Monday, October 26, 2009

Freelancing Career - New Ray of Hope by James Alina

It is an exciting career for many as it offers multiple benefits. Now any professional can render his specialized services to a freelance project from anywhere and anytime.

Here are some benefits of working as a freelancer:

1. Freelance freedom- One of the biggest benefits of freelancing is to work independently. A freelancer can self set his working schedule as per his own convenience. It also keep a professional away from general distractions, office politics, numerous meetings over unattainable goals etc.

2. Liberty of choice and timings- Freelancing allows a professional to devote as much time he wants to put in to particular task assigned. Freelancing means flexibility as it enables a professional to work anytime, anywhere as per his choice and schedule. A freelancer can keep full control over the choice of projects, timelines, milestones and price he wants to quote on the project.

3. Cost effectiveness- Freelancers usually work from home, hence the daily expenses are automatically curtailed. He can save money on commuting expenses, traveling time, petrol bills etc. Also a freelancer can also cut on different expenses like new clothes, dresses and other expenses he might face at the time of working as a full time employee.

4. Opportunities to make more money- Freelancing brings a chance to widen your horizon by showcasing your specialized skills across the globe. It also gives you an unlimited scope to execute projects and earn money for successfully accomplishing a freelance project. Social networking channels can also help you in earning great profits and also a chance to connect with professionals & companies all around the globe.

Most of the online services marketplaces, such as Elance, LimeExchange, ODesk, Guru, etc., also offer free profile posting where a freelancer can get access to varied projects matching his domain of expertise.

5. Less Pressure and work stress - The level of frustration and resultant stress is relatively very low in freelancing as compared to that in a full-time job. As freelancing keeps a professional away from the work pressure and annoying bosses which results in improved efficiency. This will help a freelancer in executing the projects and building a triumphant online presence.

Less pressure and stress brings a lot of opportunities for freelancer to put in their best every time in a project.

6. No job risks- The current global slowdown has resulted in massive job layoffs across the globe but for freelancers this has turned out to be a bright opportunity to acquire more projects. Also, professionals who have lost their jobs have started freelancing as this helps them survive and bring a substantial source of earning to them.

In order to thrive successfully in freelance business, a freelancer needs to stay updated with latest technologies, trends, demands and the market. He needs keep his learning process on as there would be less exposure to office environment. In that case, a freelancer can make use of tools/resources available online to avoid these difficulties and realize the benefits of this opportunity instantly and effectively.

Hope these benefits will help you explore new avenue to make money online. I welcome your feedback and suggestions on the same.

Alina, a competent result oriented freelance professional and consultant with more than 4 years of extensive experience in Content writing and website development. Writes articles on varied topics such as freelancing, trends, market, jobs, resources, etc.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Home Based Business Tips For Freelancing by Chris Simpson

Many people who decide to get involved in a home based business decide to do so by freelancing. Although many people think of freelancing in relation to writing, there are other freelancing options. Yes, freelance writing is one, but there is freelance photography, freelance computer programming, and so much more.

Essentially freelancing means you don't work for one specific company, but you work for various companies on an as needed basis. If you are considering getting involved in some type of freelancing from home as a business, there are a variety of important tips that can help you get started and become successful.

Tip #1 - Have a Website of Your Own - First of all, if you are going to get involved in any type of freelancing home based business, it will definitely be important to have a website of your own. A website is usually not that expensive, and when you are trying to bring in work, having a website where you can send prospective clients to is important. This definitely lends you credibility and show you are a professional. Invest in a good website and design it professionally if you are going to be successful.

Tip #2 - Use Cold Calling - As a freelancer, you are going to need to learn how to cold call for business. This is one of the best ways to drum up the business that you need. The problem is that it can take quite a bit of your time and it's difficult; however, it is worth it. You can get great leads this way. Just make sure you take the time to learn how to appropriate handle cold calls professionally.

Tip #3 - Check Out Job Databases - Often you are going to find yourself looking for work if you are a freelancer. Even if you already have a lot of work, you should never stop looking. The great thing is that there are plenty of great freelancing sites where jobs for freelancers are posted. Some are free, while others you may have to pay a small fee for. Some of the fee based databases are excellent.

Tip #4 - Have Samples of Your Work - No matter what type of freelancing you are involved in, you always need to have some samples of your work. You can use these samples to bring in more clients and to show people the quality of the work that they do. You may even want to give out a sample in some cases of freelancing to bring in more customers and to get future work from them.

Tip #5 - Buy Accounting Software - Last of all, if you are going to run a home freelancing business, buy accounting software. All that invoicing can be difficult to keep up with. You may think that you can keep track of it all, but accounting software can do wonders for you. Something like MYOB or QuickBooks will be a huge help when it comes time to do your taxes.

HomeNetPro is dedicated to helping people find honest and legitimate work at home opportunities and home business ideas. Find a legitimate home based business and learn to work from home today by visiting:

Website Site Design Tutorials Available Online

A new illustrated tutorial shows the most common design mistakes in blogs, web sites, mini sites, and online marketing documents. Available at the step-by-step document can be downloaded as a PDF immediately.

"This PDF points out the most common mistakes we’ve seen in web sites designed by our clients over the years. Most small business owners get so caught up in running their business that they don’t have time to see the big picture of web site design" states Marlon Sanders, CDO of Higher Response Marketing, Inc.

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Monday, October 12, 2009

Freelancing - Are You Ready? by April McCallum

Are you ready to be your own boss? This article will help you consider some of the practical and essential parts of freelancing, while also offering key tips and posing targeted questions that will enable you to plan ahead for success.

Following are some of the people you might expect to meet in a company. As a freelancer you are in essence, these people rolled into one. We will take a high-level look at some of the roles that are vital to operating a successful company and sample Questions, Remedies and Things to Consider as you contemplate a transition into the world of freelancing.

Receptionist - We are all familiar with the "front face"-- the first person who greets us as we call or enter a place of business. As a freelancer, you won't have the luxury of your own personal greeter and gatekeeper. However, it is important to realize the impact on the overall customer experience.

Remedy: You can handle the frontline work yourself or, consider outsourcing to a virtual receptionist or phone service center that can handle your incoming calls, messages or even schedule meetings for you. The most important objective is to ensure that the experience is as welcoming and informational as you would expect from a good host. The quality of reception will set the tone of your business when people "enter the front door".

Sales - No one will be more passionate about your work than you. So, who better to sell products, services, concepts or consult than you? Whether you are building a business around technology, art, travel, communications or education, you will need to successfully and repeatedly persuade others of the benefits of working with you.

Questions to Ask Yourself: Why should they engage me? What is my unique offering? What features and benefits do I offer? What makes me a better choice than my competitors? Is my pricing where it needs to be? After my first sale, what is my strategy for repeat business?

Marketing & Advertising - You are your Marketing and Advertising department now. No matter how awesome your products or services are, people cannot engage you to do business if they do not know that you exist. It is essential that you do your research and develop a marketing plan that will position you for positive exposure and ultimate success. Also remember, if your message is not compelling, you will not win in a competitive market.

Questions to Ask Yourself: How will I present my products or services in such a way as to convince people to buy from me? What will be my unique marketing mix (price, place, product, promotion and people elements)? Take your time and do your homework, it will pay off in the long run.

Business Development - For creative and entrepreneurial types, business development and lead generation can actually be a lot of fun. For those who don't fall into those categories, it can be a big drag. No matter, it is an essential part of building and growing your business as a solo-professional. You can no longer rely on the guy down the hall to bring you a stack of new business leads or hot new strategies to increase business.

For Your Consideration: You will need to identify new business opportunities including markets, partners, ideas, strategies and products. Equally vital, is finding ways to extend strategic relationships and expand opportunities within existing accounts in order to increase current revenue streams.

PR - No matter what business you are in, you will be relating to the public to one degree or another. In a company, there are people whose job it is to handle the flow of information, protect the best interest of the company in a public forum and promote the best image possible. You can have the best product out there, but if you fall down on your public interface, it will damage your ultimate goal of success.

For Your Consideration: Remember that you are the most significant asset to your freelance career. Think of yourself as a walking, talking advertisement. When you leave the comfort of your privacy, you enter into shared public space. Your business "brand" should carry over as a reflection of you to every situation and person you touch. Your communication, body language, attitude and character all serve to project an image.

Accountant - Not everyone is a bean counter, so true. But, if you are running your own business and expect to be profitable, you will either learn to, a) count beans, or, b) die. It's so much easier to just be handed a budget by someone whose job it is to "figure all that out", so we can just be about what we do best. When you are working for yourself, that guy isn't a simple phone call away. You are that guy.

For Your Consideration: There's no need to get all fancy straight out of the chute. Keep your bookkeeping as straightforward as possible. Take a course, read some guidebooks and do your research up front. Barter with someone to help you set up, or mentor you in, establishing a comprehensive system. Know how to budget and keep your priorities on track, because no one will be there to police you. Understand tax implications, keep meticulous files and save receipts with notations.

CEO - Every organization has its top dogs. The CEO is one of the highest- ranking executives or corporate officers. He is ultimately responsible for the total management and execution of the mission. They are at the top rung when it comes to leading, strategic planning, staffing and organizing.

For Your Consideration: The most exciting, yet most challenging part is that you are now "THE guy" -- the buck stops with you. You are responsible for the ultimate success or failure of your freelance career.

Supervisors & Managers - No more Managers breathing down your neck, challenging you, handing you assignments, mentoring you, keeping you accountable, setting goals and expectations or giving you unsolicited feedback. Sounds like freedom, doesn't it? But for some freelancers, it's too much freedom. You will need to be brutally realistic about defining goals, meeting deadlines, learning how to challenge yourself, soliciting useful feedback, delivering quality, managing your time and energy, self-motivation and keeping yourself on a successful track.

For Your Consideration: The more you learn about management (of process, dealing with people, goals, understanding your market, expectations, time, money, etc.), self-discipline and consistently apply what you have learned, the more likely it is that you will succeed.

Think Tank - Remember the good old days when you had the opportunity to brainstorm and collaborate intellectually and creatively in a group context? As a freelancer you will just need to find new ways to garner results.

For Your Consideration: Think of mental, physical or spiritual exercises that stimulate your thought processes. Consider meeting with other freelancers periodically just to kick around ideas and learn from each other in a group setting. Keep your input channels wide open by reading, listening, inquiring, dreaming and any other creative activities that engage your innovative side. Inspiration is buzzing all around us -- we just need to find ways to tap into it.

IT Department - What happens when your network goes down, your computer or other equipment starts doing "funny" things or you need to figure out how to set up that newfangled "Whatchamacallit"? You get the distinct privilege of walking into your bathroom, looking in the mirror and saying "hello" to your new assistant. Congratulations - it's you! Those propeller hats and pocket protectors are suddenly looking rather stylish.

For Your Consideration: Try to keep your initial setup as simple as possible. Determine what tools are absolute necessities, and start there. The need will vary based on the type of work you do. For example, landline and/or cell phones, fax, scanner, copy and print machines, software, hardware, peripherals, data storage, GPS and wireless, etc. Consider the importance of flexibility, networking, speed, connectivity and shared information options for your line of work. There is a myriad of online tips, courses, and how-to guidebooks. Ask around to learn if someone in your current network knows an IT professional (emphasis on "professional") that you can consult with. This is an area you may also be able to barter your services for.

Graphics Department - Remember those great people from the corporate office that "magically" made everything look so professional? Things like logos, business cards, marketing brochures, letterhead, PowerPoint presentations, customized materials and reports? Well, they are no longer here.

For Your Consideration: The good news is that there are many businesses that cater to small businesses and freelancers who need to outsource print and graphic jobs - just check in your local phone book. There are volumes of online resources and do-it-yourself options available as well. Just be aware that you need to put your best foot forward, and presentation is key when introducing or promoting a successful image. You may want to outsource or barter with another freelancer who is an expert in this field.

Shipping Department - Whether your freelance business involves products or services, you will have a need for shipping and receiving -- a delivery process. Part of the success of any business, is the ability to deliver what your clients need, when they need it.

Remedy: Set up a system that ensures you deliver what you promise in a timely fashion. Familiarize yourself with the most reliable and sensible ways to ship and receive. If you are selling a product that requires physical inventory, be sure to understand the process, requirements, pros and cons. Get to know your local mail and service centers -- they can be extremely helpful in educating you about the most time and cost-effective options. Don't forget to factor in shipping costs when planning your budget.

Board of Directors - Don't forget that most companies have a Board of Directors. And you? You have a family, a dog and a cat. You may get some feedback, but they won't hold you accountable like a corporate stakeholder or investor, ask the tough questions and advise you like a Board of Directors would.

For Your Consideration: Just because you are self-employed doesn't mean that you can't or shouldn't have an accountability structure in place. You may not need a full-blown advisory and accountability group, but the premise still applies. It is good practice to have intelligent and creative people in your circle whom you can solicit wise and timely counsel from.

Fan Club - Okay, most businesses don't actually have a Fan Club. But, they do have customers, partners, donors, clients - people whom they relate to through services or products and bring value to through their working relationship. Without people, you would not be in business. Are you ready to take on the challenging, dynamic and rewarding opportunity to be your own boss, start building your own satisfied "Fan Club" and find success as a solo-professional? If so, it's time to put on your party hat, buckle your seatbelt and roll up your sleeves. Here's to your Freelancing Success!

iPhone App Freelancer launches - Turn Great Ideas into iPhone Apps

iPhone App Freelancer is a new service that connects freelancer iPhone application developers with entrepreneurs and businesses that require custom programming, applications, graphics and development projects for the iPhone. Much like an auction, employers’ projects are posted and interested freelancers bid to complete the work..

iPhone App Freelancer:

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Freelancing - How to Grow Your Business by Tony Jacowski

Freelancers tend to earn more per hour than permanent employees.

Freelancing is common in fields like journalism, copywriting, computer programming, web design and many other professional and creative services.

Target an Industry

Build up a name for yourself: It is wise to be industry-specific. Though you may have the ability to give your services to multiple people, you should concentrate on a particular area.

For example, if you are doing web design for insurance companies, you may specialize for in Life Insurance portals. Your strong reputation and specialization in this area will help you get more clients.

Network outside Your Industry Group

You should not only involve yourself with your own group of freelancers, but also make an effort to be known by other groups also. If you interact with others and have good relations with them, there is always a possibility of gaining more business.

To expand your network, you should attend conferences, meetings and professional functions in your target market.

Ask For Testimonials

There is no harm in asking for a testimonial for a job well done. Even if you do not need them immediately, or have no place to display them, you should keep them anyway.

You never know when they may be useful to help build up your reputation.

Ask For Referrals

A good practice is to ask your clients for referrals. You could ask them if any of their friends and associates would need similar services. Usually, clients are open to such requests if you were doing a good job on their projects.

Build Relationships with Clients

It is a good idea to keep in touch with past clients via email. You could share some information other than on a professional level. This will allow you to build up a good rapport with them.

If they start looking at you as a friend, they may refer you to others as well and think about you for any future projects.

Have a Marketing Plan

Like any business or product, it is necessary for you to prepare a marketing plan. Decide what mediums you will use to market your services, how much money you will spend, your target audience and how you will measure the return on this investment.

It's A Business - Not a Hobby!

Many freelancers forget that what they are doing is a business and not just a hobby. You should look at all projects that you take on as a series of projects, a continual business.

To be successful, you have to manage your freelance work just as if you were working for an employer.

Tony Jacowski is a quality analyst for The MBA Journal. Aveta Solutions - Six Sigma Online ( ) offers online six sigma training and certification classes for six sigma professionals including, lean six sigma, black belts, green belts, and yellow belts.

Freelancing For Newbies - How to Write an Effective Portfolio by Georgi Jivankin

Many of you are failing in the freelancing business not because of inadequate skills, but because of a bad image. In order to be successful, you should present yourself as a leading expert in your field. For example, if you are a programmer and you want to work on programming projects as a freelancer, you have to demonstrate your skills so they can attract potential buyers.

When I started, I didn't have a portfolio. I relied only on words and that's the main reason for my first failures. It was a real pain for me to know that I am not selected to take any projects, having in mind that I have placed over 20 bids on 20 different projects. I was disappointed and disgusted, but I decided to experiment and I took a different approach. I canceled the remaining bids, opened my favorite text editor and started to write my portfolio. It contained all of my recent works as well as an extensive list of all technologies, languages and programs which I am using on a daily basis. Then, I saved the file and uploaded it on my personal blog. Then I went to the freelancing site and placed a few more bids with the link to my portfolio inside.

Amazingly, after a few hours I won my first project. After a day, I have already completed the work and requested my money from the site and after a week, I was having my first $30USD into my PayPal account. So my advice is to write a compelling and eye-catching portfolio and I guarantee you will receive many more projects by doing so. Not only you'll look more professional and trustworthy, but the buyers will no what exactly you can do for them and what you have done before, so they will have a realistic expectations when they choose you to work for them. Yes, many times you will not be selected because, for example, a provider with better feedback has placed his / her bid on the same project or because the buyer wish to work with a provider from a chosen country or territory, but your chance of success is doubled if you have a good and professional portfolio at your disposal.

Georgi Jivankin is an undergraduate student, but in his spare time he works as a freelancer and internet marketer.