How to Establish Yourself as a Fulltime Freelancer
For many, becoming a freelancer feels like a leap of faith. It’s not easy to leave a comfortable job with a guaranteed paycheck, benefits, a title, and everything else that comes along with working for someone else. Yet, there are many perks to being a fulltime freelancer. If you think you’re ready to become a fulltime freelancer or even if you’re only entertaining the idea, here are a few things you should do to be a successful fulltime freelancer.
Know Where You’re Going to Start (Make a Plan!)
The wrong way to become a freelancer is standing up at work one day, saying “I quit”, and walking out the door. If you do this, you don’t know where you’re going to start and you definitely do not have a plan.
When thinking about being a fulltime freelancer, it’s important to put together at least a mini business plan that includes things like what industries you’re going to focus on, how will you sell yourself to others/describe exactly what you will do, how will you reach your target audience, and competitors. An equally important thing to consider is your financials – if you don’t have clients set-up prior to officially starting as a freelancer, it can take some time to establish relationships and get a few clients under your belt. Make sure you have enough saved up to cover your expenses when you’re first starting out.
Know How to Retain Clients
Once you’ve gotten past your first big hurdle of bringing clients on board (yay!), you need to know how to retain them. This means making them happy, which isn’t always easy. You’re likely remote, so it’s hard for them to understand just how much effort and work you’re putting in. As is the case, it’s important to be very communicative by being timely in response, reiterate what you’ve completed and what you’re working on, as well as setting up weekly, or whatever is most convenient for all parties, meetings or calls to discuss not only your activities but also company updates, things coming up for you or them that may affect what you’re working on, and the like. Each client is going to be different so make sure you pay special attention to their tendencies so you can cater to their needs.
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