How To Start Freelance Digital Marketing (Beginners Guide)

Freelance Digital Marketing
Table of Contents

Freelance digital marketing is an immensely rewarding and flexible career choice, offering you the opportunity to work from anywhere with diverse clients and projects. However, starting your journey is the most important step you take, as the foundation you lay will determine your long-term success. Therefore, this guide will walk you through all the fundamental steps needed to start a successful freelance digital marketing business. By the end, you’ll understand everything related to starting your freelancing journey, from the importance of branding to mastering social media.

What Is Freelance Digital Marketing

Freelance digital marketing involves providing digital marketing services to businesses, nonprofits, and organizations as contracted freelancers. Digital marketing freelancers work with clients on a contract basis, helping them with their digital marketing campaigns. 

Digital marketing freelancers typically work on a project-by-project basis, and their clients range from small businesses to large corporations. The services they usually offer include content marketing, social media marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), email marketing, and online advertising.

What Are The Biggest Responsibilities Of Freelance Digital Marketers? 

Similar to fully-employed digital marketers, freelancers also have a range of responsibilities. The biggest difference, however, is freelance digital marketers can choose their responsibilities to suit their liking. Their biggest responsibilities include:

  • Strategy Development: Freelance digital marketers consult with clients to understand the client’s objectives. They then create a comprehensive digital marketing strategy that meets these objectives. This usually includes a lot of market research to understand the competitive landscape and customer preferences.
  • Creating Marketing Materials: Creating content that stands out is a must if you want to be successful in digital marketing, which is why a significant part of digital marketing is creating engaging content that attracts and retains customers. This can include blog posts, social media updates, newsletters, and more.
  • SEO: Freelance digital marketers often optimize websites and content to rank higher on search engine results, driving organic traffic to the client’s website.
  • Analyzing Campaign Performance: They need to track the performance of their marketing campaigns, using tools such as Google Analytics and eclincher, to measure key metrics like engagement, conversion rates, and return on investment (ROI). This data is used to adjust strategies as needed.
  • PPC Advertising: Freelancers also manage pay-per-click advertising campaigns on platforms like Google Ads or Facebook Ads.
  • Client Relationship Management: Since they work with multiple clients, freelance digital marketers also need to manage relationships, deliver on their promises, and ensure client satisfaction.
  • Keeping Up with Trends: The digital marketing landscape changes instantly, so it is pertinent to stay updated with the latest trends and tools to provide effective strategies and solutions.
  • Social Media Management: Managing the client’s presence on various social media platforms, creating, scheduling, and posting content, and engaging with the audience are key responsibilities. They often employ social media management tools to help them manage their clients’ accounts more efficiently.

    I mostly do social media management for clients, designing, creating, and improving businesses’ social media profiles, and a tool like eclincher elevated my entire management approach. Now, I manage 10x more clients in half the time, with better analytical performance, ensuring their accounts rank better than their competitors. 

5 Steps To Start Digital Marketing

Digital marketing is fairly easy to start. However, if you want to stand out from other digital marketers, you must ensure you lay your foundation correctly. Here are the steps to starting a successful digital marketing career:

Start freelance digital marketing

1. Learn Branding

I can’t emphasize this enough, a company’s brand is the most important aspect of its business. Once it’s tarnished, it is incredibly difficult to build it back up. If you can help a client build a brand that is easily identifiable, relatable, and perceived as good, your client will have success, and you, as a digital marketer, will also be successful. 

Therefore, it is important that you understand the importance of a strong, consistent brand and how it influences consumers’ perceptions of a company. You should make it a priority to learn how to create a unique brand identity, including the design of a logo, choice of colors, typography, and the voice and tone used in communication.  Once you’ve learned how to convey the brand’s message, values, and personality effectively through various channels, your client will be thanking you and even refer you to other businesses. 

2. Study Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

SEO is an effective strategy to help businesses stand out from their competitors. SEO increases visibility and drives organic traffic to their website. A typical SEO strategy involves optimizing website content and structure, using keywords, creating high-quality content, and building backlinks. 

You should learn about on-page and off-page SEO strategies, keyword research, and how search engine algorithms work – how they penalize certain strategies and elevate others.

3. Master Social Media Management

In the current digital age, social media reigns supreme when it comes to low-cost, effective marketing – with a simple post, you can reach millions of people. Therefore, social media is an essential tool for engaging with consumers and promoting products and services. 

Learn how to create and manage profiles on different social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn. 

Learn from my mistakes, employ the use of a social media management tool from the start, don’t wait until you have more clients. Trust me, if you offer quality services to one client, more clients will come pouring in. Once you employ a social media management tool like eclincher, learn its intuitive interface and understand how to create compelling content, interact with followers, manage social media advertising, and measure the success of social media campaigns by using the tool. 

Remember, if your foundation is laid correctly, your chances of becoming a successful freelance digital marketer are 10x higher. 

4. Understand Video Marketing

Ever seen a TikTok, Instagram Short, or YouTube Short that just stuck with you? Video is a powerful medium for storytelling and engagement, if done correctly, it can be one of the most effective ways of increasing organic traffic that rolls over into sales. 

Learn how to plan, shoot, edit, and share engaging videos that promote a brand or product. My favorite platforms for video marketing are TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram (shorts). You should also learn how to optimize video content for SEO and use analytics, like eclincher, to evaluate the performance of your videos. 

5. Study Latest Trends

Digital marketing is constantly evolving. Find tools to help you stay updated with the latest trends, tools, and platforms. This could include finding a new social media platform, changes in SEO best practices, updates in search engine and social media algorithms, and advancements in AI and data analytics. It could even be a new, highly effective content marketing strategy. 

By continuously learning and adapting, you can stay ahead in the digital marketing field. 

What Tools Do Freelance Digital Marketers Need?

It depends on the area of digital marketing you’d like to focus on, but most freelance digital marketers can agree that the following tools are a must if you want to be successful:

Project management tools: You can use project management tools, such as Trello or Asana, to keep track of tasks, deadlines, and client communication.

Social media management tools: To manage social media accounts efficiently, you can use social media management tools, such as eclincher, to schedule posts, analyze engagement, and monitor mentions.

Email marketing tools: You can use email marketing tools to create and send email newsletters, track open rates, and analyze campaign performance

SEO tools: To optimize websites for search engines, such as SEMrush, to conduct keyword research, analyze backlinks, and track rankings

Design tools: Design tools, such as Canva or Adobe Creative Suite, to create graphics, infographics, and other visual content for marketing campaigns

How Do Freelancers Benefit From eclincher?

Using eclincher as your go-to freelance digital marketing tool, you’ll unlock a plethora of benefits. My favorite benefits include:

  • Time Saving: With eclincher, you can schedule posts in advance for multiple social media platforms, saving you time and allowing for consistent posting. All your clients’ accounts are also on one single dashboard, making it easy to track everything associated with the client’s social media profiles. 
  • Analytics: The platform offers social media analytics, allowing freelancers to track their client’s social media performance and optimize their marketing strategies for better results. 
  • Engagement: eclincher’s social inbox feature lets you manage and respond to all social media interactions from one place, helping to boost engagement with your audience.

eclincher has a lot of additional benefits, such as content curation, influencer discovery, and team and social media collaboration. Ultimately, by using eclincher, you save time and can streamline all your social media management efforts – giving you time to manage more clients or do something relaxing. 

What Are The Biggest Downsides To Becoming A Freelance Digital Marketer?

In my experience, these are the hardest challenges and downsides I had to overcome to become a digital freelance marketer. It is important to note once you have a portfolio of clients and figure out all the kinks and issues, there are only a few career paths that are as rewarding as a freelance digital marketer. Some of the biggest downsides include:

  • Inconsistent Income: Unlike a regular job, freelancers experience fluctuations in income. Workload and income can fluctuate from month to month because they rely on project-based work and may not have a steady stream of clients initially. 
  • Finding Clients: You got to hustle to find clients at first. Marketing yourself and networking is crucial in freelancing. Once your portfolio expands, onboarding new clients becomes easier. 
  • No Benefits: You’ll usually not get the traditional benefits that regular employees do, such as health insurance, paid vacation, or retirement plans.
  • Work-Life Balance: Without a fixed work schedule, it can be hard to maintain a healthy work-life balance. You’ll often find yourself working during off-hours or on weekends. This can lead to feeling isolated and burnout. 
  • Continuous Learning: The digital marketing landscape changes rapidly, and you must continually learn and adapt to new trends and tools.
  • Responsibility: You handle every aspect of their business, from finding clients and managing projects to accounting and taxes, which can be overwhelming. This is why you need immense discipline – if you don’t do the work, no one will!
  • Self-employment taxes: You are responsible for paying your own taxes, which can be more complex than traditional employment taxes.
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Frequently Asked Questions

How does the demand for freelance digital marketers compare to other freelance professions?

The demand for freelance digital marketers is very high. Most people can create content themselves, but it takes skills and knowledge to market a brand successfully. 

Can someone with little to no prior marketing experience pursue freelance digital marketing? 

Yes, they can, but they need to ensure a solid foundation before jumping into freelancing. If they follow the steps set out in this article, they’ll be set!

Is it necessary for freelance digital marketers to have their own website?

No, at first, I didn’t have my own website. I used freelancing websites like Fiverr and Upwork to search for clients. However, as your portfolio expands, you’ll need a website to showcase your “brand” and services to potential new clients. 

The Bottom Line

Starting your freelance digital marketing journey is a process of continuous learning, adaptation, and growth. You will be well-equipped to establish your freelance career by understanding branding, mastering SEO and social media, leveraging video marketing, and staying updated with the latest trend. Remember, to use tools like eclincher to your advantage. From scheduling posts to freeing up time and providing useful insight into social media post performance, onboarding eclincher can only enhance your freelancing career. Feel free to reach out to us, and we’ll help you get started with a 14-day free trial. 

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