The freelance economy is the future of work. Freelancing has seen a dramatic increase in the past decade. The high cost of living and housing in many cities, as well as the volatility of the stock markets and delayed income taxes, are just some of the reasons why freelancing has become so popular.
If you’ve considered becoming a freelancer or have already started a successful freelancing business, you likely face several challenges. Here are five things successful freelancers create and develop that help them get through those challenges.
1. Industry knowledge
Successful freelancers know their stuff. They have a solid grasp of their field and what makes it work, and they keep up with developments in their industry and relevant trends. They have the knowledge, skills and experience to do the job well. Whether they’re writing an article about tech, starting a blog about design or making a video about cooking, they have the drive to succeed and keep learning.
2. Good value
Value is a relative term. Value can be something tangible, such as a price or available features, or non-tangible things like quality or trust. The value you’ll provide your customers should be unique. Your value proposition is the reason why people should choose your service or product.
In the end, value is what we all want. Understanding what customers value is extremely important. The key to providing that value is making sure every element of your business can be proven from the customer experience or a financial perspective. The only way to build brand value is to work hard and finesse your offering so that clients are always impressed with the work you do.
3. Professional indemnity
As a freelancer, the number one thing that will make or break your business is client satisfaction. Whether you do freelance work on the side or as a full-time, it’s crucial to nurture and maintain healthy client relationships. There are many ways to protect yourself from clients who aren’t happy with your work or treat you poorly – such as professional indemnity insurance, so make sure you invest in this as a freelancer.
4. Time management
Whether you’re a writer, editor, designer, programmer, translator, or anything in between, there’s no denying that one of the most important skills you can have is time management.
Self-employed creatives tend to work on multiple projects at once — keeping them all moving forward and finishing them on time is essential. Freelancers who excel at time management understand deadlines and not only meet them but exceed clients’ expectations.
5. Networking skills
This may be the most important of them all: networking. There’ll always be someone in your circle, the one that knows someone who knows someone. It could turn out to be a good friend, or a client, or your next job.
A good network is invaluable. You can only make money from people you know are willing to pay and can only get work from opportunities that exist. Your network is your most valuable resource. Use it.
Imagine being in control of your business and working where and when you want. Whether you’re freelancing full-time or just doing it on the side, these five things will make a huge difference in how productive and successful you are.