Studies conducted by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that only the web development field is expected to grow by 15% by 2026. That means the development industry is booming.
Companies intend to hire freelance developers in other parts of the world instead of full-time developers. Those developers will do the same tasks for a much lower price.
But In freelancing, you often compete with other freelance developers who are selling similar services. And to surpass that competition, you will need to build a personal brand as a freelance web developer.
In this article, I’m going to share with you why you should brand yourself and how you can brand yourself as a freelance developer.
Why should you brand yourself?
There is a myth in the freelancing industry that personal branding is only important for expert freelancers. It is one of the most important factors that need to be considered in this competitive industry. There are some solid reasons for this statement. Let’s discuss them:
Distinguish You from Other Freelancer
For new freelancers, it is always challenging to get new clients because the competition is so high. But your personal brand positions you in a unique way from others by showcasing your skills, values, and other unique qualities that you possess.
Companies Hire Experts
Building your personal brand helps you establish yourself as an expert. No hiring manager prefers to work with someone who has not enough experience in the specific field. Work on finding your niche and then gain enough experience.
Once you establish yourself as an authority, companies wouldn’t mind paying a considerable price to consider working with you than with your ill-experienced competitors.
It develops trust
Before deciding on which web developer to hire, a client would always do research. Now, if you brand yourself as a freelance developer and have reviews of your previous clients, the chances are high that they will hire you. These recommendations of previous clients make you credible for potential clients.
How can you brand yourself as a developer?
Now you have a better understanding of branding and its importance. Let’s move to the next steps on how you can brand yourself as a developer.
Build your online presence
Before going towards branding, you need to have a unique “username” on the internet. Namechk is a tool that can tell you the availability of a username across all Domain Names and Social Media Platforms. Once the username is decided, start creating new accounts on those popular websites before someone claims it.
Create a website and purchase decent hosting. If you have a tight budget and can’t afford this, get free hosting and domain from GitHub Pages or NameCheap (only if you’re a student). Include a portfolio of your previous successful projects. Always use professional domain email; this will make you a trusted professional freelancer.
Hire someone on any freelancing platform to design a personal logo for you. They will design an attractive and unique logo for a few dollars.
You ARE a developer
Why will the hiring manager take an interest in an aspiring developer? They will dismiss you at the first cut. Even if you’re new to development, consider yourself a developer. You will get many opportunities to explain your experience level in future.
Never send the message that you’re an “Aspiring Developer” rather than a “Developer”. Clients will directly consider you not qualified for the job.
Enhance your storytelling abilities
Sharing your story can be the most difficult thing to do because you will need to become honest, transparent, and vulnerable. It helps you show your personality to your target audience, and they connect with you on a much deeper level.
Not only mention successes, achievements, and milestones but also include struggles, hurdles, and challenges you faced in reaching this level. The more honestly you present yourself in your story, the more your target audience will trust and build a relationship with you. Below are some of the tips on how you can create a compelling story as a developer
Consider yourself a developer – Let your audience know that you’re a developer and not a person who is refocusing on the career or hoping to start a career in development.
Highlight your passion – Include the reasons why you choose to be a developer? Express the passion you have for your field.
Combine all the things in a nutshell – Find out a way to explain that “you’ve been in this field your whole life, even though you started taking an interest in it recently.
Include a project you’re working on – Explain your current project and state the reason why you’re working on it, why you’re so excited about it.
Attend the local meetups
In his study, Nielson stated that 82% of people buy any product or service based on recommendations from other people they trust. That’s why it is important to create a strong customer base and build a relationship with the right people.
You can join local meetup groups and attend their meetups. Here you will have a chance to introduce yourself as a developer and let people know about you. It will open up doors of many opportunities in the future.
Other than that, industry events and conferences where your potential clients are present are also the best options.
Be active on GitHub
Try to be active on GitHub but along with that, make it professional. It should not give clients the impression that you’re not sincere with your work and not good at time management.
If you’re never going to finish a project, try to delete them. Clear your account from all the half-finished, messy projects. Make sure that hiring managers only see projects that you have completed.
Remember that branding yourself as a developer takes time and effort. In the first place, start building your online presence and spend most of your time and energy there. Later on, you can move on to other tips.
In the end, you should see a positive difference in your job offers and projects. If you still have any queries related to personal branding, feel free to reach us.
Ron started as a tech blogger 15 years ago. Since then, Ron has developed massive writing skills and is reviewing tools for freelancers and more.
Ron has a huge part of our Everythingfreelance.com community.
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