Work from anywhere in the world by choosing to go freelance.
Being a freelancer isn’t easy. You have to source your own work, and take care of your own finances. You have to be a marketer, salesman and CEO all at the same time.
In today’s flourishing digital economy, there is the opportunity to work from anywhere in the world, providing you have a laptop and a decent internet connection!
This is particularly good news for editors like me. We can literally work from a beach hut, hammock, or (if you dare) a jacuzzi whilst tapping away on an iPad. Everything I do can be done remotely. That is, providing I have the files I need (which makes Google Drive a lifesaver) and an electronic device. I don’t even need WiFi to work on Microsoft Word.
For many people, “living the dream” doesn’t feature a huge office, a fancy job title, or a new car every year. The notion of keeping up with the Jones’ in this sense seems somewhat archaic. Today, in the world of social media selfies, it’s more akin to jetting off to an exotic location. We’ve all seen those travel lifestyle pictures featuring a person working from their laptop in a hammock.
The benefits of the remote working lifestyle are clear. There are plenty of freelancers who have exchanged their office cubicle for a faraway beach on warmer shores who would have you believe they are living the dream.
Unfortunately, in reality, finding work can be difficult. You don’t rely on a regular paycheck. This means you might struggle some months and not others. If you’re in this position you might be tempted to build your own business loan or look into zero interest credit cards as a way to bridge your financial situation. Yet there’s often a better way, which includes working hard to find your customers.
It’s all about getting yourself out there, knocking on doors, and finding clients. Here are a few tips to help you find new customers to ensure you thrive rather than merely survive as a freelancer.
Where to Find Work
Sites such as https://freelancer.com make popular tasks easier. These include web design, video editing, and copy writing. However, many of said freelancers live in countries with such a low cost of living, they can charge as little as $5 an hour for complex technical tasks. This makes them huge competition against the West who just can’t justify these prices.
However, if you choose to work from anywhere in the world, you could match these prices. This will position you as an extremely competitive option. Especially because you’ll also have the language skills, cultural understanding and relevant western experience to attract clients.
The other place to look at is Fiverr. The original concept was that you advertised a gig (e.g. edit 500 words of text) for £5, and you would then offer upgrades such as getting it done within a day or adding additional words.
Today, however, they are also offering a “pro” feature that means you no longer have to charge £5. You could charge £500 if you wanted. The key point with both of these platforms is that they provide a plethora of customers looking for your particular skill. This makes it highly convenient and targeted.
Focus on a Particular Niche
It can be tempting to purport to serve everyone, but this can come across like being a jack of all trades. Most people prefer to do business with someone they view as an expert within a particular field. Therefore, rather than promote yourself as someone that dabbles or tinkers in their craft, it would be better to position yourself as an expert within a clearly defined niche.
I’ve recently decided against editing and am focusing my services entirely on proofreading, more specifically proofreading of fiction. The benefit of this is that it will significantly reduce your marketing cost if you are focusing your ad campaigns and keywords on more niche focused terms, as for instance, “proofreading” is a more competitive term than “proofreading of horror movie scripts”.
Harness the Power of Word of Mouth Marketing
Word of mouth marketing is as effective today as it ever was. Indeed, social media offers an unprecedented platform for reaching people via word of mouth marketing!
The social proof that comes from online reviews, testimonials, and social media ‘likes’ is something to consider, but don’t forget people do business with people they like and trust, so encourage satisfied customers to spread the word by offering an incentive as this is a great way to organically grow your customer base at zero cost.
With the internet, you can work from anywhere in the world, as long as you have a WiFi connection. Choose your next adventure wherever you want it to be.