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  • Writer's pictureAlexander Jimenez Jimenez

5 Tips to Get Interpreting Clients!

Updated: Feb 26

How to get interpreting clients

I think we can all agree that one of the most, if not THE most, important things for a business to have is clients! Big secret, right?! Well, in today's blog post, we’re going to share some tips to help guide you through connecting with and engaging interpreting clients. 

Social media

Let’s start with the big one: in today's digital age, it is crucial that you develop an active presence on social media. Now let us clarify what is meant when we say ‘active presence’, as it isn’t just constantly posting content! One of the key things is to respond to comments and direct messages so that potential clients can feel rewarded when they engage with your content, but also to let them know you’re a real person who wants to help them with their interpretation or translation needs. It’s also an efficient and effective way to stay in touch with potential clients or increase word-of-mouth referrals if you can get them to resonate and share your posts (don’t forget to thank them for doing that!)

Online Portfolios and Website

Most, if not all, of the people you meet who can be potential clients will want to see evidence and examples of your skills first. When choosing what to put on your website or portfolio, make sure it is directly related to your niche if you have one. For example, if you are a literary translator, you will want to show books and things of that nature that you have translated on your website or portfolio. 

Showing the relevance and consistency in this way will ensure you are viewed in a light you want to be seen in. Pro tip! When selecting the samples to include, make sure that you include the source and the target language and keep it between 200-500 words. You want to make sure that they are quick enough to read so that anyone viewing your work doesn’t get overwhelmed but can still see what you are all about! 

Finding the clients

This ties in with social media engagement, as there are a lot of opportunities you can get by reaching out to clients directly. That, in combination with using language service providers, interpretation websites, and associations, will help you secure the business from the clients you need. Although the websites and associations are great options, make sure you don’t ignore the potential of directly reaching out as well. After all, clients are real people, and real people are your network, so you want to foster real, meaningful relationships.

Like in any business, you should also know your target market so you can focus your efforts on a specific group. This will make sure that your efforts and your energy won’t be spread too thin or spent in vain. To stay organized, go with the trusted spreadsheet method. Once you determine your ideal client, it’ll be easy to set up the columns accordingly with titles like ‘organization,’ ‘point of contact,’ and something like a ‘notes’ column to keep track of how many times you’ve contacted them as following up will be a key part of your strategy, and remember to give your outreach a personal touch.

Referrals, Recommendations & Reviews

There’s no stronger marketing tool than word-of-mouth referrals. Reach out to past clients and ask them to help spread the word if they were satisfied with the work. You could even offer them some kind of incentive if their referrals decide to go with you. 

Also, don’t be afraid to ask for Google reviews, as this will help you with SEO and visibility, which is great because if you want clients, they have to be able to find you EASILY! Not only that, but it also makes you look more trustworthy as a business and a brand because when new potential clients look you up and see that other people had a great experience using your interpreting or translation services, they will be more inclined to hire you. The best part is these reviews can be looked at as a survey of sorts, you can see what your clients are saying, whether it’s good or bad, and adjust accordingly using this information.

Your Network is Your Net Worth!

Networking should be a vital part of your plan and strategy when it comes to building your business as an interpreter or translator. To be clear, there are different kinds of networking, but the one we will be touching on a little bit is known as outward-facing networking, which focuses on connecting with local businesses or individuals who can benefit from your services. 

To start, before you go to a networking event, prepare an elevator pitch, I know I know, ‘Ugh, I have to do another elevator pitch?’ Yes! Because it really does help to get the conversation going when you are talking to individuals, and this time, it isn’t just for some role-play assignment you had to do at school; it’s for your business. A good elevator pitch should be about 45 seconds long, and it’ll get smoother the more you have to use it, and the more you have to use it, the better it’s going to get. It can definitely be nerve-wracking if you’re going to one for the first time to promote your business, but to overcome this hurdle, we recommend going with a friend who can help give you that extra push you need. 

Something else that could be helpful is to set a goal, for example, it can be something as simple as talking to ten people. This will motivate you to strive for something and give you a clear and focused plan of action. After you make all the connections at the networking event, make sure to do the most important thing you can do after going to one, which is following up! Reaching out after the event to stay connected lets them know you are still thinking of them and that you are serious about what you bring to the table as an interpreter or translator. 


In conclusion, building a successful business as an interpreter or translator revolves around effectively connecting and engaging with clients. From establishing a strong presence on social media to showcasing your skills through online portfolios and websites, every interaction matters when it comes to connecting with new clients and getting them to trust you. Remember to leverage your network through outreach efforts and strategic networking events, take advantage of that elevator pitch you’re going to develop, and don’t forget to always follow up. Also, don’t forget about the power of referrals, recommendations, and reviews to help increase your visibility and reputation when it comes to your interpretation or translation services. 

By prioritizing these strategies and staying proactive in your efforts to secure more clients, you'll pave the way for long-term success and sustainable growth in your interpreting and translation business. So it’s time to get out there and put all these tips into practice to build your client list and get interpreting or translating! 

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