Since I’ve been freelancing seriously and professionally for almost a year now, I’ve learned a great deal of what works and what doesn’t work when you’re trying to land exceptional clients and good-paying gigs.
Many people have proved that you can definitely earn a sizeable amount of money by working for yourself, but you need to operate like a business in order to do so. That’s one of best ways to differentiate a hobby from a profitable side business.
While my side hustle of choice is freelance writing, I’m sure these tips will help anyone who is looking to grow their freelance career on the side or build a business of their own.
Start a Blog or Website
Starting a blog was one of the best things I could do to land good freelance clients quickly. As someone who is interested in writing, I knew that my blog would serve as my portfolio and showcase my best work. It would have been extremely hard to land any writing jobs without an online presence like a blog.
If you don’t want to post regular updates online, you can always set up a professional website with a few pages about yourself, examples of your work and so on just so potential clients get to see who you are and connect with you in some way.
If you’d like to start a blog and jumpstart your freelancing side hustle, I highly encourage you to check out my tutorial on how to start a blog in just a few minutes with Bluehost. Bluehost has been a spectacular host to me thus far and I love all the extras I get with their service like my own professional email address.
Develop a Logo and Brand Yourself
Branding yourself as a freelancer or small business owner is so important and it all starts with a good logo. Your logo should be prominent on your website, all your invoices, and your marketing material and contracts. It symbolizes your brand and differentiates you from others.
My logo trademark is a light bulb to symbolize an epiphany along with the creative ideas and concepts I’m able to contribute. While I like my logo concept, I do feel like I need to rebrand.
If you need to create a professional logo, I would recommend checking out Deluxe Business Service. They offer three exceptional logo design packages that will help you stay true to your vision while catering to your specific needs. Deluxe Business Service offers some great benefits for their professional logo design services like:
- 10 custom logo design concepts
- Multiple revisions (they will keep working with you until they get it right)
- Unrestricted rights and 11 different file formats (this is ideal for when you need a high resolution vector file of your logo handy)
A quick overview of the process:
If you are interested in checking out Deluxe Business Services’ logo design service, I have some affiliate links you can use to get a discount:
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I must say, coming up with a logo design is one of the most exciting parts of the process when you’re trying to market yourself as a professional. It definitely makes me feel more legitimate.
Once you’ve got your logo established, you can have free range to perfect your brand and figure out what makes you unique and what value you offer to others. People like working with other people who are easy to collaborate with and bring something to the table. Therefore, it’s best to reveal some of your personality in your website and through your brand whether it’s through font colors and personal quotes or the style of your website design among other things.
Build up Some Honorable Mentions
Credibility can be hard to come by at first, but it’s one of the main factors that can get your foot into the door when you’re just starting out as a freelancer. While having a sharp logo and a solid brand are great attributes, you should also try to get some honorable mentions under your belt to build your credibility.
Find out what successful people in your industry are going to gain recognition and add your own flair to your approach. For freelance writer like myself, it’s boosts credibility to get published on popular websites like The Huffington Post, Lifehack, Forbes, etc.
You can also enter your work in contests, attempt to win awards, or pitch popular publications to feature examples of your work or refer to you to help boost your amount of honorable mentions.
Expand your Network
Who you know can be very important as you are trying to branch out on your own with freelancing or a new business venture. You can find your ‘tribe’ by connecting with people who have similar professional goals and aspirations as you and can actually help you get to the next level.
I reached out to gurus in my industry a while back, joined Facebook groups, and started being active on social media in order to build my network and it is so nice to have people refer me for freelance jobs regularly or think of me enough to send me leads. I’m extremely grateful for that type of support and probably wouldn’t have experienced so much good fortune with freelance writing is if I never put my all into building up my network and connecting with people long-term.
It also helps potential customers and clients take you more seriously when someone reputable and trustworthy in your network personally recommends you.
Having a business mindset and presenting yourself in a professional manner will definitely allow a wide variety of potential clients or customers to notice you and take you and your work seriously.
If you freelance or own a business, what have you done thus far to ensure you are taken seriously and land more clients?
A big thanks for Deluxe Business Service for sponsoring this post! All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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