Regardless of the kind of freelance work you do, making it on your own can be a challenge. Not only do you have to provide an actual service, but you must also continuously be soliciting new clients and maintaining relationships with current customers. If you’re looking to strengthen and grow your business as a freelancer, consider these tips:
Maintain a professional website, and update it often:
A website can sell for you even when you’re not working. Invest in a professional portfolio and update it often with your most recent work. This allows potential clients to see what you’re capable of, and it also makes it easy for them to get in contact with you. Though you may have to pay a web designer to construct the site, the cost is well worth it when you’re able to use it to start bringing in new business.
Tell everyone you meet about what you do
When you’re a freelancer, you can meet a client anywhere. This means that you should be telling anyone and everyone you can about what you do. Who knows when the person next to you on your flight or your friend’s mom will be in need of your services? Don’t be shy about explaining your business. This is one of the most effective ways to get the word out.
Join professional groups
Freelancing is, by nature, a solitary pursuit, but it’s also about the people you know. If you’re trying to grow your business, consider joining professional groups in your area, like the Chamber of Commerce or an organization specifically for people in your field. Any networking you can do is valuable. As an added bonus, these groups often host lectures or other workshops that can help you to strengthen your skills.
As you get active in your community helping out with a cause you love, you put yourself in a position to meet potential clients who share the same values. Even giving just a few hours of your time per week can be highly beneficial.
Just pick up the phone
Many freelancers are nervous about cold calling a potential client, and with good reason, but this strategy works. If you’re looking to build your business, you need to let people know you’re out there. Make as many calls as you can. All you need is just one or two people to agree to meet with you. Practice the calls ahead of time so you don’t sound nervous or overly rehearsed, and know that they’ll get easier over time.
What strategies have you used to build your freelance business? Let us know in the comments!