Finding your Audience
Today, I would like to talk about finding the right customers for your skills. The first and easiest way to do this is to find a website such as fiverr.com and begin selling your skill for five dollars with different options of more expensive versions. For example, if you can create a logo or you enjoy writing you can easily find an opportunity to earn a quick couple of dollars by selling your skill and begin creating a business for yourself. Another option, much like fiverr.com, is UpWork or any type of freelance job posting website where people are searching for a person that knows how to do a certain skill that you may be able to perform. With most of these options, it is a bidding game so you may have to make a few bids before you ever actually are able to work on a project. The great thing about this bidding process is once you get your first project then that customer will leave a review of your work and then you are more able to get future projects because of the fact that you’re a known source at that point. The more reviews you have, the more business you get, it’s as simple as that. One of the greatest parts of building a business online or at least for yourself, is that you can do the work whenever you want, of course there are deadlines and schedules but you aren’t nearly as pressured as you would be in a cube farm job unless you choose to be. It is all on your terms, you get to decide how busy or free your schedule is depending on what you want to do.
Next, I would like to go into a little bit more depth into what type of skills you can use on a website such as fiverr.com to make yourself a little bit of money and gain experience working within the online marketplace. A few options are online marketing, graphics and design (which is the logo designer, business card, stationary section), video and animation, music and audio, programming, and advertising. Really anything you can possibly think of creating a business around you can probably find it on fiverr.com or any of these freelance websites. Let’s say you can proficiently communicate in both English and Spanish. Something for that would be translating and are a news article from English to Spanish or translating a website verifying information is correct when someone is not quite sure about their language skills, the possibilities are really endless.
Searching freelance websites are only one of the avenues in which you can find the audience that is interested in your certain skill set. From my previous post, you can post in one of your campus forums or websites that you are interested in helping people become better and more efficient runners. In this model, you could offer a “test run”, pardon the pun, for free and then discuss with the person afterwards what they thought of your help and whether or not they would be willing to pay you to continue training them. Make sure at this point that you set a goal, such as “ok, we ran a really great mile today, let’s begin running three times a week and I can have you to a 5k by the end of the semester. (Of course presuming that you have a little bit of time before the end of the semester.)
The key to any of these different forms of freelancing is that you HAVE to over deliver on what you originally promised. That way, if you are able to gain a review such as on fiverr.com, you can almost guarantee that the person will give you five stars and will set you up with future projects. The easiest way to make money after the initial sale is through re-ups, or the situation where a previous customer decides to request your help on future projects because they know that you will do a great job. This is also something that can be seen on the review boards because it asks how many times you have used the same service or at least the same provider. With running it would be the same concept, get the first person to tell their friends etc. You may even convince them to do group runs which you could offer at a discount lets say $10 for a solo runner but then $17 if there are two runners. That means you are basically making a free $7 because you are not using the time that you would training the second person at a different time and then can therefore find another customer and so on.
Stay tuned for next weeks lesson. We will be discussing how to take your brand to the next level. Once you get those first few jobs under your belt you are ready to begin working on branding yourself within your field of knowledge. Don’t let the idea that you aren’t knowledgeable enough make you think that you can’t build this business. Once, I was told that the key to business is that all you have to know is 1% more than the person that you are teaching or working for in order to be successful. If you think about it, that is 100% true. This is why it is always so important to constantly work on your skill and your brand in order to make them better and better.
Until, next time.