Many people expect the freelancing world to be very easy and expect themselves to be successful, without knowing the pillars on how to withstand the competition among the other freelancers including the veterans.
Here are the seven things you must have to start freelancing:
1. Time and discipline
Many people that work from home have been successful in running their businesses offshore, but after a few years, an unexpected turn of events has forced them to shut down. This is because they are not totally prepared beforehand. In order to succeed in the freelancing industry, you must discipline yourself. It’s not all about making a profit out of it but also making sure that your clients are fully satisfied with your work and the way you communicate and address their concerns.
You must keep track of your time and be aware of how long you’re doing specific tasks. Although smartphones are usually the watches we keep in our pockets, having a wristwatch is more convenient. You can easily keep track of the time and make it a habit to look at your watch now and then. We highly recommend getting Tutima Watches as these are great timepieces that combine style and function. This would help you focus more on your tasks, instead of checking your mobile phone, which can also serve as a distraction.
To reach local or global clients for your freelance services, it would be best to launch a website that will feature the strategies you want to help business owners grow their businesses. A business website may simply serve as your online portfolio along with both of your previous and existing clients’ logos, as these would be an additional factor to identify that you are a legit and professional freelancer working for clients around the globe.
If you’re in a creative industry, and you want to stand out among the other freelancers online, a blog section within your website is helpful. You just need to incorporate a keyword you want to rank in search engines. So, when a client searches for a certain keyword that will correlate to the services you offer, one of the results in the search engine will include your website. This is one of the greatest ways to obtain good quality leads and convert them into the actual premium client of yours. However, writing articles may take time, but you will notice the optimum results gradually.
4. Payment Gateway
In order to succeed and sustain your freelancing business, you would need to create accounts for several payment gateways such as Paypal, Western Union, or Transferwise. Without creating accounts from these payment gateways, you are just putting a limit to yourself from which country you can offer your service. For instance, some clients are willing to create an account in a certain payment gateway just to send you the funds for the service you have rendered, while others are not willing to do so, and they will ask you to have access to the payment gateway that they only have an account with.
5. Marketing Plan
To keep the job orders coming for you, a marketing plan is a must! Creating a Facebook business page is not enough to keep the clients coming for your services, you need to plan out everything from improving your portfolio to growing your professional network. You must take note that a personal Facebook account should be a separate account for your business.
To grow your professional network, updating your LinkedIn profile, and engaging in your network regularly is necessary. While on Facebook, you must publish authentic customer testimonials, as these will attract more potential clients. Don’t forget to send out a weekly newsletter, a special newsletter during holidays, and a gratitude letter after finishing a project. A personal message and connection with your clients make them feel more comfortable working with you.
6. Project Management Tool
If you aim to be a successful freelancer, you must have a project management tool because you need to anticipate the numbers of tasks you’ll be working on for different clients. It’s highly recommended having a project management tool to keep every task in just one place and send you notifications every day of what needs to be done. It also reminds you if there are projects you need to accomplish before the deadline. You may choose from several management tools such as Taskboard, Teamwork, Trello, or Asana, these tools offer a free version for a starter if you’re still on a tight budget, or simply you want to use the funds for other important matters.
7. Video Conference Tool
You might think that a video conference tool like Zoom and Skype is not the necessary software you need if you become a freelancer. But these can help you understand better your clients before you kick off any tasks for them, it serves as a communication tool to discuss the projects, duration, and other important agreements you may have with your client.
We hope that these seven must-haves will help you become a successful freelancer the way you want to be.