Freelance work is attractive because of the freedom of place and time among so many other positives. However, work does not come without effort. To gather contacts and customers, we must put ourselves out there.
If done daily and consistently, networking is a skill that gets better with time and will serve you well.
Become a member at Voyageur U today to get help succeeding. Allow us to aid you in building a network so you can prosper doing what you love. Joining us is also a way to hone your skills and learn networking techniques.
Visit our site today to become a member to begin the journey of a lifetime.
It Starts With You
When starting any adventure, even your career, you must make sure that you are ready. A commitment must be made to yourself to spend time every day to network and put yourself out there.
This time is not just to get in the practice of networking, but it also accomplishes a few other things. Contacting people immeshes you in a group of professionals and is practice for a great work ethic: both of which are major positives.
For some, the thought of putting yourself out there to network regularly is intimidating. This feeling may increase if you speak to people you don’t know, especially in a face-to-face setting. This feeling is understandable and can be lessened with daily practice.
A keen first step to identifying networking opportunities is to start with your friends and family. Each day contact someone you know and remind them of what you do. They may have someone they know who could use your skillset or have another amazing opportunity. You never know who might have a lead on potential clients for you!
Calling someone you previously worked for is also a good step. If the experience was a good one, they are probably glad you called. Reaching out to offer your services to them or ask for leads is an excellent practice.
If you are feeling bold, you may ask your previous employer to pass your name along.
Once you feel comfortable networking in a small circle, make your network bigger. As we will discuss in this article, networking is vital. The more you do it, the more you will work.
Find Your People
The internet is a part of almost every aspect of our lives, including work. Platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and other social media sites are great for networking. They allow you to work with people you may get along well with.
Another positive of social media networking is getting to possibly work with people you may not otherwise know. This connection offers yet another possible contact for you.
It is also possible to join groups for networking on these platforms. These groups may offer an independent employee a community and a lot of opportunities to work. Not only to work, but to truly get to know the people or company you wish to work with.
Pouring into the community you network with is an absolute must. Doing this by donating services or connecting clients with other professionals is a great start. You are remembered for doing that, and your good reputation will bloom from there.
Not to mention it is very classy and generous to pour time and energy into the industry you wish to work in.
Some of the national groups online also have local groups that you can join. At Voyageur U, we support writers by providing them with a network and building relationships within the freelance community.
Networking does not happen without rubbing elbows with people. Seek out networking gatherings in your area. It may surprise you how many opportunities pop up to bring your brand face to face with other professionals and meet people.
What may also surprise you is that trading shows are a great opportunity to see how certain industries work. Handing out cards at these shows can be worth the price of admission. Especially if it is an industry you are passionate about or interested in. Your final product can be valuable when your passion and interest show through it.
Often smaller, more specialized parts of a company are looking for someone to promote their business or give their market voice. You can specialize in your work with them, and if it is a success, your name can be spread around.
Trade shows are constantly happening nationwide. They are also advertised on community and city websites, making them easy to find. Look for networking events that are meaningful for your career path.
Through your networking efforts, find someone who you respect as a colleague or mentor, and pick their brain. What have they done that has worked for them, or better yet, what did they do wrong? This will only help you grow as a professional and is another neat way to network.
After you are done working for someone, make a client remember you by casually following up with them. This communication shows that you both care about them as a client and appreciate their business.
Volunteering your services from time to time is also a major way to network and show appreciation. If a charity or non-profit organization you value needs work that you can provide, consider offering your services.
Start Your Journey
Freelancing can be an adventure that is prosperous and fulfilling. It goes so much further than being your own boss and working hours that suit you. You have to network to get ahead.
As in any occupation, there is no work without customers. Networking, promotion, and follow up go a very long way. Something that will increase your chances of success is joining the community at Voyageur U.
We work nationally to match freelancers with a network that will serve them while giving them guidance. As free as freelancing is, it can be difficult to do on your own. Being a part of our network can aid you in having work regularly.
If you are passionate about your work and wish to take it to the next level professionally, contact us. We would love to help and be a part of your journey.