It’s official, you started a freelance business! Congratulations! Whether you quit your day job or are using freelance work as a side hustle, you’re well on your way to creating a lifestyle you love.
There are many perks when you're in charge. Flexible hours, work from home, set personal goals, gain financial freedom, and saying yes to dream clients and no to the rest. No matter what kind of freelance work you do, whether it’s in web development, software development, design, or copywriting, here are 5 sure-fire ways to land the next job.
There’s a popular quote floating around that every freelancer should consider. “When you try to please everyone, you please no one.” It's important to niche down. There are lots of competitors out there and every time you submit a proposal you’re going up against anywhere from 5 to 500 competitors. In order to stand out from the crowd and charge what you’re worth you need to become an expert.
And how do you become an expert? By getting really good in a specific niche. Instead of seeking out any possible freelance clients, consider narrowing the search. Look for projects within your niche. This method will also save valuable time that would be wasting apply for anything and everything.
Create A Portfolio
One thing clients will be looking for when looking through proposals is your portfolio. Without work samples, it's very likely your proposal will be immediately passed over. Clients are investing their hard-earned money on hiring freelancers so they'll want assurances it’s money well spent.
Your portfolio should include work samples of relevant projects. Provide a link to a PDF or your website. Your portfolio should include excellent work showing the services you offer. This isn’t bragging, this is simply showing clients what you can accomplish. Projects should be a mix of images or screenshots as well as text describing each project.
Leverage Your Network
When it comes to finding work, many experts believe getting a job is all about who you know. Some experts say people are upwards of 80-85% more likely to land a job through networking. That’s great news! With networking, finding your next high quality client is just around the corner.
Leveraging your network could be pitching friends and family, or asking people to make an introduction. Having warm leads is an excellent alternative to cold-calling potential clients. After zeroing in on a freelance opportunity, spend some time looking over their website for the perfect contact person. Then check on LinkedIn, Facebook, or other networking platforms to see if you have mutual friends. Reach out to friends and see if they will send an introductory email.
With your first client introduction endorsed by a friendly recommendation, it raises the chances of securing the project. Whether you land the job or not, don’t forget a thank-you note or even a small gift to the person who made the introduction.
Perfect Your Sales Pitch
Perfecting the art of a sales pitch is the difference between successful freelance businesses and failing ones. It’s not enough crafting an inspiring proposal with that killer portfolio attached. Remember those 500 other applications? Anyone can submit a proposal. Perfecting your sales pitch means positioning yourself as someone who brings immense value.
When looking for freelance work, find out exactly what their needs are, and explain how you will fulfill those needs. Offering insight and a clear strategy will provide great value for the client upfront before even discussed timeline and payment. It’s easy scrolling freelance sites and submitting proposals. But you will lose out on great opportunities without going the extra mile perfecting your sales pitch.
Get The Word Out
Promoting your business doesn’t require a massive budget. Experienced freelancers know that getting the word out offers valuable contacts and eventually, it leads clients seeking you out.
The best way to get yourself established is by blogging consistently. Frequent blogging will increase your online ranking and gets potential clients looking at your work. Collaborate with other people to be featured on a guest post on relevant blogs. Having your content featured on other sites is great exposure and has potential clients looking at your work. Create high-quality blog posts that are relevant to your niche and offer valuable content and helpful solutions to potential client’s problems. This will position you as an expert in the field and you will be on the top of their list when they’re ready to start their next project.