People often end up losing many prospective offers even if they are expert in their profession. Can you guess, why? Because they lack the talent of branding themselves and establishing a professional relationship with the client. Underlying reasons for their failure may be a by-product of their lacking in social etiquette or email etiquette. The foremost step in building your career as a freelancer is to treat this kind of work as a business and not as a side job, even if you are working as part time freelancer.
Keeping in mind the basic etiquettes that every freelancer should know, I have created few tips below. Read on…
Mostly, the professional communication with clients is done via email when you are leading a freelancer work solutions. When email becomes your primary source of communication, then you need to be very careful with your emails and avoid unintended emails. Follow these email etiquette listed below and gain potential clients.
- Use an appropriate email id. For ex- firstname.lastname@example.org is right but email@example.com is certainly not.
- Use simple email formats with a professional accent. Get to the point quickly and use an appropriate salutation.
- Leave a professional impression on your clients by using an email signature.
- Use ‘Not Available’ reminder, if you won’t be available for more than two days.
- Remember, quick responses are always appreciated.
Just as email etiquette is important to communicate with the client, equally social etiquette is important. Social media is everywhere and is considered one of the most preferred sources freelancers use to grab their next prospective clients. I am sure you would not like to lose great projects due to lacking in social etiquettes. Here are some tips on social etiquette that you must keep in mind.
- Make quality connections on social media platform as much as you can.
- Though social media portray your social life, it can bear an effect on your professional life as well. So, behave with decent manners.
- Never use bad mouth on social media for your clients or any of your friends on the list. It does not matter how irritating a client is, talk in private always.
- Make good connections with your previous and current clients on social media.
- Highlight your strengths and let people know you are working.
Real World Etiquette
Many clients also prefer to meet in person to make discussions self-evident. As a freelancer, you might be used to work at home wearing shorts and t-shirts, but when it comes to meeting a client then you have to come out of your comfort zone and require a professional form of dress. Carry your resume, few samples of your work and business card (if you have one) with you. It is similar to a job interview and you need to brand yourself as much as you can. Avoid fake promises and showcase your skills honestly. If you feel, you cannot do a certain task then consider denying over deceiving. Pay attention to dress, hygiene and your body language.
The Numero Uno factor to be successful is to gain “TRUST” in a freelancer-client relationship. When a client pays you and assigns certain tasks, you have the freedom to showcase your skills and bring about the best results for the client. This indeed can get you more projects as satisfied clients are more likely to spread your word in their circle of influence. This will help you build a solid professional image.
Never exaggerate your work skills. Freelancers have a reputation of inflating their skills to convince clients and thereafter not communicating well in mid of the project. This is one reason many companies and hiring managers are reluctant in hiring freelancers.
To maintain trust and optimistic relationship, stop flaking and be honest with your work and services.
Related Read: 5 Tricks for Freelance Professional
Mistakes to Avoid
Even after working on several projects, many freelancers repeatedly make few mistakes. Such habits are question mark over your professionalism. To avoid such incidence, follow a set of workable and transparent procedures. It benefits you by making the work less difficult and systematic; ensuring that your client is happy.
- Keep Your Shoulders Balanced – You are a human being and will remain so. Do not take on more projects than you can handle. You may end up spoiling everything and decrease your productivity and witness client turning down your services. Prefer quality at good pay.
- Do Not Overlook the Deadlines – Your clients hire you to get the work done on time. Even they have their own deadlines. If you put them in trouble by delaying, you’re in trouble too.
- Communication Gap – Have a strong and quick communication medium. You just cannot rely upon emails. Communication gap will end up in messing up the things.
- Honesty is the best policy – Learn to say NO, if you are not sure of pulling up certain tasks. Have your own criteria of ideal clients whose businesses can benefit you. Word is already out, give respect and earn respect.
Over To You
Can you think of more etiquettes that you think will help freelancers like us? Let’s hear it.