Do you occasionally long for the opportunity to hash things out with a group of colleagues? Whether it’s an upcoming sports game or a great new iphone app, that casual back-and-forth banter is usually absent when you’re a solo worker.
Joining in a twitter chat is one way that freelancers can replicate this. A Twitter chat – also called a party - is when a group of individuals meet on Twitter at a set time to discuss a planned topic. A moderator usually organizes the event. They’ll start things off, welcome the attendees, and keep the conversation going.
Aside from enjoying some interaction with your peers, attending a chat is a great way to grow your Twitter presence. Continue Reading
My personal experience as a freelancer so far has included lots of juggling kids, errands, running a household, family and friends who think you don’t need to work during the day, and – as a result – trying to get some bits of work done here and there. My iPhone has been my saving grace in the last couple of years. I can easily check and send emails, keep up with social media news, even make edits to documents in Drive using my Google mobile app.
However, I have found that one of the best ways to take advantage of my time – while waiting in the drive-thru line, waiting for an appt., or watching my kids at sports events – is to get some social media marketing done. This helps with efficiency when I am sitting down at my computer trying to get some writing done – I can easily tell myself that I do not need to get onto Twitter or Google+ because I just updated them earlier while sitting at the doctor’s office.
All freelancers come to a point in their career where they have to promote their business or else slowly become non-existent.
It’s a potential problem though, when we come to this point and do not have enough capital base to spend on costly marketing campaigns. This is why social media is such a valuable tool for freelancers, it’s effective and affordable.
Social media statistics of 2012 point to this theory – that social media is a major promotional avenue for many companies within many industries, and I would add especially for freelancers. The following are just a few of the most important social media facts that I noted, including guidelines on how you can take advantage of them. Continue Reading
Nowadays, it’s rare to meet a freelancer who’s not on Twitter. Most of us have an account, and many of us hang out there in our free time. Sharing our lives, and glimpsing into the lives of others in bite-sized chunks of 140 characters is strangely compelling.
But how about using Twitter for your professional life?
In a new series of FreelanceSwitch articles, I’m going show you how to make the most of Twitter as a freelancer. In particular, I’ll be looking at how to use Twitter as a marketing and networking tool.
If you’ve yet to dive into the world of Tweets, I’ll show you how to set up your Twitter account. If you don’t get Twitter, I’ll show you how to make sense of it.
I’ll also be looking at what to Tweet about, how to record and understand Twitter metrics, how to grow your Twitter following and find clients on the network, using Twitter for research, and the dilemma every professional Tweeter faces: to schedule or not to schedule?
Before we get into that, it’s worth deciding whether Twitter is right for your freelance business. Ultimately, you’ll only find this out by trying Twitter for yourself. However, this article will serve as a handy primer to help you make your decision.
Twitter’s a communications platform, which makes it suitable for marketing your services. But is it worth your while, and all the time and energy you’ll invest?
Let’s take a look, starting with the argument for Twitter. Continue Reading
Social media is a great way to connect with new people, including potential freelance clients. Having a presence on one of the hugely trafficked social-media platforms can also help your own freelancer website rank better in search and help you get found by prospects.
But here’s the problem: You’re not supposed to be salesy on social media. It’s supposed to be mostly a place to hang out and socialize.
As a result, it takes a little finesse to use social media for prospecting, since messages like “Got any design work for me?” tend to get you unfollowed, disconnected and/or blocked, depending on the platform.
Also, each social-media platform has its own flavor and etiquette. It’s hard to make time to figure them all out and use your time on them productively…without becoming distracted and ending up playing Mafia Wars or forwarding funny YouTube video links. But if you focus on specific marketing and network-building activities, social media can be well worth your time investment.
If you think it’s all a waste of time, let me report that I’ve gotten several high-caliber clients off LinkedIn and Twitter that booked tens of thousands of dollars of work with me in the past couple of years. Full disclosure: The collection of tips below represent my personal take on what I’m seeing out there that’s really working for freelancers in social media.
Besides having social buttons on your own blog and hoping to heck someone retweets your stuff and a prospect sees it, how can social media help you find clients?
If you’ve only got a sec, the short version is: Connect with and then help others, and they will help you.
Want more? Here are 15 specific social-media marketing techniques new freelancers can use: Continue Reading
LinkedIn makes sense for professionals, but what about for freelancers?
In my experience, LinkedIn is an important tool in my marketing toolbox. Being on LinkedIn allows me to showcase my skills and experience. Additionally, LinkedIn is a networking platform, which makes it perfect for finding prospects, hooking up with new clients or reconnecting with past clients.
In this article I show you how to set up your LinkedIn profile as an effective marketing tool. Setting up your profile for success is important because it provides the foundation on which to build your LinkedIn networking and marketing efforts.
Here’s what you want from your profile.
- You want people to find you on LinkedIn. In other words, your profile must be search optimized.
- In every aspect of your profile, from your headline right down to the nitty-gritty of your skills and experience, you want to draw people in and make them interested to find out more about you. Your profile must be well written, and structured in an accessible way.
- Often as freelancers, we have a broader range of experience than is typical. You want your profile to give a solid, focused account of your skills and experience, putting your best foot forward.
In this tutorial, I show you how to achieve these goals. Continue Reading
Facebook is an integral part of my small business. See, I own a niche wedding publication and use Facebook to interact with my readers and fans. It’s important to me to have engagement not only on my website, but on my Facebook page, too. I use Facebook to publicize events, tease readers about blog posts, and share information to wedding professionals as well as brides planning a wedding.
I really liked this blog post on DanZarella.com about data he collected on more than 1.3 million posts published on the top 10,000 most-liked Facebook pages on how to get more likes, comments, and shares. He analyzed the posts and here’s what he came up with: Continue Reading
If you know me, you know I love a good study. And I found the findings in the 2012 Oriella PR Network Global Digital Journalism Study to be fascinating.
Titled The Influence Game: How News is Sourced and Managed Today, the study shows the deepening penetration of digital and social media into all areas of newsgathering and production.
The study was conducted in April and May of this year and surveyed 613 journalists who work for a variety of different media outlets (from broadcast to blogs) in the following countries: Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Thailand, Vietnam, the U.K., and the U.S. On average, 38 journalists were surveyed in each country.
The global economy is affecting newsrooms
The study found that journalists in Asia, Brazil, and Russia had a sunnier outlook on their news organization than those living in Western Europe and North America.
This year the study found that 12% of respondents globally believed their publication would go belly up, down from 21% last year. Check out how individual countries and regions fared when asked the question of falling (or growing) revenues:
- Europe: 43%
- Brazil, Russia, China, North America: 21%
- Spain: 67%
On a more upbeat note, journalists in Russia, Brazil, and China seem to be doing great. Advertising revenue, audience, and editorial staffing is all up in these countries. According to this study, the BRIC countries of Brazil, Russia, India, and China will experience double-digit growth in ad spending during 2012. France will see a scant 2% and the U.K. will see 3.4%. Continue Reading
I hate typos. They are so embarrassing. When I make one, I cringe and want to hide under a rock for a good 24 hours. Recently I had to make some room under that rock for Mitt Romney.
Last Wednesday, presidential hopeful Mitt Romney’s team rolled out a mobile app that had the word America misspelled. Oops. Sure, America has a lot of letters, and there is that pesky “I before C” rule, but come on.
The gaffe, presumably by some poor developer hired by the campaign, appears on “With Mitt,” the campaign’s newly released iPhone app. The app invites users to photograph themselves with their choice of 14 pro-Romney slogans such as “I’m a Mom For Mitt,” “Obama Isn’t Working” and “The America We Love,” and then share them on social media. —CNN.com
The typo has been fixed…but I have to say I am jealous beyond words at the people who got their hands on the misspelled version before it was caught. In fact, there is already a Tumblr blog called Amercia Is With Mitt! showcasing some great spoofs with the misspelled logo.
We all make mistakes. Obama has made them and former president Bush made lots of them. But when you are running for political office, they aren’t easily swept under the rug.
The fact that you can learn anything from John Mayer might surprise you, but I learned a lot about how you can ruin your reputation through social media and interviews in this NPR interview with the musician on All Things Considered this afternoon.
I have to admit, I am not a John Mayer fan. He bothers me. I can’t stand to watch him sing. And after a couple of nitty gritty interviews in 2010—one for Rolling Stone and one for Playboy—I didn’t like what I heard, either.
In Mayer’s interview with Playboy, he made racial comments, talked about his sex life with his famous exes, and made homosexual comments—all of which made the public scream Too Much Information! Continue Reading
Are you unhappy with the amount of freelance writing income you’re bringing in? The check account is looking bare, and the bills are piling up.
You need more gigs — and you need them now.
Fortunately, there are many basic steps you can take quickly to help you land new assignments at better rates. Here are 10 strategies for growing your writing income fast:
- Ask for referrals from existing clients. Do all your current clients know you’re looking to add another client or two? If not, be sure to let them know you would appreciate their referrals. They won’t be offended — I promise.
- Find former clients on LinkedIn. Do you know where every former editor of yours is now? If not, reconnect, catch up…and let them know you’d be interested to work with them again, or to receive their referrals if they hear of anything. Another great way to reconnect — ask for a testimonial. You’ll be surprised how often that leads to a new assignment.
Freelancers often underestimate how they can use LinkedIn to build relationships with clients and colleagues. As a global professional network, boasting over 135 million people, LinkedIn becomes a virtual Rolodex of contacts making it a great way for freelancers to exchange information, ideas, and share and explore relevant issues.
As a business networking tool, it’s a natural social network for freelancers to explore. While you may associate social networks with time wasting sessions on Facebook or Twitter, LinkedIn’s value as a business generating tool is worth exploring.
Here are four ways to tap into LinkedIn for your freelancing business:
1. Engage your “Connections” for help.
LinkedIn can be useful for freelancers looking to outsource aspects of their business or seeking collaborators for projects. If you’re seeking someone with special skills, the first place to look for experts is on LinkedIn.
The site provides a trusted way to find the right people who fit your needs– a kind of digital word-of-mouth when you’re doing a search.
The site provides a trusted way to find the right people who fit your needs– a kind of digital word-of-mouth when you’re doing a search. For example, if you’re looking for someone with social marketing skills to help you market your freelance services, run a search of profiles on LinkedIn in a zip code or location near you. Narrow down your search with keywords and professional affiliations. LinkedIn’s advance search feature lets you filter searches by group affiliations, companies, location, seniority, company size, and so forth.
LinkedIn is also an excellent way to do a quick background check of your clients and other freelancers you work with. You can track what people have done and corroborate material on resumes that cross your desk. Continue Reading