​How To Stand Out As A Freelancer

​How To Stand Out As A Freelancer

As a freelancer, you’re competing against every other freelancer in your market. So how do you ensure you’re seen, so you can secure the best jobs and the highest fees?

There are lots of benefits to being a freelancer, especially in the Web3 world. In a seller’s market – where the demand for experts is greater than the supply in the workforce – you can pretty much pick who you work with, and maintain a strong work/life balance. What’s more, you’ll earn more than you would in conventional employment, even in the same industry and role.

As a top tier freelancer, the world is at your feet. However, if you’re just starting out, building a reputation and client base isn’t something you can take for granted. You’ll be competing for jobs with other hungry freelancers. And it’s not enough to simply be as good as they are, or better. Employers need to notice you before they can hire you – meaning you need to find ways to stand out against the competition.

Making A Splash As A Freelancer

If you’re at the top of your game as a freelancer in Web3 (or any other industry), there’s a good chance you don’t need to apply for jobs at all anymore. If you’ve worked for well-known clients and consistently done a good job, people will naturally reach out to you and offer you work. The most you’ll need to do is spend the odd hour here and there making sure your LinkedIn page, portfolio or website is up-to-date.

Even after a savage bear market in the crypto world, there’s still plenty of demand for crypto freelancers. So long as you’re visible in the space and you have a reputation for getting things done, you should have more offers than you can physically accept.

As an aside, if you’re still at the beginning of your freelance journey, personal networks and word-of-mouth recommendations can still be enormously valuable. As you begin to apply for specific jobs, cultivate your network and ask around about opportunities. If you can do some work for a friend, colleague, or acquaintance, at the very least that should result in a testimonial and greater visibility – or even more opportunities with them down the line.

For those who aren’t yet at that stage, you’ll need to apply for jobs, which generally means having a few key assets on hand – specifically a CV, cover letter, portfolio, and possibly a website, if you’re feeling enthusiastic (see further below).

Writing A CV

If you’ve never written a CV before, we understand that it can be daunting, and it’s something that's often done quite poorly. After all, this is a document that will be many employers’ first (and potentially last) indication of the kind of person you are and the skills you possess.

It can be tempting to include everything under the sun that might possibly be relevant – your entire employment history, education, extracurricular interests, and more - however, that’s generally a mistake. As well as looking like an amateur (as this is something those new to the workforce often do), it’s simply unnecessary. A clean, brief CV that gives your employer everything they need to make a quick decision, is a far better showcase.

Keep it simple, not full to the brim with unnecessary details. No one cares to know that you walked dogs for pocket money at the age of 12, when you’re now in your twenties and looking for a job as a developer in the Web3 world. Instead, put what’s most important at the top, and summarise your skills and key experience. That way, if an employer is leafing through a stack of CVs and triaging them at a glance, you stand a chance of making the cut.

Resist any temptation to use cheesy gimmicks to grab attention (unusual fonts, drastically bright colours, etc.) unless you have evidence that you know exactly what you’re doing (e.g. if you’re a hotshot designer looking to create something a little bit different). Your experience and competence should speak for itself. Comic Sans isn’t going to help you get the job if your skillset won't. Similarly, it's important to sell yourself and make sure to do yourself justice, but do not be boastful. To paraphrase Margaret Thatcher, being good at what you do is like being a lady: if you have to tell people you are, you’re not.

And, it should go without saying, but never lie. Too many people inflate their skills and experience. A quick search of the web shows this is a surprisingly common problem, with somewhere between a third and a half of applicants admitting to lying about key information. If you’re found out, expect to be passed over for the job, or fired if you have already started the role. In a Web3 world where decentralisation is paramount, word tends to get around rather quickly, too, with the potential to permanently damage your reputation.

If your resume is successful in landing you a job, make sure you get some testimonials from happy clients, if you possibly can. Getting people to go on the record about you is a great way of showing prospective customers that you can in fact do the job they need. On a regular CV you might only have room for one or two lines, but you can include more quotes & reviews on a website or LinkedIn portfolio.

AI Tools For Jobhunters

Writing a top notch CV isn’t easy, and it’s certainly time-consuming. Fortunately, there are tools out there that can help. Given the latest advancements, this is exactly the kind of task that AI excels at. You can use AI software to crunch through the information you provide to produce a bold, clear & concise result.

As a Web3 professional, you should be using AI one way or another already, or at the very least be learning how it will affect your specific industry and what you could be incorporating into your workflow. AI is possibly the most important development of our generation, and it’s going to bring about a dramatic change in productivity. Depending on how you engage with it, this may be of huge benefit to you – or it may become a real problem.

Look at it this way: your job isn’t under threat from AI; it’s under threat from someone who knows how to use AI to do your job better than you do.

If you’re not sure where to start, don’t worry. We’ve put together a powerful list of tools for Web3 freelancers. The more you learn how to use these to help you, the more you’ll be able to offer employers - and that’s true of job applications themselves, too!

OpenAI, the organisation behind ChatGPT, is a good place to start. You can use ChatGPT to compose sections of your CV using the dialog box. Remember, the better the prompts you provide it, the better the output will be. For example:

A prompt such as ‘Write a two-sentence introduction about a web3 coder for a cv’ should return something you can use as a starting point, like:

‘As a skilled Web3 coder, I am experienced in developing decentralized applications and smart contracts on blockchain platforms using languages such as Solidity, JavaScript, and Rust. With a strong understanding of blockchain technology and a passion for innovation, I am committed to creating secure, scalable, and user-friendly solutions for the decentralized web.’

Similarly, Compose AI has a great browser extension that enables you to use AI to compose emails, documents, and more. It integrates well with Google’s suite, including gmail and gdocs. There are also several similar alternatives, both paid and free, depending on your preference.

Try rerunning the same prompts to receive different responses, have a play around, and get a feel for how you can get the most out of AI.

Once you’ve created a killer CV, it’s time to write a cover letter. You can use AI like CoverLetterAI to do that. Simply upload your CV as a PDF, include the job description from the vacancy you’re applying for, and the app will come up with a cover letter perfectly crafted for the job you're after!

Once you’ve used AI to create the perfect CV and cover letter, what else could you use it for to help your employment quest? Well, Kickresume (which will also write your CV and cover letter for you) can convert your CV into a website with a single click! Simply select from a range of customisable templates, and it will do the rest for you – giving you another tool with which to impress recruiters.

Standing Out On LaborX

Now that you’ve got all your assets in line, it’s time to put them to good work. Freelance platforms like LaborX are a great way to get your name and CV out there, and put yourself in front of thousands of potential employers. LaborX is the ideal way to streamline the employment process. Not only can you easily and quickly apply for jobs posted by customers, but you can also upload your own Gigs. These are fixed-price, clearly-defined tasks that employers can browse and purchase.

One of the great strengths of Gigs is that you can specify exactly what service you’re willing to provide – meaning you can offer whatever you want, and play to your own skills and experience. Another benefit is that customers come to you, rather than the other way round. So after the one-off work of creating your Gig, you won’t have to do all the legwork that’s generally associated with finding employment.

However, you’ll still need to stand out against other freelancers (LaborX has more than 30,000 of them, with just under 20 categories) if you’re going to secure the highest-paying opportunities. There are a few different ways you can do that. These include:

  • Make your Gig count. Write clear, concise text that explains exactly what service you offer, providing enough information but without going into unnecessary detail.
  • Include an image or eye-catching graphic as your banner.
  • Make sure your Profile is up-to-date and offers a good sense of your experience.
  • If you have already completed jobs on LaborX, make sure you ask for feedback! This will be included in your reputation score and is one of the most important factors that customers use to decide whether or not to hire you.
  • Ask for testimonials external to the LaborX platform that you can also incorporate.

You can even include your LaborX profile and Gigs on any websites or social media pages you have, and vice versa, so prospective employers can find out whatever they need to know about you, and feel comfortable that everything checks out.

LaborX Premium

There’s one final way that freelancers can stand out on the LaborX platform, and that's with Premium. This is a special service that can be accessed by locking TIME tokens (the native token of the Chrono.Tech ecosystem) in the TimeWarp contract. As well as earning your share of TIME tokens, bought using revenues from Chrono.tech’s suite of blockchain companies and services, you’ll receive a series of attractive benefits on LaborX!

As a freelancer, Premium status will give you priority placement in the search results, making sure you're more visible to customers looking to hire someone like you. As an added bonus, you’ll also receive:

  • Rebates on the 10% platform fee, which will be paid in TIME tokens
  • Referral bonuses for introducing new users to LaborX

Bronze users and above will be boosted in the search results, so by staking just 10 TIME tokens, you could increase your chances of being selected for a job. What’s more, the more TIME you stake, the greater the perks. For example, Platinum users will receive 100% cashback from their share of the platform fee charged to freelancers upon the completion of every job. For top LaborX users, that alone could be worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars per year.

If you'd like to access these Premium benefits, you can buy TIME tokens from TimeX, an Australian crypto exchange launched by Chrono.Tech, or from a variety of decentralised exchanges (DEXs) on different platforms, including Uniswap on Ethereum mainnet, PancakeSwap on Binance Smart Chain, and QuickSwap on Polygon. You can then move tokens between chains using our native TIME Bridge.

All of these chains are supported by LaborX, so you will be able to get paid in tokens using any of these platforms. Pro tip: ensure your profile includes as many chains and tokens as possible for payment options, so you have the widest possible appeal to customers preferring different ecosystems.

Do you have any other ways of standing out as a freelancer? Be sure to let us know by tweeting your ideas to @LaborXNews