The idea of working at your own pace, within the comfort of home, and being your own boss is undoubtedly alluring. Not to mention, technology has taken over our lives to the point that there ample opportunities for freelancers to make quick bucks at their convenience. Companies and businesses of all shapes and sizes now outsource everything from trivial to complex tasks to accomplish numerous goals from cost reduction to lead generation. It comes as no wonder why many people are considering the benefits of working as a freelancer.
In short, freelancing offers a great degree of work flexibility with opportunities to enhance professional growth. Tech freelancers have it better as software, web, and app development are in high demand.
However, therein lies the rub, where you, as a freelancer, need to keep your client pipeline flowing for the greenbacks. As more people transition from full-time to a tech freelancer, competition within the market is also rising. Even if your freelance business is booming, it is only a matter of time until someone tries to eat your slice of the pie. Unless, of course, you take the necessary steps to acquire more clients and work.
With that said, here are six ways to get more clients and thrive as a tech freelancer.
Build an online portfolio
This is a no-brainer! The most straightforward approach to attract more clients is by building an online portfolio. Every person who posts a job on the internet is looking for a trustworthy freelancer who can follow instructions to the T. The only approach to spur a potential client’s interest is writing an engaging proposal and highlighting how your skills can help solve their problem. However, an online portfolio can give you a competitive edge to grab the prospective client’s attention.
Every new freelancer will lose most of the clients to an experienced freelancer. However, being new in the game does not mean you are not skilled enough to offer your services to more demanding clients. Moreover, many people confuse freelancing with entrepreneurship. It is important to note that freelancing entails a more direct approach for convincing a single client that you are worth investing in. Meanwhile, entrepreneurship is more complex and critical that involves a lot of risks. Suppose you consider freelancing as your small business opportunity. In that case, an online portfolio is an investment that has long-term benefits leading up to successful entrepreneurship. Moreover, there is zero-risk as this portfolio will pay dividends in the long run.
Contribute to open-source projects
The key to getting more clients is by building your skills and achievements to make yourself more worthy of getting more work. There are many open-source projects available online for freelance contributors to add value or solve different problems. Contributing to these open-source projects will cement your experience and expertise as a tech freelancer and increase the reputation in the digital realm. Top tier developers and programmers use GitHub resources to publish their projects for contribution. Such platforms are essential for connecting with other like-minded peers, freelancers, and potential clients. You can expand your portfolio and get new business simultaneously.
Maintain a professional online presence
Besides volunteering for open-source projects, maintaining a professional online presence is hugely beneficial. Like any other business person or entity, you need an active website and social media profile to promote your services and acquire quality leads. Gone are the days when Facebook was merely a platform to connect with friends and family. Along with others, the platform has become a vital business tool to advertise services and generate leads.
Tech freelancers should leverage social media to maintain a professional online presence. It will set your professional identity and help you get more clients for your freelancing business. Most tech freelancers are instantly overwhelmed by the ever-rising competition. In this case, steering your main objective of building a reputation rather than getting paid leads is crucial. Moreover, networking on Linkedin can also add to a stable inflow of clients. Of course, nothing beats an SEO-friendly website, the benefits of which are well-known!
Create referral engines
Referrals are the holy grail of authentic lead generation! They keep the pipeline flowing in your freelance business.
As a professional freelancer, you should always maintain a follow-up sequence after every job or contract you successfully complete and deliver. You can tell them how much you enjoyed working with them or ask them to refer you to others. There is no need to feel shy because follow-up strategies are the best approach to build referral engines and positive word-of-mouth. Many small businesses solely thrive on the foundation of referrals. It is a tried-and-tested formula to success that rarely fails.
Networking with fellow freelancers
You should never limit your networking to prospective clients. But joining hands with fellow freelancers is also a practical approach to get more clients. Stop thinking of the other freelancers as your competitors and befriend them in the community. You can engage with them through social media or blogs. You can even collaborate with them in joint ventures that might lead to profitable business opportunities in the future.
As a tech freelancer, there is no shortage of opportunities to network with others in the industry. Experienced freelancers are always looking to pass projects off to peers. This way, you can generate a stream of work without actually having to approach clients directly.
Since you will be on your desk, working at your own pace and schedule, leveraging over-communication can be advantageous. You should over-communicate with clients to clarify everything that you are offering. For starters, it will save time on the job. Moreover, communication also plays a crucial role in retaining clients. It exudes a willingness to understand the client’s needs and an eagerness to work. Eventually, communication results in the execution of a better project and the in-flow of more work by the same client or a positive referral. So, never hesitate to ask questions or share information.
Global work dynamics are changing, and outsourcing work to freelancers is gaining much popularity. As a freelancer, you need to establish a work ethic that guarantees a good reputation and a stable in-flow of clients to sustain yourself. Ensure to follow up and build prospective networks to generate quality leads. The competition within the freelancing world is cutthroat, and if you’re not smart, you can quickly be overrun by someone else who’s willing to meet a client’s needs.