43

I have never used any online freelance service to acquire work. Ever. Not even for one project. Without any direct experience as a worker, they all seemed like a less-than-ideal business venture for me to make market-level money. I have hired workers from guru.com and have ultimately never been impressed. The hoops one has to jump through make the entire ...


22

The best way to find work is to go where your best customers will be. You've described the kind of service you can provide, but you haven't focused at all (at least in your question) about the type of customer you want to work for. Consider the following: Is your best customer local or anywhere? (Local makes a lot of legal and payment things easier and ...


20

I have never gotten a single client from any web-based crowd source site. Ever. All my clients have come via word of mouth. Networking in real life is far more valuable than anything online in my opinion. If you network properly all it takes is one or two of the right contacts and you'll have all the work you need. Look at it this way.... you can float in ...


17

The truly high-level freelancers you describe bring several things to the table. Excellent technical skills - both deep and wide Excellent communication skills An ability be forward thinking - see more than just the problem at hand but also where the custom will be in the future and how the freelancer can help to get them there A willingness to move away ...


13

The best advice I can give, as this is precisely the issue that I faced, is to build yourself a website that will act as your portfolio and let that website itself act as the showcase piece that shows off your talents. You can include a projects area in which you can add screenshots to those websites that you are comfortable showcasing and (very ...


13

I disagree with your premise. Most people who would hire a pet sitter care about their pets. Unbelievably low prices sends the message you aren't that good, or may have nefarious intentions. People who care about their animals won't risk it. Price will be a factor in their decision, but it probably won't be the main one. So don't set your prices ...


12

Do you have a portfolio of previous projects? How are people going to know if you're any good without previous work being available? When I designed websites (back when I did), I had asked every client, before starting, if I could use it in my portfolio. Every one of them said to go ahead. That's the first thing. Until your name is well known, you may not ...


12

Short answer Mail to the client and ask them what can be done to get things recovered. Mutually agree on scope and rate. Best if after all they change their feedback at oDesk, but even if they can't, it still worth trying. Improve the way how you communicate with the clients. The ultimate goal is to make them absolutely certain what are you currently doing, ...


12

[Bit of background, I've done contract work exclusively through oDesk since 2006.] As far as I see it, the single most important thing you can do in your cover letter is tell them how you'll solve their problem. That's really what (in most cases) they're looking for. They only care about your past work, your experience, or how well you're rated in terms of ...


11

The obvious answer: Quit your job and don't apply to other jobs. I was in the same boat as you [literally: 6 years, degree, co-op] and have only been freelancing for a short period of time. I quit my job and moved to a new location due to other circumstances. I was initially looking for remote jobs since it was possible that I could be moving again shortly. ...


10

When someone needs a website, in most of the cases, they have no idea that there is a designer and a developer, or someone who can do both things, they just look for "someone who builds my good looking and functional website", without making much difference between web design or web development. They are completely unaware of your skills, they don't even ...


10

I'd just be "busy" myself and be unavailable. This kind of interaction is a harbinger to how quickly he'll pay and how important he'll see any requests on your part to complete any projects. One cancelation is understandable. Two cancellations might be okay depending upon his/her reasoning. Three cancellations shows a clear lack of commitment or intention....


10

If your services as a freelancer are valuable, it makes sense for the client to prefer to hire you on a permanent basis - so you cannot really blame them for trying. All you can do is inform them that you are not available for permanent positions. This might get you fired or not hired - and only you can evaluate whether this works out financially for you. ...


9

As a freelancer and a client, I look for a 'genuine' person. Don't hide behind a silly company name Put your picture everywhere, doing all kinds of things. Whatever you link to or reference, make sure it's updated/still live/has no bugs. Most portfolios are complete junk, and there's no reason for it. If you have a Facebook/Twitter/Blog/etc, keep them up ...


9

I have a technique that I have been using that involves cold calling, but it's slightly different than what has been said. It's working another angle. First you need to be up to date with building for mobile, tablets and overall Responsive Design. Here is what you do: every time you see a website advertised on a billboard, truck, commercial vehicle, etc, ...


9

Here's what I tell others in my industry - design - which may be related. In general, age never matters to any real degree. Most of my clients have no clue how old I may be - and they don't care. Experience matters. The more years of experience you have the better off you are in terms of marketing yourself. However, high-end, visible experience will ...


9

I see you have a ton of experience which is good, but it's not enough to convince a client. I have been working for almost 8 months now and I'm starting to get more work than I can handle. Here are some tips to get more jobs: Don't start with " I have a lot of experience...". It's good that you have, but keep that to the end. You must first catch the client'...


9

This answer is based upon my 20 years experience of having legal departments review testimonials and approve/refuse edits. I am not a lawyer though. Almost every piece I design has many, many testimonials and they almost always go through that company's legal department for review. So, while I'm not a lawyer myself, I've gotten familiar with what I can and ...


8

When I first made the jump from permanent to contract, it was more by accident than by design. I had been made redundant (again) and the next role that I got was offered as a contract-to-perm gig. It had a good day rate with the option of going permanent at the end of the 3 months on an average senior developer salary. Having made the jump it was a no ...


8

By definition an effective "cold calling" (cold emailing?) email should be tailor made and not from a template. Even more so if you are targeting local business. In my opinion, creating awareness and cold calling are two different things. You can start an awareness campaign and follow it up with cold calling (which would seem the logical order). If you ...


8

It is a grey area. If you do not have a non-compete, send out an email to the clients thanking them for the time working with them and let them know you have left to go on your own and appreciate everything the company did for you and tell them they are in good hands with your replacement. Have a detailed signature perhaps your linkedin account. You have ...


7

The way it typically works is this: Businesses are looking to solve a problem. It could be solved with software, or it could be solved with process improvements. Or it could be solved by a little of both. It may take 6 months or it may take three weeks. Despite your credentials, you still seem a little inexperienced. Maybe not in software, but definitely ...


7

The key to finding clients is to understand where your best clients will be, and then go there. Thus the answer to your question depends largely on the kind of work you do, the kinds of customers you are interested in serving, and the types of projects that you want to do. For example: I am a freelance ASP.NET developer. I have decided my BEST clients are ...


7

The person requesting your services asked this: Hey, person X told me that you designed her website. I'm starting up a company, how much would you charge me for something similar to that site? Do not take that initial contact literally. Interpret it like this: Blah, blah, blah you did work for someone else & I would like to hire you blah, ...


7

Okay? That's 80-90% of my client communication. It's perfectly fine to communicate through email. But I do have a few suggestions: Spell properly - poor spelling in emails reflects poorly upon you Use proper grammar as much as possible. - No one is perfect, but at least make an effort. NEVER use "txt" abbreviations - U, R U, BRB, AFAIK, IMO, etc are all ...


7

Good clients are generally not the clients looking for the cheapest workers they can find. They are customarily more vested in abilities than actual price points. Good clients know that quality workers demand more than a bare minimum rate. Good clients customarily find good workers and continue to return to those workers in order to maintain a level of ...


7

If you have non-compete clause (NCC) in the contact, then it's illegal indeed. If not, then it's not morally right. And if I am the client, I would never break relations with my contractor, I am happy with working cheaper with his ex worker. On your side, it's a bit suspicious why a client would want to work with you. Is it only quality of your services, ...


6

I suspect it takes quite a bit of time and effort and many "lean" jobs to build a reputation on Elance etc especially when you are in Canada and competing for jobs with people in other countries who can work for a much lower hourly rate than you. What worked best for me was using the reputation I already had in the "real world" by finding work from friends, ...


6

I had similiar issues in my freelance Resume service back when i was running it. My answer would be to check out Guerrilla Marketing for free. My other suggestion would be, Pound The Pavement. If you can create software and webdesign, start hitting up small businesses. Restaurants? Create a "package deal" where you would create a small website that lists ...


6

Put it this way. If you're charging $5/day when the going rate is $25/day ( I don't know the rates ), somebody's gonna think you're stupid. If they've spent good money on a pet, why would they want to trust their investment with somebody stupid? I'm NOT calling you stupid. You have costs involved. Is the owner providing food? Other materials? You'll ...


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