Last week I took part in a webinar hosted by The Work Crowd and PRCA to talk about ‘Getting Yourself Noticed as a Freelancer’ together with digital marketeer, Neil Hallmark. The event was hugely successful and judging from the amount of feedback I received, it was a subject that resonated with many of us right now.
I've captured below some of the top take-outs together with a few of my own 50+ insights. From the feedback I received, some of us find it challenging at this age to gather up the confidence to get out there and show that we are still relevant and highly skilled!
1. Develop your brand – but do it with an open mind.
Think about what you are offering, what you want to be offering. Channel your communications into those specific areas so that you are known for your expertise and target potential clients in that space. If you’re looking to grow your own business this is really important in terms of becoming ‘the authority’, however, as a freelancer, although it is highly beneficial to be ‘the expert in..’, you may not want to limit your ‘work options’ so rigidly. Each ‘market’ is different, so do your research and develop ‘your brand’ to suit your needs.
1. LinkedIn It’s there to be used
LinkedIn is a brilliant tool for pushing out your own messages and for engaging with potential clients - if you know how to use it. There are some great training sessions available – it’s worth investing a little time on it. Think carefully about your personal profile - is it in line with ‘your brand’? Make sure you are connected with potential clients, your network, and with like-minded freelancers, entrepreneurs and business owners. Comment on and engage with interesting and relevant conversations – get yourself noticed. Always remember though, you don’t need to be going in with the hard sell – it may not happen immediately but by doing this you are keeping your ‘brand’ top of mind. Start conversations, make new ‘friends’ - you never know where they can lead.
2. Networking Keep on talking
Contacts are key. If there’s one thing lockdown has given us, it is a little more time to reach out and talk to people. Whether it’s a virtual coffee, a zoom call or even a conversation on a social media platform, make sure you are having regular contact with your network. Finding new contacts is not the easiest during a pandemic, but spend time on platforms where they might be. It's not difficult to tap into conversations on social media and get noticed. Lunchclub is a platform where you can meet and chat to all sorts of different people to boost your network. Don’t expect immediate results. Play the long game and see where it leads. Someone you connect with now, could have a use for your skills in the future.
3. Find Your Tribe A problem shared
There are a number of networking groups out there specifically for freelancers or agency owners. Have a look at Freelance PRs on Facebook- a closed group of over 3.5K freelancers. Or if you are an agency founder, Neil highly rates The Agency Collective. These are great ‘spaces’ to share, engage and meet other like-minded freelancers and realise that you are ‘not alone’ in your frustrations - and your wins.
4. Joining Forces Two can be better than one
Consider joining up with other freelancers. An opportunity may arise that perhaps you can only partially service, so think about bringing in another freelancer with complementary skills. It’s important to lay your groundwork from the start regarding fees and budgets. Whether it’s a split of the fee down the middle, or perhaps you can agree a day rate and a number of days with the freelancer so that you know exactly what you are going to earn and whether it’s worth your while to take on the business.
And another thing..
5. Freelancing at 50+ Use your superpowers
Don’t be too hard on yourself. Never underestimate the power of your experience and value of your network. It could take you half the time to achieve what someone less experienced could do - as you have the knowledge and contacts at your fingertips. You have no doubt gained a wealth of experiences and contacts over the years which can be greatly sought after. Don’t be shy about leveragingthem. A grown-up with years of experience and a superb reputation behind them is hugely respected.
If you want to continue the conversation do get in touch here