#8: How to Build a Strong Portfolio

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Hola, Unfxcked Freelancer👋🏼!

Welcome to another week of getting unstuck, taking control, and going pro as a freelancer. In case you missed my last newsletter, see the full archive of previous issues here.

I clearly recall pitching my writing skills to potential clients in the early days of my freelance journey.

I was filled with passion and confidence that I could write anything. Yet, there was a tiny problem – I had zero writing samples to flaunt (well, except for some interesting poems I wrote on the internet back then).

I’m sure you can guess what happened next – I got zero clients.

I was sending proposals and pitches and no one gave a damn what I was offering.

So, what was the missing piece of my puzzle? A portfolio!

Think of your portfolio as your freelancing résumé. It’s the only proof that backs up your claims of being a professional at whatever you do.

In a world where trust is essential, clients want to see what you’re capable of before they open their wallets. And having a portfolio is like showing them a glimpse of the magic you can create.

So how do you build a strong portfolio like thriving freelancers out there?

Grab your favorite drink, find a comfortable spot, and let’s dive right in.

5 Ways to Build a Strong Portfolio

1. Create for Yourself: Start by creating something for your own pleasure. Blog about your passions, build a personal website, design a logo for yourself, etc. Just do anything that lets you flex your freelancing muscles. Not only does this helps you practice, but it also lets potential clients have a taste of your expertise.

2. Pro Bono Projects: Offer your services for free or at a discounted rate to friends, family, or non-profit organizations. Not only is this a generous gesture, but it also helps you build a diverse portfolio quickly. Plus, they could help you with word-of-mouth advertisements that could lead to paid gigs down the line. But, don’t overdo it.

3. Revamp Old Work: There is something oddly satisfying about old work. That is why you need to dust off those old projects that you once tucked away in your computer. Update them with your current skills, knowledge, and insights. Add new features and you’ll see how a few tweaks can turn outdated pieces into shiny gems.

4. Personal Projects: Sometimes, dare to bring your ideas to life by turning them into personal projects. Whether it’s writing an e-book, creating an app, or starting a design series, these passion projects showcase your dedication and creativity in a way that paid assignments sometimes can’t. Use them to build a strong portfolio.

5. Collaborate: There is power in collaboration. I have seen freelancers team up with each other, regardless of their niches. Collaborative projects not only expand your skill set but also provide a fresh angle to your portfolio. Who knows, a potential client might be looking for exactly that mix of skills you’ve showcased.

Portfolios are like assets. They appreciate and help you grow. More importantly, they boost your confidence when reaching out to clients and they make clients even more confident in your ability. I can vouch for the change it brought into my freelancing journey. So, build your portfolio with eagerness, experiment with different ideas, and soon you’ll be proudly flaunting a collection that speaks volumes about how good your work is.

That’s a wrap, Unfxcked Freelancer!

Catch you on the flip side,

Temidayo – Chief Unfxcker

The Unfxcked Freelancer

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