I’ve decided to take the plunge, and begin a career as a freelancer. What do you think of services like UpWork? Can I build a business around that?
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There are lots of services that promise the same thing. Headshops too are businesses built around reselling you to customers.
1. Whose relationship?
On those platforms you are a commodity. And further you don’t control the relationship. Upwork becomes your customer.
This is a crucial point. You can’t negotiate additional services or fees, or build on the relationship. Because your customer is UpWork. They control the business they bring to you.
Just remember, your boss/client/customer is the one who writes you a check.
Related: When you have to take the fall
2. Learn sales
If you think you’re not so great at sales, join the club. It’s a real talent, and one everybody is not born with.
But if you want to work for yourself, it’s absolutely crucial. So get practicing!
Related: When clients don’t pay
3. Go to events
The ways i have found, network, meetups, blog weekly and have a newsletter that you send out monthly. Add everyone you ever meet to your newsletter. Write interesting things & appeal to a broad audience. Some receiving your newsletter will not read it but they will see your name pop up in their inbox once a month.
Related: Why i ask for a deposit
As you network, ask others for recommendations. Events, private email lists, single day conferences, forums etc.
5. Craft an origin story
And don’t forget to tell your story. And tell it well. Craft a memorable origin narrative. Practice & and add or remove things that resonate with people you meet. Even ask people, what do you think about my presentation? Any suggestions? Is it confusing, enticing, exciting?
Related: Why do people leave consulting?
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Also published on Medium.