I’m knee deep in cooking up something special, and I can’t describe how pumped I am. In a nutshell: a super practical online training programme is in the making that will help freelance language professionals create an online presence with zero technical knowledge.
💡You know you should have a basic but good performing website.
💡 Perhaps you already have a website but you’re not quite sure about the functionalities and how to use it best.
💡 You know you should have a mailing list.
💡 You know that potential clients are out there in the online universe that you could find and target with paid ads.
But you feel so overwhelmed by the seemingly endless stuff to know about web tech that you have no idea how to start. You’re just staring at the screen, feeling helpless about the technical bits – and you just keep delaying it.
Does that sound like you?
It did sound like me, 6 years ago.
In my first 7 years as a freelance language teacher in London, I was working with multiple independent language schools, agencies, and I also developed a strong private client base by word of mouth. It all seemed nice and rosy 🌹, until, one day in 2015, one of my biggest clients (an international bank) had to cut its training budget by half. I was relying on their business too heavily. My reaction when the cut was announced:
OMG, I’ll need to find new clients. Fast. 😯
But how am I going to do that? How do I start? I don’t even have a website. I don’t know anything about WordPress. Is that what I’d need anyway? What’s an actual mailing list? Just a bunch of email addresses that I bcc into my emails? Surely, there must be a more professional way to keep in touch with potential clients? I know that my service is amazing, I have no doubt that I’m a great language teacher – but how will potential clients find out about me, and know that I exist?
I really wish there had been someone who could have just answered my questions, without overwhelming me with the tech jargon, and without saying:
Why don’t you ask a professional agency to do it all for you? (Or worse: Why don’t you register on one of those tutoring platforms?)
I didn’t want to outsource my online presence to a marketing agency. I wanted to do it myself. In fact, I wanted to learn how I can do it, and how I can do it fast, without the hassle.
So I sat down and just worked it all out. By myself. With the help of countless books, Youtube videos, webinars, seminars, and endless hours in front of the screen.
Now, I manage multiple websites, handle professional mailing lists, use paid Google and social media ads to generate new leads, run campaigns, check Google Analytics and other platforms to gain insights and track the success of my campaigns. I’ve also set up a podcast, I manage multiple Youtube channels, and put some automations in place to save me time whenever a new inquiry comes in.
I’m telling you: It’s not rocket science. If I can do it, anyone can do it. But I know how painstaking it was to learn all the nitty gritty. And it would have saved me so much time if I could have learnt these basics, from one, reliable source whom I trusted would understand what I wanted and needed.
The only cure for inexperience is to get the experience.Lindsay C. Gibson Phd.
Whether you’re a language professional or you’re working freelance in another professional field, what is the single biggest challenge for you at the moment when it comes to your online presence?
Let me know in the comments below, I’d love to know.