Here’s the real American dream: you can work from anywhere in the world (this laptop has lived a good, adventurous life), you get to make your own schedule, you’re always working with new clients, you’re your own boss, oh, yeah - and you aren’t strapped for cash, either! Isn’t that what we’re all working towards? Well, another aspect of entrepreneurship is freelancing. Instead of running your own business, you run your own ‘self,’ which offers services that can help other business owners. Freelancing can take on a number of forms: social media management, graphic design, copy editing, or in the case for Alexandra Fasulo, writing.
Alex Fasulo has consistently made six figures writing on Fiverr for the past three years, ranking in yearly income numbers over $350,000. And, she heartfully believes that anyone who wants to do the same - freelance writing or otherwise - can do so, which she teaches through her writing course on Authors Unite. We sat down so she could share her best tips for anyone who wants to kick off a lucrative and successful freelance career - regardless of age or experience (she was 22 when she started).
How This Entrepreneur Makes Six Figures As A Freelancer | Stephanie Burns
1. Go Above And Beyond From The Start
Fasulo first began on Fiverr after she quit her job at age 22, and says that the first year was anything but easy. “I learned very quickly to go above and beyond for every client, and to ascribe to the ‘customer is always right’ policy,” she reflected. “What mattered most was making sure the customer was happy, so that they’d leave a five star review.” When Fasulo got started on Fiverr, she had to work her way up credibility-wise before Fiverr asked her to be a freelancer on their new site, Fiverr Pro. “I went from charging $15 per press release to $100, which was a huge jump for me,” she noted. She credits the fact Fiverr recognized her and the amount of five star reviews she had amassed.
Whether you’re starting your freelance career on a site like Fiverr or Upwork or going at it alone, the same principle applies: give every single client an all-star experience - even if they’re a low budget client. Fasulo was writing for $15, and still treated every client like they were high-ticket. The clients may not have a place to leave five star reviews if you’re independent and only have a website, but they can make referrals, easily. It’s likely that they’ll know someone else who needs your services - if not now, then down the line - and the more they can reflect on their experience with you as positive and glowing, the more likely they’ll be to send you more business.
2. Let People Know Who You Are
While the laptop lifestyle is certainly a benefit to freelancing, humans connect with other humans. So, show your humanness and who you are - it helps potential clients trust you more. “I was always transparent with my appearance on Fiverr, and used a photo to show that I am a real person!” said Fasulo. “This helped me stand out amongst the spam.” On Fiverr, many don’t share photos of themselves or any human aspect since the site is based on anonymous service provisions. Fasulo believes this is part of the reason she was able to gain traction. Trust is powerful.
How can you show up on your website and your social media in a way that makes people feel as though they know you? It’s likely you may never meet the majority of your clients in person - and even if you meet over the phone or over Zoom, it requires trust to take that time investment and consider working with you. Share who you are - pictures of your dog, an overview of your background, and why you care about the work that you do - on your website, your social channels, and anyone else you have a digital presence.
3. Build A Presence Elsewhere, Too
Remember that as a freelancer, you are always marketing yourself. “I’ve reached the point where Fiverr Pro markets my work for me,” said Fasulo. “But to get to that point, you have to be able to market yourself, too. A big part of building my credibility on the site was marketing myself off Fiverr, then having clients purchase my services through Fiverr.”
Consider how you can let more people know that you’re open for business. Fasulo has launched a TikTok account that gives others tips on how to make money as a freelance writer, which also implicitly markets her writing services. Keep yourself top of mind on every social channel that you can - that way, when someone wants your services, they’re more likely to buy from you.
“I never expected that I could make this much money doing what I love while being so young,” Fasulo admitted. Her hard work, commitment to her customers’ happiness, and ability to market herself have paid off.
Those are the three magic ingredients: there’s no reason you can’t make six figures as a freelancer. Market yourself widely, give your best work, and see where it leads.