"I'm My Own Boss" and Other Important Things About Freelancing
The concept of hiring freelancers is something that many employers used to look down upon. Employers used to say that their services were unreliable and that freelancers have little to no passion and commitment because they don't work at a company full-time.This has changed, though, and more professionals are choosing to go freelance, and for good reason, too. Being a freelancer offers a lot of benefits you wouldn't find in usual 9-5 jobs. Among them are you being your own boss and having total control over work time (which is not always the case, especially if you have deadlines).
There's more to freelancing than just these perks. As a freelancer, you actually manage a small business. It may even be considered a career if you've been doing it for a long time. Here are some nuggets of advice about improving your freelance work, your system, and your interaction with clients. These are also the insights that will help both new and experienced freelancers redeem their image and prove that not all freelancers are unreliable, easygoing, and uncommitted.
Marketing and Networking
Freelancers should have at least basic marketing knowledge to effectively promote themselves in the industry they're in. The first thing you need to do is identify the strengths of your products or services. These are what you're going to use as selling points when speaking with your prospects.
You should know where you stand among the competition, so you have a better grasp of how you're going to introduce yourself to clients. Impress prospects through artistic business cards or comprehensive portfolios. Don't forget to include in your CV the past clients you've worked with, especially if they have a reputation in their respective industries. Of course, don't forget to attend professional networking events to expand your connections.
This is quite a delicate matter for most freelancers, most especially if clients are demanding and overbearing. Usually, freelancers have different ways to determine the rates they will offer. Some use a daily rate comparable to those who work full time, while some work for a bit less. Some use their operational expenses as benchmarks of their pricing. You may also consider pricing your work by the hour; this is the common practice among graphic designers and developers. Writers commonly price their work based on the number of words written. Regardless of the method of price determination, always consider the tax. Yes, freelance workers are not exempt from taxes.
Giving Your Clients a Guarantee
Being in the freelance industry requires strong heart and determination, as it's also a dog-eat-dog world out there. Your skills are your main armor and your pitch is your pledge. As a reliable freelancer, delivering good work is not enough. You should always update your clients. Act on your client's feedback. Most importantly, work under minimal supervision and don't call your clients regarding any problems. Clients outsource their work to get some things off their shoulders. Constant bugging might only prove that they've hired the wrong person.
The freelance industry is seeing better days and a lot of improvements. This is due to many job choices, which are brought about by the Internet and other rising business platforms. This is also the right time to test the waters and see if you can make a career out of it.