How To Start Freelancing – 9 Step Blueprint For Success (2022)

Freelancing is a great way to earn some extra money on the side.

You don’t need any special skills or experience for freelancing. All you need is a computer and an Internet connection.

While freelancing can provide a great side income, many people quit after failing to scale it.

If done right, you can make a lot more money through freelancing.

Freelancing can be a way to quit the rat race and get the freedom you always wanted from your 9–5 job.

But not everyone succeeds at freelancing. One of the main reasons is they just don’t know the secrets to keep making money consistently month over month.

In this blog post, you will learn about the 9 pillars of freelancing to become a successful freelancer.

Here are the 9 steps to succeed at freelancing:

  1. Define your services
  2. Find your target audience
  3. Create a portfolio
  4. Write good proposals
  5. Create relationships with clients
  6. Add skills consistently
  7. Be versatile
  8. Be persistent and don’t give up
  9. Be reliable and have the right tools

1. Define Your Services:

Turning your skills into services is the first step to becoming a freelancer.

You need to turn your skills into services that clients pay for. To do this, you need to understand how your skill can help solve clients’ problems.

For example, if you’re a programmer, one possible problem you can look at is websites for small businesses. 

Many people are starting businesses online now. And in this digital age, having a good website is essential to succeed. So, learn how to build websites and offer this skill as a service.

2. Find Your Target Audience:

Now that you have a service to offer, next you need to find your target audience. As a new freelancer, just being great at what you do is not enough to automatically have clients seeking you out.

It’s crucial to position yourself in front of your potential clients so they can learn about your services. You need to actively find potential clients and send cold DMs and emails.

You should also look at:

  • Freelance job platforms postings
  • Leverage existing connections (Twitter, Instagram, emails)
  • Marketing, advertising, and outreach.

Try different approaches to determine which one suits you the best.

3. Create a Portfolio:

The next step to becoming a successful freelancer is building a strong portfolio. 

Once you know where to find the target audience, it’s important to build a portfolio. Your portfolio establishes your work quality by showcasing your past projects.

This is the opportunity to show your potential — not just tell — clients what you are capable of. 

Your portfolio should highlight:

  • Case studies
  • Images
  • Charts
  • Testimonials 
  • Client results 
  • Some of your best projects
  • And a bit of show-off to prove that you’re good!

4. Write Good Proposals:

It’s very important to write good proposals to get better conversions and callbacks.

A single project can attract 5 to 50+ proposals from freelancers. If you want to stand out among the crowd, a well-crafted proposal may be just what you need. 

It needs to outline the client’s pain points, and how you can improve the existing solution. 

Creating a template will help you write quick proposals. But always make sure you modify it to a specific client and project. In short, it should be a selling point of your abilities.

5. Create Relationships With Clients:

As a freelancer, your customers are your business. Although it might seem obvious, it’s crucial to have a good working relationship with your clientele.

Instead of viewing the work as a one-time task, successful freelancers build relationships with their clients. Creating a long-term partnership can result in recurring business and new client referrals.

Here are some points to keep in mind: 

  • Build trust 
  • Deliver quality work 
  • Effective communication 
  • Provide more value than asked

6. Add Skills Consistently:

As a freelancer, you’re hired for your skills. So it’s important to keep improving your skills, adapt to changes, and expand your knowledge. These are crucial to scaling your freelancing business and making more money consistently.

Keeping up with current trends is essential to providing your clients with the highest service possible. 

Online platforms like Twitter, Udemy, YouTube, and LinkedIn provide many resources to improve your skills.

Always be a learner for life.

7. Be Versatile:

Being successful at freelancing means learning to be versatile.

There are many freelance jobs that require different skill sets, and it’s important to be able to switch between them accordingly. 

A successful freelancer is a person who is always ready to tackle new projects. 

If you’re only familiar with a few skills, you’re at a disadvantage when opportunities arise across a range of topics.

While it’s important to be familiar with different skill sets, keep in mind that it’s more important to be an expert in one skill. This is your USP which you do really really well.

For example, I’m a Python expert. I can do a lot of other things like web development, GoLang, AWS, React, etc.

But when it comes to Python, I’m almost certain I can do any given task. This gives me an edge over other freelancers to find long-term clients and keep making money.

8. Be Persistent and Don’t Give Up:

Successful freelancers are persistent and know the importance of not giving up.

With this, you need to know the difference between quitting and walking away from a project. However, never let a client push you into a deadline that you can’t meet. 

Be honest with yourself and know when you’re falling short. If you feel like you’re falling short and pushing the clients to a deadline that you know you can’t meet, you need to walk away.

9. Be Reliable and Have the Right Tools:

Successful freelancers show discipline and have the right tools. 

To be successful as a freelancer, you need to have the right tools. Tools such as a virtual office, a tool for tracking your work, a writing tool, and a business plan are key to creating high-quality work. 

These tools allow you to focus on creating content while freeing up time to build your business. 

Lastly, here are the 5 most popular freelancing jobs in 2022 according to Upwork:

  1. Software Developer
  2. Writer
  3. Digital marketer
  4. Web/mobile developer
  5. Graphic designer

Courses To Master Freelancing:

  1. Freelancing School Course Bundle
  2. The Complete Freelancing Bundle
  3. Marketing for Freelancers

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