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#1 Mike111  Icon User is offline

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What did you guys do to "get the ball rolling"?

Posted 06 March 2012 - 04:05 PM

Hi guys!

As the topic states, what did you guys do to initially get your freelancing company/activities rolling? I'm planning ahead and thinking about developing software for small to medium businesses for a ridiculously low amount, just to get some references I can use, as well as developing some open source free edition/proprietary with support edition for cost.

I've also been looking at some freelancing websites, but I assume its hard to get much work if you don't already have at least some completed projects with happy clients to show for, and every job offer is immediately filled with some template spam.

So what did you do to get it all started? Now I know stuff wont happen over night and I'm happy taking some years to build up a successful company, but initially, what to do?

Thanks!

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Replies To: What did you guys do to "get the ball rolling"?

#2 no2pencil  Icon User is online

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Re: What did you guys do to "get the ball rolling"?

Posted 07 March 2012 - 06:53 PM

Initially I was selling stuff on eBay. From what I earned I got a vendors license & eventually an LLC. I did small stuff on Rent A Coder, eventually did the right work for the right people to understand other web technologies. Using those examples I started getting traffic to my own website, which leads to more profitable prospects, & eventually I quit bidding on Rent A Coder work.
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#3 Shane Hudson  Icon User is offline

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Re: What did you guys do to "get the ball rolling"?

Posted 07 March 2012 - 08:17 PM

I started off attempting to start a web design company with a random stranger. Never a good idea. We got 0 work, as you would expect. So I carried on doing free work for people... then at some point I realised that although my designs were awful, they were very well coded. So I started working through designers, charging very little and doing a lot of work.

I then did work experience in a small company, who's founder explained some concepts of business to me. When I left that week, I quadrupled my prices. I got better since I was now targeting better designers (who would make more profit so they could afford me!) and developed contacts. It was about this time that I started making enough money to warrant officially registering as self employed. I have recently put my prices up again to make sure I keep to the correct standard and am taken seriously.
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#4 JamesBarnsley  Icon User is offline

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Re: What did you guys do to "get the ball rolling"?

Posted 25 March 2012 - 07:49 AM

View PostMike111, on 06 March 2012 - 04:05 PM, said:

Hi guys!

As the topic states, what did you guys do to initially get your freelancing company/activities rolling? I'm planning ahead and thinking about developing software for small to medium businesses for a ridiculously low amount, just to get some references I can use, as well as developing some open source free edition/proprietary with support edition for cost.

I've also been looking at some freelancing websites, but I assume its hard to get much work if you don't already have at least some completed projects with happy clients to show for, and every job offer is immediately filled with some template spam.

So what did you do to get it all started? Now I know stuff wont happen over night and I'm happy taking some years to build up a successful company, but initially, what to do?

Thanks!


I would gather a huge list of emails for local web development companies off of Google. Stick them in a database.

Then email them all with an email introducing yourself and your services, just be honest with them, and if they want to do some sort of skills test to prove you can do it let them.
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#5 ValPaliy  Icon User is offline

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Re: What did you guys do to "get the ball rolling"?

Posted 27 September 2012 - 05:01 PM

View PostJamesBarnsley, on 25 March 2012 - 05:49 PM, said:

View PostMike111, on 06 March 2012 - 04:05 PM, said:

Hi guys!

As the topic states, what did you guys do to initially get your freelancing company/activities rolling? I'm planning ahead and thinking about developing software for small to medium businesses for a ridiculously low amount, just to get some references I can use, as well as developing some open source free edition/proprietary with support edition for cost.

I've also been looking at some freelancing websites, but I assume its hard to get much work if you don't already have at least some completed projects with happy clients to show for, and every job offer is immediately filled with some template spam.

So what did you do to get it all started? Now I know stuff wont happen over night and I'm happy taking some years to build up a successful company, but initially, what to do?

Thanks!


I would gather a huge list of emails for local web development companies off of Google. Stick them in a database.

Then email them all with an email introducing yourself and your services, just be honest with them, and if they want to do some sort of skills test to prove you can do it let them.


Well, wouldn't that be considered spam? Did you do so yourself? What's the outcome, if so?
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#6 vaayaaedu  Icon User is offline

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Re: What did you guys do to "get the ball rolling"?

Posted 22 October 2012 - 06:18 PM

One way i used was mailing to my linkedin group. That way you can get freelancing work from the group.
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#7 bigdawg24  Icon User is offline

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Re: What did you guys do to "get the ball rolling"?

Posted 14 December 2012 - 01:26 PM

I started handing out flyers. Let me state... I did include small repairs and stuff. Try to do everything I knew. I went to gas stations, stores, gaming type stores, businesses (network network network...), residential... if post master didnt like I put flyers on side of mailbox I knocked on doors. The first month I handed out 4- 5 reams of that mess. I only had about 2 calls a week on small repairs. I met up with 2 businesses over the course of 3 months that allowed me to build their website and maintain it for a small fee each month. Granted, I made decent pages from HTML/CSS at the time (I havent brushed up on that skill in over 4 years...) .. I was severely underpaid. We are talking less than 300 a site 5 years ago. I know companies now make them for about 100 but it is what it is. At any rate I continued till I could afford a small shop. I turned into the shop with less than $20 in my pocket (not thinking a full set of goals and plans...DO THIS..MAKE GOALS...learn from my mistakes...)

I did however sustain the business with the first six months making less than 700$ a month. Barely enough for food on table with me and 2 kids. With that being said, things exploded. had 3 employees and chaos. But, due to not enough research into things would have taught me to let customers know time-frames, how busy I am, rush-fee upfront ideas, and so on and so on...

Having $2,000 profit in my pocket a month was wild for me. So, I thought I could run with it going fast. Didnt consider times getting slower and such. This is all over the two year time frame. Suddenly the last 2 1/2 months there was just a halt in business. It wasn't the walk-in as much as it was what was going out.. plus there was personal investments w/ family that I greatly regret.

After finally having a stable life for me and two kids I lost it all... became homeless for a bit even. I still dont have a working car (its been 9 months since I lost business).

Why did I give you a short version of a drama-filled story?

When you go into starting your own business here are some recommendations from someone who just had the experience and will be doing it again God willing...

PLAN
PLAN
BUDGET
did i mention...PLAN
(plans fall through, but at least you know you can adjust)
dont hire accountant until you think you need employees. At this point you need someone to help you manage money. Cause, things will get crazy. You may be the ultimate multi-tasker...but you cant do it all
I like Dave Ramsey when it comes to budgeting. His plan is SOLID...and laid out in the most basic form. With motivation.
Dont spend money. Invest small when it comes to retail sales. Just buy 4 - 5 of 15 diff items rather than 100 of 4 or 5 items because its even cheaper. Find what sells in your area first then invest. (example: found my best seller as pc store to be iGo chargers. I could get them at $22, sell with warranty at 65 while local big chains selling them at $85)
Research
Plan on burning the midnight oil. Stimulates may help.
GET OUT... dont get so consumed that you dont have you time twice a week with loved ones or friends

I just want people that want to do it on their own to know... its a hard road...its a REWARDING road... you must keep your eyes on the road
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