Hello SOTGC community,
This year has flown by! I feel like I say that every year, but this year has really been an adventure. This was my first year as a freelance writer. I have worked as a freelance writer for the past decade, but 2014 was the first year I bit the bullet and gave it my full effort without the safety net of a “day job.”
It’s been a fun roller coaster, like with most things in life, and I feel I owe a lot of my success this year to Twitter. Twitter? Yep, Twitter.
Social media has become one of the number one tools I use to network. Networking as someone who is self-employed is essential because ultimately, you are responsible for marketing yourself. I’ve built a good base of business through connections on Twitter.
- Six degrees of separation. No matter what industry you’re in, you always end up meeting someone who knows someone you know. An introduction online can quickly turn into an invitation to meet in person, which can lead to a discussion about ways to collaborate. When you reach out to someone online, pretend you are talking to them in person. Bring the same enthusiasm and politeness you would extend if meeting someone for the first time.
- Research. Start following people in your industry. Companies often post job listings and even if they don’t, you can always research their website to see if your skills might be a fit for their company. They may not currently have a position open, but having your name and resume on file may lead to opportunities down the road.
- It’s fun. There is a strategy when it comes to social media. But I have made connections with other writers, with fellow Kansans (go Jayhawks!), and women entrepreneurs in similar situations as me. Not everything has to be calculated. Not every connection has to lead to a job. Be friendly online and create a network that you find inspiration from as you learn and grow in your field. Just one tweet can be the message you need for that day.
These are just three ways I’ve been able to grow my freelance writing business with the use of Twitter. I have personally experienced every scenario above and it has not only helped my business network grow, but it has also led me to some really fantastic people and friendships.
Social media sometimes get a bad rap for being too invasive, but use it as a tool to connect with others and usher in the endless opportunities. How have you used social media to further your career and connect with others? Tweet me with your stories!