25 Things You Must Learn to ASK For

By: Shama Hyder

We all know that giving is fantastic. Give great customer service; give great rates, and always give your best. But, what about getting? What kinds of things should you expect from your clients? Asking is also a great marketing strategy! Here is a list of 25 things you can (and should!) ask for when working with a client.

1. Ask for a down payment – Just like there are flaky freelancers out there, there are flaky clients as well. It’s completely okay to protect yourself and your time. Ask for a down payment, and make it fully refundable if you don’t do your share. Most clients will be happy to oblige.

2. Ask for more time if you need it – Sometimes your creative genius self needs time, and who can blame you? Between Twitter, and Facebook and well… clients, it’s a busy life! So, feel free to ask for more time if you need it. Just don’t go overboard.

3. Ask for clear directions – If a client wants exactly what they have in mind, they have to be able to communicate those thoughts. Help them along. Make sure to ask for clear directions and double check.

4. Ask for consistent expectations – It is okay to ask for consistent expectations on projects. If the client feels your work seems “fantastic” one day, and “not up to par” the next, and given that your quality has stayed the same-bring it up with the client. One caveat: this may require that you have some sort of quality check system in place to ensure the consistency of your work product.

5. Ask for recommendations- You kicked butt on the last project. The client is thrilled. Now, strike while the iron is hot, and ask for the recommendation. (i.e. – “I appreciate your confidence in me, and I will deliver my best to you always. Since I know you are enthusiastic about working with me, do you think you could please recommend me to your friends? I’d really appreciate it tremendously.”).

6. Ask for referrals – It can go something like this- “Who else in your network could use my services? Would it be okay if I contacted them and introduced myself?”

7. Ask for testimonials – So many freelancers forget about this wonderful marketing tool. It’s called “social proof.” People like people who are liked by other people. At the very least, they are usually intrigued. Simply stated – Ask for your clients’ good words on paper.


She is the founder & CEO of Zen Media. She has been named the “Zen Master of Marketing” by Entrepreneur Magazine and the “Millennial Master of the Universe” by FastCompany.com. Forbes, Businessweek, and Inc have all recognized her as one of the Top 30 under 30 entrepreneurs in the field of marketing. Shama has built a global audience and is known for helping brands succeed in the digital age. She is a bestselling author, an international keynote speaker, and has been named one of LinkedIn’s Top 10 Voices in Marketing for four years in a row.



Receive all of this for FREE! Get actionable ideas that you can implement today to reach new audiences, showcase your brand’s expertise, retain clients, and boost overall sales.

Take 5 with Shama Every Week for the BEST Content in Marketing, Technology, and PR

You are in great company! Over 600,000 business leaders around the world get our content. You will automatically receive our most popular content and access to exclusive material before anyone else!

    Digital Marketing

    See what they say