Freelancing Sounds Like Fun?
Thats what I thought when I tried to get in to Freelancing then I found it was very very hard to even start. So I joined Upwork to supplement my income I had visions of making an extra 4000 a month just by doing a little work. What I found was totally different and a little disheartening. Here is how I didn’t get rich through Freelancing.
This is Part 3 of a series here are Part 1 and Part 2
I Believed The Hype
I read so many articles from people talking about how they made six figures through Freelancing and how they barely had to work and could work from anywhere. I was stoked I signed up for Upwork and filled out all the criteria of my profile that fit. I started writing cover letters over and over applying for horrible paying jobs to more reasonable. I submitted so many cover letters that I couldn’t even keep track of all the jobs I had applied to. Nothing happened though I kept getting rejected and ignored with nothing to show for it. I just wanted one job so I could get the ever elusive five star rating so my new career could start, but it never did. Admittedly I gave up on it after so many applications doing everything the gurus said to do, but still nothing.
Your Results May Vary
So with that said there are people who get a job on their first day it depends on many different things. First thing you have to contend with is the competition there are far more experienced people out there. Not just that but there are people from different countries who will gladly do a job for way less than you could even afford because the exchange rate is too much in their favor. So every job gets flooded almost immediately with low ball offers and you come in with an offer of way more and the job is given to the lowest bidder. They get a sub par job but feel that that is the market standard.
How do you stand out from a crowd then. Well this is all secondhand because I have never once secured a job through Upwork yet. So take it as you will. The first advice others give who have won jobs is to read the entire job description and respond to it. Do not copy and paste the same letter over and over be succinct and tell the client what you can do for them and how hiring you will be the best move they could make, even if you cost a little more. Some people suggest you offer up an example that is specific to their needs but one they could not use. This way they know exactly what you can do and they will feel more confident in hiring you. Another tip I read was ask questions try to engage the client this way they feel obligated to answer and may give you the job because you were the most interested.
Get One Job Then Come The Riches Right?
If only life were that simple. Some people hit a wall after getting one job they still can’t find jobs even after getting a great five star review. Barely sounds fair I know. Just the way things go. Now if you get past those first few hurdles it doesn’t mean you can start charging 40 dollars an hour yet you need to slowly ramp up your price. So we are looking at an expenditure of time just to be making what you make at work. Now this can be sped up if you sign up for Upwork doing the same thing you do at work you can use examples and have a portfolio but for some of us who sign up without any portfolio and experience this is going to be a long uphill battle.
Freelancing In Your City
Why is this here when I was discussing online freelancing well that is simple sometimes before you walk you need to crawl. Some people suggest you go around locally and offer up your services so you can expand your portfolio so you can then tackle the online scene. I have a friend who was laid off from his job and started his own freelancing business in our town. He takes photos at weddings and makes websites for others. He lives paycheck to paycheck and works longer days than he worked at his previous job, I suggested online for him but I don’t think that really interests him. He has such an extensive portfolio that I would probably be easy for him to find a job especially since he can hard code a website. That is another thing try to find a skill you have that is more unique than most so you can find a sub niche this will greatly increase your chances.
You Are Now Established
You are now established in your niche you are now pulling in a six figure income. What more could you want? Well unlike the other two business models I have written about Drop-shipping and Affiliate Marketing this one is the most work you will have to do for smaller returns. You are limited in this field by how much work you can do. You are still trading life for income. At least with Drop-shipping you can automate some of it and outsource the most of the rest. So if you do not work you will not get paid. Also if you are doing this to get out from under a boss you are definitely choosing the wrong business because everyone who hires you is your boss and some are reasonable and some are downright horrible human beings but you have to be professional and courteous to all, and cater to their every whim even if they do not quite know what that is yet.
So Why Even Bother
You see for all of its flaws it offers the fastest return for your time as opposed to the other two models. You can literally get paid the same week, that is nice especially if you need money now. If you don’t need money now I suggest you use your time for building your Drop-shipping or Affiliate Marketing empire it is a far better use of your time. For a little extra money I do suggest trying it, you will lose nothing and may learn some things. If anything you can see what you could outsource in the future. I do intend on going back and trying again myself just for the fact that it is a matter of pride now.
Thank you for reading this long series of posts. I hope it has been helpful and informative if you have any questions or comments please feel free to leave them.