Why hello, fellow creative!
Or, at least, that’s what I imagine you to be if you’re looking at how to freelance successfully!
Let’s be honest, the shift to remote work and greater flexibility has definitely worked in our favor in some respects. In others though? Maybe not so much.
While the pandemic proved that HUNDREDS of previously only ‘office-possible’ jobs were, in fact, possible from home, it also convinced countless people that the 9-5 life might not be for them. And with that, endless numbers of new freelancers, contractors, and part-time workers have arisen.
So, now what? Sure, there’s not exactly a short supply of freelance work, but there isn’t exactly a shortage of competition either.
Freelance Work – How To Be Successful
First and foremost, allow us to add a little disclosure clause: as with most things in life, there is no one-size-fits-all situation here. What may work for one may not work for another, and your industry may also have a hand to play in how you operate. That being said, there are some things that apply to EVERYONE…
1. Know Your Niche
Some love being a Jack, or Jill, of all trades, but often in the case of freelancing and freelance work, this might not be the best approach. The advice:
- Identify your zone of excellence – what are you BEST at? And what part of your field do you enjoy most? Focus your primary energy on obtaining jobs / contracts in this sphere. Then, develop secondary skills that you can start honing.
- In the freelance world, people are often searching for specialists. For example, website developers, coders, or interior designers.
- Find your ‘thing’ and stick with it! Become the best.
2. Know Your Worth
We know everyone says this. We also know that sometimes it’s tempting to accept less because it’s work and when things feel scarce, it’s scary.
- Charge for your EXPERIENCE, not your time
- Create fair rates that you don’t feel resentful of when you’re paid
- Stick to your rates – the right clients will see your value
3. Automate As Much As You Can
Freelance work, especially when done for multiple clients at a time, can be time consuming. There’s always a little pressure to do more or to ‘just quickly’ do something – we all know it’s never quick. The key?
- Whatever you don’t have to do manually, don’t
- Create systems & processes
4. Get Organized, Be Successful
Sounds so simple, right? Everyone knows this! But does everyone do it? You may be surprised. The whole point is to make your life easier and more efficient – after all, time is money!
- Sort out your backup – Google Drive, iCloud, whatever it is!
- Set an invoicing date & use an online generator – don’t forget to number them!
- Create folders for each client – never spend time searching for things
5. Request Referrals & Be Findable
If you’ve ever felt awkward about this, that’s got to stop today! You did the work, you’re more than entitled to ask for a reference or referral. Why is this important?
Two words: social proof.
A few others…trustworthiness, reputation, portfolio, experience
People TRUST what they believe to be tried and tested. It’s like going to a tattoo parlor, are you going to walk in and just say “ink me”? Unlikely! You’d want to kick the metaphorical tires a little, see some previous work, read some Google reviews, check their social presence etc. Don’t you feel better about getting inked there now?
The same applies to you…
- Exist online
- Provide previous examples of work
- Referrals or testimonials
- If applicable, promote your clients on your social pages
Running a freelance business and being a full-time freelancer can be daunting. It won’t always be sunshine and roses, but the possibilities of freedom in your life make it SO worth it – or we think so, at least!
Just picture it, you’re traveling the world, working on freelance projects with clients that you love in hours that you set – isn’t that the dream?
To us? It is. Which is exactly why we developed the Full-Time Freedom Accelerator – an 8-week programme designed to help you become a successful, remote, freelance-based life. And who better to learn from than someone who has successfully scaled their online business while traveling for the last 8 years?