Michael Baron has been a designer since he graduated college in 2015. Initially, out of college, he worked at a print shop, managing and coordinating different projects. He would receive designs from designers and then make sure they got implemented correctly on whatever they were printing/producing.
Eventually, he wanted to get into the actual designing himself and landed a job working at the New York Jets, where he worked for a few years. From there, Michael moved on to work as a designer for a sports management company. Unfortunately, after a short few months of being at the sports management company Covid 19 hit, the sports industry was crushed and Michael started freelancing full-time.
Michael always did freelance work on the side, but it working full time as a freelancer was a whole other story.
Our full interview with Michael is below
Main Points and Lessons Learned
Upwork, Fiverr, and other freelance websites can be tough
For those that are looking to do freelance work. Often a great way to drive clients your way is to sign up on a website such as Fiverr or Upwork. You can create a profile describing what you do and people who need your services will be directed to you.
Unfortunately, these sites can sometimes be frustrating for certain professions, especially ones that are really common such as graphic design. The pool of talent is really large and since there are freelancers from all around the world, often it can be a race to the bottom of who will do a job for less.
I am not saying you can’t have success on Upwork or Fiverr, instead, you just need to be patient. Initially, you might have to do some jobs for less money in order to build your reputation. Eventually, however, you will be able to charge your normal rate because your reputation will speak for itself and customers will know you are worth it.
Direct marketing as a freelancer is a great way to get customers
Don’t be afraid to reach out to customers directly. Going door to door or picking up the phone and calling people is less and less common these days but is a great way to gain customers.
Also, use your personal connections the best you can. You have a big network that surrounds you that you don’t even realize. Start talking to people and asking them if they might need your services. You will be amazed at how quickly you find customers that way.
Get in touch with Michael