How to Become a Freelancer
How to Become a Freelancer
Know Your Focus
When becoming a freelancer, getting started can be the hardest part. You need to figure out how to develop a client base as well as gain credibility within the field. The first step is to figure out what kind of work you are interested in producing and what subject you want to focus on. For example, if you are interested in becoming a freelance writer, it is helpful to know what subjects you are more knowledgeable in, so you can writer high quality pieces. Although it is good to have an open mind and write about various subjects, having a focus to start will make writing easier.
In order to gain credibility to establish a client base, it is important to have a portfolio of work. Although you can try to convince someone to contract you through an interview or resume, you’ll have a leg up if you can show and example of your skills to a client. Not only does the client feel more comfortable that they are hiring someone capable of completing their task, but you have a foundation to work off of especially when negotiating payment.
Motivation is key to any job, but it’s especially difficult to stay motivated as a freelancer whether it be because of a lack of work or because you feel like you’ve hit a wall. In cases where you can’t find any high paying deals, it might be a good idea to take on a smaller project just for the sake of writing, and you never know what might be a perfect addition to your portfolio. On the other hand, you can consider starting projects for yourself, if you have free time. Not only does this give you the freedom to write about what you want, but you are also able to improve your writing and explore subjects that you might not be particularly comfortable with.
Pay Attention to the Business End
Ultimately, your work as a freelancer is similar to having your own small business. You serve clients directly and manage your own time. With this in mind, you need to make sure you are managing your freelance work in a reasonable and constructive way. Make sure you are signing contracts with clients, so you are able to have every project documented, and there is no confusion about payments or work that is supposed to be produced. This develops a professional rapport between you and your client.
It is also extremely important to keep track of payments, so you can be accurate on your tax report.
Networking and Finding Clients
One of the hardest parts of being a freelancer is finding someone to produce work for. If there is no client, there is no business. As new resources and applications have been popping up on the internet, it has never been easier to find a client base. Websites have been developed specifically to content freelancers with clients. It never hurts to make accounts for these sites and posting a portfolio. Other professional sites allow you to advertise your freelance work like LinkedIn and even Facebook. Social media is a great and free way to show people your talent.
Although freelancing can seem daunting, with a little bit of motivation, now is the perfect time to start your freelancing career.