So you are ready to start making money as a freelance social media manager, but where do you start?
We know this stage can seem daunting, its one of the topics that comes up time and again in our free community, The Social Media Managers Hub. There are lots of things to consider and it can be overwhelming.
So here are some quick tips to help you transition to freelance so you can start making money as a social media marketer as soon as possible.
One: Set up your social platforms
We firmly believe that to be taken seriously as a social media manager you need to be showing up on social media! It's a no brainer really and now is the perfect time to start building your online presence as a social media manager because you aren't too busy doing it for your clients!
But before you do this have a think about who your ideal clients might be and where they would hang out online. Are they small independent retailers that use Instagram to showcase their products? Or maybe they are marketing managers who can mainly be found on LinkedIn.
Having a rough idea on who you plan to work with/for can help you focus on where to start. This doesn't have to be set in stone, this is just for now, not forever.
Two: Start showing up as an expert
Now you've got your platforms sorted you can start showing people that you know your stuff. Showing up as an expert may sounds tricky but it just involves being yourself and showing off your knowledge.
You can do this by answering questions in Facebook groups, sharing tips on your social media posts and offering advice to people who need it.
Once you feel confident, you can level this up by offering to give a guest talk at a local networking event or in someone else's Facebook group. If the thought of this terrifies you then start by attending a networking event to see how it works, and introducing yourself to some people.
By answering peoples questions and giving tips and advice you will soon see that you know way more than most and that boost in confidence can do wonders for you when you first start out.
Once you are regularly showing up as an expert, and offering great value to people for free, you'll see that people will take you more seriously and be intrigued about what you can offer them when they are paying for your expertise.
Three: Find your first paying client
It might feel like we have jumped ahead a few steps here but we believe getting your first paying client asap is important for two reasons.
1 – The first paying client is often the hardest to get.
2 – That first client will increase your confidence so that you can find your second.
But don't panic, your first paying client doesn't need to be a full management client, in fact you should probably go in with the mindset that it won't be.
Dial it back a bit and find some ‘entry level' clients. People who will pay for your expertise on a one-off project.
For example, a client strategy or audit is a great way to boost your confidence and get your foot in the door with a client who could then want you to do more for them, or can recommend you to others.
When you first start out it can seem awkward to charge the fee you really want to, and while we are big advocates of charging your worth, we also get that everyone needs to start somewhere. So rather than going full guns blazing and offering in depth services to new clients when you are just starting out, you could consider starting with a more top-line service at a reduced cost.
When Laura M wanted to get the ball rolling quickly to bring some cash in and to start getting her name out there. She offered top level audits, which she carried out on a video at a much lower price than she would now charge for a formal audit. You can use Loom or Vidyard to create something like this by recording your screen as you talk through your clients platforms and guide them on any changes you'd recommend.
Looking for ways to create some quick cash in your business? Click here
This is just the initial starting point and there is a lot more work that goes into building a successful career as a freelance social media manager. Like do you need a website? What do you need to do about accounts? What even is GDPR anyway?
You could spend hours, if not days or weeks googling the answers to these questions and more. Plus creating the templates that make your business look professional, planning what level of information to put in a proposal or putting a workshop together.
But you don't need to.
We have done all that hard work for you. So, when you are ready to take the next steps check out The Social Media Managers Toolkit where you'll find all the answers, advice and guidance to really make this work.
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