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How to Start Freelancing?

Discussion in 'General Marketing' started by Ethan Alvin, Jul 31, 2014.

  1. #1
    Hi guys,

    Just thought of sharing this post here from my blog. Do add on or comment :)

    Freelancing tends to sound like an attractive opportunity to most who hear about it, even with the downsides weighed in properly. Still though, you have to be realistic about your career as a freelancer in the beginning, if you want to get off to a good start. There are a lot of pitfalls that beginners seem to have a hard time avoiding, while on the other hand you can progress very quickly if you spend a little time researching your relevant field in the beginning, and preparing yourself.

    Presentation matters

    The way you present yourself will play a huge role in the way your freelancing gig takes off. Always take things seriously, and this will reflect on your success in more ways than one. Because, on one hand, you only get to make one first impression on your potential clients – make it a good one and of course you’re going to get more jobs than those who don’t put effort into their presentation. But on the other hand, carrying yourself like a professional, even when you aren’t quite one yet, can really help boost your confidence and allow you to carry more open conversations with your clients.

    Finding good jobs

    You should ideally stick to a single website in your search for freelancing jobs, instead of taking the “shotgun approach” and going through as many different places as you can. This will help you streamline and organize your work, and you will also integrate yourself into that particular freelancing community better, instead of spreading your attention over several ones and not really establishing a solid presence in any of them.

    Approach clients that are offering interesting-looking jobs, even if you think you might be slightly under-experienced for the task. If you’re upfront and honest with the clients about it, sometimes you may still end up landing the job, while you’ll also make a good impression on your potential client through your honesty.

    Follow-ups are crucial!
    SEMrush
    Once you’ve completed a job for a client, and they’re happy with it, ask them if they can put out a good word for you with their partners and clients of their own who might be interested in your work. This is how you’ll establish many of your good connections, and you’ll often also land higher-paying gigs this way, as people will approach you with some trust already established.
    This is also why you shouldn’t ignore small, one-time jobs. Even if that particular client is not looking for any further work in your field, they might (and usually will) know someone who does hire such services on a regular basis. So pay attention to any kind of job that you can comfortably fit in your schedule, especially if the client approached you about it first!
    It can take a surprisingly short amount of time to build up your skills as a freelancer to a very professional level, in any line of work. Just make sure that you treat yourself like the specialist you want others to see you, and approach your jobs with the same level of respect.

    Source: http://freelancenomads.com/start-freelancing/
     
    Ethan Alvin, Jul 31, 2014 IP
    SEMrush
  2. Dele

    Dele Active Member

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    #2
    Excellent write up
     
    Dele, Jul 31, 2014 IP
  3. cborrx

    cborrx Member

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    #3
    To me freelancing is just one step short of fully working for yourself. I mean you are doing 99% of the work and then handing it off to someone else. Why not do it for yourself via a website/blog and build up a loyal following who will immediately start throwing their money at you. LOL
     
    cborrx, Jul 31, 2014 IP
  4. janinaherz

    janinaherz Active Member

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    #4
    Its look like a good Guide Report to me, surely help Newcomers.

    I personally like some of your sentences, viz
    • The way you present yourself will play a huge role in the way your freelancing gig takes off.
    • Approach clients that are offering interesting-looking jobs, even if you think you might be slightly under-experienced for the task.
    • Ask them if they can put out a good word for you with their partners and clients of their own who might be interested in your work.
     
    janinaherz, Aug 1, 2014 IP
  5. chinesegirl07

    chinesegirl07 Active Member

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    #5
    Very well said. Working as a freelancer is not a walk in the park.
     
    chinesegirl07, Aug 1, 2014 IP
  6. dcristo

    dcristo Illustrious Member

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    #6
    Because not all freelancers have the necessary skills to do everything themselves. Good freelancers will make more money then "jack of all trades but master of none."
     
    dcristo, Aug 1, 2014 IP
  7. chinesegirl07

    chinesegirl07 Active Member

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    #7
    very true.
     
    chinesegirl07, Aug 1, 2014 IP
  8. ketan725

    ketan725 Member

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    #8
    informative. i have always found it difficult to get the first project on a freelancing site.
     
    ketan725, Aug 2, 2014 IP
  9. MoneyWrite

    MoneyWrite Member

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    #9
    I would add one thing - specialise in a market rather than simply trying to cover everything. That way your portfolio looks more relevant to potential clients, recommendations tend to be better targeted and you don't get the nagging feeling that time invested in reading around a commission will be largely wasted. I specialised in consumer finance and investment (which was probably too wide) and I got the reputation among my friends of being the go to guy to talk about pensions or mortgages - although my wife wishes I specialised in gardening and DIY!
     
    MoneyWrite, Aug 3, 2014 IP
  10. Senobia

    Senobia Notable Member

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    #10
    No, you shouldn't. You should look for opportunities wherever you can find them, even if it's at the grocery store. It would be a sad, sad day in the writing world if all writers relied solely on DP Forums (for example) for writing gigs.
     
    Senobia, Aug 3, 2014 IP
  11. dcristo

    dcristo Illustrious Member

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    #11
    I get the point you are making, but I think his point is that by sticking to one freelancing site, it allows you to build a reputation, which in turn will create more business for you.
     
    dcristo, Aug 3, 2014 IP
  12. MoneyWrite

    MoneyWrite Member

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    #12
    It not only builds reputation, buy you get to know the buyers better and to get a sixth sense of the sort of gigs to avoid.

    I used to love reading Wickedfire, but I'd only reply to DP posts because I felt that I knew the way that people acted around here. (I did get approached on Wickedfire to write stuff and in one case to go into partnership, but that's not the same thing).
     
    MoneyWrite, Aug 3, 2014 IP
  13. Rado_ch

    Rado_ch Well-Known Member

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    #13
    Indeed you are right but I think there is a point missed here. As this is a guide to start freelancing, this means that the starter is a person with absolutely no knowledge of the freelancing world, what to charge their clients etc. In such a case its good to choose at least 3-4 different places and read as much advertisements as they can (even applying for the most interesting). This way they will get a much better comprehension of the market in a faster time (imagine they choose a site that doesn't have that many ads, or 95% are low-paid). Experience comes with trial/error, so spreading the efforts might be a better idea for starters. But yeah, once you get it going, you can simply choose the site that lands you the most clients, with the best rates, and just stick there ;)
     
    Rado_ch, Aug 3, 2014 IP
  14. MoneyWrite

    MoneyWrite Member

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    #14
    I'm not sure about this, as it means learning different cultures and spreading your reputation around a number of different sites.
     
    MoneyWrite, Aug 4, 2014 IP
  15. Rado_ch

    Rado_ch Well-Known Member

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    #15
    Different cultures? Barely. Just as some freelancers are hanging around one and the same sites, the employers are doing the same thing too. Especially if its an urgent task you would want to find a good freelancer to do it fast, right? And you speed it up by posting a job offer in a few different places.

    Even if we disregard those facts, its still good to try a few different places if you are a starter. You get invaluable lessons on how the business works from different perspectives, you are gaining a much needed experience even if you are spreading reputation a little. But what reputation are we talking about for a novice user? They are still to build it. And if you want to stick to one place, how would you choose it without experience? Would you blindly follow the advice by someone else who makes a recommendation, or would you try a few places to see which fits you best in terms of opportunities, payment terms and ease of use? ;)
     
    Rado_ch, Aug 4, 2014 IP
  16. Matei Gavriluta

    Matei Gavriluta Well-Known Member

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    #16
    One time the freelance websites were really a gold place, literally. Now you hardly can take a good job because you being underpaid. No offence but $1 per hour or $3 or $6 sometimes is very low. I am not saying that on long term a $6 can't be good but when people big 0,5$ per hour or stuff like that and have minim knowledge of what they do, the employer can be happy to train himself 1-2 day but at the end he will pay 5 times lower than hiring me for example. My personal opinion here and I guess that's one reason why freelancing is going down day by day. Poor quality grows each day and people wonder why. Well it's obvious. When you hire at this rates you actually get for what you pay for..
     
    Matei Gavriluta, Aug 5, 2014 IP
  17. John14

    John14 Greenhorn

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    #17
    Freelancing can't be taken as full time job as you don't know when you will get project and when not
     
    John14, Aug 6, 2014 IP
  18. MoneyWrite

    MoneyWrite Member

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    #18
    Some people just want partially automated doggerel for low value web pages at the bottom of their marketing pyramid and that's not your market. It sounds like you need to advertise rather than simply reply to advertisers.

    On the subject of web marketing pyramids it's really important to understand the concept. It is not a pyramid scheme (which google will come up with) but a way of ordering web pages in larger sites or networks of sites. At the bottom you have thousands, or millions of automated or semi automated pages which users may never see or only see rarely. These pass link juice up to the lead in pages in the middle of the pyramid. These attract and engage the prospects. They could be user generate or informative articles. These could pay OK. Finally you have the sales page at the top, which could be on the web or could be through email (after your email address is obtained) and this pays the big money.

    It's a very simplistic operation, and always changing due to Google updates (Google don't like being gamed), but you need to know which part of the market you are aiming for.
     
    MoneyWrite, Aug 7, 2014 IP
  19. Villasforrentinsrilanka

    Villasforrentinsrilanka Greenhorn

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    #19
    I am Serching Freelacing Jobs Since Long time but i did not get the job still.,some of your sentences are really inspirational..Nice Work..