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Building Your Career as a Freelancer in 2022



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Over the last couple of years, we have seen the number of freelancers in the United States constantly on the rise. Some estimates say that, by the end of 2028, that number is going to hit a historic $90.1 million. We can’t say we are entirely surprised with this development since the freelancing employment model offers young professionals very flexible working hours, great project autonomy, and an excellent way to stretch the business muscles before starting their own gig.

Of course, all these benefits come at the expense of various challenges that, if unchecked, can make the whole arrangement simply not worth the effort.

Let us take a look then at some of the common strategies for overcoming these obstacles and reaping all the benefits the life of an entrepreneur can offer.

Define your services and skillset

Even though being a “Jack of all trades” sounds like a good way to cast an extensive market net, you have to remember that this proverbial person is “a master of none.” In this day and age, the business world has become so complex that even the large corporations have a problem successfully covering an extensive market ground. If you try to wrestle this problem left solely to your own devices, you will spread yourself too thin and, more importantly, deny yourself a chance to reach a high level of expertise in some critical area. And a high level of expertise is what employers seek when they hire freelancers.

Define your ideal customer

This will considerably narrow down your target market and make outreach to future clients much easier. So use your service portfolio as a starting point and conduct thorough market research that will help you identify the key traits of people who would benefit from your products the most. Your analysis should put a focus on demographics (age, gender, income level, etc.), business goals (what are your clients trying to accomplish), main challenges and pain points (what challenges are they experiencing along the way, and how you can help them), and what kind of approach would those groups respond to.


Create a professional-looking website

Website will serve as an anchor for all of your marketing efforts as well as the channel where you will spend most time promoting your portfolio so you need to nail down this task as best as you can. For a start, make sure the website looks good, is optimized for access from mobile devices, and follows all the good design practices of 2022. Also, you should make sure to come up with some creative personal website domain that catches the attention and is easy to promote. Finally, do your best to optimize the website for SEO since this strategy will be one of the most powerful weapons in your marketing arsenal.

Set up a meaningful portfolio

What we mean by this is that simply uploading your previous works to the website won’t suffice since these projects mean very little without an added context. That is why every work you intend to present needs to tell some specific story, spotlight some field of expertise, or demonstrate your pricing model. If it was a shared effort the project needs to send clear info about your contribution. While you are doing all this, try to present the full range of your skills and keep some sense of structure. So, start the presentation with a short introduction and a picture of yourself to give the works additional context.

Pen down a thorough business plan

That’s right – even though you are still not running a company that doesn’t mean you can’t benefit from a thorough business plan that will outline your mission statement, long-term and short-term business goals, financing options, marketing strategies, and all other elements that are covered in this essential document. Once you are done, you will have a great template for writing business proposals and a reference you can use to estimate how well your plans are enveloping at the moment. Of course, to do that, you will need to spend some time setting up the relevant KPIs so try to keep that in mind as well.

Invest effort into developing relationships with clients

According to a recent survey, as much as 61% of small and medium companies reported that more than half of their revenue comes from repeat customers. These numbers are very translatable to the world of freelancing so do your best to develop a strategy that will help you to improve relations with existing clients and encourage them to spend more money on your services. Some of the most popular ways for meeting these goals involve flexible pricing and charging models, allowing clients greater involvement in the project, producing consistent results, and offering a meaningful follow-up after the finished project.

We hope these few suggestions gave you a general idea about the ways you can build up your career as a freelancer while avoiding some of the obstacles that are associated with this employment model. Even though this work arrangement offers a great deal of freedom navigating a way through the present-day business world can’t be imagined without some rules and good practices. Learning them all won’t be easy but now you know where to start.


Derek Lotts is a Sydney based writer and researcher, a regular contributor at Smooth Decorator blog. He writes about décor, gardening, recycling, ecology and business. He thinks all of these topics fall under the self-improvement category. He believes in the power of sharing ideas and communicating via the internet to achieve betterment.

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