Paris Hilton’s Top 5 Tips for Freelancers
And now readers, it is time for some light weekend reading. This week billionaire heiress and all around good time girl Paris Hilton is going to give us a few lessons on how to be a better freelancer…
Certainly everyone knows Paris
It pays to network
You know the saying “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know”, well it certainly is true for freelancers where networking means getting gigs. Getting out there and meeting other people leads to connections, ‘friend of a friends’ and deals. Where often you have to work to get your foot in the door, or wait for a referral to land in your lap, networking instead is about taking control, meeting people, introducing yourself and always carrying a business card just in case.
There are many ways you can network, ranging from just going out a lot and meeting new people, to targeting industry events like conferences and tradeshows to going to local user groups. The most important thing is the volume of contacts you make. Although on first glance you would assume that going to an industry event would yield the most results, sometimes just going to a party can generate loads of new leads.
Unfortunately for the shy among us, there’s no escaping the dread of networking. If you’re not doing it, someone else is. The good news is that it does get easier, and who knows you may even come to enjoy it!
you don’t get the city, you get the heiress
… now that’s branding!
Build a brand around your name
Branding isn’t just for companies and big organisations, freelancers can and should have their own brands. Branding for the uninitiated is how people perceive you. Think of a person you know. That person is not their name, they are not their face, they are not their personality. They are ALL those things. Likewise with branding, it is a combination of your logo, the way the copy on your website is phrased, the service you provide, the music you play when a person is on hold and everything else that people perceive about you. Of course how far you take branding depends on you.
Good branding is essentially selecting one consistent face to present to the public. One that they become familiar with, develop a relationship with and come to trust. This relationship and trust can then be used to drive sales, attract new users and generate customer loyalty. Branding is as important for freelancers as for bigger organisations and at the bare minimum you should have a logo, some business cards and a consistent email signature.
We’ll talk more about branding later this week on FreelanceSwitch because it is such an important area for a freelancer not only to help generate leads but also to inspire confidence and give an aura of professionalism.
she acts (um sorta), she has a reality show
… the list goes on
It helps to be able to offer add-on services to your clients
One of the advantages a larger business often has over an individual freelancer is the ability to fulfil many aspects of a job. So if you can perform extra services this helps to even the scales a little. Now that doesn’t mean you should try to be a programmer, photographer and designer all in one, but it might mean having a network of other freelancers you use, it might mean performing a few services outside of your established set or it might simply mean coordinating those things for your client.
While certainly not an essential rule of freelancing, providing a larger service range is just one extra way that you can stand out from the crowd.
She works it, every day of the week.
No-one wants a coy freelancer playing hard-to-get, so unless you are the most famous designer in the country or you just finished writing a Pulitzer-winning novel, you are probably going to need to sell yourself a little. That means being confident, going for pitches, being proactive and putting your name forward for jobs.
If you know your stuff, are good at what you do AND sell yourself, then you will be on to a winning combination. In my experience a client looking for someone to do some work wants a solution to land in their lap, so if you have the goods to back your words up then they’ll be happy and often you’ll get the job. And if you don’t, well on to the next lead!
sex tape ’1 night in Paris’ actually seems
to have done her good…
When things go wrong try to make the best of a bad situation
Life doesn’t always go the way you want it or expect it. Sometimes jobs go south, clients get upset, projects come out less than perfect. In all these cases it is your job to make the best out of a bad situation. You can’t hide, run away or expect a boss to deal with it… *You* are the boss!
Admitting if you are at fault, taking responsibility for things even if they weren’t yours and finding ways to repair broken bridges will often turn an upset client or a bad project into a positive result. And if not that, at least you have the knowledge that you have done all you can and you can move on gracefully.
So there you have it, Paris’ top 5 tips for freelancers! And for a little trivia that I learned “researching” this story: Did you know that Paris Hilton owns a night club called Club Paris, that there is a cell phone game featuring her and that 30 million results come up for her name in Google – that’s one for every man, woman and child in California. Boy that girl gets around!