How to Get More Translation Clients?
You need to know a few things on how to attract translation clients. There are generally two ways to go about this. The first is to work through a translation agency. The second is to get direct clients. Many freelance translators work both sides in order to get the most clients possible. Each side has its positives and negatives. And understanding that can make the difference in the methods you choose to attract new clients.
You need to look at agency work vs. direct clients. Working with a translation agency can be a good thing. Most agencies provide steady work for their employees and freelance contractors. However, the pay is often not as good as that you make when working with direct clients. It is also harder to find an agency willing to work with you if you do not have experience. On the other side, working with direct clients is also a good thing. Direct clients often want to work with local translators instead of working through an impersonal agency. They are more likely willing to work with an inexperienced translator than some translation agencies might be. The pay is often much better when working with direct clients since there is no agency fee involved in the transaction.
Advertising yourself is a good step in attracting more translation clients. Make sure your resume is clean and up to date. If you want to go through translation agencies, find out who handles hiring and contracting in the agency. Then send a directed cover letter along with your resume. If you want to attract direct clients, then look for local institutions that might need help. Many companies, hospitals, schools, and large manufacturers need translators periodically. Another option is to contact any local language institutions in your specialty. You also need to make contacts in local business and network. A business acquaintance may know of someone who needs help with translation.
Try every avenue for business. When you want to get more translation clients, you need to consider blanketing all the potential customers in your area. Don't think that a few inquiries will give you steady work. You want to hit every possibility within a reasonable driving distance. Make contacts in local towns and surrounding counties. It is better to have too much business than not enough. Direct clients will find you only if you tell them you are there. Ask your current clients for references if possible. This will help spread the word about your work.
-By Adriana Tassini
The following Translator Q & A is part of our Translator FAQ Series.Question:Answer: Learn more: