7 Reasons why a blog is a must for every developer even if he is not planning to be a freelancer but if you plan to be one, it is better to start one now
The first priority for new freelancers is always to get clients. Naturally, the path will always start with the freelancing marketplaces like Upwork. It is indeed one of the better paths to start freelancing. But one must remember it isn’t the only source to get a regular source of clients.
As a freelancer, having more than one source of clients can provide the needed stability to your freelancing career. The other better way to get long-term high paying client for me has been my blog.
Building a blog won’t be easy but the benefits of building a blog, in the long run, outweighs everything else. Building assets are never easy and blog is your own asset to your career. A quality blog can help you get the much-needed base that any freelancer or an online entrepreneur needs.
I always recommended developers to start freelancing early (as early as in college or at least alongside the first job) and have a blog and a website and here is why:
1. Blogging Builds Trust
Upwork as a freelancing marketplace works really well for me but I still build my blog because it reinstates a trust factor in clients I send the proposal on Upwork.
It becomes much easier for me to win clients.
The only factor that will differentiate the successful freelancer from not so successful ones is being able to build trust.
The only thing clients know about freelancer from your online profile and samples.
The blog helps build the trust among the clients when they are able to see the things done by the freelancer or read about things done by a freelancer.
A blog not only establishes your expertise in the subject matter but it also allows clients to get a quick overview of other areas of your expertise.
2. Become an Expert
The best part of being a blogger is, you are seen as an expert on the subject matter.
The important aspect is, if you have a blog and you prefer sharing content regularly, you will actually become an expert on the niche.
As a blogger, it is easy for a freelancer to become an expert and this is one thing that can give you the much-needed edge over other freelancers for sure.
3. Connect With Like Minded People
Everytime you publish a new blog you generate an opportunity to grow your online business, help readers find who you are with an opportunity to convert them into a client. But everyone who reads your blog may not be a potential client. There will be readers who want to connect with you purely for your opinions and ideas.
As an example, if you are a PHP developer and blog about WordPress, you will not only connect with potential WordPress clients but also other WordPress developers who may be looking for what you have shared.
Once you are connected with like-minded people, it can open up many synergy opportunities.
Let me share my example here: My post about optimizing vBulletin brings in many potential clients for sure but then it also helped me connect with other vBulletin experts. If I am stuck at some point, I can take help from them or even outsource some part of the work to them.
Recently, when I was looking for writers, I hired them from my IMTips readers itself.
So, blogs not only helps you build clients but it can also help you connect with like-minded people and help you in more than one way.
4. New Businesses Opportunities
As a blogger when you connect with your readers, it can help you explore new ideas and even venture out to other business areas which might eventually turn out to be completely new businesses.
I ventured few partnerships in the past with people I was connected via my forums or blogs. Some worked well and others failed miserably but the point is, it helped with new opportunities.
As and when you are looking for new opportunities, your blogging community can help you with ideas as well as opportunities.
5. Opens Door to the World of SEO
An informative blog gives Google the content to analyze and over time can help you rank well in search for many related keywords and terms.
SEO as a source of clients is important because very few freelancers take that route.
Google brings a lot of quality traffic to each one of my websites and it is one of the best sources of high paying clients for me. Still, I see a lot of freelancers not willing to dedicate time and effort to build a blog. They are busy trying out different online sites and create profiles to attract clients but do not consider blogging
Setting up a freelance profile on distinct websites is a good approach to start with but once you establish yourself as an experienced freelancer, it becomes important to have other sources where you aren’t pulling clients but clients are coming your way.
6. Builds an Online Brand
A blog is still the most useful tools (even in the age of social media) to spread the word about your services and build a brand online.
Most freelancers will prefer a 5-page website instead of a blog and I will tell you the reason why? Most of the freelancers want to start earning overnight.
Freelancing is a long-term game and should be ready to dedicate the time.
If your perception is to get rich in a short span of time do something else and do not consider being a freelancer.
As a freelancer, be ready to work up the rate chart by providing more value to your clients so they want to be working with you over and over again.
7. Social Media Marketing
Marketing by connecting with your audience is the need for the hour. Call it social media marketing or something else. Connecting with the readers on WhatsApp may be termed as social media marketing but the fact of the matter is, it is a method to interact with the audience.
Social media marketing can be done without a blog as well but once you have a blog, it is much easier to interact with the audience over a personal channel like an email and promote your services. On top of that, as a blogger, when you have an interactive audience, it is easier to be on new social media platform and build a following instantly.
What I mean is, let’s say you are only on Facebook and have started a new Youtube channel. It’s tough to promote your YouTube Channel to your Facebook followers because it may not get the needed reach on Facebook but if you have a blog, you can email your reader to subscribe to your Youtube channel.
If you plan to start a development blog, here are the types of content to write.
Further Reading …