How To Become a Digital Marketer Freelancer in 7 Steps
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Digital marketing is an important resource for organizations to use to promote their products or services. Pursuing a career provides a range of employment opportunities, such as working for a company's in-house marketing department, for a digital marketing agency or as a freelance professional. Learning more about freelancing as a digital marketer may help you decide if this is a good option for you. In this article, we define what a freelance digital marketer is, outline how to become a digital marketer freelancer, discuss some benefits of this career and provide tips for finding work in this field.
What is a freelance digital marketer?
A freelance digital marketer is a digital marketing professional who works for various clients remotely. They often work on a contract or per-project basis to complete tasks associated with digital marketing efforts. While they may specialize in a particular aspect of digital marketing, many have experience with multiple areas, such as:
Search engine optimization (SEO)
Freelance digital marketers can select which services they want to offer to their clients. Their responsibilities may also vary based on a particular project or a contract they have with a certain client. While exact duties may vary, some common responsibilities for freelance digital marketers include:
Choosing, setting up and tracking key performance indicators (KPIs)
Creating original content for blogs, websites and social media
Developing and implementing unique digital marketing strategies
Engaging with their client's target audiences
Implementing campaigns to improve their clients' rankings on search engines
Improving online shops to encourage purchases
Managing paid ad campaigns on social media websites and search engines
Operating their clients' social media accounts
Preparing collateral like promotional materials and graphics
Promoting their clients' unique brands
Researching and writing case studies and white papers
Hosting webinars or digital marketing training sessions
How to become a digital marketer freelancer
Here are the steps to follow to become a digital marketer freelancer:
1. Develop your skills
Build your skills as a digital marketer. This may include earning a degree in a relevant field—such as marketing, communications or public relations—or completing professional certifications. It's also often helpful for freelance digital marketers to have some professional experience before seeking work as a freelancer. Explore opportunities to develop your digital marketing knowledge through internships and entry-level positions.
Related: 25 Digital Marketing Certifications
2. Create your brand
Determine how you want to present yourself to potential clients. Think about what services you want to provide and what you want clients to know about you. Developing your brand may also involve choosing a name if you want to operate under a business name as a freelancer and creating a logo to use.
3. Review the requirements
Research the requirements for working as a freelancer or a self-employed professional where you live. Some states may require you to get certain permits or licenses based on the type of work you complete, especially if you plan to operate as a business. This may also help you learn what type of taxes and fees you may have to pay as a digital marketer freelancer.
4. Set your rates
Choose what type of rates you want to charge, such as per-project or per-hour rates, and establish the rates that you plan to charge your clients. Think about your previous experience and the value you may provide your clients and determine the minimum amount you need to earn each month to be able to pay your bills. It may also be helpful to research freelance rates for digital marketers with experience comparable to yours.
5. Build a website
Create a website to use to market your services to potential clients. Be sure to include information about you and your credentials and highlight your expertise and how clients may benefit from working with you. Ensure your website includes ways for potential clients to contact you and a portfolio showcasing samples of your previous work.
6. Leverage your network
Alert your professional network about your desire to begin freelancing. Ask if they know anyone who may be looking for digital marketing expertise. Consider contacting people who you previously worked with to inform them of your services.
7. Find potential clients
Look for potential clients to work with and pursue opportunities to grow your client base. Review job opportunities online for freelancers, such as those on professional networking websites. It may also be helpful to join online job boards or groups where organizations post the type of digital marketing tasks they need assistance with completing.
Benefits of working as a freelance digital marketer
Some potential benefits of working as a freelance digital marketer include:
Freelancing enables you to dictate your earnings more than you can with traditional full-time employment. You can set your rates based on your own preferences, and you can continue to agree to more projects, given you're able to complete them. It's also possible to work as a freelance digital marketer while also working in another part-time or full-time role, but it's important to ask your employer about potential conflicts of interest.
Working as a freelance digital marketer typically provides you complete control over which hours you work. This allows you to establish your own work schedule and enjoy as much flexibility as you want. However, it's still important for you to meet all the project deadlines you set with your clients and attend all scheduled meets.
All businesses have costs of doing business, which refers to the money they spend for their operations. While freelance digital marketers may have some expenses associated with their work, such as paying for equipment and software, they may have lower costs than traditional businesses and employees. They may also save money on expenses like business clothes, meals at restaurants and transportation costs.
Most freelance employees have complete independence about where they complete their work and when. Working as a freelance digital marketer typically requires only a computer with a good internet connection. This enables you to work wherever you want, such as working from home or traveling often to work in different locations. Remote work also eliminates the need for commuting, likely providing you with more time for enjoying leisure activities.
Becoming a digital marketer freelancer empowers you to decide how much you want to work and what type of work you specifically want to complete. For example, you may prefer to work with clients in a particular industry or focus on one aspect of digital marketing more than others. It's important to remember, though, that building a client base may require working with a greater variety of clients until you form strong relationships.
Tips for finding work as a freelance digital marketer
Consider these tips to help you find work as a freelance digital marketer:
Ask satisfied clients for referrals
Be flexible with your rates when appropriate for clients
Consider focusing your work in a particular niche
Develop a strong brand that you market consistently
Include testimonials from happy clients on your website
Keep in contact with your clients through email marketing campaigns
Look for an experienced digital marketer to mentor you
Use social media to market yourself and connect with clients
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