IF you’re getting sick of your secure, salaried position, then you might be tempted to join millions of people in the UK, and try to go it alone as a freelancer. It’s a career move with plenty of advantages going for it, but it isn’t for everyone. Let’s take a closer look at the freelance lifestyle, and see how it might apply to your circumstances.
How many people are going freelance?
There are around two million people in the UK working freelance, around 1.77 million of whom are working freelance as their main job. All in all, freelance workers are worth around £125 billion to the economy. This is a mode of working that’s more popular in some professions and sectors, with web-based jobs being increasingly done by freelancers.
What are the benefits?
Freelancers are able to cut back on their commute, which is great news in an age where fuel prices are rapidly rising. You’ll also tend to get greater flexibility, and the ability to strike a better balance between your work and home lives. If you’re the kind of person who craves responsibility, and wants to be able to make decisions and live with the consequences, then life as a freelancer might be just what you’re looking for.
5 Things to Bear in Mind:
You never stop learning
When you’re a freelancer, you might find that every day presents you with an opportunity to pick up a new skill. You’ll want to invest in training for yourself, especially if you want to offer a diverse range of services to your clients.
For example, beauticians might consider courses in a range of treatments. In their blogpost on the subject, Capital Hair and Beauty are keen to recommend training. “Upskilling and training shows your clients you’re serious about being able to give them the very latest in trends and techniques. Continuing your training shows you care about your craft and that you’re truly passionate about what you’re doing.
“Training is just as much for the experienced pro as it is for the new beginner. From lashes and brows to bridal hair and modern colour techniques and nails, there’s no excuse to not stay ahead of the game. Adding a new skill not only offers value to your clients; it also boosts your profits.”
Getting the right supplies to go with your training is also critical. There’s no point in running a nail salon if you don’t have access to the right acrylic nail kits.
You don’t have to do everything
When you’re working on your own, it can be tempting to try to do everything yourself. This approach might cause you to burn out rapidly, however, and to find that you run out of your most precious resource: time.
A loyal client base is essential
As a freelancer, most of your work is going to come from a small core of clients who keep coming back for more. By offering an excellent standard of service, you’ll not only keep these people loyal, but get them to act as evangelists for your brand.
If you don’t know how much to charge for your products and services, then you stand to lose out. Too high, and you’ll dissuade customers; too low, and your margins will shrink. Do your research ahead of time: the investment will pay dividends.
Invest in marketing
You’ll need to get the word out, especially during the early phase of your career as a freelancer. This means getting a firm grasp of both digital and physical marketing media.