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Freelancing 101: What Every Potential Freelancer Should Know

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The gig economy is booming. According to Forbes, between 2005 and 2015, 94 percent of 10 million jobs created were either freelance or temporary gigs. For freelancers, this shows a great demand across different niches and industries and a steady decline for traditional 9-to-5 day jobs.

However, being a self-employed freelancer means owning your own business. Whether you’re prepared for it or not, you have to be your own boss. To help you better understand the nature of freelance work, here are nine things all potential and current freelancers should consider about the current state of the market climate.

1. Freelance work isn’t just one-time projects.

Traditionally, startups and smaller businesses hire freelancers for short-term ad hoc projects that the owners and their staff don’t have time to do themselves. This trend has begun to change recently, as companies are integrating freelancers into their core business strategies.

“Modern businesses are choosing to run in a very lean fashion,” said Nikolas Badminton, an author, researcher and keynote speaker for Futurist. “Sometimes there are solopreneurs that build everything they need using freelancers and they run the business on their own. Even large businesses are using freelancers as part of their contingent workforce.”

Rich Pearson, senior vice president of marketing and categories at Upwork, has observed a similar pattern, noting that some freelance positions are for projects extending as long as six months. This is an important trend for freelancers to pay attention to if they are looking for steady work.

2. Think beyond local.

College graduates and laid-off employees who have difficulty securing full-time positions near their homes frequently turn to freelancing to support themselves. Because most freelance work can be done remotely, you don’t have to stick to jobs that are close by.

“From a business standpoint, companies hiring freelancers can get better talent by escaping the local economy,” Pearson said. “It helps freelancers too in areas where there’s not much local work.”

Though competing with a national pool of applicants might be intimidating, you may be more qualified for a job than someone who’s geographically closer to the company. Freelancing ensures that you won’t lose a job because of your location.

3. Rejection is a part of the job.

Since freelancers work with several clients at a time, balancing several projects at once, there is less sense of stability. Oftentimes, your clients will change, based on your working relationship, the company’s need to employ a freelancer or even their budgets. That’s why rejection comes more often, but it’s important to not take it personally.

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“Get cozy with rejection,” said freelance content writer Minda Honey. “Don’t get discouraged, just keep grinding. If you do good work, people will talk and more people will want to work with you.”

4. Find a community.

It’s important to have a community to fall back on for support, accountability and resources. There are local chapters of Freelancers Union in major cities, but if you can’t find the right one, don’t be afraid to start your own.

“Build a community of other freelancers to stay motivated and keep you going,” Honey advised. “I get so much energy and motivation through my friends’ successes, and we learn from each other’s missteps too.”

After transitioning to full-time freelance writing last summer, I founded a blog called The Millennial Freelancer to foster a community among millennial-aged freelance writers and editors I know online. Every other week, I publish an interview with a successful freelance writer. Additionally, my blog has partnered with a Philadelphia co-working space this summer to develop a more localized community in my city.

5. Always build your pipeline.

Honey stresses that the freelance industry is often “a numbers game” of sending out persistent letters of introductions, pitches and cold calls.

“You have to always be adding to your pipeline, even when times are good and your schedule is full,” she said.

As a freelance journalist, I’m constantly developing new ideas and honing pitches to send out to editors, even when I’m working on several pieces already. The key is to schedule and plan work for the future so you’re never left without any work to do and bill for.

This also means consistently marketing your services across social media and on your website, as well as networking with professionals offline, no matter how much work you already have piled up.

6. Highlight your skills.

Pearson told Business News Daily that 70 percent of companies that hire freelancers use them to fill specific skill gaps in their staff. If a job description lists a highly specialized combination of skills and you have them, make sure you focus on that when contacting the employer.

“Make sure you highlight your unique skill set, some success stories, and why you are the best freelancer for the employer’s job,” Badminton added.

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7. Document it all.

When you’re self-employed, you’re not only providing services to clients, but you’re completely responsible for bookkeeping. Staying organized will help you dodge any mistakes and mishaps along the way, especially when tax season comes around when you least expect it to. 

“I just use an Excel spreadsheet to keep track of pieces after they’ve been accepted, and color-code them to know where in the process I am with them – if they need to be written, if they’ve been published, if I’ve been paid for them,” said Sulagna Misra, freelance writer and the editor and founder of Pitching Shark. “I know some people keep track of their [assignments], but I figure the best way to keep track of those is waiting anxiously for emails or sending follow-ups.”

8. Build a portfolio.

Many freelancers create virtual portfolios of their work on websites like Tumblr, Contently or About.me for prospective employers to look at. If you don’t have a dedicated online freelancing profile, make sure you have a collection of clips, files and other past projects ready to go in case someone asks to see them.

“It’s essential for a freelancer to show a portfolio of their work,” Badminton said. “This is a huge opportunity to wow employers and seal the deal.”

A rich history of past work can put an employer at ease when considering you for a freelance job, but be careful when choosing which projects to share. The sample pieces you provide should be relevant to the freelance job you want.

9. Communication is key.

You may not be a full-time employee of the businesses that hire you as a freelancer, but while you’re working with them, your point person at each company is your boss. This person expects you to perform a specific task, and just like with a regular boss, you need to keep the lines of communication open to ensure that both parties are getting what they need.

“Use IM, video chat and email to talk with potential employers, ask questions and connect on a deeper level,” Badminton said.

Once you submit a project, be open to feedback and willing to revise and make changes to it if the employer wants something different.

“These are all things people in the gig economy have a rough time with, because no one gave us any idea on what to do,” explains Misra. “We’re all struggling with this on our own. I’ve been very lucky because I’ve not only gotten advice from a lot of people but been in a position where I could reach out to a lot of people for advice. But when you’re first starting out, it’s incredibly daunting.” Via BND

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The Top 10 Freelance Blogs You Need to Follow in 2024

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Introduction
Freelancing has become a popular career choice for many people around the world. With the rise of the gig economy, more and more people are turning to freelance work as a way to earn a living. However, freelancing can be a challenging and sometimes lonely experience. That’s why it’s important to stay connected with other freelancers and learn from their experiences. In this article, we’ll be sharing the top 10 freelance blogs you need to follow in 2024.

Freelancers Union Blog
The Freelancers Union Blog is a great resource for freelancers of all levels. It covers a wide range of topics, including how to find work, how to manage your finances, and how to stay motivated. The blog also features interviews with successful freelancers, which can be a great source of inspiration.

The Creative Penn
The Creative Penn is a blog for writers and creatives. It covers topics such as writing, publishing, and marketing your work. The blog is run by Joanna Penn, a successful author and entrepreneur who has been freelancing for over a decade.

Freelance Writing Jobs
Freelance Writing Jobs is a job board and blog for freelance writers. The blog features articles on how to find work, how to improve your writing skills, and how to negotiate rates. The job board is updated daily with new freelance writing opportunities.

The Freelance Hustle
The Freelance Hustle is a blog run by Matt Olpinski, a successful freelance designer. The blog covers topics such as how to find clients, how to price your services, and how to manage your time. Matt also offers a free email course on how to start freelancing.

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Freelance to Win
Freelance to Win is a blog run by Danny Margulies, a successful freelance copywriter. The blog covers topics such as how to find high-paying clients, how to write effective proposals, and how to negotiate rates. Danny also offers a paid course on how to become a successful freelancer.

The Freelance Mom
The Freelance Mom is a blog for moms who are freelancing or thinking about freelancing. The blog covers topics such as how to balance work and family, how to find clients, and how to manage your time. The blog also features interviews with successful freelance moms.

The Freelance Podcast
The Freelance Podcast is a podcast for freelancers. Each episode features interviews with successful freelancers, who share their tips and advice on how to succeed as a freelancer. The podcast covers a wide range of topics, including how to find clients, how to manage your finances, and how to stay motivated.

The Freelancer’s Year
The Freelancer’s Year is a blog run by Emma Cossey, a successful freelance consultant. The blog covers topics such as how to find clients, how to manage your time, and how to stay motivated. Emma also offers a paid course on how to become a successful freelancer.

The Freelance Collective
The Freelance Collective is a blog and community for freelancers. The blog features articles on how to find work, how to manage your finances, and how to stay motivated. The community allows freelancers to connect and share their experiences.

Freelance Folder
Freelance Folder is a blog for freelancers of all levels. The blog covers topics such as how to find work, how to manage your finances, and how to stay motivated. The blog also features a job board and a community forum.

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Conclusion
Freelancing can be a challenging and sometimes lonely experience, but it doesn’t have to be. By following these top 10 freelance blogs, you can stay connected with other freelancers and learn from their experiences. Whether you’re a writer, designer, or consultant, there’s a blog on this list that can help you succeed as a freelancer. So, what are you waiting for? Start following these blogs today and take your freelance career to the next level!

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The Top 5 Freelance Marketplaces for Freelancers in 2024: A Comprehensive Guide

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Introduction:
The freelance industry has been growing rapidly in recent years, and it shows no signs of slowing down. With the rise of remote work and the gig economy, more and more people are turning to freelance work as a way to earn a living. However, finding work as a freelancer can be challenging, especially for those who are just starting out. That’s where freelance marketplaces come in. These platforms connect freelancers with clients who are looking for their services. In this article, we’ll take a look at the top 5 freelance marketplaces for freelancers in 2024.

  1. Upwork
    Upwork is one of the most popular freelance marketplaces in the world and for good reason. With over 18 million registered freelancers and 5 million registered clients, Upwork offers a wide range of job opportunities for freelancers. The platform allows freelancers to create a profile, showcase their skills, and bid on jobs that match their expertise. Upwork also offers a range of tools and resources to help freelancers succeed, including a time tracker, invoicing system, and dispute resolution process.
  2. Freelancer
    Freelancer is another popular freelance marketplace that has been around for over a decade. The platform has over 50 million registered users and offers a wide range of job opportunities for freelancers. Freelancer allows freelancers to create a profile, bid on jobs, and showcase their skills. The platform also offers a range of tools and resources to help freelancers succeed, including a project management tool, time tracker, and dispute resolution process.
  3. Fiverr
    Fiverr is a freelance marketplace that is known for its low-cost services. The platform allows freelancers to create a profile and offer their services for as little as $5. Fiverr offers a wide range of job opportunities for freelancers, including graphic design, writing, and programming. The platform also offers a range of tools and resources to help freelancers succeed, including a messaging system, order management tool, and dispute resolution process.
  4. Guru
    Guru is a freelance marketplace that has been around since 1998. The platform has over 3 million registered freelancers and offers a wide range of job opportunities for freelancers. Guru allows freelancers to create a profile, bid on jobs, and showcase their skills. The platform also offers a range of tools and resources to help freelancers succeed, including a project management tool, time tracker, and dispute resolution process.
  5. PeoplePerHour
    PeoplePerHour is a freelance marketplace that is based in the UK. The platform allows freelancers to create a profile, bid on jobs, and showcase their skills. PeoplePerHour offers a wide range of job opportunities for freelancers, including web development, graphic design, and writing. The platform also offers a range of tools and resources to help freelancers succeed, including a messaging system, order management tool, and dispute resolution process.
ALSO READ:  5 Tips to Grow your Freelance Skills to attract more Buyers

Conclusion:
In conclusion, freelance marketplaces are a great way for freelancers to find work and build their careers. The top 5 freelance marketplaces for freelancers in 2024 are Upwork, Freelancer, Fiverr, Guru, and PeoplePerHour. Each of these platforms offers a wide range of job opportunities for freelancers, as well as a range of tools and resources to help them succeed. Whether you’re just starting as a freelancer or you’re an experienced professional, these platforms are worth checking out.

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Mastering the Art of Freelance Proposals: How to Craft a Standout Pitch and Win Clients

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In the competitive world of freelancing, a well-crafted proposal can be the key to securing lucrative projects and standing out from the crowd. Whether you’re a seasoned freelancer or just starting, understanding the elements of a winning proposal is essential for success. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the strategies and techniques that can help you create the best freelance proposal to outshine your competitors and land your dream projects.

Introduction

  • Discuss the importance of a strong freelance proposal in winning clients and setting the stage for the rest of the article.

Understanding the Client’s Needs

  • Emphasize the significance of thoroughly understanding the client’s requirements and how they influence the proposal.
  • Provide tips on conducting thorough research about the client and their industry to tailor the proposal accordingly.

Crafting a Compelling Cover Letter

  • Discuss the elements of an attention-grabbing cover letter, including personalization, addressing the client’s pain points, and showcasing your understanding of their business.

Showcasing Your Expertise

  • Highlight the importance of presenting your skills and experience in a way that resonates with the client’s needs.
  • Provide examples of how to effectively showcase past work and achievements to build credibility.

Pricing Strategies

  • Discuss different pricing models and how to choose the right one for each project.
  • Guide justifying your rates and demonstrating value to the client.

Detailed Project Plan

  • Emphasize the need for a detailed project plan that outlines deliverables, timelines, and milestones.
  • Provide tips on creating a clear and comprehensive project scope to set realistic expectations.
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Testimonials and Social Proof

  • Discuss the impact of including client testimonials and social proof in your proposal to build trust and credibility.

Call to Action

  • Highlight the importance of a strong call to action that encourages the client to take the next steps.
  • Provide examples of effective calls to action that prompt a response from the client.

Conclusion

  • Summarize the key points discussed in the article and reiterate the importance of a well-crafted freelance proposal.In conclusion, mastering the art of crafting a standout freelance proposal is a skill that can set you apart in the competitive world of freelancing. By understanding the client’s needs, showcasing your expertise, and presenting a compelling case for why you’re the best fit for the project, you can significantly increase your chances of winning high-value contracts. With the strategies and techniques outlined in this guide, you’ll be well-equipped to create winning proposals that leave your competitors in the dust.
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