More people have been leaving their traditional jobs and embarking on freelance careers these days. With the help of the internet, it is easy to find freelance work as a writer, artist, designer or other professional. Even so, anyone who wants to do this will need a lot of helpful advice before starting on that path.
Bridget Scarr is someone who has spent several years in various creative jobs, and she is the person to go to if you are thinking of starting a freelance career. You have the option of starting a traditional business, but Scarr suggests that you follow her five-step plan instead:
Step 1: Find Out as Much as You Can about the Economic Situation.
You will need to know if there is a lot of competition to contend with and whether the public has a definite need for what you have to offer. In this research, you may discover that there are several people who are already offering the product or service that you want to provide.
If so, find out if you can supply the product or service at a much higher value. It would be difficult for a graphic designer who delivers general services to find many clients. But, if you are someone who advertises yourself as a “designer of interactive media,” finding clients will be much easier for you.
Learn what you can about people who are doing the job that you want to do. What prices are they charging? How do they advertise their services? How can you customize your services? Then, look for ways that you can do those things differently.
Step 2: Establish a Unique Brand.
Your brand should show people what is unique about your way of doing business, and this can be done in a variety of different ways. Some of these techniques include purchasing business cards and having a social media presence.
Developing a website is highly affordable. If you would like to keep your costs down even more, you could trade services with other professionals. For example, you may be a good writer, but you can’t set up your own web pages. You could offer to write content for a web designer who will build your website in return.
Along with your website, you will need a logo, email account and business cards. Then, you can introduce your website on social media. Bridget Scarr believes the first place you need to go is to LinkedIn. This is the place where you want to be extremely thorough when describing yourself and explaining what you do. It’s also a good idea to be on a second social media network, such as Facebook or Twitter.
Step 3: Write Content for Your Website.
This should be the first thing you do before you ever mention your service, and it must be about more than just your experience, technique and skills. A website also gives you a great place to present samples of your work. Then, potential clients will be able to determine whether or not they like your style.
Bridget Scarr wrote 100 articles before she started marketing her website. You could do this too, but it isn’t necessary. If you don’t have a lot of time, several relevant articles will be enough to get you started.
It may take some time to create the original samples that you will need, but you could update the work that you have already done to save time. It is imperative that you do not directly copy any of your previous work that may already be on the internet.
Step 4: Always Be Thinking about the Future.
A freelance career needs long-term planning to be successful. Bridget Scarr suggests that freelancers write a list of the people who would benefit from their services. Some of these
people are individuals, non-profit organizations, corporations, small businesses and agencies. Remember to include the enterprises located in your own neighborhood.
Evaluate how much money you expect to make and the amount of money you will need to spend. How much will you need to live for three months? How many hours of work will be required? Also, plan to set aside time for communications, marketing duties and your records.
There will be times when you won’t have any clients. This will be the case whether the country is in a recession or not. Anticipate these times by saving enough money for living expenses that will last for several months. You could also keep a job outside of your freelance business to ensure that you always have money coming in.
Step 5: Start Talking about Your New Endeavor.
You can make an announcement on Facebook or send an email message to everyone in your address book. Remember to tell people about your website, and ask them to take a look. This may lead to suggestions on how you can make the website even better.
In the first step, you learned about freelance professionals who just started to work in your field. It would be a good idea to call these people and tell them all about what you are trying to do. They may be able to offer you some help, and you might be able to do the same for them.
Last but certainly not least, advertise your product or service to people who may be interested in it. Don’t do this until you have a website that has attracted numerous followers. If you enter the market before you are truly ready, you may miss the chance to get your business off of the ground.
About Bridget Scarr
Bridget Scarr has been in the entertainment field for more than 15 years. She is an executive producer who develops television shows, animation projects and advertising campaigns. She is also a writer, singer and a songwriter who is writing a novel and working on her first album. After collaborating for several years on other people’s studio projects, Bridget decided to open her own studio, and she named it “Colibri Studios.” Now, she is in control of every part of the creative process where she engages in digital content, virtual reality, augmented reality, exhibition projects and traditional television shows.