Tips for Aspiring Freelancers in the Gig Economy

Posted May 13, 2019, by Jenny Sakr

The life of a freelancer can be fulfilling. Freelancers set their hours, be selective in working with clients and work on a variety of projects. At the same time, the success of a freelancer’s career depends on an individual; not the economy or the state of the gig economy industry. As a freelancer of four years, these tips will help you get started to define a successful future of the right way to get started as a freelancer

1. Professional Branding is Essential

The first step is to focus on a niche before you get started as a freelancer. What is your talent? What are the demographics of your target audience? How do you plan to reach the audience? A professional website with an interesting biography, professional photo and a list of services is important. Take a look at freelancers in your industry and create a site that is different than the norm; one that will stand out from the competition. A video of yourself with a brief bio and what you can offer on the front page is another idea. Research the social media and online platforms your audience uses. Share valuable advice to help them through blogs or information to help attract website visitors to begin the sales funnel process.

2. Nurture Your Customer Base

The concept of having a solid number of clients is a freelancer’s dream. A consistent volume of work from a few reliable clients is the ultimate goal. It can be less time consuming to invest and find new customers to keep the business running smoothly over the years. Here are a few ways to keep customers happy:

1) Be transparent

2) Only accept work you have the skills to complete

3) Answer emails or correspond within 24 hours

4) Share your achievements with clients

3) Set Realistic Goals

It takes time to be high in demand freelancer with the help of setting realistic goals. Write goals on a piece of paper and place it in a visible place in your office. Set a timeline of no more than five years and work each day to accomplish the goals. Include what you can offer to accomplish the goals. Set daily goals and when you feel unmotivated, continue on the path by reminding yourself of the bigger picture of what motivates you to freelance.

3. Network with Freelancers

Experienced freelancers can offer advice based on their experience. Many will refer to books, blogs and literature to inspire you on the journey. The conversations while networking with freelancers can be uplifting because they understand the highs and lows of the industry. A reliable freelancer can be a mentor to help shape one’s career, offering advice that can help a new freelancer to avoid common mistakes.

4. Attend Business Meetings

Business meetups can be a place to meet potential clients. It is an opportunity to hear the pros and cons of entrepreneurs to learn what it takes to run a business. A few rules to networking etiquette include asking questions, listening and taking mental notes when speaking with successful business owners. Find out they experience working with freelancers and avoid making the same mistakes if some have bad experiences to build a reputation in the community; you are a reliable professional.

To conclude, freelancing can be a hobby or a business that can sustain your lifestyle. It is helpful for students, people with disabilities, women on maternity leave or people that are interested in becoming financially independent. It is important to network with other freelancers, take advice from entrepreneurs and connect with business owners in the community. It can help to prevent making common mistakes of new freelancers and build a network of potential clients.

This article was produced for Career FAQs by Makeda Waterman. 

Jenny Sakr
Jenny Sakr

Jenny found her way with words while interning during uni, since, she's produced articles on it all – from hair and beauty to homewares, travel, career advice and study tips. On a weekend you're most likely to find her lining up for a table at the latest cafe or restaurant.

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