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Why and How You Must Track Your Freelance Writing Clients

track your freelance writing clientsIf you don’t have a solid way to track your freelance writing clients, I strongly urge you to develop one this week!

Or, assuming you already have a system, make sure you’re keeping it current – daily if necessary.

Okay, maybe you don’t have to drop everything to get this done. I do, however, know how easy it is to let chores like this one get postponed roughly forever.

Why it’s important to track your freelance writing clients

Here are the two most important reasons it’s so important to develop and maintain away of keeping track of your clients:

Ten years from today

Yep, a decade from now you may want to reach out to the client you’re working with today.

Tracking freelance writing clients let’s you market continually

If you have a way to track your clients you also have a way to market to them.

How to track your freelance writing clients

Believe it or not, I’m old enough to remember when we tracked clients with 3 x 5 or 4 x 8 cards kept in a box designed to hold those cards. We’d alphabetize them and if we were really clever would by an additional set of tabs with numbers 1 – 31 for the days of the month. Every week or month we’d sort those clients who needed to be contacted into the appropriate date. It was actually a pretty good system, which was super hard for me because my hand writing and my printing, is pretty hard to read, even for me.

Some writers make spreadsheets work for them – either Excel or Google Sheets. I don’t like that approach because soon the list exceeds the screen view and I get lost. Yes, I do know how to make the headings etc. follow me – maybe I’m just easily confused.

Use a CRM to track your freelance writing clients

The best option for me is software especially designed to let you efficiently track your clients. The better news is there are some good ones you can use for free.

Basically, with any CRM (Customer Relationship Management system), you enter a clients contact information. You’ve also got space to add notes about each contact you make, as well as schedule the next time you should contact them – usually with a calendar you can view. Ideally it can integrate with your Google, Outlook or other calendar as well.

The good ones also integrate with your autoresponder and email so you can send a marketing or other message to the whole group or parts of it. If you initiate an email through the CRM it will keep a copy for you in the client’s file.

I’ve been using Capsule, a product from the UK. It’s free up to 250 clients and does everything I want and more. It does everything I’ve mentioned, is mostly easy to learn. Although using the free version doesn’t guarantee support, my few queries to them have been answered with real help. Capsule truly makes managing my client base almost easy.

The 10 Best Free and Open Source CRM Software Solutions is a pretty good overview of CRMs – and if you find yourself reading this much after 2017,  you’ll want to make sure the article has been updated or search for something similar.

What else would you like to know about how to track your freelance writing clients?

Write well and often,

Anne Wayman, freelance writer

{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Excellent advice, Anne. I don’t track them beyond invoices and Word folders. This is exactly why I should.

    Thank you!

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