Tag Archives: networking

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getthumbnailDid you know that Freelance-Zone.com is the #1 “Freelance” blog (in English) on Facebook? We are also in the top ten blogs for “Advice”. Don’t be left behind…join us and be a part of our online community!

Why join our Facebook page? One word…networking. We are growing fast and you can meet people on our FB page that you may not find here on our blog. Join us today–we’d love to have you! (And while you’re at it–hook up with us on Twitter too…these days you can’t afford to ignore social media!)

Share The Love

A situation I found myself in this week moved me to rant a bit about freelance karma. Every now and again, I find myself in a position to catch up with and sometimes even help people who gave me work in the earliest days of my freelance career. I’m always grateful to those who helped me wobble my way out of the part-time ranks and into the position I’m in now, so whenever I get a chance to do the same for someone else–or to give a helping hand to someone who previously threw me some work–I try to spread the wealth around.

In the early days of a freelance career you may not have the time to help someone else, but I think it’s very important to keep your earliest contacts close. Cultivate those relationships and remember who your early benefactors are…you may well discover life coming full circle back to you at some point, whether that’s a chance to help or even a new opportunity from someone who you proved yourself to in the beginning–willing to work with you again because you showed yourself to be a trustworthy resource.

Most of the successes I have now are quite literally due to the people I worked with in the earliest stages. In one case, a former editor helped me land a new, dependable and high-paying gig; in another, one of my earliest clients came back to offer a long-term project with financial implications that pushed my career into another phase altogether. And lest I neglect to give credit where credit is due, Catherine L. Tully is the one who goaded me into writing professionally in the first place–she and I regularly share leads, assignments and take on joint projects…something we’ve been doing since the beginning of my career. None of this would be possible without her prodding me to pull my finger out and get started.

Remember those early clients and editors…they could wind up being your best friends in the business.

Facebook Networking

I have to admit that my activity on Facebook was minimal until I started getting back in touch with all my old journalist friends from the Air Force TV News days…I find Facebook so much more relevant and interesting than MySpace, which really feels like a one-way radio by comparison. I’ve always been a bit of a come-lately with the latest social media apps, but Facebook’s power and fun can’t be denied.

My question–and feel free to chime in with a comment or three–is how many of you use Facebook for business MORE than you use it for fun? I’m decidedly playing catchup with both Facebook and Twitter, so I am curious to get a reading on what other freelancers are using these apps to get done. What’s your experience? Business or pleasure?

4 Networking Ideas For Writers

Since writing is such a solitary pursuit, you may at times ask yourself, “how can I network”? There are plenty of ways to expand your associations and get to know people who may bring you work. Here are some ways to get started:

  1. Is there a writers group in your area? Join and see what other writers have to say. You can pick up tons of information this way, and many have an online presence as well these days. If there is no group where you live, consider starting one yourself.
  2. Check into your Chamber of Commerce. Although this can cost you a little money, Chamber members do try to look out for one another. Depending on the place you live and the type of writing you do, it may be worthwhile.
  3. Photography clubs can be a good resource. Even if you don’t shoot, dropping in to meet local photographers can be fruitful. Next time you need photos for a piece, someone may be willing to help you out.
  4. Book clubs are another possibility. If you enjoy reading and have the time, it can be enriching. It can also be a great way to expand your pool of contacts.

Freelance Networking: Events and Seminars

I returned this weekend from my trip to NYC with a head full of ideas. I was a panelist for the Fair Media Council’s Connection Day, and for some reason it never occurred to me that there would be displays and booths set up by industry people advertising their services. I pictured the whole day as nothing but seminars and meetings. Wrong!

Then I realized that many others probably thought the same thing, but these journalism events can be quite a boon for a smart freelancer. What’s the last thing you’d expect to find at an event where the sole purpose is to help PR and marketing people better understand and connect with the media?

How about a bunch of booths set up by companies that use freelancers for their articles, web content and feature pieces? Naturally, these booths were set up to market the services rather than find new writers, but you can see where a huge networking opportunity exists. Never underestimate the power of your local chamber of commerce events, journalism and PR organizations and other groups that **seem** to have little to do with your needs as a freelancer. I talked to three different reps from companies all actively seeking writers, and the consensus is naturally “We’re not looking for writers. We’re looking for GOOD writers.”

These companies offer you a chance to write at levels beyond web content sites and SEO marketing gigs beginners often wind up using to further their career, and if you are reaching the point in your freelance writing work where you feel the need to move to the next level of pay, responsibility and quality in your assignments, these are the people you’ll want to connect with.  Check the web for the next media-related event near you or a chamber of commerce meet and greet. You may be surprised at what you find.

Networking For Freelancers–A Different Approach

When I was early in my freelance writing career, I totally misunderstood the notion of networking as it applied to writing. I stayed well within the confines of the writing community, trying to make connections with editors, fellow writers, photographers and other people who work directly within the world I was trying to break into.

At this point, if you aren’t asking why I say that is a mistake, you’re definitely reading the right article. It’s so easy to get tunnel vision about these things, but once you get a bit of perspective all becomes clear. Continue reading Networking For Freelancers–A Different Approach