What are the general guidelines for using SE profile/s for the promotion of the freelancer and as the method for proving his skills?

I've heard that Java Black Belt account was a plus in some environment when applying for job. How it looks in the case of freelancer who wants to promote himself?

High reputation on SE sites is some measure of skills. In case of webmaster it would be reputation in SO, particularly in tags like JavaScript or CSS. In case of translator a reputation in ABC Language&Usage. In case of copywriter Writers.SE would be most adequate.

But how to point that I have high reputation on my web page/profile/visit card? Putting that information in central place is probably not the best idea, since many clients that don't know what SE is could be distracted. On the other side, placing the SE flair in the footer is a bit too little. It doesn't also point, in what tags I have gained the most reputations, that is, what are my key competences. And does SE belong in contractors CV or visit card?


I think you want to think about the three M's of marketing: Message, market audience, medium. The three must go together. If they don't go together your message will not effectively find you clients.

Trying to put everything in one place is the wrong way to think about it. You may have better luck building presence by putting out messages in different places and media tailored to different market audiences.

So with that in mind the question is "who can you reach effectively with an SE profile? The first answer is SE users, so having a profile which attracts this is good. I haven't really done that much in this area because right now I haven't needed to, however I am in the process of revisiting a lot of this.

The second point is that your presence online and your online marketing is based on the extent you have multiple interconnected sources of that presence. SE is one source, and should be one among many, so you should look at interconnecting these.

So putting all this together, SE is a medium that reaches a certain market segment. The message you put on there should appeal to SE users, either as potential customers or as potential referrers. It should also direct users to other resources about your work (blogs, etc) so that people can find out more. Other SE-friendly resources should link to it.

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