It's me, Shreya.
Next Saturday, 24th September, is my 4th "LinkedIn Birthday."
It's been four years since I put up my first post on LinkedIn... which went viral with 1.5M views, got me a few clients, and turned me from a no-income first year college student into a freelancer.
At times it feels like these 4 years flew by too fast.
At other times, I don't even remember what life was like before I started freelancing. I can't imagine living a day without thinking about emails, clients, content, sales, info-products, and what not. At times like these, the last 4 years feel like 40.
While thinking about all of this, I was mentally revisiting the content and topics I have been creating on LinkedIn over the years.
Four years ago, these concepts were not "mainstream." I am so glad that they are picking up in the freelancing world now.
So here are 17 concepts I've introduced in the (Indian) freelancing space in the last 4 years:
[If any of these are new to you, I encourage you to adopt them and live the change in your freelancing career]
- Freelancing = a career. Freelancing is not just a side-hustle, or an attempt at a quick buck. Freelancing can be a full-time career providing a full-time income.
- Have a global outlook. Think in USD. Improve your skillsets and create a portfolio that you're confident about. Pitch to clients across the globe.
- Charge in advance. Make this a non-negotiable payment term and charge at least 50% in advance.
- There is no “market rate." Don't follow the random "INR 0.3 per word market rate" that you find online. Don't compare your prices to that of other freelancers. There is no "market rate" or "industry standard" in freelancing.
- "Shreya’s Law of Pricing" - Charge what you feel is right for you. If you charge $100 for a piece of work and feel $120 would be the right fee to charge next time, then charge your next client $120. Likewise, if you charge $100 for a piece of work and feel $80 would be the right fee to charge next time, then charge your next client $80.
- Monthly/ project-based fees only. Ditch the hourly fees and per-word-rates. Charge for a complete offer, and charge it by the month or by the project.
- Find your own clients & stop competing on Fiverr/ Upwork etc. Use LinkedIn, Twitter and other social media platforms to find your own clients. This way you also have the freedom to charge what you think is right for you, rather than be restricted by the pricing rules of freelancing platforms.
- Create content online. Start sharing your journey and your stories online. This does NOT mean that you need to teach freelancing or build an audience of freelancers.
- Create content on LinkedIn. Twitter and Instagram have been popular content creation platforms for a long time now. LinkedIn is still underrated - which is an advantage for you. Leverage this advantage.
(If you haven't read Ca$hing In on LinkedIn yet, click here and read it now! Get your copy ASAP so you can join the LIVE Q&A session at the end of the month!)
- Use a personalised hashtag on LinkedIn. Mine is #ShreyaWrites and acts as my "signature" under each post.
- Create content in a personal story-style. Make your content narrative. Paint an elaborate image for your readers through your words. You can be professional/ formal and yet make your writing hooking.
- Self-promote shamelessly. If you don't talk about yourself, your story, your services, your achievements... who will? Promote yourself and your work online.
- Inbound lead generation works. When you start creating content online and self-promoting, you will attract leads without having to look for them or reach out to them.
- Learning freelancing is about DOING freelancing. When I first started talking about freelancing online, beginners would ask me which certifications I did. They were surprised when I said none. Remember: Certifications won't make you a freelancer; freelancing will.
- You CAN and SHOULD set boundaries as a freelancer. Being hired by a client for work doesn't grant them access to your lunch hours, midnights and weekends. Set professional boundaries and stick to them.
- You can say NO as a freelancer. Your client is paying you for a fixed scope of work. Get comfortable with saying no for extra work (or charging for extra work.)
- Improve your English - nothing happens without that. I have faced a lot of flak for saying this online; doesn't make this untrue though. If you want to freelance on a global level, win over high quality clients and make freelancing a sustainable, long-term career option, then you need to improve your English (writing, reading, speaking, listening, and comprehension.)
I hope these 17 concepts help you out.
Finally, I want to say:
Thank you for reading this email, for subscribing to this newsletter, for caring about my content, for buying my ebooks, for sharing your stories with me, and for supporting me over all these years.
None of this would have been possible without you.
See you again soon :)
Lots of love,
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