Working as a freelancer is one of the best options to develop your profession from home or as a digital nomad traveling the world. Now, many people still have doubts about where to start to work as a freelance or how to guide their career towards this type of employment, so below we are going to solve all these doubts to create your roadmap.
The trend of working as a freelancer is here to stay, however, as in any beginning, it is first necessary to adjust the bases to take off and then the results that you long for will come.
With the help of this guide, you will know exactly what it means to be freelance and what are the first steps you must follow to make the transition to this type of employment and start enjoying the advantages of working on your own and free of bosses.
What does it mean to be freelance?
Freelance is a form of independent work where professionals have greater autonomy and decisive power over their work and the projects in which they participate, with the opportunity to collaborate online with multiple clients and companies in different parts of the world.
Freelance workers offer various services , for example: writing, design, programming, online customer service, translation, video editing, among many other professional activities, as long as they can be done remotely from a computer connected to the internet.
In the freelance world there are no bosses, so professionals are solely responsible for responding to client needs, managing work, delivery times and productivity during the development of a project.
What do you need to start working as a freelancer?
If you still don’t know where to start to work as a freelancer , don’t worry!
Everything is a matter of organization and respecting the following guide to know step by step what you must do to join the freelance work modality.
Let’s get started!
Selection of an activity and specific sector of work compatible with the freelance modality
To start working as a freelancer , the first step is to decide in which professional field you want to focus your services, in addition to determining if it is compatible with this type of employment and you can cover all the needs on your own and working from the computer.
At this point it is important to analyze your main training, experiences, abilities, skills, interests and goals at a professional level that will help you focus on one path or another.
For example, today the most contracted categories when it comes to freelance work are related to IT and programming services, digital marketing , sales , writing , translation , design , virtual assistance , among many other services and jobs that you can consult at this list of the best jobs to do from home .
Fortunately, there are currently many job categories and professions that have remote employment opportunities , especially in freelance mode, surely there will be an opportunity for you!
Create a portfolio to present your projects
Many of the services that you can offer in the freelance work modality require presenting a previous sample of the projects you have carried out , in order to know your experience, knowledge and skills that demonstrate what you are capable of achieving with your work.
The portfolio , especially in some sectors, is the main document to demonstrate your experience and present your value proposition to potential clients, so even if you have a good resume or cover letter , if you are looking for freelance opportunities in creative fields.
For example, profiles of design, arts, photography, architecture, audiovisual communication, advertising, among others, the portfolio is an instrument that cannot be missing to start off on the right foot.
Do you need to create your portfolio? Learn about the 10 keys to creating a good portfolio and attracting new clients.
Assemble the necessary equipment
The technical team is an essential part of starting to work as a freelancer, especially if you have plans to adopt this type of work in the long term.
Remember that almost all your responsibilities, productivity and comfort depend on whether you have a good computer, internet device, microphone and webcam for meetings with clients, a backpack to transport your equipment, a comfortable chair, etc…
That’s how it is!
In addition to the computer or laptop, there are several electronic devices ( gadgets ) and items that can make a very positive difference in the final result of your work as you invest in acquiring them one by one.
Set prices and rates
Another of the first activities that you must carry out when starting to work as a freelancer is to calculate your prices and rates for each service , so that you can safely answer the classic “How much do you charge?”
Calculating the fair price for your work is not easy, and in general, there are many factors that influence the rate you end up charging your clients, for example, level of education and training, years of experience, project conditions, hours and resources invested, taxes, main rates in the sector, among many other aspects that you should assess before setting a price.
The key is not to undervalue your work and end up charging less than you deserve for fear that your proposal will not be chosen, but it is also not about launching rates that are too high that almost no client can afford to pay.
To finally know how much to charge, define a minimum rate considering the aforementioned aspects and from there, establish a fair price for hours/days and type of service/project.
Define your value proposition
The world of freelance work, despite having many opportunities with different clients around the world, can become highly competitive and require you to differentiate yourself from other freelance professionals with services similar to yours, this is achieved if you have established a good proposal of value.
The value proposition is based on a series of advantages, benefits and unique solutions that only you offer within your budget and services, in order to attract the attention of your potential clients and make them prefer your work over the proposals of other freelancers in the same professional sector.
This differentiating value can be offered if you add an additional advantage in delivery times, an attractive offer for a limited time, an extra service included for free, a previous test, recommendations and special references, among many other means that will position you as the ideal freelancer option.
Registration on the main platforms to find freelance employment
If you want to start working as a freelancer, you have to know the best websites and platforms to locate employment opportunities in this modality and, of course, create an attractive profile so that potential clients are interested in your services and contact you.
These types of platforms are updated day by day with hundreds of freelance job offers in various categories, so you only have to select your sector of specialization to see the most convenient opportunities according to your most notable skills.
Establish contacts and projects in the medium and long term
In your freelance career, contacts with potential clients that can continually offer you new job opportunities, as well as getting involved in medium and long-term projects, are a good way to improve the stability of your income without fearing for the life of your finances.
One of the disadvantages of this type of employment are intermittent workflows or periods when you have fewer projects in charge, and often you are forced to find ways to earn extra money.
However, if you want to guarantee the constant arrival of new projects, cultivating good relationships with your clients, networking and prioritizing collaboration opportunities in the medium or long term , they are an excellent way of not being left without responsibilities for long periods of time, by least as far as work is concerned.
personal brand development
A personal brand can help you grow as a freelancer , position your name and professional services to attract potential clients and make yourself known to the infinite world of the internet, so if you want to start working as a freelancer achieving a good online identity and reputation, work in your personal brand from today will make your way much easier.
In fact, today the personal brand of a freelance professional plays a very similar role to the one that business cards used to occupy years ago, where this medium managed that with just a glance, everyone perceived your profile with authority and confidence , not only to be hired in a certain project, but also to network with valuable contacts.
For example, suppose there is a person who wants to work in the area of web design and is limited to sending proposals to other companies or potential clients hoping to be considered, while, on the other hand, someone has a personal brand, with general communications directed to a target audience to promote their professional services as a freelancer in the area of design and add value.
Who is most likely to receive a positive response?
Obviously, the person who has created a personal brand and has consolidated good samples of work and references that speak for themselves.
By building your personal brand, you let proof of your capabilities do the work for you and increase the chance that others will contact you to learn more about your services.
Constant training is a crucial practice for your personal and professional development , since only through experience and education will you obtain the tools to correctly attend to your responsibilities as a freelancer, increase the value of your work, generate new skills and update your knowledge. according to the trends of the moment or the circumstances and needs of the current labor panorama within the sector.
Conclusions on how to start working as a freelancer
Now that you know where to start to work as a freelancer, you will be much more oriented when embarking on your professional path in the employment modality that is transforming the world and that, without a doubt, once you follow these recommendations, raise the skills that you can offer as a professional and the possibilities of being hired on multiple occasions.