The gig economy is popular now, growing rapidly and opening up opportunities for many people who cannot find full-time positions or want to maximize their freedom through flexible schedules.
The rate of growth in this sector has been increasing steadily over the past few years, making it now one of the biggest industries in the world. A third of the workforce in the US are self-employed and work on a freelance basis.
Since the freelance market has grown exponentially, so have your competitors. It can be tricky to stay competitive.
Even more than before, you need to advertise yourself and your services to stay relevant. Thus, you need a marketing plan that helps you keep up with changes in the industry and gives you a way to reach out to new customers. A good marketing strategy can help you stand out and maintain your freelance business.
Investing in growth-oriented marketing strategies is an essential part of growing your freelance business.
You can build a loyal, stable client base and cultivate a personal brand by implementing the right strategy. Here are a few methods that are essential to get you going.
Creating a Website
You'd be surprised at how many businesses miss a huge opportunity by not having an online location that clearly presents what the brand does and who the business is for.
That said, it's the same for a freelance business. To start engaging with customers, you first need to make yourself known.
Having a website with your skills and services lets you put yourself out there and is the first step to securing clients.
Your website will need to have useful information to reach customers in your location or niche. In today's digital age, there's no excuse for not having a website.
Some clients may not even consider engaging your services if they do not have a reference for your work.
Creating a website might sound challenging, especially if you are not a designer or coder. However, it doesn’t have to be.
Learn how to create a website on WordPress in this comprehensive step-by-step guide.
Social Media Presence
Today, social networking is nearly everywhere. The domination of social media has led to its utilization in business contexts and not just for keeping up with your friends and family.
You can turn this to your advantage by promoting your freelance business through social media. Such platforms also provide clients with a quick and easy way to connect with you, and they can also help you share updates and highlight your accomplishments.
Social media retargeting is a technique used successfully by many marketers and freelancers when site visitors abandon their shopping cart or visit a site without buying anything.
When presented with special offers or reminder emails, because these potential buyers are already familiar with your offerings, they are more likely to re-visit your site or go back to their shopping cart and complete the purchase.
Highlight Your Portfolio
When it comes to the freelance market, your resume or curriculum vitae aren't as important. You're not trying to secure a job with a company.
Therefore, your strategy will naturally be different. Instead, the ideal way to showcase your skills is by having a portfolio.
It is one of the most crucial parts of a freelancer's career, and it should always be available for clients to review.
Outsiders should be able to see your previous experience and skills, while you should use it as an opportunity to reflect on yourself and visualize your achievements.
Your portfolio must be easily accessible and visually engaging, disseminating information interestingly and efficiently. It is the best representation of your skills and abilities.
Still, if it's hard to find or too challenging to navigate, then your clients may very well leave without ever learning about the great work you've already completed.
If your portfolio requires too much wading through long pages or scrolling to get to the work you're proudest of; then it isn't doing its job.
Luckily, you can showcase your best projects online for potential clients to review them and hire you directly on Freelancer.com.
Besides your portfolio, you can also shine a spotlight on your expertise through blogging, vlogging, or podcasting.
Producing content for your website or social media can help you establish yourself as a professional freelancer.
It can help you promote your freelance services and give potential clients a better understanding of how you work and what you do.
Sharing insights about your niche can establish you as a thought leader. When you share your advice, experience, and knowledge, you create an opportunity to build your brand's authority and reputation within your niche and construct an avenue that enables you to receive inquiries about your services.
The Internet runs on algorithms now. To ensure that your freelance business is prominently featured, you need to optimize it for search engines.
As search engines continue to gain importance, optimizing your website to help you show up at the top of search results is more important than ever.
This means making sure that your website content and service descriptions are clear, concise, and rated highly by the Google ranking system.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a must-have for any online business, especially when algorithms can change with just a slight tweak. Thus, having a solid SEO marketing strategy is crucial.
Joining a Community
Even though you're a freelancer, you can't just do your own thing. You need to keep abreast of what's going on in the industry.
It is also a shortcut to gaining more clients. You should join communities and groups related to your niche.
However, don't just focus on promoting your services right off the bat. As valuable as promotion is, it has a short half-life.
You should also participate in discussions about the job, share relevant content, and contribute opinions that add real value to the community.
This way, you'll become a genuine community member who brings value to members instead of just an advertiser.
Thus, you establish yourself as an expert in your fields of interest. People will respect your efforts and may just become future customers.
When you are a known figure within your niche, it becomes easy to reach out to other members of the community — and they'll reply.
A significant part of creating collaborative content is leveraging your status as an expert. When you build the authority and reputation of being a thought leader, you become active in and connected with several social and professional networks. This allows you to showcase your work further and to an expanded audience too.
Recommendations and Referrals
Networking is a must for growing your freelance business. When you connect with other freelancers, you can let them know about the services you offer and the kinds of clients you're looking for. It may be possible for you to scratch each other's backs.
Feedback is an invaluable source of information for your freelance business. You can improve your services and customer satisfaction by listening to constructive recommendations from current or past clients.
The more you learn about the specific elements that make your customers happy or sad, the better you'll become at offering quality products.
You can also use your previous clients' reviews to help you gain exposure and a good reputation within the industry.