Freelancing 101: Picking Your Services

Lesson 4: Picking Your Services


Picking your services

If you’re ready to choose which freelance services you’d like to offer to potential clients, here are some important ideas and concepts to help you decide.

#1. Experience and education

Does your service successfully reflect your education and experience?

For example, if you want to be a freelance graphic designer, you’ll need examples of your work. Having a great portfolio is the best way to get started.

The same is true for any type of freelancing business that you might want to start. Your customers want to hire a professional and showing them examples of your talent and experience is a must.

 So while you're determining your basic services, consider how you can present them online to best highlight yourself.

#2. Highlight your talents

Think about how you can incorporate your best talents into a service.

For example, maybe you're going to film school and learning how to tell effective stories utilizing video. There are filmmaking platforms where you can set up a profile and advertise your services as a cinematographer, production assistant, and more. Also, think about all the ways you could use your film school education to help business owners market and advertise their products and services.

Whether you're in film school or not, or if you're just great at making TikTok videos, you could potentially turn that talent into a thriving freelancing business.

Today, social marketing videos generate a whopping 1200 percent more engagement than both text and images combined. Video marketing services are in high demand.

The bottom line is that you can use your natural talents to create a list of basic freelance services and build from there.

#3. Love what you do

Thanks to the internet, you can turn your talents into services that people and businesses need. It is very important to note that it’s going to take time and commitment so make sure you love what you do and the services that you offer. 

#4. Offer in-demand services

If there's a lot of competition for the service you want to offer, that’s a good sign. There will be plenty of customers willing to pay for an in-demand service or product. However, there will also be lots of competition which can make selling your services more challenging. That’s when offering a niche or specialized service can make sense.

For example, there's a lot of competition for general marketing services. But a video producer who can make specialized social videos could focus on the cosmetics, health, or the foodservice industry.

The possibilities are endless once you start finding out what people and businesses need.

#5. More choices, more money

It's a good idea to focus on services that give customers choices.

For example, if you want to offer logo design as a service, you could provide a basic line drawing for one price and then a full-color, final logo as a more expensive option. You could also offer various sizes and file types such as JPEG, PNG, or PDF. Then, if they want to develop their full brand image, they can order a more expensive brand board that includes variations of their logo, brand colors, typography, graphic elements, and stylized imagery. 

 Another possibility is to offer a subscription service where each month you get paid to supply your services.

For example, if you write for websites, blogs, or eCommerce sites, you can offer your customers a certain number of blog posts, website text, or product descriptions for a monthly fee. Maybe you'll create a blog post a week or six social media videos a month. It's up to you because you're the boss. 

Also, a paid monthly service can provide additional financial security for freelancers since there is more consistency in your monthly income.

#6. Grow your business

Freelancing and self-employment generally mean working on other peoples' projects. However, you could also turn some of your services into your own products.

Say you're a writer for a specific industry. After some time, the articles and posts you’ve created will add up. Some freelance writers will gather this material and reformat it to produce a new book specific for their industry. They then sell the book to existing customers or use it to find new readers and clients.

While you might not have products to offer at first, it's a good idea to consider how the services you offer now could turn into products later. One of the best aspects of self-employment is that you can continuously add to and improve your services and products as you go.

#6. Keep learning

Freelancers can also grow and improve their business through continual learning.

Regardless of which industry you’re in or the services you offer, the knowledge base
necessary to stay competitive is constantly evolving. To keep up, a freelancer should
expect to have to learn new skills on a regular basis.

 For example, if you offer marketing services, gaining a Google Analytics Certification could help you gain new clients. If you’re a freelance web developer, you will need to learn new programming languages or design standards. Social media consultants should not only explore new platforms, but also familiarize themselves with the new features of existing ones as well.

Data is big business these days and data analysts are in high demand. A Google Analytics Certification not only provides your customers with another service, but it also gives you the advantage of illustrating the impact your services make on their bottom line.

There are similar certifications for project managers, graphic designers, marketers, and audio engineers.

While it might be worth investing in courses and certifications which cost money, keep
an eye out for free or low-cost resources, like edX, Codeacademy, and Skillshare.

So, regardless of your skills, there's likely a certification that can increase your value as a freelancer.

#7. Build a support network

As a freelancer, even though you’re working for yourself, it doesn’t mean you have to go
it alone! Finding a community of freelancers—whether it be a discussion forum, a
website, or a social media group—will help you stay connected in more ways than

Some of the benefits of networking include...

  • learning about the latest developments in your field, or even sharing tools and solutions to common problems
  • finding a mentor who can answer your questions so you don’t feel overwhelmed when starting out
  • finding a collaborator who can work with you on a specific project you want to take on but might need help with

While you might think of yourself as being in competition with other freelancers,
networking will oftentimes lead to job opportunities. It’s not always easy starting out, so
finding a community can help you find that motivation and support.