Being on the receiving end of marketing

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Last time I posted about how I hired freelancers to help with updates for my website maintenance clients. And it feels like a weight has been lifted. I’m happy. My clients are happy. And my contractors are happy.

So where did I find these folks? Well—they reached out to me. They sent cold emails.

This post is about how marketing really works, and what it’s like to be on the receiving end of marketing.

See, I had been thinking about getting help from a freelance web designer for a while. Someone who could do updates for my website maintenance clients. But I kept talking myself out of it—deciding I could handle it all myself.

However, as my workdays grew longer and my delivery dates got later, I realized something had to give.

I was ready. But I wasn’t ready to actually say, “Hey, person, I need help.”

Fortunately, I received emails—from two freelance web designers—during this time period.

Examples of email marketing that worked

SUBJECT: Inquiry - Designer

Hi Jill,

I hope all is well. My name is (name) and I’m a freelance designer in (area).

I recently came across your website and was curious if your company might need any extra design help. If you’d like, you can read more about me on my about page. I am a one person design studio supplying creative services to small businesses through web and logo design. I specialize in responsive web design. I have experience creating wireframes, designing detailed mockups, and developing websites into HTML & CSS. But, I am open to multiple design opportunities. I am available for remote freelance work right now. 

I’m contacting you to determine whether you have any occasional or ongoing need for the services I provide above. If you're interested in adding another creator to your team, I would love to work with you. I can help alleviate some of your company’s overflow work. Take a look at my portfolio.

If you would like to talk further, I would love to chat and answer any questions you might have. 

Thanks for your time!
SUBJECT: A Hello & Quick Question

Hi Jill,

First of all, I hope I'm not interrupting your Sunday! 

Secondly, I just want to say that your site design is pretty nice. I like the fonts in use, and the background patterns; they work nicely together.

Anyway, reason I'm emailing is pretty simple -- I am a NYC based developer with a specialization in WordPress. I spent a few minutes searching 'freelance wordpress developers nyc' and stumbled upon 

Basically, I'm looking to take on an extra side project from time-to-time to make life a bit easier here in the Big Apple. I work a full-time job, but eyeing up chipping away at a few straight-forward site builds in the near future. As a successful WP dev, I was wondering if you've ever had to turn away projects due to being too busy? 

Ideally I get to take on projects that other developers don't have time to do, or become a resource for agencies who perhaps can't allocate resources to some of these smaller jobs. 

I realize you probably get these emails all the time, so I won't wander on. 

Ultimately, I'm just reaching out as a hello, also interested in any advice guidance you might have as someone who secures client work on the regular, and of course - if you ever became inundated with WordPress work, by all means reach out.

Thanks Jill!

Why these emails worked

I had received lots of emails like this before. But this time, the timing was right. I was ready to enlist this kind of help. Here’s why these two marketing emails worked:

  • They were authentic, not generic. The emailers showed they actually visited my website and had an understanding of what I do.
  • They presented skills that I need.
  • They were conversational and well written.
  • They landed in my inbox when I needed them!

It was about reaching out and saying the right things. It was about the fact that they were qualified and capable. But most of all, it was about timing! And the fact that they did the asking!

I have a hard time asking for help. (Hi, I’m Jill—and I’m a do-it-myself-aholic.)

I’m an introvert. I have social anxiety. Which makes asking for help even harder! But if someone pops into my inbox—they do the asking! It’s a whole different ballpark.

Instead of saying “I need help,” I got to say, “Yes!” That feels fantastic!

When you’re doing outreach, you give people the opportunity to say yes. Had they reached out to me six months ago, when I wasn’t ready, I would have said no.

But they reached out when I was ready.

This is why you should always be marketing! You should never give up. Because you don’t know where people are in their decision-making process.

Granted, what they did…I would never do! (Here’s how I market as an introvert.) But I’m sure glad they’re braver than I am.

About Jill Anderson

Hi, I’m Jill, a WordPress WordPress designer/developer who partners with talented designers, copywriters, and agencies on their websites, and their client’s sites. I’m passionate about crafting beautiful and innovative WordPress websites focused on clear positioning and positive user experiences. Get my free report, Get Your Website Done: 12 Actionable Steps for Designers, and check out my Client Onboarding Toolkit, a simple 4-step digital course for converting prospects into a paying clients.


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One thought on “Being on the receiving end of marketing

  1. This post was a bit serendipitous. I launched my side biz,, in June and have yet to get clients. I recently went through a proofreading/copy editing course and have decided to expand my biz to include both indie adult romance authors AND businesses. And I plan to do A LOT of cold emailing. These letters provide a little bit of a guideline.

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