I've posted before about the importance of an effective letter of introduction, or LOI. It's an essential weapon in your freelance arsenal, and can be just as effective, if not more so, than a query letter.
There is no one-size-fits-all LOI. And even if you have a template for an LOI, you should never send the same LOI to two different markets. You must customize your LOI the same way you would customize a query letter--and that means including the most essential element in your LOI.
That element is this: why you are contacting the potential market.
I know, I know. You want money. You want work. You want clients. That's the reason you sent your LOI. Duh!
But that's not enough for your target market. You must have a reason that works for him or her--and that reason will make the difference between an LOI that gets deleted or ignored, and one that prompts a response.
Here's an example from one of my LOIs: "I'm contacting you because I know you produce nutrition-related content for a variety of clients, and I've written about diet and nutrition for a variety of consumer and custom publications."
The "why" can make all the difference to your potential client...and to your future with this client.
**Want to see more examples of LOIs that worked? Check out the ones included in Six-Figure Freelancing: The Writer's Guide to Making More Money, Second Edition and Goodbye Byline, Hello Big Bucks: Make Money Ghostwriting Books, Articles, Blogs, and More, Second Edition.