The idea of branding might feel intimidating to you, but you should know that the freelance market is tough. The freelance workforce is growing very fast, and a recent Upwork study reported that freelancers would make up the majority of the population by 2027.
With statistics like this, it is essential to find ways to stand out from the crowd. You need to increase your presence and connect with your audiences. When you become a freelancer, essentially, you are a one-person business so look at yourself as a brand.
Branding yourself means the practice of marketing yourself. It is a proven fact that people connect much faster with face and personality than a business brand. Freelancing allows you to become a lasting brand that can withstand any business shifts.
In this post, we will provide you some practical and actionable tips for branding yourself that you can start applying today as a freelancer.
Optimize your online presence
Most of the time, consumers search online whenever they buy goods or services. You can gain a massive number of customers by creating a website that ranks well in search engines. Make your website SEO-friendly.
Work on keyword optimization. Place all the phrases related to your business on your website strategically. Analyze the SERPs for the users’ questions related to your business and answer them on your website. Write high-quality blogs on specialized services and expertise you are offering. This will increase the traffic to your website, and more people will come to know about you and your business.
If you don’t have much grip on SEO, then instead of focusing on short, highly competitive keywords, try to rank for long-tail keywords with less search volume.
Create a Memorable Logo
Visuals can strengthen brand recognition. So, work on creating a unique logo for your business and place it throughout your website, blog, and profiles. The more you use your logo on marketing channels, the easier it will become for clients to differentiate your business from competitors.
Your logo needs to be a good one. There are dozens of online tools available on the internet that help you create logos, but if you’re not a graphic designer, it’s better to hire a talented professional to do this task.
Work on gathering reviews
It doesn’t matter how much time and money you spend on your marketing; you can’t attract customers if you don’t have past clients’ opinions. Consumers trust the opinions of past clients and pay more attention to your service based on those reviews.
Never hesitate in asking your customers to leave a review shortly after purchase when the experience is fresh in their minds.
It works as proof and evidence of your hard work. Always respond to the review, whether it is positive or negative. It gives the clients an impression that you’re listening to their feedback and committed to doing better. Customers are more likely to trust you when you make an extra effort to respond to the reviews and give your business the benefit of the doubt.
Pick your social media channels.
So, you have created a website and logo. The next thing you need to do is to create marketing materials behind your freelance brand. But it won’t be enough; you’ll have to hustle, and social media is the best place to do that, where 37% of employers pick up new hires.
Many freelancers think they have to be on every social media platform, but it is not true. Fewer networks can give you better results. Focus on identifying the right social network according to your services.
Social media platforms you should be on
Below is the list of social media networks you could be owning as a freelancer:
- Facebook – This platform can be beneficial for all freelancing niches.
- Instagram – You can use it if you’re a photographer, designer, or artist. This is not that good for developers.
- YouTube – Currently, it is the biggest video-sharing platform. If you’re a graphic designer, video editor, or social media personality and have video editing skills, you should create a channel and start publishing videos over there.
- Twitter – Always use the right hashtags that can help you connect with your niche. Freelancers from every industry can be successful here.
- LinkedIn – Every freelancer should have an excellent LinkedIn profile. It should highlight all the skills you have and examples of your work.
Branding yourself as a freelancer isn’t that much hard if you choose the right social media platform. It allows freelancers to share their passion and attract new business at the same time.
A blog is an essential tool that helps freelancers expand their brand statement and promote their services. But many freelancers are unaware of the advantages attached to it.
I know freelance marketplaces are doing great, but you should also promote yourself independently as a freelancer. You can get your business done without any commission fee on your blog.
There is a myth that only writers should have a blog. Freelancers from every industry should have a blog where they highlight their work.
You don’t need to be an experienced writer or WordPress expert to write a post. You only have to provide enough information to engage your reader. If you want to rank for a specific keyword, you will have to acquire SEO knowledge or hire a professional SEO expert.
Know your brand’s voice
Most of the time, freelancers mistakenly modify their brand message depending on their audience. Sometimes, freelancers may be very serious and professional on their blogs, but they adopt a cheeky and playful tone on Twitter.
This approach is not going to be effective and creates confusion for clients. To maintain a strong brand, you must be consistent in presenting it to the clients.
There are many websites available such as Frontify. These platforms help you create a brand-style guide. It will help you nail down your brand colors, style guide, typography, and brand voice.
Branding yourself as a freelancer isn’t always easy. Freelancers are often so busy working for clients that they forget to work on their branding. This practice needs to be changed.
Working on your project can be the most grueling part for a creative freelancer. But after following the steps mentioned above, you should be able to evaluate your unique situation and make your freelance business a brand.