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How to find freelance work

There are many routes to finding freelance work and clients. Check out our top tips for promoting your skills and services.

Promote your services online

  • Create a website that showcases your work and/or an online portfolio using a platform such as Behance, or ArtsThread.
  • Sites such as Upwork and People per Hour match freelancers with projects and The Dots allows you to showcase your previous projects and connect with clients.
  • Have a social media presence that represents you and your work. Post professional content regularly and connect with people you’d like to work with.

Get in touch

  • Contact potential clients directly. Do some research to find clients who are looking for your specialist skills (LinkedIn is a good resource). Contact their HR department or a relevant employee such as their Design Director or Creative Director directly.
  • Work with an agency who may be able to find you contract work based on your specific technical, creative, commercial and project management skills.

Make an impression

  • Word of mouth is a very effective way to get work as a freelancer. If you’re friendly and productive clients are more likely to recommend you for work.
  • Attend events where there are potential clients (such as private views and industry networking events). Make sure you have business cards or other information to give to people you meet.
  • Collaborate with other freelancers. This allows you to offer a combination of skills to potential clients and you can refer clients to one another.

Tips for promoting yourself as a freelancer

  • Identify your offer (your specialisms and approach) and make sure this is communicated across all your promotional material.
  • Make sure your website is visual, clear and up-to-date.
  • Identify your 20 ideal clients and make a plan of how to work with them.
  • Be creative in how you approach potential clients to help you to stand out from the crowd.
  • Get testimonials from existing clients and include these in your marketing materials to add credibility.
  • Make time to promote yourself and keep your social network accounts updated and relevant.
  • Stay in touch with clients as this may mean they are likely to give you more work.

Establish a relationship with your clients

Maintaining good relationships with your clients during and after your work is important for your freelance career. If they liked working with you and feel you have a good understanding of their business and creative needs, they are more likely to offer you work in the future.

Employees move to other businesses, so staying in touch with colleagues means that you will have a contact wherever they go (LinkedIn is a useful tool for maintaining professional contacts). When you have finished a job, update your online portfolio (make sure the client agrees first) and let other clients know about the project.

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