If you sell your skills and you run a blog or website, you must have a hire me page.
An About page which mentions you’re available for hire isn’t enough. The information will always be too broad: it has to cater to new visitors, people who want information about the blog/site, people who want general information about you, as well as clients.
It also doesn’t indicate from the main page that you’re looking for work. A page called ‘Hire Me’, ‘My Services’ or ‘Consulting’ is much more likely to attract the interest of prospective clients — though it doesn’t hurt to link to it from your About page, either.
If a ‘Hire Me’ page sends you just one client every few months, it pays for your time (a basic page will probably take half-an-hour to write). In my experience, a Hire Me page can do a lot more than that.
On to the good stuff: how to write one that works.
1. Introduce yourself.
Include your name, what you do, and maybe where you live. This grounds you as a real person rather than an abstract entity.
Don’t go too far and over-personalize it with information on your kids and hobbies. You want to keep the focus on your services alone.
2. Focus on wants.
I often illustrate this point with two alternate, hypothetical pitches from a web designer — though I see pitch #1 made all the time on portfolio sites. The first:
- I write valid XHTML code.
- I create standards based designs.
- My designs will create a unique branding experience for your business.
- I specialize in using design and usability strategies to increase conversion rates.
The first pitch is what’s important to the web designer. Most clients don’t know what that stuff means. If they did, they’d probably design the website themselves.
Pitch #2 acknowledges that clients invest in a professional design because it will lead to better branding and more sales.
It says: “I will help you get better branding and more sales.” Simple, huh? It’s no surprise which one wins. (And that doesn’t mean you can’t craft rock-solid code, too.)
Think about the real reason clients might invest in you. Freelance bloggers get hired for their potential to bring links and traffic.
Web designers get hired for branding, conversions and traffic. And on it goes. Once you’ve got an introduction out of the way, forget the means and talk about the ends: “I can give you what you want.” Talk about benefits that will make your rates sound cheap in comparison.
3. Showcase testimonials and examples.
Provide links to or images of your best work. Decide what to include by limiting yourself to a maximum of three stellar portfolio items. More items just makes it more likely that a client will see something they don’t like.
Testimonials from past clients are a magic touch if you can get them. If you’re on good terms with a particular client, ask them to answer the question: “What would you say to anyone thinking of hiring me?”
The more positive answers in their own words, the merrier. Genuine testimonials are fantastic social proof.
4. Focus on who.
If you only work for a certain type of people, don’t leave it to the email stage to say so. Establish your target market on your ‘Hire Me’ page. This minimizes mutually disappointing email exchanges and makes your target audience more confident that your services are tailored to them.
5. Highlight your experience.
Here are some questions you can answer. If the answers make you sound good, work them into your Hire Me page.
If they don’t make you sound good, forget about them.
- How many clients have you worked for?
- How many years experience do you have in this field?
- Do you have any relevant formal qualifications?
- What are the different skills you have relating to this field?
- How many jobs have you completed?
- How many hours have you consulted?
- Do you have any interesting achievements in this field?
- Have you been featured in mainstream media or on a popular website/blog?
6. If you have fixed, un-bending rates, list them.
Correspondence with non-genuine clients will waste time. While not listing your rates might increase your total number of offers, it certainly won’t increase the number of offers you might actually accept.
If your rates are at all flexible, though, only reveal them in individual negotiations. This will allow you to customize premium rates depending on the client.
7. Provide a means of contact.
While moderating the job boards at Freelance Switch I’ve been amazed at the number of job posters who’ll write detailed instructions on what an application should include, then completely fail to provide an email address.
Having a contact address or contact form the on same page as your Hire Me information is crucial. Every other page the prospect navigates to is another opportunity for them to exit the loop.
Points to review
- Tell prospects who you are.
- Tell prospects how you can give them what they want.
- Show off your best work and capitalize on social proof with genuine testimonials.
- Make it clear who you’re targeting (and who you aren’t).
- Show that you’re experienced by sharing favorable credibility indicators.
- If your rates are fixed, list them up front.
- Always provide a means of contact on the same page.