why I started my own business to overcome that instead
Freelancing has become an increasingly popular career choice for many people around the world. With the rise of technology and the gig economy, more and more people are turning to freelance work as a way to earn a living. Freelancing platforms like Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer have made it easier than ever for freelancers to connect with clients and find work. However, there is one big problem with these platforms: the inability to market your own brand outside of them.
The whole point of freelancing is to build a personal brand and reputation, and these platforms make it easy for clients to find you. When you are able to build a large personal brand, people come for your services because a level of trust is there.
But, what happens when you want to take your freelancing business to the next level? What happens when you want to market yourself and your brand outside of these platforms? That’s where the problem arises.
With more online scams appearing on freelancing platforms, they have taken a step further in protecting the client by assuring a level of protection to the client is met. Those platforms not well scrutiny will face backlash by the community, which actually is happening to Upwork.
With the raise of these issues, freelance platform are now stricter than ever when it comes to personal branding. In recent years, this has lead to a number of rising issue pertaining buyer to seller.
1. Non-compete clauses
Many freelancing platforms have non-compete clauses in their terms of service. This means that freelancers are not allowed to work with clients they have met on the platform for a certain period of time after they have stopped using the platform. This can make it difficult for freelancers to build long-term relationships with clients outside of the platform.
2. Lack of control over client communication
Freelancers often communicate with their clients through the freelancing platform’s messaging system. This means that the platform has access to all the communication between the freelancer and the client. If a freelancer wants to communicate with a client outside of the platform, they risk violating the platform’s terms of service and potentially losing their account.
3. Difficulty building a personal brand
Freelancing platforms are designed to showcase the freelancer’s skills and experience, but they don’t allow for much customization beyond that. This means that it’s difficult for freelancers to build a personal brand and stand out from the competition. Without the ability to create a website or social media presence outside of the platform, freelancers are limited in their ability to market themselves.
The inability to market your own brand outside of freelancing platforms can have a few negative effects on freelancers:
1. Limited client base
When you’re relying solely on freelancing platforms to find clients, you’re limiting yourself to a specific group of people. You’re competing with thousands of other freelancers on the platform, and it can be difficult to stand out from the crowd. By marketing your own brand outside of the platform, you can expand your client base and reach a wider audience.
2. Dependence on the platform
When you’re only using freelancing platforms to find work, you’re completely dependent on the platform for your income. If the platform changes its policies or shuts down, you’re left with no clients and no income. By building a personal brand and marketing yourself outside of the platform, you can create a more stable and reliable source of income.
Overcoming the Problem
Although the inability to market your own brand outside of freelancing platforms can be a major problem for freelancers, there are ways to overcome it. Here are a few strategies that freelancers can use:
1. Build a personal website
One of the best ways to market your own brand outside of freelancing platforms is to build a personal website. Your website should showcase your skills and experience, as well as provide potential clients with a way to contact you. You can also use your website to share your portfolio, testimonials from clients, and blog posts related to your niche. By having a website, you can establish yourself as a professional in your field and attract clients outside of the platform.
2. Use social media
Social media is a powerful tool for marketing your brand and connecting with potential clients. By creating profiles on platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram, you can showcase your work and build a following. You can also use social media to network with other professionals in your field and stay up-to-date on industry news and trends. Social media can be a great way to attract new clients and build your personal brand.
3. Leverage your existing network
If you’ve been freelancing for a while, chances are you already have a network of clients and colleagues. These people can be valuable resources for marketing your brand outside of the platform. Reach out to former clients and colleagues and let them know that you’re available for freelance work. Ask them to refer you to anyone who might be looking for your services. By leveraging your existing network, you can quickly build your client base and establish yourself as a trusted professional.
Helping Other Freelance Writers
I have been a freelancer for over 3 years now and understand the problems of not being able to market yourself outside of these platforms. If you are looking to expand your freelance business, you need to learn to find a way to market yourself.
To help everyone in the freelance community, having a publication is one of the best ways to get your name out. If you would like to write or share your personal story on personal finance & side hustle. Be sure to check out HustleVentureSG, a community of writers that aims to support side hustling and growing your finance to live a better life.