Having a great freelance business isn’t hinged on how talented you are, or your skills at doing whatever you do as a freelancer. Mostly.
Truly, it becomes a dilemma when a talented writer makes only a minute sum of money from freelancing. Sad, right? However, someone who is probably less skilled is making a lot of waves, making more than enough income from his or her freelance business. That is the key. It is a business.
The fact that most of the things which people end up doing freelance are things those same individuals are passionate about can be quite confusing, as many individuals aren’t very good at soliciting funds for what they are passionate about.
Yet, the absolute truth is that you would be shortchanging yourself if all that you do is be passionate about what you do, and then get paid peanuts for it because you don’t run it as a business.
Here are ways to help you see your freelance business as what it is, a business:
1. Show your clients what they are paying you for
As a freelancer, or even as a talented individual, one thing which you are probably used to is delivering value, providing valuable services to individuals- you just might not have been making money from this venture.
Sometimes, you might even feel as though you don’t need to make a good impression on anyone, after all, they are the ones cashing in on your skills right? Not so, when you are focusing on making good money. You actually have to pitch in, and let your prospective clients what you do, how you do what you do, why they should pick you above others who can provide the very same service to these clients. Why are you special? If a client sees clearly how special you are from the pack, or your own skill sets, then you become marketable.
Only remember that in freelancing as opposed to operating a free business, you’ve got to market yourself as someone who is running a business. Only those on the playing field get to play.
2. Are people willing to spend money on what you do?
A popular freelancer, Rozakis says; “A lot of people go into freelancing thinking, ‘I’ve got the talent.’ What they need to realize is a lot of people have talent. What makes a successful freelance business is how strong your client list is.”
I would like to reiterate that while talent and skill in your primary business area is key, look around; it’s probably not the most talented individuals who make the most money off their business. Rather, it is those who either understand the technicalities of entrepreneurship, or who at least, hire someone to handle this critical aspect of their business.
James-Enger also says: “You can be as talented as anything, but it won’t mean a thing if you can’t sell yourself.” Talent isn’t everything, marketing skills are as important.
3. Have a contractual agreement
One very potent way of stamping it into both your mind and those of your clients, that your business is indeed, a business, is that you make a contract which clearly defines the terms of your business.
To know how to write an excellent freelance contract, click here.
This is probably one thing which freelancers are very poor at, however, those who have taken the pain to understand how to write contracts and use them appropriately see a lot of great benefits from it.
4. Be Persistent
Persistence is of utmost importance if you would make it big in freelancing. While several budding freelancers would look at successful freelancers, and immediately begin to wish they were in their shoes, very few people dig into the history of these successes, to discover that none of this success was gotten in one day! Persistent marketing of your skills is something which you have to do, and from early on in your career. It takes as much as a few months, and sometimes even years, to build a strong client base, and to make an enviable income from freelancing.
However, the catch is that you would have to strongly believe that what you are doing is a business- even if you haven’t earned a dime from it as at yet. You cannot act as though you are volunteering and not be treated as though you are volunteering.
5. Win-win situation
A business also takes into account, the needs of its clients. When you do this, you are creating the impression that service delivery is paramount on your mind. This is a potent reminder that although it is a business, you should be malleable, not stoic in service delivery. Don’t act as though all you’re interested in is money- in fact, all you’re interested in shouldn’t be money. (But of course, it isn’t for charity!)