Among the types of jobs that are location-independent and, therefore, suitable for digital nomads, freelance digital marketing is a popular option with low entry level costs. To be a successful digital marketer, you need to network constantly and gain stellar reviews.
Creating Your Brand
Instead of cold-calling, the most efficient way to attract new clients is to create a strong personal brand. Start with a well-designed website, then add a blog, and podcasts and/or videos. Demonstrate your expertise by sharing best practice advice and ask for customer testimonials to build a portfolio.
Because you don’t necessarily need a marketing degree to work as a digital marketer, you will have to invest time in acquiring a wide range of skills while working on client projects. Your clients will trust you to grow their brands if they see how much you are investing in your own personal brand.
Blogging and Writing Guest Blog Posts
Here at Digital Nomad Europe we receive many requests to write guest blog posts on a regular basis. Just a few months after launching the website, it attracted 2,000 views per month, and requests for writing guest posts came flooding in.
Writing guest posts for external websites is an excellent way to gain new audiences and build backlinks.
Identifying Potential Clients
To identify your potential clients, first identify your niche. Do you have experience working in a specific industry? Have you come across businesses that aren’t responsive on social media? You could approach them to offer your services.
Networking to generate new business can be done online and offline. Face-to-face networking is still a great way to meet potential new clients. What is your unique selling point? When talking to new clients, can you explain in one sentence how your services can help them and why they should choose you?
If you are a solo entrepreneur, you are most likely to be a good fit for small and medium-sized businesses. Local businesses can be great potential clients for project work, to keep a healthy cashflow while travelling (see also: connecting with local businesses). The main advantage that freelancers have over digital marketing agencies is cost, as freelancers can provide services at more competitive prices. However, you should never undersell yourself for the sake of winning a contract.
How Many Freelance Clients Will You Need To Make a Living?
Once you have decided which types of businesses you want to work with and how much you will charge per project, it should be fairly straightforward to calculate how many clients you will need to make a living.
If you provide SEO services you will need fewer clients, because SEO analysts attract higher salaries. According to the Search Engine Marketing Professionals Organization (SEMPO) the average salary for SEO professionals is approximately $80,000 per year. In terms of hourly rate, freelance digital marketers can expect to earn between $30-$100 an hour, with monthly retainer rates starting at $250-$1,000 (see Entrepreneur article). The expected maximum monthly retainer is $3,000 (but of course, it all depends on negotiations).
Figures from a 2017 Credo survey show that:
- Solo consultants charge on average approximately $150 per hour
- Solo consultants charge less than agencies
- Solo consultants will charge more over time depending on experience
- Strategy consultants can ask for higher hourly rates
- SEO consultants charge on average approximately $170 per hour
Digital Marketing Jobs
Jobs in digital marketing can vary from simple social media channel management to running email campaigns and creating marketing calendars. Examples include roles such as:
- SEO specialist
- Paid social media specialist to execute Facebook/Instagram/Twitter paid social campaigns
- Analytics specialist
- building sales funnel from a landing page to generate sales leads
- creating a marketing strategy for a company
- researching topics and creating content
- running email campaigns
- Google Adwords manager copywriting landing pages
- Creating and managing a content calendar
- Engaging with fans and followers on social media
SEO specialists, paid social media specialists and Analytics specialists are the most sought-after consultants, and pay will reflect that.