Are you among the professionals that feel their jobs are at risk? Are you stagnating at your workplace? With no signal of role promotion coming soon? Again, are you doubting the future of your industry?
Do you need a pay rise or stable income, and you hesitate to approach your boss for the same discussions?
Are you experiencing a toxic workplace, and you admire going for freelance jobs?
If you have answered “yes” to one or two of the questions, then this article might probably change your life and give you a shift to a freelance career.
Advantages of Digital Freelancing Over “Real Jobs”
About ten years ago, freelancing was a tiny aspect to several professionals; It was unpopular. If you would walk into a party and introduced yourself as a freelancer; People were like, “You guy look for a real job.”
People would assume you’re unemployed. That you may be doing freelance jobs because you failed to secure “real jobs.” It was even difficult to find a serious partner- boyfriend or girlfriend. But who would even be willing to date someone who spent long hours on computers and earn peanuts? Yes, that was the challenge for freelancers before.
Are Freelance Jobs Good and Safe?
Hey there! That was an old mentality. The year 2020 was the year for true revelations. The Covid-19 pandemic turned the world upside down. Everyone is now searching for freelance jobs because real jobs are declining. The job market is shrinking, yet people are graduating every year.
The same people who had pride in having real jobs are worldwide looking for freelance opportunities. And to be honest, you may be one of them. The 2020 pandemic revealed the harsh truth to us. That our governments can’t take good care of us even the companies that you spent years and decades working for can’t take care of you.
To make it worse- relatives, friends, and extended families can only provide us with moral support, and they rarely support us financially.
You have one option! You have to take care of yourself and your immediate family members. Taking good care means; making good cash and bulging the size of your wallet or bank figures.
What Means Freelance Jobs?
People who managed to retain their corporate jobs are experiencing excessive pressure. They work for longer hours, having stressful relationships with their colleagues and bosses.
Some companies are even taking advantage, and pile blames on the pandemic to cut salaries which sometimes is as much as half the original salary. The top-level or senior positions, such as managerial roles, are easily replaceable with young and talented individuals who demand less monetary compensation.
People now flock internet searching for ways to earn more money and have financial confidence. Most of them prefer working from home; they want to make money remotely- while having fun with their families and staying safe at their home premises.
It is crazy, but there are many avenues to make money online apart from full-time jobs. But several opportunities are not suitable for all people outside there.
What Freelance Jobs pay best?
Yes, you may be looking for the answer to this question, and again, yes, the answer is here. If you are familiar with freelance discussions, you might have come across many people talking about online opportunities. Here is the list of freelance you shouldn’t consider at the beginning:
Blogging: Writing is one of the best skills to earn you an income and boost your brand. Writing provides a path to build a career, company, or even when starting up. You can’t deny all the facts, everything is true, and no one should feel discouraged.
However, blogging alone cannot earn you a good income if you only write for your blog. Blogging is a marketing process and not a money-generating method, as many beginners may think.
You only begin making money from your blog after building a solid foundation and large audience. But the same process takes quite some good time. And so, you don’t need to make it a priority when starting your freelance career.
Social Media Influencers: Guess what? There is too much noise on social media; social media influencers are all over Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube, making shout-outs. For sure, some are living giant lives while some are faking almost everything for their audience.
Maybe you’ve not been told this before. But being on social media platforms as an influencer is good for popularity and not for a steady and dependable income source. Nurture your audience, understand and relate with them well so that they take actions when needed.
Becoming a trainer/Mentor or Coach: The Internet opened up doors for online tutors and mentors. Digital mentoring is exceptionally profitable, and many make good money from this niche.
But as a beginner, how will you teach what you don’t understand well? Be ready to do everything by yourself and teach others while referring to your exceptional results.
Let’s assume you’re an author and you want to mentor others to publish a book. Do you have your published book ready? It is what will make your mentees take action. It serves them as motivation.
If you’re a digital marketing trainer, do you have results, clients, or testimonials? If not, how will you convince your students that they will make money after taking your course? Start from somewhere, create strong credibility and make more money after the whole process.
Multi-Level-Marketing: Just ran away from network marketing. It is sucking. You’ll be promised much and will end up earning nothing after submitting your hard-earned cash. Get out of quick rich schemes; they will drain you both financially and emotionally.
Some direct sales companies use it to encourage existing distributors to recruit other distributors who are paid commissions on their recruits for those who don’t know multilevel marketing. The one challenge of network marketing is that they use money from recruits to pay people at the top rank more than those who perform the actual work.
Another challenge is how to determine the legitimacy of multilevel marketing. The legality is from the basis of whether the company is selling products to consumers or from its members who must have to bring new members to purchase their products.
Setting up an agency: It is good to start an agency. However, you can’t expect the market to respond and buy your products right away. It is a journey that begins from freelancing, blogging, and personal branding to mentoring and consulting to set up a start-up. So even if you aspire to build a start-up, freelancing is the first step to pursue.
That is not enough; here are the complete steps Mass Trust Blueprint;
From the diagram, you can realize that every person has a long way to build a personal brand that constitutes a complete start-up.
Learn: Explore the available resources, learn and master new skills.
Work: Working makes you practice the skills learned and be good at them. You can begin as a freelancer or employee.
Blog: Create awareness about your personal brand through writing content. Writing connects you with your audience.
Consult: This is a stage where you sell your advice to businesses based on your experience.
Start-Up: After all the processes, you are ready to build a start-up, set up a team, and start helping other businesses.
Now that you have a clear context or picture of freelancing and its advantages to professionals, let’s dive deeper into freelance opportunities for 2021. All of the options shared here will help you launch a freelance career.
1. Academic Writing
Since education is a continuous process, some people get back to classes when they have many responsibilities. Some join virtual universities because of the office works that give them the challenge to join physical lectures. They hire freelance academic writers to help them handle their projects and meet the deadline for their submissions.
There are different academic writing styles, and students learn them during their educational journey while doing their assignments. Highschool curriculum doesn’t reveal many advanced writing styles, and most students learn the skills during their college life.
If you mention academic writing as a skill, then you need not forget sub-skills every writer should develop. The gifts may include research, critical thinking, proofreading, referencing, among others.
With such skills, you will be legible to ace your class assignments and increase your chances of being accepted for a freelancing task. Most of the experts that offer UK essay writing claim that more than half of the overall student population is working on some freelance writing projects all the time.
Many research institutions mention that freelancing is the most convenient and reliable source of income for many students. Based on that, competition is growing, and you should do your work exceptionally for you to remain at the top edge.
How to Develop Freelance Academic Writing
Read Articles Regularly and Write a Critique- Touching critical thinking. The suitable way to develop and boost this skill is by reading random academic journals and articles of your interest during your free time and criticizing their writing style, content, and structure. It is a fun practice because you are not consuming boring-course-related pieces but the range of your own interest.
Remember not to go through the content. The ultimate goal of reading is to pin focus on the depth of the content. Analyze the main idea the writer wants you to interpret out of the article. Diving into the depth of content eventually forces you to think critically. And that will improve your critical thinking abilities and become the best writer.
Proofread other People’s Work-The significant issues that can ruin the quality of contents are grammatical errors, sentence structure, and spelling errors. And it is the exact reason why you need to improve your proofreading skills. The suitable approach is by proofreading and editing your fellow candidates’ work or colleagues who write assignments more often.
After proofreading some written work, you will begin recognizing the usual mistakes and be well composed of what to pay attention to while doing an academic writing project by yourself.
Spend Good Time on Research- Researching is the primary aspect of academic writing. It is the basic foundation of your content writing project. To kick-off, apply various research techniques when working on assignments. Out of available strategies that you may think about, some are exceptionally effective. This means that those strategies will help you produce content within the shortest time.
Source for expert advice on the possible ways of doing research. The expert’s advice can assist you in analyzing the pros and cons of each tip. After settling for a particular trick and method that suits you best, you don’t need to stop it there; keep practicing, and finally, you will be able to set a pace in research.
Master Citation Styles- Citations are essential in academic writing, and you need to pay much attention to the citation reference and styles. There are numerous citation styles, including APA, MLA, Chicago, and various colleges, follow one or two types for their assignments.
However, as a freelance academic writer, you need to learn and understand all the styles since the client might request you to use any of the styles.
Consequently, guidelines for all the styles are available online, and it consumes a lot of time to follow the techniques from the internet. Therefore, it is advisable to practice every citation style and referencing on various assignments and exercise patience. Eventually, you will be an expert in all types, thus making you an efficient freelance academic writer.
By practicing the tips shared above, you can effortlessly improve your academic writing skills, extending to your writing tone and style’s overall improvement. With time, you will monitor your work quality changes, which will boost your success as an academic writer.
The moment you strike a bid on freelance assignments, the prospect will probably ask for your sample (especially new clients). But that shouldn’t be a big deal since you showcase your learning and polish your skills through examples. Thus, increasing your chances to get hired. The benefits of freelance academic writers are limitless.
2. Content Creation and Writing
Writing is an opportunity that most people consider as the oldest profession. It has been in existence since the invention of written language. People used to write on rocks and clay tablets long ago before the invention of pen and paper.
Today we have flourishing bloggers and authors that are existed through writing. But do you know where to begin? The best way to launch your writing career is to write for others. You need first to get out bad words from your systems before the good stories begin flowing. It would be best if you made mistakes and get corrected.
When you start as a writer, you might consider writing eBooks for other content creators or publications to bump up your portfolio. You can also decide to create your own blog and produce few eBooks to market and so that you can showcase it to potential.
The hard truth is that if you start with a weak personal brand, you may not earn much from each word you write. The average pay rate for US writers starts around $0.10 per word; with the same quality, a writer makes a standard rate of $25 for a specific page that translates to 250 words. Sometimes it might be sounding low, especially if you have a bigger budget, but that is how everyone begins their writing career.
Your rate will rise as you improve your writing speed, skill, and personal brand as a freelance content writer. Don’t stagnate at one standard; keep increasing your charges as your skill bulges.
Here are the types of content writing:
Have you imagined writing without associating your name with the work done by yourself? May you haven’t, but that is what to expect when starting your writing career from scratch. You write on behalf of other authors, CEOs, and blogs, but the copyright doesn’t belong to you. Ideally, it is a good way of making money online, but it will not improve your personal brand as a writer.
Transcription is a process that entails the conversion of video and audio content into written content. The video and audio content include files like video courses and podcasts. Transcription is slightly similar to ghostwriting since you don’t own the copyrights, and few will recognize your work that lowers the growth of your personal brand as a freelance writer. They do not pay much, but there are plenty of transcribing opportunities.
Proofreading and Editing
Proofreading and editing is an excellent approach to improving your writing skills since reading other people’s work. It will enlighten your ability and knowledge of writing while helping others to improve their content. With proofreading and editing, you still don’t own the copyright, just like transcription and ghostwriting.
After gaining enough experience and exposure as a writer and having an irrefutable personal brand, you can now transition to be a copywriter.
Firstly, what is copywriting? It is about making sales through written words.
Did you visit any website sometimes back? Or receive email newsletters from a company?
The content shared on such platforms is written by copywriters. Copywriting career comes with many responsibilities, and one has to learn consumer psychology, sales, and persuasion.
It is the most paying niche in the freelancing space currently. Experienced copywriters earn around $130-$240 per hour. They charge even more for a copywriter who has SEO knowledge on top of their content writing skills.
No client is willing to hire an SEO specialist separately to optimize their written content- that is double-spending that every business is trying to avoid. You are more relevant with SEO skills and find the appropriate time and learn if you haven’t.
The best way to learn and practice SEO content writing and become better is through writing regularly. Start your blog, write more guest posts, and exercise SEO for your own content. No one will certify you as a qualified SEO specialist or expert, and no one will hire you based on such qualifications.
People are going to hire you as a freelance content writer based on your work and results. So, start writing, and keep writing to nurture your skills. Once you master creating text-based content, you can now extend your knack and also try the video-based range and charge for video content creation. Infographics are also good opportunities for copywriters.
There are plenty of freelance copywriting projects, learn tips on how to cold-pitch for more projects and don’t depend on job boards like Fiverr, Upwork, and much more available on the internet.
3. Traffic Generation
The biggest war every business is battling is the low flow of traffic to their websites. Traffic means that business is alive. Low web traffic brings various problems for businesses. Imagine you can’t make sales without traffic.
You can get leads without traffic. You can even grow a brand without traffic. You can’t build an email list without traffic. And so, without traffic, your business is making zero progress.
No business across the globe can bravely say, “I do not need traffic.” They need indisputable traffic-in fact, high traffic. As a digital freelancer, you can help businesses to solve the traffic challenges through;
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Generally, SEO is a technique that ranks websites on Google or any other search engine like Bing. Try this test if you have a website- type the website’s name or any keyword associated with your website on the Google search bar.
If it doesn’t show up, then your website needs an SEO service as well. That is what you can help the business achieve if you have a full-length knowledge of Search Engine Optimization.
You can help businesses rank for keywords that their prospects are searching for. Various websites outside there are not or fully optimized for search engines, and they could probably hire your skill to fix their search traffic.
SEO experts have the highest demand in the freelance market based on Google Trends. Just like digital marketing. If you have the potential to combine SEO skills and content writing skills, then you are irreplaceable.
Social Media Marketing
Businesses want to improve their brands and engagements with the online community along with good traffic. They want an excellent social media presence. Social Media Marketing has become a talk of the day to businesses globally. Most companies are today active on social networks more than before, creating a lot of sales noises.
As a freelancer, this is an opportunity for you. Grasp social media marketing skills and start pitching for such businesses and grow their online presence. There is a lot you can explore within social Media and expertise in an area that suits you.
Companies spend millions of dollars on Google and Facebook Ads. Many agencies charge 10-20% of the ad spend to manage and monitor campaigns. This includes ad copywriting, creation of ad images, setting up campaigns, management, and optimization to maximize ROI.
People with excellent paid ad management are known as performance marketers. The most relevant skill here is targeting the right and appropriate audience or market, communicating the relevant message, and copywriting. Again, don’t forget it is about reaching high-quality, scalable traffic at a low budget.
4. Lead Generation
After optimizing websites for traffic, next is how to extract leads from traffic. Most giant companies are on top of a lead generation model. Take an example with Facebook; they give users free access to collect their emails and contacts.
These same leads are what they use to help businesses benefit from it through paid ads. To shop from Amazon, you need to provide your email, which is a lead generation model. As a freelancer, your role is to research generating B2B leads for your prospects. You can charge each lead you generate or based on the conversions.
Once you generate leads, most businesses do not even bother to follow up with the leads. They need results and not methods.
Here is the list of strategies for lead generation:
Lead Magnets- You can develop lead magnets for your clients that, in return, will shorten the lead generation process. The lead magnet is a strategy where you give gifts in exchange for leads. Here is where you can put your content writing and creation skills into actual practice.
Create a landing page for your clients and then go ahead and drive paid traffic to the landing page to collect leads. Different skills in freelancing support each other. If you understand how to create content and then direct traffic for the same, you can generate leads. It is possible.
Lead Nurturing (Email Marketing and Automation)- Assume you now have emails from your clients; what is the next thing? You need to create a stronger relationship with your email subscribers. Most businesses spend much to generate leads and end up abandoning their email lists.
If a company hired you to generate leads, it is always good to advise and recommend nurturing leads that can give suitable conversions. This can be through follow-up emails and messages. And that is the point where automation comes into the actual play to help you reduce much work and effort.
At this point, you need to treat sales as a service, and that is the primary goal for lead generation. You generate leads so that after nurturing, you can convert them into actual sales. Keep learning sales concepts and ideas.