Being a translator is exciting and engaging but sometimes challenging. Being a freelance translator is the same but more challenging occasionally. Self-employed people are more often faced with searching for a project(s) and should be professional in their area and good self-marketers for their brand. Agree that it is easier to filter the potential offers and choose projects that could interest you rather than find clients through the freelance platform. So this article overviews how to make the customers come to you and build your professional brand.

A beginners guide to LinkedIn for translators

1. One person - various platforms

Now is a time of social media, so you can use a list of platforms to promote yourself. The most popular are LinkedIn, Xing, Twitter, Facebook, etc. Moreover, you can use TikTok, create groups in Telegram, or use the latest released Threads. The best thing about using a few platforms is targeting extra audiences and creating different content. Publish your work achievements to LinkedIn, discuss hot topics on Facebook, or generate entertainment videos about fails on TikTok. Much you'll try - the more you'll get. Do not forget to interlink your profiles so users can find more information about your brand.

2. Create a well-look profile picture

The first thing visitors will see is your picture. Here, we suggest being individual first of all. Some situational photos with a smile or in your industry context will win more than a straight profile shot. Your photo is a first impression, and it is so important. Use the same photo throughout all your profiles to simplify identification and recognition. Do not change the main photo often; keep your brand face permanent.

3. Create a detailed description

Good personal description is best for you and recruiters or employers. It can save a lot of time for both sides by avoiding unnecessary communication. Add information about your experience, preferred industries, and languages, and mention from the start if you are (not) open to new offers. An example would be: "I worked in the nutrition industry for a while, so I also translate products in food, health, diet, fitness, and cooking." Please write in complete sentences, make it a clear and cohesive text, and ensure no spelling mistakes.


4. Referrals and reviews

Word of mouth is a great tool to promote yourself. You aren't saying something - other people do this for you. Ask your previous clients about providing their reviews about your work and show the testimonials on your pages. LinkedIn, for example, provides such an option from scratch so users can leave comments just inside your profile. 92% of buyers prefer services with reviews from the trusted source!

5. Portfolio and samples

Provide a resource where you can show your best work. It can be a Google Drive, at least, or (it will be better) a small website. Add some stand-out freelance projects you have done or are currently working on, including translation samples. This is especially true for work where you have covered complex marketing tasks like translating slogans, puns, idioms, CTAs, etc. As a freelance translator, showcasing your project experience and skills rather than traditional employment history is important. Quality matters more than quantity, so feel free to omit projects that don't highlight your expertise.

6. Your education and certification

In numerous countries, it is possible to acquire certificates as a language expert in various fields. If you possess any of these certificates, highlight this information. This information will symbolize quality and reliability and show customers that you continuously improve your skills.


7. Communicate with colleagues

Online communities and different platforms allow connecting with other professionals and sharing the experience. For instance, consider joining a LinkedIn or Facebook group for translation experts in your target language or about your target expertise. Networking can significantly improve your chances of success. Besides getting knowledge, you have two significant advantages: You can increase your visibility. Share your content and helpful tips, and answer questions. You can get more job proposals. Members can post details of projects they cannot take on themselves, or managers can use such communities to find a new team member.

8. Show your self-organization skills

One of the crucial skills for freelancers is the ability to self-manage workload. Clients often look for freelancers who efficiently manage their work, meet deadlines, and ensure quality. Highlight this point in your content or profile - Write a short post about your tools or time management strategies. By highlighting your self-organization skills in your content, portfolio, or social media profiles, you attract potential clients and differentiate yourself as a dependable and efficient freelance translator. Remember that in freelancing, your ability to manage your work is often as important as your expertise.

9. Measure the success

As we mentioned earlier, you can use different platforms to promote yourself - social media, communities, and even entertainment platforms. From the start, track the success of each to understand the most profitable for you. This will allow you to direct efforts on the beneficial sources and scale success.

10. Do what you love

All these tips will work only on one condition - you should love what you do. The inspiration of a true enthusiast is difficult to fake, and your audience will feel the insincerity. So, if you are not a big fan of social media - don't try to generate content just because you think you should. Authenticity matters more than the quantity of content. It's fine to be selective about your online presence. Instead, focus on providing as much valuable information as possible in your preferred channels. Whether it's maintaining an informative blog, actively participating in professional forums, or sharing insightful posts on LinkedIn, do what feels right for you.

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