How to stand out and land the best gigs in an ever-growing sea of freelance talent, according to seasoned freelancers and the people who hire them

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The pandemic is squeezing companies into finding ways to cut costs — one of which is to hire gig workers instead of full-time employees.
With a surge of layoffs expanding the talent pool, it’ll be tougher to differentiate yourself from a new sea of freelancers.
Business Insider asked seasoned freelancers, the companies who hire them, and talent marketplaces what it takes to get hired and make it on your own.
When it comes to marketing yourself, experts said to avoid a generalized approach.
Emphasize your specializations, craft targeted pitches to the right people, optimize your online presence, and foster long-term relationships with current clients.
Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

As the pandemic wears on, companies worldwide are looking to cut costs.

One of the ways they’re doing so? Opting to hire gig workers instead of full-time employees.

Freelancer reports that freelance job openings increased 25% in Q2 2020 compared to the first quarter of the year, and Upwork’s “Future Workforce Report” revealed that 47% of hiring managers are more likely to hire freelancers than they were pre-pandemic.

That’s good news for side hustlers and full-time freelancers, though the surge of layoffs means there’s also been an uptick in talent looking for work. The team at Upwork, which posts more than 8,000 freelance jobs per day, also reported an increase of freelancer sign-ups of about 50% since the country began to react to the pandemic.

So how does a new freelancer stand out in this sea of talent? Business Insider asked seasoned freelancers, the companies who hire them, and the talent marketplaces that bring them together exactly what to do to get hired and build a thriving business.

Market yourself as a specialist, not a generalist

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When they’re starting out, many freelancers are open to many types of gigs in order to gain clients.

But according to Shirley Yang, VP of community at Braintrust, a marketplace that connects enterprises like Deloitte, Nestle, and Blue Cross Blue Shield with highly skilled freelance technical talent, that’s not the right approach.

“Even if you’re at heart a generalist, specifying a niche is the best way to get noticed online,” she said.

Nancy Van Brunt, director of freelancer and agency success at Upwork, also emphasized specificity. “Instead of presenting yourself as a web developer, for example, demonstrate that you are an expert in ecommerce applications and front-end development for that specific purpose, and build your portfolio around that specialization.”

Abby Borden, freelance event producer and owner of Los Angeles-based Table Set Go, has seen first-hand success with this approach.

“Early on, I noticed when I just put myself out there as a ‘freelance event pro,’ I would get calls to be a PA or to work on weddings, or ‘Can you help my friend with their kid’s birthday?’” she said. “While I appreciated the offers and the referrals, it’s not what I was passionate about and did not fit my particular skill set.”

When she turned these jobs down and instead shared the type of clients …read more

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Source:: Usa Today News

      

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