaged network, you’ll be able to build trust with potential clients and show them that you’re a credible freelancer.
You should aim for 500+ connections to really look trustworthy before reaching out to any prospects.
Don’t panic! This is really easy to do. Just start connecting with everyone in your field – especially those who work at the companies you want to write for. LinkedIn will show you suggested connections based on the people you already know, so it’s just a matter of clicking “connect” and sending a quick message.
Most people on LinkedIn are happy to connect with others in their industry, so don’t be afraid to reach out!
Personalized connection requests tend to get the best response rate, so be sure to include a message when you send a request. But don’t overthink this – you’re not pitching yourself yet, you’re just establishing a connection.
Here’s an example of a connection request message that you can use:
It looks like we both work in the world of [NICHE] marketing! Would you like to connect?
How to Cold Pitch Freelance Writing Clients on LinkedIn
Once you’ve built up a strong network of 500+ connections, you’ll be in a good place to start pitching your services. And the best way to do this is with a cold pitch.
A cold pitch is when you reach out to someone – usually via email or social media – and introduce yourself with the hope of landing a gig.
It can be really effective, but only if it’s done well! The key to an effective cold pitch is to make it as personalized and relevant to the client as possible.
You should NOT waste sentence after sentence talking about yourself or your services. Instead, focus on how you can help THEM and what value you can provide.
If you want to to swipe my “3 C’s” cold pitch method and my tried-and-tested templates for LinkedIn, click here to grab the 13-page guide.
Basically, you want to personalize your introduction, explain how you can help them (i.e. what problem you can solve for them), and then provide some sort of offer or call-to-action.
This really shouldn’t take much more than 3-5 sentences. Being a good writer means you can make a strong impression quickly and succinctly!
Here’s an example of a recent LinkedIn Cold Pitch I sent that led to a discovery call and a referall:
Congrats on your new role as Marketing Director at XYZ! Plumbing may not be the most glamorous industry – but I hope you’re loving it as much as I do!
If you ever need a freelance copywriter that specializes in B2B plumbing manufacturing, I’d love to take some writing off your plate! Happy to send samples.
Thanks for connecting!
See how that was short, sweet, and relevant to Anne’s needs?
Remember, the key is to focus on how you can help THEM and what value you can provide. And personalizing it is really just a matter of browsing their recent posts to see what they’re currently working on or thinking about, and including that in your message.
And sometimes, if I’m a little stuck on what to say, I use Jasper AI to help me come up with the perfect pitch. Read all about how Jasper AI saved my writing career here.
Bonus Tip: Commenting on and liking one or two of their posts before you send your cold pitch will definitely help increase your response rate!
Browse LinkedIn job postings for freelance writing jobs
Cold pitching or waiting for people to notice your profile and reach out to you is not the only way to find clients on LinkedIn. LinkedIn has a job board where companies post open positions – including freelance writing jobs!
You can filter the job postings by location, job type, and even keywords to find the ones that are most relevant to you.
I always select “remote” for the location because I’m a digital nomad and I work from anywhere in the world.
And for job type, I select “contract” to filter out full-time positions. You can also just enter “freelance” into the keyword field to see all of the freelance writing jobs that are posted on LinkedIn.
I also select “under 10 applicants” in the filters, so that I can be an early applicant and hopefully catch their attention before there’s dozens and dozens of applicants to weed through.
Even with all that filtering, the problem with this method is that you’re competing with lots of other writers. But if you have a strong LinkedIn profile and a winning portfolio, you should be able to land at least a few clients this way.
And even if you don’t get the job, many of these postings will include the contact information for the person in charge of hiring. So you can always reach out and introduce yourself even if you don’t get the job. You never know… the person they end up hiring might not work out and you could be next in line!
Network With Other Freelance Writers in Your Niche
Did you know that the number of freelance copywriters and content writers in the United States is relatively low? There are only around 4,500 freelance copywriters and 5,700 content writers in total. But there are nearly 32 million small businesses.
That means there just aren’t enough writers to go around! Time is a limited resource, and once a writers schedule is full of projects, they’re not taking on any new clients.
By connecting with other writers on LinkedIn, you can build relationships and potentially handle overflow work from them when they get too busy.
It’s a win-win for everyone involved. And it all starts with connecting and networking with other writers in your industry or niche.
I hope this blog showed you can find freelance writing clients on LinkedIn quickly and easily. There are several other strategies all outlined in my FREE 13-page “LinkedIn Lead Machine” guide. Click here to get access right now!