Google Ads Freelancer Ready For Work

2021 marks my 10th year as an independent consultant.

Looking back on those 10 years, I realize that a lot has happened!

So, in this article, I’d like to walk you through my journey from starting out as a jack-of-all-trades to becoming an international Google Ads expert. I’ll share some of the lessons I’ve learned as I’ve gotten better at my craft and business in general.

I’m sure talking about all my mistakes will help speed up your own journey. Let’s get started!

image
My 5 Best Ways to Find Good Clients in 2022
Find good and hassle-free customers for your service business.
The Passive Income Dream (2011)
In 2011, I returned to Belgium after completing 1.5 years of training in Brazil. During that time, many of my friends got comfortable jobs. But even after a few years, I could start to see cracks in the traditional way of working: the jobs are not enough, the hours are too dangerous, etc. Therefore, instead of looking for a similar job, I think I will try to do it myself.

My biggest inspiration at the time was The 4 Hour Workweek, a book by Tim Ferris. 4 hour work week
If you haven’t read it yet: It’s basically about building a business that runs on autopilot. Decoup income from the time you spend in the business. It sounded good, so for months I pursued all kinds of ideas: chewing gum for runners, supplements for endurance athletes, importing electronics, etc.

After 3 months of long hours of work, I have earned exactly €0, and I have no prospect of earning a living. So, instead of pursuing a new and exciting business idea, I started thinking about what I could do to make money tomorrow.

The only things on my list are the skills I acquired during my time working in Brazil. In this business, I have done all kinds of online marketing.

Therefore, I turned my attention to that way. The Madman (2011)
When I decided to become self-employed, I didn’t have any contacts or potential employers.

So, in order to make a living, I had to find the customers myself. Here’s how I found them:

Create a list of Belgian software companies (I have experience here)
Find contact details
Send an email (see example below)
Follow up by email/phone
Get a meeting
Pitch work
Here is an example of an email format:

Cold email pitch

Even though I got a good response rate on my emails, I felt like I was getting nowhere.

The main reason for this is rejection, along with the idea that no one really wants what I have to offer. I was afraid to start in the morning.

And even though I hated doing it, I managed to get my first “startup meeting”. I went to the company’s headquarters and gave a detailed explanation of what they could do to improve their sales.

A day later, I followed up with a $150 quote for SEO services. Here’s the OG version of that:

I first suggested
This first project came 4 months after I started my business, and about a month I took freelancing seriously.

My hourly rate at this level? $30 per hour.

Lesson: Instead of trying to create a new business idea that will change the world, focus on what you already know (skills, industry knowledge, contacts, etc.)

Notes: After this first job, I continued to work with this client for several years. In the end, sending that cold email could be worth up to six figures in revenue!

I understand there is a lot of luck involved, so I wouldn’t recommend this plan <img draggable=”false” role=”img” class=”emoji” alt=”😅” src=”https://s.w.org/images/core/emoji/14.0.0/svg/1f605.svg”>

image
My 5 Best Ways to Find Good Clients in 2022
Find good and hassle-free customers for your service business.
Contract Entry (2011 – 2020)
Trying to find and close clients with this awareness also made me hate cold calling. Even if you succeed in this strategy, the “success rate” is so low that you will face rejection many times.

I found it very difficult. By this time, I had found my first clients, which made me money. But I still have free time. I didn’t want to make cold calls anymore, so I decided to use my free time to start networking. And for a few years, I probably went to all the startup events in Belgium. According to Betagroup’s monthly meeting in Brussels:

betagroup meeting brussels 2012
I know I am somewhere in this picture but I don’t see myself <img draggable=”false” role=”img” class=”emoji” alt=”😛” src=”https://s.w.org/images/core/emoji/14.0.0/svg/1f61b.svg”>
The picture above does not look sexy. It is the main building in the school. But he was turning to thought and energy. All entrepreneurs are looking for business ideas. Although I didn’t realize it at the time, the contacts I made at these events would become the foundation of my network.

One of these contacts was Hubert, who started h

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