Freelancing may be something you do on the side of your nine-to-five but for some, freelancing is their day-to-day. It’s common to get to a point in your freelancing career where you want to upscale to take on more freelance work, to earn more money and challenge yourself.
Either way, no matter if you’re new to it or have been freelancing for years, there’s a range of ways you can seek out and secure more work.
To help you out, we’ve pulled together some super helpful tips to help you find more work as a freelancer!
What Is Freelance Work?
Freelance work, also known as freelancing, is a form of self-employment which allows you to utilise your unique skills and talents on a flexible basis, working around your personal schedule, to a client base that’s manageable for you.
When freelancing, you’re in charge, which means you decide whether you work on long term or short term projects. Not only are you in control of the type of projects you work on, but you also have the ability to decide what to charge for your time, which will vary depending on the project.
Freelancing comes in many shapes and forms varying from a Graphic Designer to an Accountant!
Common freelance roles include -
- Web designers/developers
- Copy/content writers
- Graphic designers
- Virtual Assistants
Benefits of Building a Freelancer Business
Building your freelancing career can lead to amazing opportunities, help to expand your business network and give you the opportunity to keep developing your skillset with new and exciting projects.
As a freelancer, you’re able to decide your own work schedule, so you can choose the times that you feel most productive, and schedule your calendar to suit your personal and business needs.
These days, many freelancing opportunities are remote, so you’re able to choose where you work from. Whether that be from your office, the comfort of your home or your local coffee shop, the world is your oyster.
How to Find More Work on a Freelance Basis
Build a portfolio
If you haven’t created one already, you’ll want to build up a portfolio to showcase to potential clients to give them something they can visually see and understand. It’s always beneficial to make sure you keep it up to date with your best work, so take some time to regularly review it.
Get registered online
A great place to start finding more work is to make sure you’re registered to a freelancing service websites. Registering with these websites allows you to advertise your services and offer your skills for work.
Freelancing websites are great for those early into their freelancing career or those who want to take their offline freelance work, online. We’d suggest looking at popular websites including Fiverr, Upwork and PeoplePerHour. Some of these websites even allow you to bid for work, which can open up even more opportunities. Freelancer has a great guide which you can read to learn how bidding works if you choose to try bidding for new opportunities.
Leverage social media
Social media can also be a powerful tool to help you find work, promote your services and engage with business owners and other freelancers who you can build strong relationships with. Using platforms like LinkedIn will help you get in front of many business leaders and fellow freelancers who are actively looking for people like you to help with their plans and projects.
You can also utilise channels like Facebook and Twitter, where you can join groups and advertise your services, or find prospective clients you can start building relationships with. Don’t forget that friends and family may also recommend you if they see any opportunities, so don’t shy away from sharing your new freelancing journey on your personal pages.
Another way you can find additional freelance work is by actively reaching out to businesses. Start by creating a marketing plan or a sales plan and consider targeting specific sectors or postcode areas. You can execute this by sending emails or making calls to promote your services. If you’ve seen a business that you know you can support, reach out to them, showcase what you can offer, and try and arrange a conversation.
Building strong relationships is key to long-term success. You don’t want to be known as the type of person who just randomly connects with you on LinkedIn to offer their services. Ideally, you want to be known as the thought leader, and the expert in your field. Offer your knowledge, get to know your prospective clients, then once you find an opportunity, the trust and relationship will be there for you to offer your services.
Stand out from the crowd
A freelance business is still a business, so you’ll need to understand how to sell yourself. Make sure that you know what your personal USP’s are (unique selling points - what makes you stand out from the crowd?) Create some case studies to demonstrate your success stroies and offer ideas and inspiration for how you can help your client’s improve. Potential clients love to see examples and action speaks louder than words. Having this information to hand will also help you feel more confident when you’re pitching yourself to clients.
When taking on new projects, it’s important to weigh up the pros and cons before taking on work including how much your time is worth and if the timescales are achievable. You will also want to consider if the client shares your business values and if they’re likely to be one off clients or repeat business.
Stay on top of projects
As early as possible in your freelance journey, it’s a good idea to invest in some form of project management software, so you can easily manage your workloads. Many freelancers use paid software such as Trello, or free platforms like Notion. Making these decisions will depend on your circumstances. You might want to weigh up how often you use the tool, the potential ROI (return on investment) of using the software and which platforms you found worked best for you. Many paid versions include a demo/trial period which give you a chance to try them out.
Take care of your own business
If you’re new to the world of business accounts, you may also want to consider contacting an accountant to help you decide what kind of business type you would like to set up. They’ll also be able to help you look at the best ways to manage your business accounts, show you different types of business bank accounts and help you understand the tax side of your freelance business. They’ll be extra beneficial for you as your freelance business grows, we recommend that you take a look at Experlu’s guide on how an accountant can help small businesses.
Being a freelancer is a fantastic way to make the most out of your skills, while supporting clients and building your personal reputation.
Understanding how to find work effectively and building a strong network will help guide you to many freelancing opportunities over time, whether you actively seek them yourself, or you bid for them using a freelancing websites.