How to Start A Career as A Freelancer

Times are tough, I think we can all agree on that. It seems like quarantine and lockdown are never going to end, and every time we look at media the news is worse and worse. The unemployment rate is sky high and over 20 million people have lost their job. This is tragic, but the good news is that if you were laid off or you need extra cash, there’s an easy way to make money right from your couch; as a freelancer. It might not seem ideal, you aren’t promised work and benefits can be up in the air, but here at Clutch we offer freelance, temp-to-hire, and contract roles around the country (with benefits included). Even if you’re just curious about the freelance life, here are some tips to get started as a freelance worker.

 

Brand yourself


This tip relies heavily on our most recent blog post, but it’s crucial as a freelancer to create a brand for yourself. Use your name as the name of your company and create a brand that represents you. Now more than ever you are going to be based purely on your digital presence, so take time, especially during quarantine, to create a personal brand. Create a brand kit using colors, fonts, and images you like. Use these guidelines on a digital portfolio and your resume. This will guarantee you a leg up from competitor freelancers.

 

Set a price


Similarly, to a full-time position, it’s important to know your price before going into a negotiation. Do your research on the asking price for other freelancers in your niche and expertise. This will help you understand the price range you should be in and what you should be asking for based on your experience.

 

Carefully pick your first clients


As a freelancer it can be easy to find work right away, but it’s important to set standards for yourself based on the personal goals you set. It’s okay to be picky and wait for the right client to come along. Your past clients will have an effect on your future clients, along with the pieces of work you will present in your portfolio.

 

Learn how to pitch yourself


As a freelancer, this skill is essential to open a door with a potential client.  You are pitching your business, which is yourself and your work, and it’s a craft that will be perfected over time. Begin with a templated elevator pitch message/email you want to initially send. Don’t be afraid to follow up every week or so if the client doesn’t get back to you. Make sure to show persistence without sounding needy. Another tip would be to sell your strengths. Don’t be afraid to show the potential client what you’re good at. Talking yourself up will show them what you are passionate about and capabilities. A great way to do this is by showcasing the best work on your portfolio while explaining the skills you used to achieve your work.

 

Starting your own freelance company can be nerve-wracking, especially if you don’t know where to start. Hopefully these tips will help you on your feet and fight the disturbances that this pandemic has created. 

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