Monday, August 4, 2014

10 Ways to Stand Out As A Freelancer (Part 6)

(8.) Think network, not competition.

Some freelancing professionals have reached fever pitch when it comes to scoping for clients. They think it's necessary to make a lot of cold calls on most days of the week or write a ton of pitches through email, hoping to generate a few responses that would turn into clients.

Although I, for one, is an advocate of marketing one's self in order to shorten dry spells and quickly establish regular cash flow, there are several less aggressive and less subtle ways to promote your freelancing services. (Read related article for more details.)

You may think that advising you to team up with your fellow freelancers and forming a network counteracts all my other suggestions on standing out in your field. After all, if you want to land lucrative projects, why should you join and help your competitors?

The thing is, freelancing professionals differ from their salaried peers in the workplace in a sense that their salaried peers have no choice but to strive to get along with their colleagues and superiors. 

There is a positive side to this situation because they can easily get support should they be fortunate enough to have the kind of work environment that's conducive to their career growth.

But peer support is not easily made available to freelancing professionals. While we may enjoy the privileges of setting our own schedules and working at our own pace, and avoid coming across The Boss From Hell, we need to go out on our own and find freelancers like us from whom we can get tips and garner valuable lessons.

So instead of thinking about your fellow freelancers as your competitors, think about them as partners in building your business.

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