Becoming a freelancer is a good idea if you know you can be really strict with yourself. You won’t have a boss to keep on nagging you to do the job, you need to be 2in1. Personally I found that was the hardest thing to do at the beginning. It is all up to you how you going to do things and how you will approach a client, which projects to take and which not. Until you get into a routine of doing things, it might feel like a real struggle. It is always harder to learn good habits and those bad – die hard. Since now you don’t have a regular income you must learn to plan ahead. You will also have to learn the best way to deal with people and workload.
Modern era customer service.
In the modern world customer service seems to be much different to what it use to be. Some deals are done even without people meeting face-to-face for example, where other times you can actually be lucky to meet your possible client in a real world.
Let’s talk about the first case. From our experience when finding new clients from online platforms the most important thing would be to show what you can do or what you have done in the past and how you can help to improve their business. It is all pretty simple if you have a great portfolio but obviously the tricky bit is when you are a newby.
Getting your first client.
How do you draw attention and actually get the job signed, if you have little to show?
Unfortunately there is no other way than to just do it.
You can offer a discount, however in digital world discounts aren’t recommended. In my opinion it is good for groceries products in supermarkets but not for any creative work! You must learn to use your common sense before you gain more experience.
Trust your gut! If you feel that working for this client is right and you can benefit in a long run then it’s surely worth it. You obviously must give your 100% but most importantly you should know your worth and stick to it as confidence is the key.
Start small, do work for your friends and family. Practice by learning from YouTube and experts like Linda.com Go to free meetup groups, seminars and talk with as many people as you can. There are a several websites and applications like upwork, Guru and many others, where freelancers and agencies are meeting for work. There are many jobs being offered however rates aren’t high – so if you are expecting a big pay, maybe that place isn’t for you.
If you can’t make it right – get it done.
Get as much done as possible, build your portfolio and keep on keepin on!
Yes, easily said than done, right?! But it is what it is and if you want it as badly as you want to breathe then there will be no other way, you will eventually have clients coming to you!
The work must be done first, so read blogs, books related to your business, speak with people from the industry on any occasion. Take your chances when they come to you. Be aware when it happens.
You now found a client.
The job been agreed and you think it’s over and expecting to be paid.
What do you do next when that client becomes more demanding and asking you to do more work? How to deliver an exceptional customer service without going mad? Where do you draw a line between delivering outstanding customer service and your sanity?
For this you must be prepared before you start working on a project. Have a well written contract stating the obvious and not so obvious situations. Provide clear milestones and the payment plan. This will help you in situations like this, you will be able to avoid doing extra work for free. Once it is written and signed, between you and your client, they must pay extra for your time, or they must pay even if they change their mind. Because the work was done.
Relationship with your clients.
There are many ways, styles, systems on how to do things, the most important is to build a trustworthy relationship with your potential clients. Without the trust there is no business. That work both ways. If you gain connection with a possible client, who is just an another human as you are, if you gain that trust then you get the job!
That’s why it is so much easier to get work from your family and friends, although you can not do it forever as it is not a sustainable way. You will have to go out of your comfort zone and find clients outside of those circles.
Don’t worry, after doing it for a several months you will have no problem speaking with “strangers”. It will be a part of the game.
The best thing about it is that if you try and it won’t work, you can always change your strategy, plan your goals and do it again. There is no wrong – just an experience and more you gain the better you become!