Freelancing

How To Land Your First Freelance Client

How To Land Your First Freelance Client

Over the years a lot of people have asked me "how do I start freelancing?" and honestly it's been a struggle for me to answer that. When I started freelancing in 2015 it was by chance. I created a blog about Harlem and I would constantly create cool graphics for it as well as promote it via social media and a monthly newsletter. Naturally, I added it to my LinkedIn profile and was then contacted by a recruiter who was looking for a few freelancers to do entry-level marketing/research work for a small marketing firm. I ended up landing the gig and before I knew it I was a freelancer! I soon started taking on more responsibilities within the marketing firm and started leveraging the work I did there to gain additional clients.

While it was a bit of "luck" involved in landing my first freelance gig, putting my work out there was really the first step to me gaining a client. So for everybody wondering "How do I start freelancing?", here are son helpful tips on how to land your first freelance client!

Portfolio

No one will know what you’re capable of unless you show them. If you don’t want to create a public online portfolio (though I highly suggest it) at minimum create a PDF or some type of presentation/package you can send to prospective clients.

Side Bar: When I started freelancing I didn't have a portfolio but I did have an informational blog where I included info about myself along with articles which served as an example of what my interests were as well as what I could do. If you're feeling overwhelmed by creating a portfolio or you feel you don't have enough work to put into a portfolio, starting with a blog may be a great option for you.

Create/Update Your LinkedIn

As I said, LinkedIn was where I got my first freelance opportunity. While having an online portfolio is a great way to direct potential clients to see your previous work, LinkedIn search options allow clients to come to you based on your profile and skill sets. It's like job searching while you sleep!

Attend Local Networking Events

Nothing beats good ol’ fashion face to face networking. You never know what opportunities are in the room. Approach it as looking to learn and build relationships rather than looking at it as a surefire way to get clients.

Networking is a process that should be implemented throughout your long term freelancing strategy. I recommend attending at least 2 networking events a month (even more if you can swing it ). Also, it's great to go to events targeting professionals in the field you will be freelancing in but also attend events that target your clients as well. For example, my freelance work is within marketing and content development so I often attend events geared towards entrepreneurs/small businesses looking for more marketing skills.

Remember: You just need one!

Don’t think that you need 5 or more clients out the gate because you probably don't have the systems in place to properly meet that volume of work. Take it slow. Slow and steady wins the race!

If you have any questions or suggestions on how to gain your first client feel free to hit me on social media or comment below!

What Is Influencer Marketing?

When I tell people I work in marketing and my specialty is influencer marketing, it’s usually followed by one question… What is influencer marketing? It’s honestly a fair question since it sounds much more complicated than it really is. Influencer marketing targets key influencers to help brands drive their message to larger audiences. So instead of directly telling potential customers they should buy a product or support their brand, they pay (or create some sort of incentive) for influencers to get the word out for them. Think about it: Would you be more inclined to try a new skin care product if...

a) you see an ad for it plastered across a bus on your way to work or,

b) your favorite beauty blogger created a post showing how their dry skin has improved since using the product?

Most will go with B.

So now that you know what influencer marketing is, how do you know if it’s right for your business or brand? Generally speaking I believe most brands, no matter the industry, can benefit from influencer marketing. I’ve worked on influencers campaigns for beauty brands, gaming apps, restaurants and other businesses. And here’s why:

  1. Cost Effectiveness: While major brands like NBC (who used influencer marketing to draw millennials to the Rio Olympics Gameshave the luxury of sparing no expenses when it comes to creating marketing campaigns, influencer campaigns also works with smaller brands who have much smaller budgets. For example, a clothing brand can incentivize fashion bloggers and influencers to write or post about the brand simply by providing them with product if they haven’t gotten to the point where they can afford to pay influencers.
  2. Innovation: Collaboration often brings forth the best ideas. Working with influencers can cause you to think about marketing your brand or product in ways traditional advertising wouldn't.  Also consumers are tired of traditional advertising. Honestly, how fast can you click the “Skip Ad” button that pops up on a site or a Youtube video? I’m at about .3 seconds.

  3. It’s SocialThe best influencers have great social followings. I use the term  “great” instead of “large” because a large following isn’t the only determinate for being a  great influencer. Engagement and the ability to make stellar content are also factors that contribute to being a great influencer. Although some companies provide influencers with pre-made content, a lot more opt for the influencers to create the content (photo, blog posts, etc.). This allows you to get the attention of their audiences as well as repurpose the content and share with your audience.

So if you’re building a social strategy and you haven’t included influencer marketing, you could be missing an opportunity to scale your brand socially and at a great price. And if you feel like you want  to start implementing influencer marketing in your strategy but have no idea on where to start no need to panic, that’s what I’m here for! I’ve worked with small and national brands to find influencers and implement influencer marketing strategies. So if you’re looking to get started contact me for a FREE consultation where I’ll guide you on where to get started with your influencer marketing efforts.

Get Croissant! The App That's Changing The Coworking Game.

Photo Cred:  GetCroissant.com

Photo Cred: GetCroissant.com

If you know anything about me I’m a HUGE fan of coworking, at least when it’s done right! There are many entrepreneurs and freelancers who worship their home offices but as a NYC freelancer who has roommates my work-from-home experience isn’t really that great. It usually starts off smooth. I whip up a quick breakfast, grab a cup of joe, take out my Mac and get to work! But slowly me sitting on my bed turns to me laying on my bed or maybe it’s one of the times my TV mysteriously turns on (well maybe not so mysteriously) and I’m caught up watching a Live episode of The Breakfast Club… Let’s just say for me being able to work outside of the house allows me to be WAY more productive. So I was excited a couple months back when Nisha, one of the awesome co-founders of Croissant, reached out to me about trying a month of their services in exchange for my honest opinion on the app. But before we get into my thoughts on it, let me tell you what Croissant is.

Croissant is an app that gives you access to various coworking places in your city. Based in New York, Croissant has coworking places in NYC, Boston, Washington DC and has recently expanded to San Francisco.

Getting started!

After receiving my credentials from Nisha I downloaded the app, entered my email and password and bam! That was it. All 30 of their NYC locations were at my fingertips. I loved that there were a couple locations right in my neighborhood of Harlem that I could walk to as well as numerous ones downtown which would be great for a whole day of coworking or for popping in between running to meetings.

I kicked off my membership by going to a familiar place: TEEM.

Photo Credit:  TeemCW.com

Photo Credit: TeemCW.com

Photo Credit:  TeemCW.com

Photo Credit: TeemCW.com

I’ve been to Teem before, it’s right in my neighborhood and it’s always a good spot to get some work done. It’s a simple space featuring coworking desk and privates offices. I got assigned a desk where there was an outlet available. No need to fight over outlets like at the cafe, Yay! They also had coffee, water and snacks available and I was welcome to store my lunch in the communal fridge. TEEM is a solid coworking space for when you just need to get stuff done! My boyfriend would love TEEM. You see he doesn’t believe in luxury coworking. He’s more of the “I come here to work not play” type of entrepreneur and hey, I get it. But me on the other hand, I am ALL about the amenities. I love when coworking spots offer more than the standard desk and coffee. Like Primary for example.

Photo Cred: Alex Welsh

Photo Cred: Alex Welsh

Primary thus far is one of my favorite coworking places available through the app. Centered around wellness, primary offers mid day yoga and meditation classes that of course I had to try. Now I’m far from a Yogi but I’ve done some yoga before so I figured I’ll opt to try a yoga class.

Photo Cred: Alex Welsh

Photo Cred: Alex Welsh

Photo Cred: Alex Welsh

Photo Cred: Alex Welsh

After the session it was clear that I could definitely brush up on my yoga skills but I enjoyed myself. The instructor was encouraging and patient, and I left feeling refreshed and ready to get back into the real reason I was there… to cowork! The co-working room was nice as well. The whole space had a very zen vibe to it which helped me push through the mountain of work I had that day.

My overall thoughts…

Honestly, I'm hooked on Croissant. So much that after using the app for a month, I was able to come aboard the Croissant team as their Brand Ambassador. (Yay me!) What I like about Croissant the most is the flexibility it gives me as a freelancer. Some days I just need a desk, some coffee or tea and some peace and quiet to get my work done which they have ton of spaces for. But other days I want to feel the energy of other creatives around me, interact with them, take a yoga class or maybe enjoy some complimentary wine from the “booze cart” that Grind Park offers weekly. Croissant allows me to cowork around the city based on my mood and that is something that traditional coworking memberships fall short off. I would recommend Croissant for any freelancer, entrepreneur and/or creative but especially those who are constantly “on the go” and like to try experiences. You can find out more about what Croissant has to offer on their website GetCroissant.com.

5 Must Have Social Media Tools

5 Must have tools.jpg

Social media marketing is essential for expanding a brand/business's reach and connecting with it's audience. In an ideal world, a business would have it's own social media marketing team but in reality most entrepreneurs (and freelancers) have to create and execute their own social media strategies especially when first starting out. But no need to fear! From time management to analytics, I've rounded up my Top 5 apps for ROCKING any social media plan.

1. Time Management: Hootsuite

Hootsuite is one of the leading social media management tools and has been around for a while. This tool can manage your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and Google+ accounts. The free version allows you to manage 3 social media profiles and includes post scheduling and basic analytics

It’s pro plan that starts at $9.99 a month allows you to manage up to 50 social media profiles and allows up to 9 team members to contribute. It’s a great plan for the solopreneur as well as small businesses with up to 500 employees. This is one of my favorite tools because it save me so much time when I need to share content across multiple platforms.

2. Analytics: Iconosquare

Analytics for Instagram?! Say what! Iconosquare allows you to analyze, manage and engage with your audience on Instagram better. This tool is one of the most in-dept analytics and management tools to be created specifically for Instagram. Iconosquare allows it’s users to

  • See daily gained and lost followers

  • See top followers

  • Identify where your influencers are located

  • Discover your best time to post according to the number of likes, comments or engagement rate you get

  • Discover the most influential posts on hashtag.

  • Track up to 5 of your competitors.

  • Compare your performance with theirs – engagement rate, followers, likes, comments…

  • Export data to build your own report.

3. Influence: SocialRank

SocialRank is my boo. No seriously, out of all the apps in this list SocialRank has a special little place in my heart. I’ve used this tool for many things. It’s a great starting point for finding potential influencers when creating an influencer campaign for a brand or business. SocialRank allows you to see which of your followers have the largest following and are the most engaged with your account. I’ve always found greater success when working with influencers who are fans and supporters of a brand before hand. This tool is also great to find out “who” my followers are by using the keyword bio filter to search for keywords in my followers bio. For example, I was looking for more women to feature in amy recent blog post 10 Women Share The Hardest Thing They Had To Overcome Within Their Careers and What They Learned From ItI used that filter to search words like entrepreneur, freelance, and creative to find which of my followers would potentially be a great fit for the article.

4. Research: Buzzsumo

Buzzsumo is a great tool for content creators. A great content strategy starts with research and strategic planning. Buzzsumo helps you find content that resonates with your audience by allowing you to search the most shared content from 24 hours ago to 12 months ago, review how many times your topic area is shared on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter to give you a better feel of. It also shows you which form of content is shared most often (infographics, videos, long form, etc.) and what domains are shared most often. Note: I wouldn't be a bad idea to check those site to see what type of content they're publishing.

5. Creativity: Font Candy

Now I’m a photoshop type of girl but sometimes it’s just better to keep it simple. Font Candy is a photo editor with allows you to add typography captions via text overlay and other creative graphic designs. I use this app most often to create quote pictures to share on social media or within blog posts.  It’s super simple and easy to use but creates a wide array of different looking graphics.

Do you use any of these social media tools or are you interested in giving any of them a try? What social media tools do you use to ROCK your social marketing? Let me know! Feel free to leave a comment below or tweet me @RosiSellers. I’m always looking for more new things to add to my social media toolbox! 

Jumpstart Your Freelance Career With 1 Social Network, 3 Websites and $5

So you want to be a freelancer? You’ve come to the right place. I started considering myself a freelancer about a year ago but realistically I’ve been freelancing for about 3-4 years now. Freelancing is defined as working for different companies at different times rather than being permanently employed by one company but at it's core, freelancing is using your skill set(s) to generate income. If you just internally said to yourself “hey I already do that” you my friend, are a freelancer! And it’s time to own it and promote yourself as one.This post will get you on your way.

Now, if you just said to yourself “that seems like something I can or want to do” then you're in the right place as well. So let’s skip all the small talk and dive right into how you can jumpstart your freelance career!

Social Network:

LinkedIn

Let’s start with the site that has changed it all for me, LinkedIn! In 2015 I was a trainee in StreetWise Partners career development program. If you’re not familiar with StreetWise Partners, it’s a non-profit with a 3-month career mentoring program that delivers high-impact professional development services with 2:1 career mentoring in corporate settings. One of the first requirements of this program was for the trainees to create a LinkedIn. Now at this time, I’ve had LinkedIn for about a year but my profile…Oh boy! It’s was so neglected. Like, seriously neglected. No profile picture, no updated information, no endorsements… Nothing! One of my mentors encouraged me to use LinkedIn as a tool to connect with the companies I wanted to work for. So I went to work. I added a profile picture, updated my work experience, added skills and connected with people I knew as well as people I wanted to know. I started following companies I had interest in and sharing content that was relevant to me and my following. Now I’m not here to say it was an overnight success. It took me about 3 months to get over 500 connections and almost a year to get my first client from LinkedIn. But I must add that despite what my mentor proposed, I never actually used LinkedIn to find work or really connect with people from certain companies. I’m simply used it to share content, industry and self created, and just by doing that I was able to score 2 major clients as well as work with creatives on projects that I wouldn’t had the opportunity to be apart of if it wasn’t for LinkedIn. I say all this to say, don’t underestimate the power of LinkedIn. Sure it’s not as appealing to the eye as Instagram or as humorous as Twitter, but it’s instrumental in taking your freelance career to the next step.

Website 1:

Freelancer.com

The name speaks for itself. Freelancer.com is one of the top sites to find freelance work. As the world’s largest crowdsourcing marketplace, the site has nearly 20 million users and have posted just under 10 million jobs to date. There’s an ambiance of opportunity on the site which in turn draws more talent and naturally, more competition. You may have to lower your rate for your first gig or two until you build your reputation for providing reliable and quality work. 

With that being said, I still would recommend using this site especially if you’re just starting out because it can be really hard (and time consuming) to create leads for your business in the beginning. With websites like Freelancer, Elance and even Thumbtack, it cuts the time you would’ve spend looking for clients because there already on the site looking for you!This allows you to focus on getting the job done and expanding your client base. 

Website 2:

ByRegina.com

ByRegina is my go to website for everything freelance and infoprenuer based. Regina Anaejiona is the creator of the site and she’s built hundreds of websites has extensive knowledge on building brands.

If you’re a freelancer it’s safe to say that you have a skill or two. This site helps you tap into how to make money from that skill in more “non traditional ways”. Let’s say you’re a freelance writer who gets paid to write for websites and publications. You can grow your business by continuing to apply for writing jobs and pitch publications but you can also use your experience to create courses, workshops and possibly even a ebook to share your experience and help others. ByRegina.com teaches you how to do all of this. From finding your brand identity to creating full out courses, no subject is too big or small for ByRegina.com And she’s like the Queen of FREE info that’s actually helpful. 

Right now I’m enrolled in Free Blog School, a course she created that helps you build Wordpress and/or Squarespace blogs from scratch. It’s truly amazing! 

Website 3 & $5:

Fiverr.com

I read an article on Entrepreneur.com a few years back called “The 80/20 Rule of Time Management: Stop Wasting Your Time”. In the opening paragraph the author wrote:

“Small-business owners waste their time on what I call $10 an hour work, like running to get office supplies. Meanwhile, they forgo the activities that earn $1,000 an hour, such as sending the right email to the right person, or negotiating a lucrative contract, or convincing a client to do more business with you.”

That quote has since stuck with me since. As entrepreneurs and freelancers, it’s important that we spend less time preparing for the fishing trip and more time actually trying to catch the fish. That’s why I love fiverr.com. Out of all the sites on this list, Fiverr has to be my favorite because it’s what I like to call “dual resourceful”. If you haven’t heard of Fiverr it’s an online market place where you can get almost anything done for the incredibly low rate of $5. You can get a blog post written, a logo created or even can find you a virtual assistant for the starting rate of $5. Now of course the more intricate the project, the more you may have to pay but it’s usually always a steal. Now not only can you purchase services to help further you entrepreneurial endeavors, you can also sign up to provide services. Fiverr is a great site to make some extra cash for your business and help you gain more clients. 

So are you ready to quit your day job and bet your life on succeeding as being a full time freelancer after reading this? Probably not but I hope this was helpful to you and your business and just know there's so much more to come! If you have any questions or topics you would like to see covered on the blog let me know in the comments section. Until next time! 

It's Time to Take It Up A Notch... You Ready?

It seems like forever ago that I created this site (actually it was about 6 months ago) with the hopes of furthering my freelance business and helping others do the same. So, was it a success?? Well... Partially.

My freelance business has definitely picked up. I've worked with brands from different states, acquired a restaurant in Manhattan as a client and even got a chance to work at a VC backed Tech company heading up their influencer marketing campaigns. So yes, business has certainly picked up but I'm greatly disappointed with myself because while one of the main reasons I created this site was to further my business, it was also to help others do the same and in that regard, I've failed. But I've never been the type to accept failure so June marks the month that I will revive RosiSellers.com. And man, it’s going to be better than ever! I have some new content that will help you take your brand to the next level! I’m also working with some cool entrepreneurs and creatives to bring you awesome content. Basically I’m writing this post to let you know that I’m back baby! And I want to thank everyone who continues to take this journey with in real life as well as virtually.

Though I’ve been a bit MIA from the blog, I have been up to some pretty cool things online. One being The Cool. The Cool. is an online magazine I started with creatives in mind. Centered around Lifestyle, Music and Culture, The Cool aims to be the first magazine for creatives by creatives. If you're a writer or photographer and you're interested in contributing to The Cool. please email me at TheCoolMagazine@gmail.com. Or if you're just interested in seeing the dope content we've produced, check it out:

#CreativeTalk

I also recently started a Twitter chat “#CreativeTalk” with the mission to help creatives grow their businesses as well as their networks. Here are a few highlights from my first chat with TheCollegeOfHipHop.Org, an online learning hub focused on educating aspiring artists, A&R’s and CEOs on the music business as well as entrepreneurship.

If you're interested in being a guest on #CreativeTalk or have a topic you would liked to see covered contact me HERE. Be sure to keep and eye out for new content this week. See ya soon! 

 

Welcome to RosiSellers.com!

Hey guys, welcome to my site. I am pleased you took the time out your busy schedules to check out my newest labor of love.

I know you have questions and I aim to answer so let’s jump right in!

Who I Am?

Well… My name is Rosi Sellers (which I’m sure you have gathered by now) and I am a Free Spirited Freelancer. I freelance in writing, media and social marketing. Check out my ABOUT ME page to learn more who I am and what I do!

In the summer of 2015 I decided that I didn’t want to spend majority work for anyone else any longer. With only a part time freelance social media gig (which to be honest, wasn’t much) I decided to quit my full time job and focus all my energy into working for myself. 

A few months later and here I am, with my own fancy blog and everything so I must be doing good, right?.But no seriously,  working for myself full time has been hard. And still is hard. I’ve learned so much about myself. For example, I never realized just how bad I sucked at time management or how good I already was at networking. Taking this leap of faith has striped me down and built me up to be a better person, and I am truly blessed for that. 

So why RosiSellers.com?

I created this site for a bunch of reasons but mainly for these 2:

  1. To showcase my work and give those who want to work with me a direct way to reach me and

  2. To help others freelancers, entrepreneurs and creatives excel

You see, no one in my immediate circle of family and friends works for themselves full-time. So I’ve had to find a lot about becoming a full time freelancer by using an effective trio of Google, social media and common sense. 

I’ve found some great tools and resources; gems that have saved me time, money and my overall sanity (at moments). The blog portion of this site will be dedicated to fostering a community of freelancers, entrepreneurs and creatives who can engage and learn from one another. 

If you are freelancer, entrepreneur, creative, writer, business coach, etc. and would like to contribute to the blog please click here.

So if your interested in freelancing, entrepreneurship, writing, social media, productivity and the all that boring stuff then stay tuned, because you're in for a treat. 

But in the meantime make sure to sign up for my weekly newsletter “Free Spirited List” where I will bring you the best in all topics listed above and a special “Treat” every week! You don’t want to miss this!