Freelancing is often associated with freedom, flexibility and control of one’s own life, and for a good reason, freelancing is all those things and much more. To put things into perspective and help you truly understand what freelancing is, simply contrast it to a full-time employment of 9-5. Assuming you’re employed and are familiar with what the corporate world is like, freelancing is complete opposite.
On the one hand freelancing offers myriad of benefits including but not limited to freedom, flexible working hours, complete control of one’s life and earning power, while on the other hand, it’s very risky and unlike conventional 9-5 employment securing a continuous monthly paycheck is often challenging and occasionally questionable due to the nature of freelancing business. Put simply, you get paid only for the work you do – no clients to do the work for, no money to pay the bills.
This may sound petrifying and perhaps it is for many which is why the freelancing career isn’t suited for everyone. Risk averse people who believe in the myth of job security and seldom – if ever – change their careers willingly, shouldn’t even bother considering freelancing, let alone embark on a freelancing journey.
Assuming you’ve got what it takes to freelance, here are five tips on how to get started with relative ease:
Before embarking on freelancing journey, you’ve got to be honest with yourself and crystal clear as to why you want to do it? Why freelancing and why now? Ideally, you should have a big why or else you’ll run a risk of abandoning the ship at the first sign of a storm.
To succeed as a freelancer, strong resolve is necessary for you to weather all the storms and overcome all the obstacles you’re bound to encounter in a freelancing career. Know with certainty that it’s not going to be easy, especially in the early going when no one knows you, your capabilities, work history or personality, you simply don’t exist at first.
So be prepared mentally and make sure you have a clearly defined WHY to keep you going when the going gets tough.
2. Self-SWOT Analysis
To succeed as a freelancer in the world that’s adopting freelancing phenomenon at a speed of light, you’ll have to be exceptional in every possible way. Clearly, while you personality and positive attitude matter greatly and are directly related to your ability to succeed, it’s your skills and professionalism that will set you apart from the crowd and ultimately have clients flock your way.
So to stand out from the pack, you’ve got to know what arsenal of skills and talents you already possess and can unleash at will. Knowing full well that you like everyone else can only excel with your strengths, it’s imperative for you know with certainly what they are. Make sure you do a self-SWOT analysis, identify your strengths and hone them accordingly before you put them to good use.
3. Freelancing Platform
Because of the nature of freelancing business, you’ll have to find the most adequate freelancing platform to use as your base to conduct a business from. Think of a freelancing platform as your office with all the necessary tools to help you promote yourself, seek relevant clients, do the job and get paid.
Because freelancing platform is all the aforementioned things and more, it’s in your best interest to choose the one that’s best suited for you. Take your time to evaluate several of them before making the final decision on which to use.
4. Don’t Sell Yourself Too Short
Assuming you’re truly fully committed to becoming the best freelancer you possible can and have selected a freelancing platform which doesn’t operated on the competitive bidding principle, know your worth and don’t sell yourself too short.
Build the most compelling freelancer profile humanely possible – use a professional hi-res photo, provide your personal and professional overview emphasizing the areas you’ve excelled at and ideally offer via platform in exchange for hourly rates you decide are fair and are happy with. Remember, you’re in control, there’s no boss other than you so play it smart.
Be active on the platform and mindful of your reputation and ratings in particular. Excel at each new job you’ve been given to entice clients to give you high ratings and provide great reviews as the same will ultimately help you get more work on regular basis. Depending on what the freelancing platform you’ve chosen offers in terms of perks and tools, make full use of it and promote yourself to help you stand out from the crowd.
5. Celebrate Your Success and Share It With Others
As you establish dominance on chosen freelancing platform on the back of stellar performance, happy clients, positive reviews and high ratings, let the others know it, flaunt it with fanfare. Freelancing isn’t for shy and timid, so be bold and loud.
Take your success places including all the social media you’re member of and spend fair bit of time on i.e., Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, reddit etc. By doing so, you’ll inevitably raise awareness of your success as a premium grade freelancer and ultimately increase the chance of attracting more clients who are interested in what you’ve got to offer. The more clients you attract the greater your success will be.