Author: Tatiana Rivers- Tati Rivs Social Media Marketing
The freelance space is competitive and it can be tough to stand out.
Freelancing has been gaining popularity over the years for it’s flexibility and work life balance. Millennials and retirees alike are turning to freelancing to start side hustles and businesses. With this heavy competition coming in, how do you stand out?
We have put together a few tips that will help you find your niche and stand out against the competition.
1.Think About The Big Picture
The most successful freelancers look at themselves like a business. They put together a business plan that includes their long term goals, short term goals, target audience, marketing strategy, brand and style.
This sounds a little overwhelming at first but with some tips you can come up with a business plan in a few hours.
These tips from Quickbooks can help you put together a business plan in no time: Business Plan Guide
The reason to do this, is that by writing out your plans and thinking about your audience, it will probably start to become obvious what your area of expertise or niche might be, which is how you will stand out against your competitors.
One of the most important things you can ask yourself when finding your niche and looking at the big picture is;
“How do you like to spend your time”?
Some of the best examples of freelancers that have found success are in the Mom Blogger or Food Blogger spheres.
Freelancers who found success here just thought about they wanted to do, made a plan and went for it. They weren’t all trained Chef’s or parenting psychologists. They just liked food a lot, wanted to spend time with their kids and they wanted to write about their experiences.
At some point they decided they wanted to do that full time. So they came up with a plan, a brand, a strategy that honed in on those experiences and have made a living from it. By starting with the big picture, you can break things down into smaller goals which will help you gain your ground in a competitive environment.
2. No One is You and That is Your Power
No one has developed the skills you have in the way that you have and wants to do the specific things that you want to do with them. No one.
You might find similar models out there, and that’s ok, but somehow you will bring something new to the table. You don’t have to rewrite the wheel, you just need to put your spin on it, your perspective and style. Keep that in mind and make sure that is obvious in everything that you do, from your email signature to your Instagram account to your proposals. Stamp it with your brand.
For inspiration on how to hone in on your niche, listen to one of our favorite podcasters, Pat Flynn. He talks more about finding your niche with his Niche Selection Tips.
3. Always Keep Adding to Your Skills
Never stop learning. The freelance space can be like the wild west. Cutting edge technologies are coming out in AI and VR and there will be more tech in the next few years that we don’t even know about yet. There can be tremendous opportunity if you can learn how to stay ahead of the curve.
From YouTube videos to blogs and podcasts. There is a wealth of knowledge out there that will help you develop your niche, build your business and stand out from the competition. So keep learning and add to your skills. Check out our blog on Our Top Freelancing Podcasts for inspiration and guidance.
4. Look At Your Competition But Not Too Long
When you are just starting out, it is easy to get discouraged when you see a similar business to you that looks much more put together. Just remember they probably didn’t start that way, they have had a few years to work on their brand.
It is important to learn from your competitors and admire what they do, take some ideas away from them but then put your own spin on things. After you have taken away some ideas, don’t look at them for awhile. Doing that will only trip you up.
Take away what you liked about your competitor and ask yourself why? Did they have a nice website or fun Instagram page? What drew you to them? Find a few other competitors, do the same with them and soon you will start to develop of list of things you really like and want to take away to your own business.
But they will be unique.
They will be a combination of all things you have learned from your perspective. Combine these ideas with your unique skill set and you will see that you aren’t like your competition. Use that to stand out.