My educational background has NOTHING to do with marketing or social media.
I have a PhD in Microbiology and Immunology and 2 bachelor’s degrees: one in nursing and one in biology (completely over-educated person over here).
So how did I become a freelance social media manager?
Here’s the abridged version of that story.
I was in grad school and I needed extra money to pay the bills.
Though I knew I needed extra money to pay my bills, I was not sure which skills people would pay me for.
Because I had a bachelor’s degree in nursing, I came up with the idea to tutor nursing students who wanted to pass their licensing exam.
I did this on the side for a while but then lost interest because tutoring meant I had to leave my house to meet my students. This was not particularly ideal as I had just had my son.
So I started looking into things I could do from home.
I eventually landed on freelance social media manager.
How I Became A Freelance Social Media Manager
Start By Picking A Skill
I did a little research came and across social media management as a field that was and still is quickly gaining steam.
A lot of businesses are still jumping on the social media wagon and the truth is that most of them have no clue how social media works.
Although I’m pretty introverted, I absolutely LOVE social media and the opportunity it gives everyone who leverages it well to get their name out there. So I decided, I wanted to become a social media manager.
Be Ready To Invest In Your Skill
The person who got me interested in social media management was Sandi Krakowski.
Although I had played around social media a lot, I needed to know how to turn it into a business.
She held a paid webinar providing information on what it meant to be a social media manager and I invested in it. This was more than 5 years ago.
That investment saved me A LOT of time and helped me get on the fast-track to starting my own freelance business.
I know we all don’t just have money laying around waiting to be spent on courses. But if there is anything I have learned from building my blog and business, it is that sometimes you will have to make that temporary monetary sacrifice in order to achieve the long-term goal.
After I took the course, I kept on reading every piece of information I could find on the different social media networks, what worked on each and what did not work. I learned a little bit of copy writing so I could craft posts that would move people to action.
Let me tell you a truth a lot of people gloss over: If you want to build a profitable business, you are going to invest your time and money into learning.
There’s no way around it.
Use What You Have Learned To Build Proof
Now, it was time to build something with all the knowledge I had acquired. So I started a blog. I did experiments and reported them. I kept on learning and implementing.
I got on Pinterest and started joining relevant group boards to drive traffic. I saw results.
I started doing my own FB ads with $5 and $10 budgets to test my knowledge. I saw results.
I started researching hashtags and using them on Twitter with my posts. I saw results.
Why did I do that ? Because if I was going to SELL my client, I wanted to show them that what I would do for them WOULD work.
Traffic to my blog began to grow and so did my social media presence. Everything I had learned started to pay off.
You don’t have to start a blog and build a social media following to become a freelance social media manager. That was my path but to be honest, having a blog and social media presence GREATLY helps with getting the conversation moving with potential clients.
Get Your First Client
I got my first social media client from Craigslist. (Finding your first clients for a freelance business is a whole other post I will be writing soon).
She was looking for a social media manager and I reached out. I shot her a quick e-mail saying I was her girl and invited her to check out my blog and social media networks.
She loved it.
She took me on and the rest is history.
This one client was the source of 75% of my clients during my first year as a social media manager. as she keeps referring me to everyone.
Before I knew it, I was making an extra $1200 per month as a social media manager!
And that, my friend, is how I became a freelance social media manager.
It was not easy – especially since I had a full-time job and a family not to mention responsibilities with my local church.
But there is something about seeing your fridge empty and being behind on your bills that will kick you in the pants and make you charge towards your goals regardless of the obstacles.
What’s the point ?
The point is you don’t need to be formally trained in a particular skill to offer it as a freelance service.
The point is if you will dedicate yourself to it, you can choose and learn a skill in the next 60, 90 or 120 days that will make a WORLD of change for you and your family.
Here’s a little graphic to help you remember what I just said.
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