Top 10 Tips on Becoming a Successful Freelancer




freelancingI am writing this post from the comfort of my living room. You will ask; What has that to do with anything? Well, it roughly sums up the whole concept of freelancing, since blog and article writing is a form of freelancing!

The great thing about freelancing is, you don’t have to waste time dressing up and commuting daily to your office. Nor do you have to work continuously for hours. And the best part, there are fewer tax regulations on freelancers compared to office workers! And now with the advent of social media and other promotional websites, there has never been a better time to start freelancing.

Admittedly, freelancing is not for everybody. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. Some people get discouraged too easily. There are a lot many things that may be going wrong. Today, we will talk about a sort of a check list that you need to complete for making your freelance contributions worthwhile.

Think before starting!

thinkAre you ready to give up your weekly or monthly wage? Are you willing to quit your office and the company of your colleagues/friends? Most importantly, are you suited to freelancing? If the answer to any of these questions is no, then you might want to think again. People unwilling to give up office or other work try to squeeze freelancing into their careers. As a result, they often find their schedules cramped and busy, resulting in frustration. If you have to try freelancing anyway, start as part-time and slowly ease into it.

Consider your market

know your marketAnalyse yourself, and find out what skills you have.  Then consider whether there is a market for those skills. This is very important. There are many people out there waiting to get hired, but no one offers them an opportunity because their skills aren’t (exactly) what is required. So only consider freelancing only if you think you’ll get customers. Some researching won’t hurt.

You are your own company!

If you are freelancing, you are not in a company. You’re The Company! Meaning no one will tell you what to do. You will have to tell that to yourself. While there were various departments at your previous workplace, now you are all those departments. I know it’s a lot to do, but you will have to realize that beforehand. You will have to manage your customer relations, your advertisements, your accounts etc. all by yourself. Beginners will find it difficult at first. But it’s no big a deal really once you get used to it.

Advertise yourself

No matter how good you are, it almost always boils down to how well you advertise yourself. There was never a better time than this to advertise yourself, when there are a host of social media websites and forums etc. Build up profiles on all the major platforms (Facebook, Twitter etc.). Make a portfolio of your own and advertise it on those major social networks.

advertise yourself

We recommend you get your own domain and create a website (or get one made for you). Sub-domains given out by free web hosting websites are considered worth nothing these days. Having your own domain gives a more professional look. Create a professional looking portfolio complete with your personal information, picture, some of your best works, etc. If you don’t have anything to add to your portfolio, then write about, or make a presentation about who you are and what you can do. Try out with small jobs (fiverr.com) and build up your portfolio.

Show Professionalism

show professsionalismWhen interacting with your clients, always conduct yourself professionally. Use a professional looking profile picture, and talk professionally as if you know what you are talking about. Being casual portrays a don’t-care attitude. But also remember than being overly professional is not good either. Be friendly with your clients, but don’t be casual. I hope all of you can identify the line between the two.

Ask questions

ask questionsDon’t hesitate to ask questions. Your clients may be busy, but this is one important step you can’t miss. I know from personal experience that doing something different from what the client want results in a lot of frustration and waste of time. So ask every detail about the work you will be doing. That way, the client can’t complain about your work

Plan ahead

Concentrate on getting work more than on getting paid. In order to be successful, you will need to have a constant supply of work projects. So while you are working today, think ahead about the next day, week or month. Think about where your earnings will come from months from now. Always make plans. Remember; Gaps within your work days are no good. You might be working for yourself, but that doesn’t make your schedule any less busier (it shouldn’t, anyway).

Complaints

complaints are goodComplaints and feedback are good! They tell you the error of your ways, and how to correct them. That way, you are better prepared for future. So don’t be discouraged when a client complains. In fact, ask your client if he has got any complains.

Don’t take days off!

At an office or a formal workplace, this is usually frowned upon. But won’t hurt your earnings. On the other hand, if you are a freelancer, no one cares a whit if you take the day off. But that harms your earnings. As we already discussed, Gaps in your work are never good for business. So don’t go freelancing if you are habitually irregular (:)).

Avoid distractions

Ok. So you are a freelancer. And your computer is your shovel with which you dig out your bread and butter. But beware! The computer is home to time-wasting stuff. Many a times while working, I can’t resist opening up Facebook and looking at some comics (or playing Pacman :P). And a good half hour passes in chatting before I realize I had lots of work to do. Then I curse myself and close Facebook (:P). Thus, although the computer provides you with your livelihood, it also distracts you from work hence decreasing productivity.

We have shared some tips with and hopefully, some one you (at least) will benefit from them. If you have anything to add, feel free to comment :).

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About Qasim Zaib

Qasim is a passionate blogger and has written several articles on Affiliate Marketing and Blogging niche. He is a young internet marketer and enjoys guiding people on how to make a better living online. He is a Gold star SEM contributor and a co-author.
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