August 5, 2015

How $200 on Promoted Tweets Got This Freelancer a 6-Month Contract

How $200 on Promoted Tweets Got This Freelancer a 6-Month Contract.

Buy Promoted Tweets to Push Your CV 
Directly to End Clients

Barry McGee, a freelance front-end web developer, normally has quite lengthy engagements, 3-6 months or longer. Near the end of 2014 the contract he was in was coming to an end. To get a new freelance gig after the Christmas holidays, he decided to experiment with paid ads on Twitter, a.k.a. promoted tweets.

From previous experience, he knew that more valuable contracts are easier to win if you speak directly to end clients. He wanted to by-pass 3rd parties like job boards and recruiters. The challenge was to get his CV directly in front of the people in companies that take on freelancers.

So Barry wrote a tweet telling what he does and his availability and linked his CV to it. Then he paid Twitter $200 to display his tweet. Simple as that!

Barry's Promoted Tweet. How $200 on Promoted Tweets Got This Freelancer a 6 Month Contract.

What Happened?

That $200 investment in Twitter ads got him 30,000 well-targeted impressions in people's timelines. Out of those, about 500 people clicked through to his CV.

He got a variety of responses. Some people were slightly confused over why Barry had appeared in their Twitter timelines. More importantly, some interesting potential clients got in touch with him, e.g. Sainsbury's (a supermarket chain), Financial Times and Now TV (on-demand TV).

In the end, Barry secured a 6-month contract to consult with Kahoot! (online educational platform), a Norwegian startup based in London.

Barry had previously met one of Kahoot!'s developers on a networking event. After spotting Barry's promoted tweet, the same developer got in touch with him.

This example stresses the importance of reaching out to potential clients continuously wherever they are, online and offline. When Kahoot! finally was in a position to hire, Barry's promoted tweet appeared.

Who Did He Target the Tweets To?

Barry's goal was to get his CV in front of people within big organizations with the power to hire freelancers. Twitter offers a pile of targeting options for promoted tweets. To reach his potential clients, Barry picked these targeting options for his promoted tweets:

  • Keywords: He targeted searches and users who tweeted with these words: “front end”, frontend, front-end, html, HTML, CSS, Javascript, SASS, “start-up”, “product lead”, “in-house recruiter”, “tech lead”, “resource manager”. He works with clients with a large web presence in need of conductance and guidance on managing and scaling a large code base.
  • Location: Greater London, UK
  • Language: English
  • Gender: Both

He chose to show ads both in users' timelines and in search results

Besides Barry's choices, you can also target specific interests, e.g. “web design” or followers of specific Twitter accounts, e.g. competitors.

How Much Did He Spend?

For this marketing experiment, Barry put a cap on his ad spend to $20/day and he capped his total campaign budget to $100. Setting a cap guarantees that the ads will stop running once that budget has been reached. He paid per click. It means that all other actions and engagements (impressions, replies and retweets for example) are free.

He ran two $100 campaigns.

Before letting the campaign run, he spent a couple of hours experimenting with the Twitter Ads interface.

[box] Connect with Barry! Website Twitter LinkedIn[/box]

For more marketing ideas for freelance creatives, check out 18+ Marketing Ideas Actually Used by Freelance Creatives!

Barry has also spoken about his experiences in this podcast. In order to find new clients, he will definitely use promoted tweets again.