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Discussion in 'Graphic Design Forum' started by catherinegiaquinto, Mar 18, 2010.

  1. catherinegiaquinto

    catherinegiaquinto New Member

    Hi Everyone,

    I am new to freelance uk and this is my first post :)

    I'm currently on maternity leave and hoping to go freelance full time rather than going back to work. I am in the process of sorting out childcare for August but I just wanted a bit of advice really....

    What are the best ways of promoting yourselves? Shall I just bombard agencies with my CV and samples of work?

    Has anyone signed up to Freelance Alliance? If so has it been beneficial and do you get regular work through this? It's an option I'm thinking about but obviously money is pretty tight at the minute so I want to choose the most cost effective option.

    Also, anyone who decided to take the plunge into freelance - How long did it take for the work to come in? I'm worried that if I arrange childcare for August and then nobody wants me for work!!

    Also, what is the going rate for freelancers these days? I am based in Manchester.

    I'd appreciate any advice you have!!

    Many Thanks
    Catherine
     
  2. FreelanceUK

    FreelanceUK Administrator

    Welcome!

    Hi Catherine

    Thanks for posting your question. Taking a break to have children is a great time to rethink your career and plenty of mums have made a great success of working from home and for themselves at this time too.

    How to get started.. if you have a look elsewhere on here this is asked by lots of people trying to work out the best way to get the business coming in. Most will tell you word of mouth is No. 1, since a personal recommendation by someone who knows you/has used your services removes the risk of the unknown for prospective clients. So tell everyone you know to tell everyone they know what you're doing. And don't forget to thank the people that get you business this way too! They're then far more likely to keep pushing your name out there.

    Then get your name on as many quality freelance directories as you can (there is a difference, you don't want to sell yourself short). With Freelance Alliance it's definitely what you make of it. Upload a full portfolio so clients searching can see exactly what you're capable of there and then, no clicking here there and everywhere else. If you do join (and it's £5 a month which we think is a no brainer :cool2) then list all your skills and your location as the site optimises you for both so your profile is found by clients searching for graphic designer in your location in Google as well as direct searches made on the site. Then, remember to reply to those who send you enquiries! Yes it sounds a bit mad but even if you're busy do say 'thanks for thinking of me I'm fully booked but please do consider me for future work' and then follow them up when your work pipeline runs dry. Not everyone does and I think it's a real shame.

    Plenty more but hope that's food for thought...

    Best of luck anyway.
     
  3. SurreyWeb

    SurreyWeb New Member

    Hi Catherine

    What are the best ways of promoting yourselves? Shall I just bombard agencies with my CV and samples of work?

    Depends on the situation. There are places that will need information on you and others where posting a good profile is appropriate, here, wherever but don't make yourself the core of the content.

    Make information available online and have this in print if required but remember that nobody buys you, only what you can do for them.

    Currently, we receive about 200 submissions a week from web designers, graphic designers, photographers, copywriters, a saturated market. Almost all are deleted without being read, fact of life. The odd one that begins with an appreciation of what is really needed tends to be read.

    A specialist designer contacted us about 5 months ago, who clearly understood his role. Client needs and benefits the complete and subtle focus of his submission. We did pass on a little work but no point now, he's too busy. Those who devote themselves to promoting themselves are busy as well, arguing over which park bench they are going to sleep on:)
     

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