Starting a Freelance Business? Here’s What You Need to Focus On for Results
Recently, I’ve had lots of reader questions come through my inbox about starting a freelance business. Many people are either looking for ways of earning more money or they want to ditch the day job.
When I was first starting my freelance business I had no idea what I was doing. I didn’t know where to spend my time or efforts. I didn’t know anything about earning money on my own. Many of my blog readers happen to be in that same place.
It’s taken me seven years to get to this point in my business, and I’d like to have you avoid the steep learning curve. So if you’re starting a freelance business, here’s what you need to focus on for the best results.
Learn how to pitch.
I recently posted a picture of a colorful apartment building on my Instagram. The caption tells the story of how I always wanted to live in one of the condos on the water and my business has allowed me to do it. It also went on to say how my business started with me learning how to pitch.
You see, when starting a freelance business no one knows who you are. Therefore, the onus is on you to pitch consistently until you’ve got a reputation. Even after your reputation is built, you still need to pitch for more opportunities.
Once you’ve mastered the pitch, then you need to actually close the deal. The next step when starting a freelance business is to learn sales.
I don’t care if you think you’re just a “creative” and your skills are enough. I’m here to tell you they aren’t. If you want to get paid, you need to know how to sell.
I’ve done several sales trainings throughout the years, but the best teacher is definitely experience. I tell my group coaching students to take as many sales calls as possible just to practice. This helps them get better at dealing with objections, pivoting and closing the deal.
Start building a brand from the beginning.
When I was first starting a freelance business, I also started a blog. At the time, I had no idea the two were even related. In retrospect, I see how I was building a brand from the get-go and how that has helped me gain recognition and clients.
One of the biggest mistakes I see people making when starting a freelance business is not branding themselves. Similar to not learning sales, they seem to think having a skill is enough.
However, as one of my mentors and colleagues says, “A skill does not a business make.”
Is it difficult to juggle content for yourself and clients? Yes. But, if you start doing it from the beginning, you get in the habit of doing both simultaneously. Over time, you’ll learn skills to help you systematize and streamline everything.
You don’t want to be in a position where you’ve had a business going for years, haven’t made any money and then need to worry about fitting a brand into the mix. At that point, it’s more frustrating to go through the process.
Starting a freelance business doesn’t need to be hard, you just need to make sure you’re focusing on the right things. Start with what actually leads to money and you won’t go wrong.