18

Why maintain a false facade? People like dealing with people. In fact, they often prefer it over dealing with a company. There's no reason to pretend you are something you are not. I contemplated this same thing briefly when starting out. What I found was ... As an "organization" when I received a cold call from someone, they were merely shopping around ...


16

In my experience, a website will - in itself - give you nothing. Clients are only found by actively seeking them. When you have lots of face time with a potential client, a website should make no difference. However, a website could be helpful as a supplement, as it allows a short chance encounter in which contact details were exchanged, to perhaps become ...


14

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

Knowing an entire API or framework inside and out is not really necessary. Every project I've worked on in 10 years of freelancing has involved something new that I've never done before. You are "qualified" when someone is willing to hire you. And the only way to find out if you are is to put yourself out there. BUT...there is much more to being ready for ...


11

Having an active LinkedIn profile can be a massive help. You can tag your connections to put them into groups and then send a message to the entire group. There is a limit of 50 recipients, above which LinkedIn won't send the message, so if, like me, you've got bags of recruiters connected to you, or a network of potential clients, you can easily reach them ...


10

There are a few things you probably need to ask yourself before trying to book projects / find agencies to work through (although I know much less about how agencies operate). Your's is a unique question in that you're new to both software development and freelancing. Can you build it?: Whatever projects you're trying to win (either a specific project, or ...


10

Unfortunately there are few marketing techniques that are going to consistently provide a return and don't need upkeep or consistency. I spend about 1/4 of my time marketing myself. This includes an array of things: Applying to speak at conferences (this requires travel costs as they don't always pay your way!) Writing guest articles for industry related ...


8

First, let's put this in perspective. A resume is simply a brochure you hand a specific target market. It has its own conventions, formatting standards, etc. but in the end it is just a piece of advertising material and ideally one piece among many. Likely your resume will go to a different target market and be read differently if you are are seeking ...


8

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 ...


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

So much to address here... First off, NO. You don't need a PR person on full-time to help you. You need to deal with your own situation before you bring more people in. Freelancing should make you more money than being a regular full-time employee, punching in and out everyday. What are your rates at? Obviously, too low. Read the other questions on here ...


8

Personal opinion... don't engage too much. If the relationship is damaged, then it's damaged. Get paid and move on. Too much discussion will only inflame issues. In addition, any reduction not cited in the contract shows your willingness to not adhere to the contract itself. This could be interpreted as a failure in the agreement from its inception. The ...


7

The first time I got this question, I was completely stuck. My stuttering answer was: "someone who pays me on time". Ugh. It took me awhile to arrive at understanding my ideal customer, mainly because I kept trying to think of it in terms of industry or type of app (I'm a programmer). Eventually I figured out that for me these attributes were irrelevant. ...


7

Neoflash, If a customer's #1 motivation is to get a service done as cheaply as possible, then you can't fix that whether you are at the pre-service stage, performing the service, or done with it. You just got lucky that it didn't come out sooner. I hope you've cashed any checks from this customer and aren't sitting on them! That same customer can't call ...


6

I won't tell you all the fluff that you can find in books and other resources. You are ready when: Cash: You need cash. I know this isn't a technical requirement, but unless you are a rock star, starting out will be slow. Even if you have a good reputation as an employee, people may look at you with some distrust. I mean, they don't know you, so what will ...


6

I started freelancing 2 months ago with Android development and landed my first job in just 1 day. The key points are: you are new and probably don't have a lot of experience. So, to have a good offer that the client will take into consideration you should ask for less money that most of the people bidding. This way, even if you don't have experience people ...


6

This is always hard to find work at starting no matter how intelligent you are ... but you can get slightly easier if you have created any project to show , and contribute in some open source which would be good and you can tell about this either to client or to company(in case you want to do job ) and its easy to get clients by friends/family references


6

I would start off as you have by emailing in the first instance. It allows you to set out your offering clearly in a passive manner to begin with. If you haven't heard back after 48 hours, I would then follow up with a phone call. The advantages that I have found with this approach are that: The client has hopefully read your initial email and if not, you ...


6

This is what I do when I evaluate a market (for my needs or for my prospects): I search on google for goods or services from that market and watch what shows up I rotate different keywords to see who is advertising on them on google (no ads suggest that the market might not be profitable, if it is not worth money for ads to anyone) I search online company ...


6

I don't know about the legality of soliciting business at the bus or train station. But I think you are on the right track by thinking about: Who would purchase my services, and Where can I find those people Some other suggestions: Connecting with the concierge service of some hotels that might get the customers interested in your service (probably not ...


6

If you release a good free app with no advertisements, the person/service that is actually being advertised is the app's creator. If you do a really good/useful app and give it away for free (putting your name on it), then you will have a return in terms of company (or developer) prestige. The monetary incentive of this will be that the company name will ...


6

Since now I was very rarely contacted by clients that found me from my website, and consider that I am online with my website since 1996, each 1-2 years I renewed it making it tecnically and graphically up to date (being a web developer and designer, it should be an example of good design and efficiency), it responds well to keywords and have a good number ...


5

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 ...


5

As others have noted, personal and professional networks are the most common sources for a first client. And although you haven't asked for this answer, I'll add that if you are employed full-time already, make sure you carefully review the terms of your employment contract before committing to any freelance work. Many employment contracts contain terms ...


5

I got my first client by literally going door to door in local businesses introducing myself. It turned out that one of the business owners was an old family friend, and so I got a client. If I had it to do over again, I would probably start by making a list of friends who have businesses, and approaching them asking for feedback rather than work, and then ...


5

I completely rewrote my resume a couple of years back, having been a contractor for (then) a couple of years. The main thing that I removed from it, that I think makes a contractor CV completely different from a permanent CV, was the chronological career history. The key question that your CV needs to answer changes when you switch from permanent to ...


5

I've been offered the services of lead generators, but for my business, they wouldn't work; they were in a call center in another country, wanting to cold call a bunch of businesses. That's not how I work. In your business plan should be information about how you are hoping to attract and keep your clients. Make sure you stick to it! It is possible that ...


5

It's always safer to ask, right? But if you want our opinion, then: Yes, you can use it. Just be professional there as well. Do not give project names or project specifications, but rather only company name and technologies you used while working for them. If you have, however, created a cool thing and want to brag with it, then it's a must to ask your ...


5

Don't be a guy with no projects. Projects don't have to be paid ones. Have you created projects during the learning phase? You must have had so put those into portfolio. Also create a few more projects with that skill and put in the portfolio. Clients don't care much if you had paid projects. They need to see projects to see what your skill are.


4

I don't know specifically about freelancer.com but here's some good tips for these types of sites: Start with a few simple jobs to get some feedback Make your 'about me' type page well written and honest Bid for jobs with honest pricing, don't go too low and don't bid on projects that don't pay what you think is an acceptable amount for the work involved ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible