If you’re a freelancer, you know how important it is to wear different hats. Sure, you do all of the marketing and business development for your business yourself. But what are you doing for developing your freelancer skills?
What Are Your Freelancer Skills?
Of course, there are different flavors of freelancers: designers, developers, marketing consultants, copywriters, etc. Some of us may do it all, while others hone in on a specialty like brand identity or illustrations.
If you want to do everything or grow your skillset to include other services to provide to your clients, here’s my big tip: experiment!
How to Experiment to Develop Freelancer Skills
If there’s something you’ve always wanted to try, GO FOR IT. The experience you get just from trying something is so important to your ongoing development as a business person and as a human being. If you want to develop new freelancer skills, here are a few ways to go about it:
Try a hobby.
Hobbies aren’t always monetizable, but they do increase your range of knowledge. After my and my husband’s first joint business venture failed, we started something else: a YouTube gaming channel. We didn’t expect to become big time streamers, but just learning about how to stream, use OBS, and manage media files helped me get acquainted with how to set up microphones for video recording, how to convert FLV to MP4 files, and how to edit video clips.
Launch a side business.
So we didn’t keep up with the gaming channel, but instead pivoted to something else.
At this point I was really into vegetable gardening, and my husband wanted to get into 3D printing. We started Print A Pot, a 3D printed planter business, as an Etsy shop in 2017 and have been growing it since. We launched its e-commerce site in 2020 and are launching a new company division this year. Thanks to my work with my side business, I’ve improved my photography game, gained valuable knowledge about Etsy and e-commerce, and personally know the difficulties that a small yet growing business experiences – because I’ve experienced those difficulties myself.
Samples of my product photography, which is much better than it was 3 years ago!
Do what you love.
If there’s something that you love doing and you find yourself saying, “I wish there was…”, can you turn that into an opportunity? For me when it came to gardening, I wanted fun and unique planters that didn’t fit the mold of what you would find at a big box store.
For Karen Wang, she was able to turn her newfound love for D&D into a 7-figure business:
Keep Things Interesting
Don’t get stale with your skills. Try new things and don’t feel disillusioned or defeated if they don’t work out. Sometimes you just need a bit of practice, or to try a different program/app if it doesn’t work out for you the first time. New tools are being developed all the time and access to learning is becoming easier.
And of course, there’s always YouTube to learn online!