Rejection affects everyone in business. For freelancers, rejection or the fear of it can get in the way. Beginner freelancers may be hesitant to dive into client pitches and marketing which can slow progress. Those that do get further can sometimes let pitch rejections get the better of them until they’re making fewer and fewer.
Why is the fear of rejection such a problem?
The fear of rejection can really get in the way of building any business. It can hold you back from going out and winning over clients, charging what you’re worth and can also get in the way of marketing effectively.
Without the help of other colleagues or having to answer to a boss, this fear can end up sinking your business before it’s had a chance to take off. It’s entirely up to you to get ahead in your business and tell that doubting voice in your head to be quiet.
How to deal with rejection:
Remember it’s not personal
If you’re sending out tons of query letters only to get nothing back, try not to give up too easily. There could be any reason why a company might not get back to you. They could miss your email, they might not be looking to hire anyone or it could be a bad time.
That’s not to say you shouldn’t always be looking to sharpen up your query letters but just bear in mind that it’s very unlikely to be anything personal if you don’t get replies. Just keep trying and your letters will get better as you learn more.
See it from the client’s perspective
If you face rejection from a client, try to bear in mind how difficult it can be to make financial decisions. Often money spent on freelancers is one of the first things to go, mostly because it’s easy to let a freelancer go before employees or budget cuts in other areas.
If they’re choosing between freelancers to hire, know that this is also never an easy to decision to make. Just because you didn’t get picked doesn’t mean they didn’t think you could do the job, the other person might have just had more experience.
Always be persistent
This doesn’t mean you should keep bombarding the same client who said they weren’t interested because then they’ll just know they’ve made the right choice. Instead you should be persistent when pitching in general. This means you should always keep looking and trying to find work even if you get rejected.
Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback. If you’re going wrong somewhere, then you’ll be in a better position in the future if you know exactly what you can improve on.
Sometimes this will even give you the opportunity to make a fresh pitch if there was something about your original offer that they didn’t like or felt was being missed out.
Analyse your rejections
If you’ve been sending the same pitch out to clients only to get nothing back then take a look at the pitch. Is it too long, too short, not engaging enough? Are there links to your website? Have you clearly explained how you could add value to their business, or are you just talking about how great you are?
Try to be as objective as you can be with your pitches and look at them as if you were going to hire the person writing them.
Remember it’ll make you more resilient
If all else fails, the rejection will help you build a thicker skin. Everyone in business, freelance or otherwise will experience rejection in one way or another. It’ll teach you more than harm you as long as you don’t let it hold you back.
Have you faced rejection in your business ventures? How did you go about dealing with it? Let us know your thoughts or tips in the comments!