Becoming a freelancer is a big step in your career path. With so many outlets and resources on the internet, it can feel daunting at first. It doesn’t need to be difficult, though it will take a little time and patience to get started.
The first step you want to take is to build up your resume and portfolio. You can do this by building a website through a multitude of free hosts. Wix and Weebly are easy to use templates that offer free hosting.
Next, take a look at the different freelancing websites online. There are many opportunities with the connections that the internet gives us. It is advisable to connect with more than one. Three popular sites for helping you market your abilities are Upwork, Freelanced and Freelancer.
These websites cover a broad range. They include real estate, IT, data, coding, graphic design, and copywriting. That is only the tip of the iceberg! Having so many options can feel overwhelming. Stick to the websites that you feel most comfortable with and write which ones you prefer to use so that you don’t lose track. You will find out quickly through using these different outlets which of them you prefer. This will happen naturally so do not worry too much about it while you’re getting started. It will take a while to build up in the beginning. With persistence and dedication, you will find that the work flow will begin to flourish.
It is important to stay on top of the game. Never stop learning and continue to hone your skills. There are many resources that offer free or discounted courses. Udemy and Coursera are two that are often mentioned. Many programs offer a certificate of completion. You can often add these to your LinkedIn profile and your resume. Having these shows your prospective employers your dedication to ensuring the best quality service. This can only help in the appeal and development of your freelance portfolio.
Staying trained in current programs also helps boost confidence. This is something that you’re going to need to hold on to while becoming a freelancer. It can be discouraging at first. Battling and bidding for jobs, something that many school programs do not warn us about. Remember that you’re a professional and take some time to look at your previous experience and capabilities. Continue your work on personal development. Add projects to your portfolio between assignments so that you have more material to impress with.
Don’t forget to use LinkedIn and other social networks. Word of mouth is important and it is key to be an active member in your social circles. Making good impressions is vital. You never know who is paying attention and considering hiring you. If you keep a professional conduct with an employer they are far more likely to refer you and keep up a long-term relationship with you. This is something to remind yourself of in online conduct. What you type and put out on the internet past your professional work is attached to your name. It will reflect on you. Articles, comments, reviews – all these will come back to your name. So be mindful, even if it takes place on Facebook and you think that it is private. Social Media is a double-edged sword and it is important not to burn any bridges or make a bad impression.
Last but not least, hang in there! It can be a long road at first but it will pay off and you’ll soon find that work will begin to find you. One day you will have to decline work because you already have a full docket. When that day comes, take a moment to remember how it was when you were starting. Appreciate the hard work that you have put in. It all pays off in the end.