Why Freelancers Need to Build a Network

Building a network that works for you is vital in any industry, but particularly for freelancers. People do business with people, and networking is a huge part of this. If you’re looking to branch out as a freelancer, or want practical strategies that will bring your business to the next level The Freelancers Forum is the perfect event. Best of all, we’ve got a 50% discount,  DM us on Twitter to get the code, or check the entrepreneurs group on the GirlCrew app for more information. In the meantime read on to find out why freelancers need networks, now more than ever.

We have all sat down at our 9-5 job and thought “someday I will be calling the shots.” No early morning commutes, no feeling of panic when your alarm never goes off, and the best of them all- no boss. It seems like such a good gig, but if so, then everyone doing it. In reality, the life of a freelancer is more than meets the eye. Here are the reasons why:

1. The Awkward Phase

You are remember the first day of class when  you awkwardly stood there making small talk until you found your true friends. Well this is the daily life of a freelancer. They are constantly meeting up with new clients, trying to prove that their pitch is good enough to sell. This is where building a strong network is vital. Like any other skill, networking is something that can be practiced. The more new people you talk to, the better you become at it. Top tips are to listen, and smile. When you exchange business cards with someone make a note on the back of it, of where you met them. When you get home pop their details into a spreadsheet in no time you’ll have started to build a powerful network that you can leverage.

2. You Want It? I Got It

The customer to seller relationship is based on how bad both parties are willing to pay for goods. Customers always want the cheapest price so it is a constant battle of prices. Add in a third party offering a lower price and now your whole game is thrown off. Talk about nerve wracking. Many freelancers set an hourly rate, but this might not suit everyone. And what happens when things begin to slide? Setting the right pricing can be a case of trial and error, but there are a few core strategies that might help. 

  • Competitive Pricing – survey the competitors in your niche, take the average of their prices and price yours lower. Of course, if this means you’re not turning a profit then this is not the model for you.
  • Cost-plus – gather all the costs it takes to provide your product/services. From there calculate how much it costs to generate each and deliver it, and add mark-up. This can vary but some experts put it around 30%.
  • Package pricing – this is simply bundling products/services into one and selling them as a deal. For example, it could be X number of hours spent researching, strategy building, and social posting for clients.
  • Prestige pricing – unlike competitive pricing, with this model where others go low you go high. Trading on the idea that quality goods come with a higher price tag, by increasing your prices you can potentially claim a bigger share of the market.

3. Each Person for Themselves

Making your own rules sounds great but what about when you need a second opinion. You don’t have colleagues or a manager to rely on. That is the life of a freelancer. Ultimately, they rely on themselves for every aspect of a business. They are the definition of everyone for themselves. That is not to say freelancers are a crooked, greedy bunch – but it is a system whereby you do need to take responsibility for your business. The fun parts but the hard parts too. Whether it’s getting paid on time, or fulfilling the brief, it’s on you. You need to be honest with yourself, set realistic goals and targets. If you’re not reaching them, assess why. Talking to others that you trust in the same space can really help bring clarity. 

Luckily for freelancers, we live in an age where social connections and events are happening every second.  The Freelancers Forum on Thursday, October 4th is a day for freelancers to come together to learn and connect. The event will help self-starters succeed in today’s economy. With 20 experts covering everything from productivity to technology this is not to be missed. Familiar faces you will see there is Louise Horgan, a personal well-being coach, Andrew Burke, the Dean of Trinity Business School, Ruth Medjber of Ruthless Imagery, and a whole host of others. Moreover, there is a whole session dedicated to practical strategies which will help you grow your business, and upgrade your skills. The day will finish with an office party with drinks, entertainment and fun. 

The Freelancer’s Forum Time & Date: 4th October 2018, 9 am – late. Venue: D-Light Studios, North Great Clarence Street, Dublin 1. For more, visit the website. In order to receive the 50% discount,  DM us on Twitter to get the code, or check the entrepreneur’s group on the GirlCrew app. See you there!

This post is not #Spon, but we are #Friends with Happenings – so thanks to Sammy and the team for arranging this generous discount.

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Chelsea Caulfield

I am an international student currently studying aboard in Dublin Ireland. I am very passionate about the environment, love dogs, and can't wait to travel the world.

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