1. Make sure you’re solving a problem and that people are willing to pay for that problem to be solved.

Just because you’re a freelancer, it doesn’t mean you need to skip past this very important point!  What you’re offering to businesses and customers needs to solve a problem they are having and they need to be willing to pay for it to be solved – much like a normal business.

If you’re a designer or photographer – be clear on what problems you’re solving for your customer or client and how the client is better off hiring you to solve that problem.

Research the market, be clear on the pain points you can solve and sell it.

  1. Be passionate, love what you do and plan.

You’ve heard the saying Rome wasn’t built in a day! This is so true. Rome took months and years of planning and the architects and town planners would have gone through many highs and lows in that time, to get Rome to where it is today.

But I bet you a dollar they were passionate about every single building they placed in that city! That’s what gets you through the hard times – having a plan and being passionate about what you do!

Setting up as a freelancer is a marathon not a race. Plan 3 months, 6 months and 12 months ahead (no more than that, as times are moving too fast these days).

Use your passion and revert back to the plan when you’re having a bad day/week and be sure to do the things that you love.

This will keep you going for the long run.

  1. Understand your values and mission and integrate that into your branding.

Being you in your freelancing is so important, especially in the service industry.

A huge percentage of people and businesses use services from people they like and there is only one unique person like you on this planet. You have your own unique mission and so people need to know about YOU and YOUR MISSION.

Ask yourself these following questions:

+ The words I’d like to live by are…?

+ The things I really wish others knew about me are…?

+ If I could tell my younger self one thing, what would it be…?

+ What values are most important to me?

+ My style of communication is very…?

+ What excites you about the field you work in…?

+ What has always annoyed you about the field you worked in…?  (The reason I ask this is because where something annoys you it is usually because it’s messing with your values)

+ What do you find the most fascinating part of your current work…?

+ What frustrates you…?

+ In five years time I want to accomplish…?

+  What’s my main priority in life…?

Now use the answers to these questions to work out your mission, your values and give those to your graphic designer/ project manager when you’re working out your branding. This will play a big part in the development of your freelancing and personal brand.

  1. Outsource – Work out a budget and start paying people straight away to do the things you can’t do.

 The fact of the matter is we are not good at everything and more importantly, we can’t do everything.

As soon as you can outsource the things you are not that good at, especially if you are already time poor, the easier things are going to be for you.

If you’re not a designer, get someone to design your logos and develop a style chart.  If you’re a designer and not that great at writing, then hire a copywriter.

If you are time poor no matter what you do, be sure to put your money to work and hire people to help you get the job done, whatever it is.  I know a REALLY great website where you can find AWESOME freelancers to help you! (The Freelance Collective, of course!)

What are my top things I would outsource while in start up phase?

+ Graphic Design

+ Website design and build/ installing websites and getting them set up

+ Copywriting of the content for the website

+ PR/marketing and setting up of social media sites where possible

If you can’t afford all of them, just pick one or two.  Trust me when I say it will be worth the weight in gold for the time and hassle you spend if you are trying to do things yourself, unless you’re an expert in the area.

The sooner you are set up, the sooner you can freelance.

  1. Be You! (my favourite)

Be glorious, zany, amazing, outrageous, daring, fire blazing, confident, beautiful you!

There IS only one of you on this earth, with your talents and skills, your gifts and passions.

Never be afraid to charge what you’re worth. Never be afraid to say no to jobs that aren’t quite you, or that don’t sit right in your gut or intuition.

There are always more opportunities coming your way.  Be brave, step out and love who you are through your business – your clients will appreciate you.

Go take the first step and trust the process.

sj
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