In the last… well, ok, I won’t date myself, but in the last several years of Freelance writing and Freelancing as a Social Media Strategist, I can’t tell you how many times friends, clients, colleagues, Twitter followers, and family have asked how I find work as a freelancer. I decided that if people in my personal circle were wondering it – it had to be a fairly common question.
Finding your niche in the world of Social Media is of the utmost importance as a freelancer, but aside from creating your network, there are specific things you need to think about before jumping into the ever-growing pool of freelancers. It’s in growing demand to be able to set your own schedule, to work remotely, to pursue your own personal goals whilst being paid by clients to do what you love.
And no one said it would be easy… Becoming a Social Media Freelancer – and having it support you financially is no easy tast.
Here are a few steps to set you in the right direction.
Assess Your Skills -
In order to market yourself accurately and effectively, you need to determine your skills. What sets you apart from the rest? For me, it’s that I have an affinity for learning, an affinity for meeting and connecting with new people and a drive to challenge myself with each step. These skills translate well into managing clients and constantly staying ahead of the game. For you – it may be that you are a leader, a great manager, a creative mind or a social butterfly. Whatever it is, use your skills as the center-point for pitching yourself to clients.
Establish Your Online Presence -
It’s of the utmost importance that – because you do not have a company representing you, that you represent yourself as a freelancer. Make sure that you’re present on on each and every social network – and not just present, but active.
Aside from just having an account on all the latest and greatest social outlets, I’d have to say that it’s important that you own your own domain for a website. Whether it’s MiaTaylor.com or SocialMediaFreelancer.com, it’s important that you have a place to direct potential clients. Becoming a Social Media freelancer means that people will be looking at how you do your own Social Media marketing. Spend a few moments on YouTube and research how to start your own blog. It takes a matter of minutes, and will show you an incredible return on your investment.
Put Yourself Out There -
The most difficult part of being a freelancer is that you’re making connections for yourself. It’s easy to rely on a company that employs you to represent you and to do the business development for you, but as a freelancer, your connections and relationships with people are crucial. Go to MeetUps, Sit at a coffee shop while you work- and connect with someone you see there regularly, begin to build a solid network of those who know what you do, and understand your passion for it. It’s only then that you’ll begin to build the potential of your network.
I don’t mean 50 Shades of Grey or one of Oprah’s Reading List novels, but rather something more on topic. Scour the web for resources that you enjoy reading.
Here are a few of my favorites:
Be Prepared -
It’s important that you be prepared to sell your services at the drop of a hat. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve met people in passing who see that I’m reading a Social Media related blog or magazine, who ask me if I’m in the “space.” Everyone knows someone that needs Social Media -and you should always be prepared to have them your card with your website and contact information. Make eye contact, shake their hand.