Want to do freelance work to get capital to start a business? Ask yourself these questions

Capital, capital, capital, it is one of those things that can keep you wondering how to actually start a business in Kenya in the shape and form similar to the picture you’ve been playing and replaying in your mind lately.

If only you had a certain amount of money you could pick and use to start, life would be really great. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case.

Sometimes the money you think you need is ten to twenty times what you make on a monthly basis.

 Note that Niabusiness has linked to some of the resources on this page (some listed below) using affiliate links. When you click on something and purchase it, Niabusiness will receive a commission from every successful sale / referral, at no extra cost to you. 

Does that mean you only have to see your business inside your head and not in front of your eyes? It depends…on what you really want and what you do thereafter – which hopefully should be in alignment with what you really want – which is to start a business.

In this article, we are going to look at how you can make more money with your skills. This money of course is going to be part of your capital. You have a business to start, so that’s where I want your focus to be.

1. How much do I need to make as a freelancer?

This is the first question you have to give serious thought. It isn’t the only question you should focus on at this point.

There are many more related to it. For this article, we are only going to focus on this question – and this one: How much would it cost to start a business (like the one) I want?

The second question encourages you to do research, to learn a little bit about the industry you want to be a part of, to listen to the stories of people who have been where you want to be.

In other words, it doesn’t allow you to rely only on your judgment to determine how much money you are going to need to start.

When you do your research, brace yourself for surprises because sometimes you might realize that your estimates were either too high or too low.

2. How do I know my skills, before I get started as a freelancer online?

Different people may have different definitions to the word skill. In this article, we’ll simply define skill as something you do very well.

Take a pen and paper and list down your skills.

See the ones you really do very well and the ones that you need more time to master and then settle on the ones you want to do for pay.

For example, someone who loves reading business books, writing, spotting factual and grammatical errors and correcting them can decide to become an editor and proofreader for the numerous small business websites, whitepapers, tutorials, ebooks and the millions of sales pages getting uploaded / published on the internet everyday.

This is work they can do both online and offline unlike some type of freelance work.

3. Can people pay for my skills?

The quick and short answer is yes.

If you do your best, then worry not about people thinking that the value of your skills is worth nothing.

Know your skill – and start reaching out to the people, organizations and companies you know / think are a good fit for what you want to do as a freelancer.

4. How much am I going to charge for my freelance services?

That depends on your skill, how well you do your work, the type of clients you meet, how much you get done and what you think your skills are worth.

Study your industry to learn more about the rates other freelancers with similar skills accept, and then come up with your own rates.

Your rates will help you determine how long it will take you before you reach your golden figure and start that new business.

5. How do I get freelance work that pay well?

There are tons of websites that connect freelancers with the people who need their services.

Clients come to the sites to choose who they want to work on their project.

Of course several freelancers with similar or better skills than you will always be bidding for the same work as you (not always the case) and it is the client’s discretion to choose whoever he or she wants to work with.

Then there are many agencies who recruit freelancers and give them a cut of what they get for the work that comes their way.

When they receive work, they send it to you, you work on it and they give you a fraction of the money they are paid.

A lot of these agencies have their ads on popular classified ad websites  and job boards as well.

These are all great ways to get work.

You can join and get work from Upwork.com, Fiverr, PeoplePerHour, Freelancer.com or even place ads under the services category of many classified ad sites like OLX Kenya, CraigsList or Gumtree.com.

Then there is my favourite: starting your own WordPress website to tell the world (the people who can benefit from what you have to offer) about your skills (what you can do for them).

In our example of the editor and proofreader above, you can create a site and write pages about what you do, answer questions your clients may have in in-depth blog posts, include your rates, a contact page, a hire me page and more.

Don’t be afraid to use a combination of all or any of these to get well paying gigs.

You can also introduce prospective clients to your services by writing them short emails about what you can do for them, and linking back to pages on your site (from inside the emails you send) where they can find additional information.

It’s called cold emailing.

6. What if the money I earn as a freelancer isn’t enough?

Use what you have saved to start. If it is not really really enough then borrow some money to make it enough.

Borrowing only takes two things: asking and a solemn promise to return the money on the agreed date.

Do everything you can to avoid any drama that may ruin the relationship between you and whoever loans you money.

Niabusiness Recommendations – Tools, Resources

Book Recommendations – Buy & start reading these ebooks on your device now

  1. The Miracle Equation: You Are Only Two Decisions Away From Everything You Want by Hal Elrod
  2. The Art of War: Complete Texts and Commentaries by Sun Tzu, Thomas Cleary
  3. Secrets of Self-Mastery by Mitch Horowitz
  4. Master Your Emotions: A Practical Guide to Overcome Negativity and Better Manage Your Feelings (Mastery Series Book 1) by Thibaut Meurisse, Kerry J Donovan
  5. Coleman’s Laws: Twelve essential medical secrets which could save your life by Dr Vernon Coleman
  6. The Elements of Moral Philosophy by James Rachels
  7. Loving Your Spouse When You Feel Like Walking Away: Real Help for Desperate Hearts in Difficult Marriages by Gary Chapman
  8. Renovating Your Marriage Room by Room by Dr. Johnny C. Parker, Jr
  9. The Billionaire Who Wasn’t: How Chuck Feeney Secretly Made and Gave Away a Fortune by Conor O’Clery
  10. Here’s The Deal: Everything You Wish a Lawyer Would Tell You About Buying a Small Business by Joel Ankney
  11. Buy Then Build: How Acquisition Entrepreneurs Outsmart the Startup Game by Walker Deibel
  12. The Art & Science of Respect: A Memoir by James Prince by James Prince, Jasmine Waters
  13. #BreakIntoVC: How to Break Into Venture Capital And Think Like an Investor Whether You’re a Student, Entrepreneur or Working Professional (Venture Capital Guidebook Book 1) by Bradley Miles, Carol Tietsworth
  14. Leading with Cultural Intelligence: The Real Secret to Success by David A. Livermore
  15. 101 So Bad, They’re Good Dad Jokes by Elias Hill, Katherine Hogan
  16. The Sleep Solution: why your sleep is broken and how to fix it by W. Chris Winter
  17. Angel: How to Invest in Technology Startups—Timeless Advice from an Angel Investor Who Turned $100,000 into $100,000,000 by Jason Calacanis
  18. Sulwe by Lupita Nyong’o, Vashti Harrison
  19. Ruthless: A Memoir by Jerry Heller, Gil Reavill
  20. The Upside of Stress: Why stress is good for you (and how to get good at it) by Kelly McGonigal
  21. How to Be a Great Boss by Gino Wickman, René Boer
  22. Who Moved My Cheese: An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life by Spencer Johnson
  23. Small Giants: Companies That Choose to Be Great Instead of Big, 10th-Anniversary Edition by Bo Burlingham
  24. The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing: Exposed and Explained by the World’s Two by Al Ries, Jack Trout
  25. My Favourite Dictators: The Strange Lives of Tyrants by Chris Mikul, Glenn Smith
  26. Influence – Science and Practice – The Comic by Robert B. Cialdini, Nathan Lueth
  27. What Every BODY is Saying: An Ex-FBI Agent’s Guide to Speed-Reading People by Joe Navarro, Marvin Karlins
  28. The Dynamics of Conflict: A Guide to Engagement and Intervention by Bernard S. Mayer
  29. The Time Trap: The Classic Book on Time Management by Pat Nickerson, Alec Mackenzie
  30. Choose Yourself! by James Altucher, Dick Costolo
  31. Get a F*cking Grip: How to Get Your Life Back on Track by Matthew Kimberley
  32. You Can’t Teach a Kid to Ride a Bike at a Seminar, 2nd Edition: Sandler Training’s 7-Step System for Successful Selling by David H. Sandler
  33. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
  34. How to Win at the Sport of Business: If I Can Do It, You Can Do It by Mark Cuban
  35. The Greenhouse Approach: Cultivating Intrapreneurship in Companies and Organizations by Chitra Anand
  36. DotCom Secrets: The Underground Playbook for Growing Your Company Online by Russell Brunson, Dan Kennedy

Domain registrars – get your own domain name

  1. Namesilo – get a .com for $8.99. Use the coupon code BP to get $1 off.
  2. Namecheap
  3. KenyaWebExperts – get .com & .co.ke domains for less than KSh 1000/yr.

Web hosting companies – get hosting for your blog or website

  1. KenyaWebExperts – starting at KSh 2,100 / year.
  2. HostGator – starting at $3.95/mo if paid annually.
  3. Bluehost
  4. Namecheap
  5. Namesilo
  6. WPEngine
  7. Garanntor Kenya

Plugins for your WordPress site

  1. MonsterInsights
  2. OptinMonster
  3. WPForms

Hire freelancers to help with tasks you’d rather outsource

Check Niabusiness Classifieds. Place an ad for free. See categories you can outsource tasks in.

For more recommendations, check Niabusiness Tools & Resources page.

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