Going through the trenches starting a career on one of the popular freelance portals.

8 replies
Hello Warriors,
I hope you will forgive spreading seeds of discouragement.

This post is sent from the place of a slight but increasing frustration with a leading freelance portal.

I set up an account on the very popular freelance portal adding some pieces of my work (likely not a PRO-level).
And so the fun began. I am now in the process of struggling to get ANY sort of response even though I only apply for the entry-level jobs with the lowest rate (as I am a beginner myself).

This is a very multi-faceted question, I get that.

It looks like taking off from the ground ZERO is like climbing Nanga Parbat in the winter. Seems unachievable.
I hope it does not come across as weird what I wrote.
I was wondering whether any of you guys was/is in a similar position.
I guess it all comes down to ONE question I started to ask myself more and more often:

* Does it make any sense whatsoever to study Copywriting/ Content Marketing without having any business myself? *

Several months into the process I feel completely lost and just drifting around with no purpose.

Thanks for all insights and enjoy the Sunday!
#career #freelance #popular #portals #starting #trenches
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  • Profile picture of the author DWolfe
    Originally Posted by TheThinWhiteDuke View Post


    * Does it make any sense whatsoever to study Copywriting/ Content Marketing without having any business myself? *

    Thanks for all insights and enjoy the Sunday!
    Sounds like you are suffering from Information overload. Take a step back. First off if you want to learn about copywriting go to the https://www.warriorforum.com/copywriting/ section here on the forum. There is a big difference. Read the sticky's first in that section.

    If you want to learn about content marketing you can read the free e-mails by Maggie Linders - Freelance Writing Riches, Freelance Writing Jobs (not and affiliate link) Do not buy anything at all or you will be really over whelmed. This is just a general tip,good luck .
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  • Profile picture of the author rohansmith38
    Hey Its ok Everybody go through a little discouragement sometimes. Just hang in there and keep doing it Dont give up now. Best Wishes!
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  • Profile picture of the author TheThinWhiteDuke
    Guys much appreciated. Indeed information overload seems to be overwhelming me quite a bit.
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  • Profile picture of the author nowservingpixels
    I used to make a full time living using those sites back when I first got started. I have over 1,000 completed jobs logged on my now inactive Upwork profile, but I certainly had my share of struggles early on (I think most of us do.)

    Getting hired is all about the proposal and your timing. Make sure that you directly address the job poster's unique problem, and do so in a way that lets them know you actually read the post. Most freelancers are reckless and send out copy & paste templates to every job, so if you can address the client's post on a personal level, you're already ahead of 80% of the competition. And you should aim to be one of the first freelancers to place your bid. Once 10+ people have applied, the client will usually find what they're looking for from a pool that size.

    If you've done that and you're still not getting hired, it might be that they're simply not convinced that you're capable of doing the job, sorry to say. I'd give it a couple of months of consistent effort before I jumped to any conclusions though. Good luck.
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  • Profile picture of the author girlwonder
    I made a living writing content for a while, and have now moved into content strategy. It's definitely doable. There's a ton of work, and the momentum builds once you get started. I agree with what's been said here, and I would absolutely study content marketing. It'll help build your confidence and help with your pitches because you'll understand what the person hiring really needs. The certification at Hubspot is great. Do that ASAP. If you don't like those classes, you probably won't like the work itself.

    The best advice I can give is to do one thing at a time. Focus on getting one job first, then focus all your energy on doing the absolute best work you can do on that job and go from there. If you do that, you'll be indispensable to your clients. I approached the first job I got (and many after that) as if they paid 10x what they did, and it paid off in the end.

    Don't waste time searching through thousands of job posts, but set a price limit on what you will even look at. When you find a post with a budget that meets your limit on a job you want to do, spend a lot of time crafting a great proposal. I'm happy to share a couple proposals that worked for me if you pm me.

    You'll need to prove that you can do the work, so have a portfolio of some kind. I used my own website at first, and that worked just fine. I also wrote an article for a blog I knew was hiring and sent it to them before they hired me. Whatever it takes to prove your skills.

    You mainly have to build your confidence, and once you get a few jobs (don't under price your work) you'll realize how needed your skills are and how quickly you can rise above the competition. I tell people that the main skills you need to do what I did are common sense, professionalism, and confidence. Those will get you farther with freelance than you know. Best of luck, don't give up!
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  • Profile picture of the author brettb
    Those sites aren't that great - to get the best gigs you need connections.

    Become a name in your niche and start reaching out to people who might hire you.

    And get a career going.
    ÖŽ FindABlog: Find blogs to comment on, guest posting opportunities and more ÖŽ

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  • Profile picture of the author ctrlaltdelete
    Hey there. I'm not a freelancer but I do hire folks from sites like Upwork and Onlinejobs.ph from time to time. It's hard for newcomers to get jobs because we do prefer hiring folks who have experience freelancing online. Take some time off so you don't find yourself getting overwhelmed, but don't give up and just hang in there. Also, as you go along, develop connections just like brettb mentioned. It'd be great if you have a previous job that's related to what you're doing now. It could help you build that network of contacts.
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  • Profile picture of the author TheThinWhiteDuke
    Very good insights, much appreciated.

    This is a vicious circle. Because I have barely anything to show in my portfolio (except for some gigs done for friends).

    Also whenever I am reading the descriptions I almost feel depressive because I am not able to answer it in a convincing, reality-based manner.

    Maybe I should spare my free connects and a "rising talent" status until I get some first-hand experience by perhaps cold-approaching some companies out there.

    Christ, what a checkmate
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