- Finishing a triathlon in the first 3 positions
- Writing a bestseller
- Making a full-time income as a part-time freelancer
These are all examples of achievements that were thought to be impossible by many people.
But after personally starting to earn $3500+ working less than 20 hours per week, I know firsthand that making great money as a freelancer is not just a mere dream.
Let’s talk about some of the strategies I’ve used, and how they can help you get premium fees when working with clients.
1. Stop writing "standardized" proposals
A real proposal should be the last thing you send to a client before they hire you, not the first. Yet freelancers see these blank boxes and immediately go into salesy-mode, trying to close the deal before they even exchange a message with the client.
What to do : Start a conversation with the client. This is a realistic goal that shows you are interested in helping, not making some moolah.
2. Dare to charge more
Most freelancers undercharge because they believe they have to compete on price in order to succeed. This leads to burnout, one star jobs and poor quality as they try to compensate for ridiculously low rates. The result ? There’s a huge market of high-end clients who are happy to top-dollar for high-quality work.
What to do : Take time everyday to learn about your industry and become better at your craft. Then don’t be afraid to charge accordingly.
3. First, focus on small jobs
Making good money as a freelancer involves focusing on one step at a time : You want to win big jobs, but clients are most of the time hesitant when it comes to giving large sums of money. But by playing my cards right, I often suggest to clients that we begin with a small demo job that takes only one or two days to complete. This approach makes it easy for them to hire me and they can evaluate my work before going to the next stage.
What to do : When you meet a client who wants a long-term partnership with a freelancer, say something like this :
“How about if we work together on a small milestone? I’ll charge you only for my time, and we can see if this will work well for your business"
4. Become a client
Trying to supercharge your freelance business without being in the client's shoes at least once is like attempting to be a chess player without ever learning how to play chess. By becoming a client yourself, you can spot the mistakes most freelancers make when writing their proposals ( e.g. "I have X years of experience", "I don't charge you when I go to the bathroom"...ZzzZzz ) and beyond, so you can avoid them and stop detaching from the pack.
What to do : Post a small job on any freelance platform and go through the entire hiring process. If you don't want to spend too much money, you can hire someone to consult for just 30 minutes.
The better way to freelance
Average freelancers simply sign up on a platform, apply to dozens of jobs, and leave the world decide if they get paid or not. This mentality causes them to work too hard for subpar sums of money.
But there’s a better way.
Using unique approaches like the ones I’ve just told you about, you can earn more in less time and also devote your energy toward improving your skills.