Freelancing as a Career : How to Get Started

Freelancing as a Career : How to Get Started

Posted by: kshitij lunthi | 13 Dec 2022

Freelancing as a Career : How to Get Started

In this era of remote work, more and more people desire to become freelancers or begin freelancing. Hence, the next question is how to begin freelancing?

Being a freelancer has never been easier. Furthermore, freelancers are in much higher demand than ever before, and companies are becoming increasingly comfortable hiring freelancers instead of full-time employees.

The majority of jobs can be done remotely, and companies do not have to provide full-time employees with the same financial or health benefits as freelancers. Then maybe it is time for you to become self-employed and establish a freelance business.

Let’s now discuss how you can launch your own freelance business very quickly with very little initial investment steps by steps :

  • Set specific goals for your freelancing career
  • Identify the skills you will use as a freelancer
  • Decide who your target audience is
  • Develop a service offering based on your expertise
  • Make your skills visible by creating a portfolio
  • Create a client acquisition strategy
  • Utilize the network you already have
  • Identify and create new connections

An overview

Let’s move forward

Set specific goals for your freelancing career :

The first step in starting a freelance business is to determine your goals. Without a destination to reach, you are unable to begin your journey. In the same way, it is not advisable to start a freelance business without a clear destination in mind. Defining your goals will assist you in establishing a successful freelance business. Be specific about your goals :

Why would you like to become a freelancer. The first step to finding clients and doing excellent work for them is understanding your own “why.”

Why did you decide to become a freelancer?

  • As an additional source of income ?
  • In order to replace your full-time income ?
  • What is your expected income from this work ?

The purpose for which you wish to become a freelancer will serve as your compass for success.

Consider freelancing as a part-time or side business

It is a smart idea to begin freelancing part-time or as a side business. It is easier to be thoughtful about the type of work you do and the clients you work with when there is less pressure to generate income immediately.

Thus, it is advisable to start a freelancing business before you feel compelled to do so. Oftentimes, freelance relationships are built on trust and mutual respect, and it takes time for those relationships to develop.

Therefore, if you are freelancing part time or on the side, you will give yourself the opportunity to build the relationships you will need if you were freelancing full time.

Stepping up to full-time freelancing 

If you intend to become a freelancer full-time, congrats! Owning your own business has never been more exciting.

It is extremely crucial to determine how much you must earn to cover your living expenses if that is your goal. The term ‘living expenses’ includes all of your living expenses, including taxes, insurances, and even retirement expenses.

Here you will find your freelancing income source!

Regardless of whether you have immediate bills to pay or even debt, you need to remain focused on your income goal. By doing so, you will prevent yourself from digging yourself deeper into a hole. Obviously, you will not be able to reach that number in the first month. However, knowing what your income goal is will give you the highest chance of reaching it as soon as possible.

Identify the skills you will use as a freelancer :

In order to build your business as a freelancer, you will need to be able to showcase your unique skills. The greatest asset you possess is your skills.

First, identify what skills you have acquired over the years that others may not have and wish to hire you for. Make a detailed list of your skills.

  • Utilize your previous work experience to start a freelance business
  • Make use of your hobbies and self-taught skills to start freelancing
  • Narrow down your list of expertise 

Decide who your target audience is :

The next step is to determine who will pay you to use the skills you have determined will be most profitable and enjoyable for you. Many freelancers do not demonstrate thoughtfulness and dedication in this area. In order to avoid selling, they start freelancing and will accept any client offering them any amount of compensation.

Be careful not to make the same mistake as those freelancers!

The following points should be considered:

  • Think about your ideal clients, who need that type of assistance which you are providing.
  • Dig deeper into client avatars, Your client’s requirements should be considered as specific as possible.
  • Having defined your target client and feeling confident about your understanding of them, it is time to take a quick deep check. Several things must be true for this client to be worth serving. Consider the following:
  • Is this client aware of their problem and seeking assistance?
  • Is this client in a position to afford your services?

Develop a service offering based on your expertise :

Selecting your skill is just one step of starting a freelance business- next you need to sell them. In order to sell your skills, you need to think of them as a service. Provide your clients with your services in the following ways:

Provide a solution in place of a service 

Identify your target client’s needs and position your solution accordingly

When you begin freelancing, what will you charge?

Put it all together with the formula you developed for your client

Make your skills visible by creating a portfolio :

No matter what your clients think, they hired you because they trusted your abilities. It is critical for them that you deliver the quality of work that you promise, and that you do what you say you will do. So you should be very clear what you need to be mentioned in your portfolio:

Is a portfolio necessary to start freelancing?

Some clients are easy to obtain – they may be family or friends. However, in most cases, that client will need a reason to trust you. This trust needs to be built. In order to ensure that new clients have good reason to trust you, plan to have work samples available from the beginning.

How to prepare a portfolio for freelancing

As a professional, you should align your portfolio and samples of your work with the services you provide. Focus on samples that you are truly proud of. Include only your most outstanding work.

Build a portfolio that will help you start freelancing

So when you think of starting freelancing you should have some work samples with you to show your abilities to clients. If you do not already have examples of work you have completed for clients, consider free projects you have completed for yourself or others.

How to display your portfolio when you start freelancing

Some individuals share their portfolios on third-party websites such as Instagram, Dribbble, or Behance. Alternatively, some individuals may create their own portfolio website. Please do not hesitate to use a third-party platform if you need to. Providing your clients with easy access to your work will help you succeed.

Create a client acquisition strategy :

Congratulations, your ducks are officially in a row!

At this point, you have established a strong foundation for starting a freelance business. Getting your first client is the next step.

For finding new clients as a freelancer, there are three major strategies to consider:

  1. Engaging directly with clients
  2. Assisting as a subcontractor
  3. Utilizing freelance job websites

Now that you have considered all these points, you are ready to begin your freelancing career

Utilize the network you already have :

In this section, we will discuss how to find clients directly and how to subcontract.

Earlier I mentioned that people hire people with whom they have a high level of trust. Moreover, they are more likely to work with someone whom they like as well. You are most likely to be hired by someone who knows, likes, and trusts you, especially when you are just starting out as a freelancer.

These individuals are your backers. You already have backers on your side. They are your friends, family, coworkers, and colleagues. These individuals are your advocates. You already have advocates on your side. They are your friends, family, coworkers, and colleagues. You are always most likely to obtain hiring or referrals from your advocates.

Most service-based businesses grow through word of mouth and your advocates are your key marketing tools. It is likely that those advocates will not be as adept at referring you to people as you would like.

That can be changed.

Identify and create new connections :

Ideally, if you reconnect with your backers, one of them will hire you or introduce you to someone who will hire you. Now is the time for you to establish new connections and expand your freelance business. Make yourself available to your clients in a variety of ways, such as through social media, direct telephone calls, emails, etc., and make it convenient for them to work with you. When you begin freelancing, your primary objective should be to gain more backers. 

The term ‘backers’ is used to distinguish them from clients.

We would certainly like to have clients, but even clients are backers first. In the absence of backers, they would not have become clients; they would have had to convince themselves that you were the right person to hire. A primary objective of any outreach is to create new advocates. Outreach does not involve selling a project. In outreach, the purpose is to sell a conversation.

Next, take action :

We are pleased to have you with us! Get support on your journey by joining our community.

We at Uniblok, a freelancing marketplace, will guide you through every step of starting a successful freelance career.

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