Should you design a 'proposal website' before approaching a potential client?

2020-01-14

I recently had a freelancer ask me if it would be a good idea to design a website for a specific business before he approached them. Just a random business essentially that he thinks could use a new website design.

I told him that I thought it was a bad approach. First of all, he’s assuming they have a need where they actually may not have a need. He’s never spoken to the decision-maker at the business and so, therefore, hasn’t qualified them. How does he know their pain points? How does he know they can afford his rate? What are their worldviews? Etc.

Being that he had no ad budget, I believe his time is better spent creating assets that he could leverage for his own business.

Things like blog posts, ebooks, templates, cheat sheets, workbooks, online courses, software (SaaS), etc. Anything that will help his target audience develop their skillset further and ‘level up’.

This will help him build an audience organically and attract paying clients over time that will value his work and pay top dollar.

It’s usually never a good idea to do custom work of any kind for free upfront, even if you do intend to sell it to a potential client. It tends to devalue your work!

Instead, go out there and create assets that you can either sell or give away for free to reach a bigger audience. This will have a snowball effect allowing you to work less and make more money in the long run.