Reply
cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 
Reply

Canned Pitches Are Against The Rules Now?

Highlighted
Active Member
Andrew B Member Since: Feb 11, 2011
1 of 14

So, I got a warning that I was violating the rules for using canned (pre-written) pitches in my proposals. UpWork/Odesk always advised against this, but this is the first I heard of it being against the spam rules.

 

OK so,

 

I understand that canned pitches are less likely to get a response than unique ones. I get it.

 

But I consider myself somewhat an exception to the rule.

 

I have been able to put together a set of canned pitches that get as good a response rate as is the norm for Upwork. My stats show that I'm hired at about the average rate for a freelancer, and my hourly rate is *FAR* above average for this site, so I suspect I'm doing  above-average for freelancers in the $45-$50 an hour category.

 

My use of canned pitches isn't hurting my results.

 

But now, UpWork considers this "spam," just because the same message is repeated several times?

 

Has anybody in management ever worked in phone sales? It's completely common to reach out to an audience and deliver a set message every time. This is totally normal in sales and I fail to see how it's in any way good sense for Upwork to make it a policy violation to do it.

 

 

Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
2 of 14

Interesting. Do you use the same bid always or just copy/paste a portion? I sometimes copy/paste a portion of it. It would be interesting to know if it's just the whole thing or a portion that got you flagged. Maybe someone reported it?

Community Guru
Robert James R Member Since: Apr 17, 2015
3 of 14

I use a similar method but I often "customize" it according to the job description and the client's needs. Usually, I start the cover letter with how I notice the needs of the client and BOOM copy-paste. I then wrap it up with a little note on the bottom.

Community Guru
Fergus M Member Since: May 23, 2015
4 of 14

I try to make each proposal individual, but I'd much prefer it if Upwork just stuck to giving us a list of RfPs to bid on and stopped trying to "help" us do our jobs. They obviously haven't a clue how freelancers work and most of their so-called enhancements are just getting in the way.

If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.― George Orwell
Community Guru
Daniel C Member Since: Nov 21, 2010
5 of 14

When you post a job, and you look at the quality of most bids, they appear to be copy-paste.  Like 80+% of the bids aren't even worth reading.  

 

I usually ask that they write a short phrase so that I know if they read the jobs posting.  You would be surprised to know that almost no one includes the phrase.  However, many of them do say something along the lines of "I understand your request!"  It’s like, seriously!  20 applicants and only one bothered to follow a very simple instruction. 

 

So as a client, this is really good news.  As a freelancer, I write every proposal tailored to the individual.

 

For you, this might suck a bit.  I think you can adapt to the new situation and still get just as many jobs, If not more, with a few minutes of editing.

Community Guru
Fergus M Member Since: May 23, 2015
6 of 14

"I usually ask that they write a short phrase so that I know if they read the jobs posting."

 

Ugh, I hate that. I understand why clients do it, especially in the dark pre-connect days when people could spam as many proposals as they liked, but I'd like to think they could tell I read their posting by the way I wrote my proposal. I particularly hate it when it's a question that needs answered; a popular one is "Who was the 29th/whatever president of the United States?" I'm from Glasgow, so how the hell would I know? I don't even know who the 29th PM of the UK was. They're only politicians anyway, so why bother counting the swine?

If liberty means anything at all, it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear.― George Orwell
Community Guru
Daniel C Member Since: Nov 21, 2010
7 of 14

I hate doing it too Fergus.  But when a job requires attention to detail, and they all overlook a simple detail, then nobody is qualified for the job.  I'm hoping the recent changes actually improve things so this doesn't seem necessary in the future.

 

I actually read the proposals because 1 in 20 actually includes the phrase.  Then after reading them, it's pretty clear that the majority have not bothered to understand the project before throwing out a random bid.  There's no wonder why so many jobs go unfilled.

 

When I bid on projects, I usually get somewhere around 3 out of 4 that I bid on.  I take the time to respond to each of their concerns but I have never had any freelancer do the same with any of my job postings.  

 

I'm sure that I could get work just by copy-pasting the same proposal to 100 different jobs.  I have 200 connects at the moment and even if I hooked 1-in-25 I would be doing pretty well.

 

I'm sure if you look at your stats, you out perform your competition if you're putting in the effort.

Community Guru
Chris M Member Since: May 6, 2015
8 of 14

_____

 

'I usually ask that they write a short phrase so that I know if they read the jobs posting.'

_____

 

 

I'm a freelancer - I don't mind typing in a short phrase at all.

 

I always read job descriptions thoroughly. I always customise my proposals accordingly.

 

There was one time though that I forgot to include the phrase. I remembered just after I pressed the submit button.

 

...it's another reason why we should be able to edit/update proposals after submitting.

 

As I recall - I withdrew the proposal, then re-submitted with the phrase added.

 

Community Guru
Daniel C Member Since: Nov 21, 2010
9 of 14

"...it's another reason why we should be able to edit/update proposals after submitting."

 

Yes, or at least make amendments.  

Ace Contributor
Martin L Member Since: Mar 26, 2015
10 of 14

Andrew B wrote:

So, I got a warning that I was violating the rules for using canned (pre-written) pitches in my proposals. UpWork/Odesk always advised against this, but this is the first I heard of it being against the spam rules. 


This isn't new. I got a similar warning back in 2012.

TOP SOLUTION AUTHORS
TOP KUDOED MEMBERS