The awesome thing about freelance jobs is that there’s no application process. You don’t need to wait for permission to start calling yourself a writer, or a designer, or even that vaguest of titles – a consultant. It’s a perfect way to make some extra income, or to take the first step towards a new career. Of course, freelancing is a lot easier if you’ve actually got some money coming in. So where should you begin looking to find your first job?
Sites like Freelancer and People Per Hour provide a place for freelancers to connect with potential customers. Generally, you create a listing that details the services you offer and the prices you expect, and clients will list what they’re looking for. It’s a great place to gather information about what’s out there, who your competition is, and what the going rate is. The downside is that if you’re newly self-employed you might find people with more experience competing for the same jobs.
It might not be the first place you think of looking, but there are definitely job opportunities on Twitter. Learn any hashtags used in your specific industry and join the conversation. Even if you don’t get direct offers of work it’s still a great place to prove yourself to be the expect we know you are about your chosen industry.
Keep an eye out on Linkedin. You might have mutual connections who you could get in touch with if you know they might be looking for something or have worked with freelancers in the past. There’s also lots of people sharing lots of content. If you catch someone sharing an article about change and you could help them to make it a reality, speak up! You never know where it could lead.
Your local area
Sometimes it’s good to put the screens down for a while and take a trip around your local area. You might find local businesses who are in need of your help. They might not know that yet, but you’re a kick-ass freelancer who can promote yourself, so you’ll soon make them realise. Maybe there’s a local shop who need a website, or a restaurant having a PR crisis. Take advantage of your own local knowledge and use that to sell your services.
If you’ve got a facebook page or the knowhow to launch a Google adwords campaign you could always bring people to you instead of approaching them. Make sure to keep it snappy, and try to target the kind of companies you’d really aspire to work with, so that if they do approach you you’re prepared to pitch them with passion.
Of course, finding work is only one of the challenges to being a freelancer. For more in-depth help don’t forget to check out what’s on offer on HowNow.