So, you are among the 56.7 million Americans freelancing this year, as estimated in the 5th Annual “Freelancing in America” Study. Or, maybe you are reading this off the coast of Bali and are one of the million freelancers working all over the world. In either case, it has increasingly become the trend (if you have not made the switch yet, here are some remote working tips).
Those new to the role or seasoned vets know though, that building a freelance business is as much about the work that you are specializing in as it is building your own brand. Whether you are a freelance writer, designer, developer, or artist you are more than just that title. What you offer is something uniquely different. You must let your existing and potential clients know that to ensure current and future business. And, that means sharing your unique talents with the world in all the online ways you can think of in the fastest ways possible.
Deliver your niche
In a world with a thousand voices, not the same but similar to yours, you have to be prepared to get yourself and your “schtick” out as quickly as possible.
Provide relevant content that engages your clients and shows your own personal style. Show who you are and why your work sets you apart. Develop your style and voice through blog posts, SM, video, evergreen content, etc.
In this act though, you will soon see that other skill sets are needed; not only do you have to be a brand manager but also a tech-aficionado. This may even mean developing technical skills outside of those you currently offer.
Here are a few tips to automatically build and share your brand as fast and quickly as you can.
Expand your knowledge
On top of being an expert in your particular area, building and delivering a brand requires a person to have a broad working knowledge of content marketing tactics, email marketing, SEO, social media marketing, etc. You still need to be a jack of all trades.
Not only do you need to push your work but also promote yourself as a thought leader. To be seen as authentic, you need to deliver that as seamlessly and reliably as possible.
In that same study as mentioned above, they found:
“Freelancers place more value on skills training: 93% of freelancers with a four-year college degree said training was useful versus only 79% who said their college education was useful to the work they are doing now; and 70% of full-time freelancers participate in skills training in the past 6 months. Compared to only 49% of full-time non-freelancers.” — 5th Annual “Freelancing in America” Study.
Join the ranks of others and expand your knowledge. Network with others to spread your brand quickly. Take online courses. Attend marketing or career-specific events. Join Slack channels and FB groups. Read marketing and sales blogs even if that is not your work focus. Build the skill-sets needed to get you comfortable with not only growing your talent but your voice.
2. Arm yourself with tools
Automatically when you think of building your brand the obvious comes to mind: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and even your own website. That’s where you deliver yourself. But the difference between a GREAT personal brand and an OK one is the “how”.
The faster and more seamless you can deliver your brand the more time you have to actually to devote to doing your work, keeping your current customers happy, and building your client base.
There are a ton of tools out there that will help you push your work & shine faster. For example, social media management tools like, Hootsuite, Buffer, Feedly, PostPlanner. Nothing new but there you go! Check out their availability here.
But sometimes you need something more or have created some workflow that uses other apps outside of the sphere of social media. Maybe you are also working with webform apps, direct email marketing platforms, and content management systems to name a few. There are a ton of great third-party tools to help with that.
3. Automation is your secret weapon
Third-party tools like workflow automation platforms help you to connect all sorts of apps and so that you can use your existing tools more intuitively.
The previously mentioned are great for getting you started, but a third party tool lets you think outside the box and take your branding to the next level, instantly — literally.
So also get cozy with these tools. Integromat is a great place to start. It has a wide variety of apps and more importantly endpoints within the apps that allow you to set up actions to happen automatically for you. And, there is no coding needed. Here are a few social media templates to get started.
Moreover, imagine grabbing the data from your website sign up form, uploading it your blog subscriber list, and sending out your blog automatically. Or, think of instantly sharing your favorite blog posts not only across your SM channels but adding them to your website. This is all possible too. See our templates section and just type in the apps you want to use to give you ideas of how they can work together.
Note: These tools should come with a warning. In some cases, mastering these tools can even turn into another skill that you can offer!
There are a lot of freelancers are out there. Some doing the same work as you. Show how you are different. Expand your knowledge, arm yourself with the tools, and automate where you can.