How to Make Money Online as a Freelancer

How do I get started as a freelancer online?

You may have heard about Freelancing at some point, but maybe you’re not quite sure about what it is. Freelancing is simply working on a for hire basis. When someone needs a job done, but doesn’t need someone full time they may post a listing asking for help. If you get hired on by this company you are considered a freelance worker.

Freelancing is great for someone that is trying to fund a business, but is also working a full time job elsewhere. It’s also great for someone that is running a business, but has a little time on their hands to do side jobs. Anyone can freelance no matter what skill you have. It could as simple as mowing lawns or as complex as creating a mobile app for a company. It all just depends on your skill set and hustle.

Where can I Find Potential Jobs?

So finding work online might be easier than you think, it just takes a little bit of searching to find the right kinds of jobs. I’m going to list a few places you can try out, but it is far from the only places you can go in order to find work. It all depends on your creativity level. Enough with the small talk though, let’s get to the freelancer list.

Fiverr

Fiverr* is one of the most common places you can go to sell your services. So if you’re looking to sell services, especially coding and design work, you can post your jobs here. The name Fiverr comes from the fact that work can start as low as $5 for people to buy. Despite this you can charge more than this if you’d like.

Upwork

Upwork is a site where freelancers can go in order to find companies looking for work. It’s a little different, and a lot more professional, than Fiverr. Users can contact you for work, but primarily freelancers are there to find work from businesses posting requests.

A business will post there requirements on the site and what price they’re looking to spend. From there freelancers will submit their offers and are given a chance to demonstrate why they’re the right choice for the job. If the company picks you, than you perform the work and get paid. Companies can rate you based on your performance so be sure to do awesome work.

Social Media

If you have a good following on social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube than you can potentially have people reach out to you on there. You can simply make an agreement via email or messenger systems and bill them via a platform like PayPal for the work. When I do work like this I like to bill on a deposit basis. Basically the customer puts a certain amount down for the job and pay the rest at completion. I deal with websites so it’s less likely for me to get ripped off since I can always just take the site down if they don’t pay.

YouTube is fantastic for doing freelance work because you can make videos showing off your skills or even giving some tips for free. If you can gain trust via your free content you may find people more willing to pay you for your services on a freelancing level.

LinkedIn ProFinder

The LinkedIn ProFinder page is a place where people can find a vetted professional freelancer. To get listed on the ProFinder part of the website you’ll need to meet certain requirements. For starters you’ll need a LinkedIn profile, I would strongly suggest filling out all of your info and making sure your artwork looks good also. LinkedIn also likes you to have some recommendations or endorsements from some of your LinkedIn connections before they’ll put you on their ProFinder listing.

With that being said, if you have clients on your LinkedIn profile it would be a good idea to get them to give you some endorsements on your skills. Not only will it help you get into the program, but it will increase your chances of being selected by potential clients. Overall the ProFinder section works much like UpWork, but it is tied in with the LinkedIn system so one could argue it’s an even better option to find work.

Website

If you create your own website you can populate it with useful information and content to show off your skills. With a website of your own you can post portfolios, add blog articles, and place some testimonials from past clients.

Having a website can make your content easier to find via web search compared to the other options listed because everything on the site will be all about you. I highly recommend posting blogs and other informative content on your website to answer questions clients might have, show off your skills, and demonstrate to viewers why you’re the right choice for them. Similarly to social media you can set up deals via email and charge with PayPal.

<shameless plug> By the way, if you need help setting up a website you can always reach out to me. </shameless plug>

 

So there are a few ways you can get yourself a little bit of extra money by working freelance for clients. If you have enough skill and hustle you can easily turn this into a full time gig and potentially ditch your current job. How awesome would that be?

Have any ideas of your own that I didn’t mention? I’d love to hear about them in my comments section so please, let me hear it!

 

Do I Need A Website If I Have a Facebook Page?

So this is the one question I get from people the most when it comes to building a website for their brand. My answer to the question is typically the same for everyone.

This question is fundamentally flawed because it’s not a question of Facebook vs. Website. These two items actually should be used in unison with one another rather than being looked at as a competition. Facebook and a website have many pros and cons that can make it worthwhile to have both of them set up. I’m going to cover some of the different ways you can utilize the two places together to create harmony with your brand.

Facebook can be a great content funnel.

When you talk marketing you will typically hear about funnels quite often. Using your Facebook following as a part of your own funnel can be a great strategy to employ. The top of the funnel is market awareness, using a huge site like Facebook can really give you a boost in that regard.

If you’re someone that writes blogs has a lot of video content than it may be beneficial to direct users away from Facebook and over to your own personal website. The Facebook format doesn’t look the best for longer articles so it might make a lot more sense to push interested users over to your website. From there you’ll have a lot more options for formatting and branding your content.

I also think Facebook is a great place to offer up free content that your users will find useful and share. When users share items on Facebook it creates instant discoverability to reach more people. If you become well known for providing awesome free content or advice you may become known as a bit of an expert in your industry. If this occurs you can always offer up premium services as well, this is where the website comes in. Whether you’re selling ad space, consultations, or physical products; this is going to be much easier from your own platform.

One final way I’ll mention to help use Facebook as a funnel is to create some awesome promotional content to share onto the platform. If you’re pushing a fun product you might make a cool video showcasing people using your product to do amazing things. Of course if the content is sharable it can easily reach thousands or even millions of potential customers. Once they’re aware of your product you can use your presence over on Facebook to direct them onto your site where they can purchase your product or learn more information.

Facebook Is a Noisy Platform, You’re Website is Not.

Facebook is active with over 2 Billion users monthly. That’s billion with a B guys, so just about anyone you could think of is on the platform. Don’t let this fool you though, while Facebook has a lot of users they also have a lot of noise along with it. The algorithm only shows your content to people that like your Facebook Page and even then not everyone will see it. With all of the posts users put on the site daily the algorithm is designed to show users the types of content the system thinks users will enjoy. Unfortunately this means that sometimes your content will get passed by unseen by many, if not most, of your page fans unless you’re willing to shell out some money for promotion.

On the other hand with a website you have complete control over the content on your page. When a visitor goes to your website they’re going to see the information you want them to see based on how you place them in the web design. This is a fantastic feature if you’re trying to promote a product, grow a newsletter list, or encourage users to view a specific video. You also don’t have to worry about other creators content being shown alongside yours, this is your space and everything on there can reflect that.

Facebook integrates with websites easily.

Thankfully Facebook plays very nicely with websites. If you have a site built on the WordPress platform you can easily add plugins to connect your website directly to your Facebook. This makes is much easier to share blog posts automatically, give users the option to share your content to Facebook, and so much more. You can even hook your feed up directly to your website which can be extremely beneficial when it comes to keeping visitors up to date. For example, if your news feed displays on your website you can easily update both locations simply by posting on your Facebook. This can be a great option for someone that wants to keep an updated web site, but doesn’t have the time or resources to continuously update multiple places.

On the other hand it also makes it easier for site visitors to keep updated about your business. They may not log in to your website every single day, but there’s a great chance that they are actively checking their Facebook on a regular basis. So adding a like button onto your site can increase your ability to stay in front of the consumers eyes.

Facebook can make customer support easier

With Facebook constantly improving upon their Messenger service it can make a fantastic way for you to keep in touch with customers. You might sell products on your webpage, but can easily handle many of the support issues or questions over on your Facebook page. If you choose to do this you could actually eliminate your need to have a separate chat program on your company website. Perhaps the best part of using Facebook Messenger (besides the fact that it’s free) as a support option is that it is easily usable on virtually all platforms and is maintained very well by Facebook.

Facebook does have an article that talks about some of the benefits for using them as a customer support option. Some of the great messenger features that could be beneficial to your business include:

  • Welcome greetings for users engaging you on messenger.
  • Auto replies that can be sent when users send you a message.
  • The ability to write away messages when you’re out of the office.
  • Easily gather customer info from their profile.
  • Save replies to use later for similar questions.

 

So as you can see the question shouldn’t be Do I Need a Website If I Have a Facebook?, but should instead be How Can I Better Integrate My Facebook With My Website?

If you’re interested in finding out how Facebook and a Website can work together to better suit your business needs than Contact Me in order to request a premium consultation to discuss your options.

Demonetization on YouTube: How to Fix and Prevent It

It’s the Yellow symbol that’s been striking nerves all over the YouTube community, the Demonetized logo. If your videos are coming up as being “Not Suitable for All Advertisers” than you need to read this article to discover why this is happening and, more importantly, how you can remedy the problem.

Why do videos get demonetized?

In February of 2017 it came to light that some videos promoting hate speech or terrorism were displaying ads. Advertisers were obviously not pleased to see their brands showing up on videos with unsavory content. By April most of the large advertisers on YouTube began to pull their ads from the platform. Creator profits from Monetization plummeted in an episode known as the “Adpocalypse”.

Due to the boycott from the major companies that advertise on the platform YouTube had to make some serious changes with their system to keep ads from showing up on the wrong videos. Part of this change was a machine learning bot that is designed to check videos over and determine if they’re advertiser friendly. The biggest problem with this new bot is that it makes a lot of mistakes about what is truly advertiser friendly or not. Luckily this bot is capable of learning from its mistakes, this should lead to fewer false positives.

How do I know if I’ve been Demonetized?

If your video has been flagged by the bot as being “non advertiser friendly”¬† you will notice the infamous yellow icon.

Unfortunately YouTube doesn’t tell you exactly what caused the video to be flagged. The answer could lie within the titles, description, or tags. It takes a little bit of tweaking to prevent your videos from being flagged in the future.

What to do if You’re Demonetized

If you’ve been demonetized it might seem pretty frustrating at first. Don’t worry, there are a lot of things you can do to not only get your symbol back to green, but keep it from turning yellow in the future.

1. Upload videos days ahead of when you want them public.

Usually the bot will flag a video within 24 hours of the upload. If you upload them as Private a few days before you plan on releasing them to the public. This can give you a chance to fix everything before it goes live and you can start off making money. Since most of your views should come in the first few days, this is important to keep you from losing too much ad revenue.

2. Request Review Immediately

YouTube allows you to request reviews on videos that you feel were flagged as non advertiser friendly by mistake. You can request a review even if your video is still private (which is why I said to upload it before going public). Although YouTube states your videos require 1,000 views in a 7 day period before it can be reviewed, this is completely false. All of my videos are uploaded at least 3 days before going public and they are monetized before going public.

To request a review:

  1. Go to Creator Studio
  2. Go to Video Manager
  3. Click on edit to bring up the Video Edit screen.
  4. Click the monetization tab.
  5. Click request review.

3. Check Your Meta For Potential Flags

Look over your Titles, Tags, and Descriptions for words or phrases that you feel could be potentially causing it to be flagged. Anything that may be considered unsavory or spammy can cause the bot to look unfavorably on your video. This can possibly keep your videos from being flagged in the future.

4. Make Videos that Comply with Community Guidelines

You don’t want to break the community guidelines, period. This can not only get your video demonetized, but can get you banned from the platform altogether. Here’s the link to the community guidelines page on YouTube

These guidelines restrict items like the following from videos:

  • Nudity or sexual content.
  • Harmful or Dangerous Content
  • Copyright Infringement
  • Violent or Graphic content
  • Spam and Scam Content
  • Hate speech or Hateful Content
  • Threatening Content

Conclusion

It’s important to remember that without advertisers the YouTube system wouldn’t be what it is today. There’s a definite give and take process between YouTube, Advertisers, and Content creators. If you’re very frustrated about the issue just try the tips I’ve mentioned and hopefully you won’t get as many headaches from it. Keep in mind that YouTube is actively working to resolve these issues and they’re still the only platform that pays users to upload content. If you focus on creating great content and gaining views you can still find success on this platform.

 

 

Why Your Subscriber Count Means (Almost) Nothing

Browsing through various internet marketing groups I see a majority of posts are from people talking about one thing: subscriber count. I’m here to tell you that subscriber counts aren’t all they’re cracked up to be.

Sure, having a high subscriber count can be helpful in many cases. It can help you get a nicer initial boost on videos you post to YouTube due to the notification system. It also unlocks certain features like Super Chat that you can’t use unless you’re at a certain number (currently 1000). Other than that it doesn’t have too much weight behind it other than looking cool.



The fact is that many channels now have large subscriber bases so it’s no longer anything special to have thousands of people subscribed to you. Many of these large subscriber bases aren’t even watching anymore, they’ve just never bothered to unsubscribe to you.

So if I am down on the importance of YouTube subscribers than what IS important? Simply put: engagement.

Engagement is the force behind successful channels. It’s one thing to get users to watch a video or look on a page, but it’s an entirely different thing to convince them to interact with your content. Engagement comes in many forms: comments, likes, and shares being the most common. YouTube loves content that is engaging because it keeps people interested and can build a better community. So if YouTube likes it, you should like it too.

There are many other benefits to gathering engagement on your channel. Engagement tells us a lot about what fans like and don’t like. Likes/dislikes can tell creators what is going over well and comments are an option for further discussion or suggestions.¬† It also looks great to a potential sponsor because you are demonstrating that you have the power and pull to make people take action. After all, as a sponsor you’re looking for creators that can convince their user base to take action and look into a product or service.

So am I saying that subscriber count has zero to do with anything? Of course not. For one, it does give us practice with our persuasion skills. If we’re able to persuade people to subscribe to our content then maybe we can also use those skills to persuade them to check out a sponsor or buy a product. Another important detail we can gather from subscriber count is how much people value our content. Usually people don’t just subscribe from one good video. Most subscriptions come from the channel overview page and you’re more likely to get subscribers if your channel features a lot of content the viewer will like.

So while it does provide some value and insight on the health of our channel, the subscriber number is not what we should be focused on (especially in the beginning). Instead try focusing on your views and watch time. It is a well known fact that YouTube favors videos and channels that keep viewers on the website. You don’t do that by getting people to click a subscribe button. You do that by hooking viewers and keeping them watching your content for long periods of time. As for views, when you’re getting started you can try to gain search traffic by targeting relevant and valuable keywords.



Getting views and watch time will lead to some real magic in the long term. Views and watch time will lead to higher search results and more appearances in the suggested videos column. This will cause (hopefully) your subscriber count to rise as more viewers will see your content. If you’re getting the eyes on the channel and providing good value it will lead to a more consistent flow of subscribers, I promise. It also doesn’t hurt to ask them to hit that subscribe button either. A good call to action can do wonders for you.

The bottom line is this: Views and Watch time lead to subscribers, not the other way around. If you’re new to YouTube and constantly find yourself checking your counts try to stop focusing so much on it. Believe me, I’ve been there and I understand the excitement of seeing a channel grow. However over time you’ll see the same thing I did; if you focus on providing a great value on a consistent basis the rest will start to fall in place over time.

Build A Website: 5 Reasons You Need a Website for Your Brand

I push and push the concept quite a bit. If you ask me, you need a website no matter what type of online content you’re creating. I get a lot of different excuses for why people don’t feel they need a website for their brand. Among them are:

  • My brand is still small.
  • I don’t know how to code HTML.
  • I don’t have a lot of money.
  • I don’t see why I need one.

Well heck, I can tell you exactly why you need to get one and break down some of these excuses that prevent you from going forward with a page.

It cannot be taken down easily

So let’s imagine for a moment that you have an Instagram that does very well. What if for some reason it gets flagged and your content is taken down? Your users will no longer be able to find you. That’s a scary thought. In the blink of an eye your entire web presence is gone, *POOF!*

Thankfully if you have a website for yourself than people can always reference it when they’re looking for you. Plus, it cannot be taken down as easily since you own the domain and the web hosting is paid for by you. Essentially you are the boss here and everything on the page is geared towards you. No other profiles are shown, only the content you choose for them to see. Isn’t that kind of control great?

It is more professional

When you mark your brand with a .com you also get email addresses. This looks exponentially more professional than the old yahoo.com or gmail.com one you may already have now. By all means, keep those Gmail accounts handy, but it’s best to use your personalized domain email for business communications.

A web domain is also good to put on business card and can be remembered much easier than other URLs. It also looks good to have your own space in the world. It makes your brand appear more professional and because many of your competitors may already have a name, it may be a great idea for you to grab one also.



Building a Site is Inexpensive

People seem to have this idea in their heads that building a website is expensive. Turns out the costs of maintaining a simple WordPress is actually quite cheap. I use HostGator for my website, the cost of hosting there can be as low as $6.95 per month. Many times you can get a discounted price on a domain name when you first sign up. Personally I use NameCheap.com for my domain name registrations. It can get as cheap as $8.88 a year.

Don’t be afraid to shop around for deals. There are many other awesome web hosts out there that will give you great service as well. I have made a page that lists the various web hosts you can use, they are all regarded as solid web hosts and are included on the list because of it. Don’t worry, I try my best not to hook you up with poor services.

It’s the perfect home base for Brand You

So you’ve made the perfect brand for yourself, why not put it all together in one place? By having a website you are creating a home base that can link all of your social media networks together. Chances are you have a YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, etc. Instead of directing users to “Like my Facebook, Follow My Twitter, Follow My Instagram, Blah, Blah Blah, Blah, Blah…” you can just simply tell them to visit your website.

From there you can include everything about yourself in one place. Consider the website to be like the Walmart of your brand, get it all in one easy to remember place. Plus since some social media sites do not allow many links, you’re able to promote yourself and your products much more freely. So while many social media networks don’t like you sending people off of their platform, it may be worth it to send them over to your own personalized space.

It’s easier than you think

If you’re creating a simple WordPress blog than the need for coding knowledge is minimal. Don’t allow yourself to be intimidated away from building a blog because you think it’s going to be too hard. The truth is that many themes in WordPress are fully customizable without ever having to open up the HTML of the page itself.

WordPress is not your only option though. Squarespace and Weebly are a couple other places you can turn to for some easy GUI based web building options. So remember, it doesn’t have to be hard. Things are so automated today that you can have a nice looking website up and running in less than a day. Heck, I can have my WordPress blogs ready to launch in one afternoon pretty easily.

Conclusion – If you need more help

So there’s my 5 reasons. Don’t be afraid to get yourself a website. If you’re still a little nervous or have some questions; I understand. If you want some extra advice from me don’t hesitate to get at me over on Twitter @ericminermedia. Give me a follow, send me a message, and I’ll be glad to help out wherever and whenever I am able to do so. Till next time, thanks for reading this one. Keep mining for your social media gold.

4 Perfect Reasons to Use Lists in Your Videos

So here’s an article on lists and why they’re great for your videos. Get this, the article about how lists are great is indeed a list itself! Oh the irony here! So I have 4 great reasons for using lists in your videos.

1. It will keep your information organized.

So if you’re putting things into a list than you will have an organization. For example, this article covers 5 key points on why I feel lists are amazing to use. If I didn’t put it in a list format I could be all over the place, but since it’s organized into a list it keeps things right in place where they belong.

So don’t wander all over the place in your videos. Use lists to keep yourself organized.

2. People Like Structure

People enjoy knowing what to expect when they tune in for a video. If I post a video that is called Top 10 things you need in your daily life than you know exactly what to expect. What happens after I reveal #3 on my video? I bet you’d probably guess that the reveal of #2 is up next. So this gives your videos a nice level of structure that is easy to follow for people.

3. It keeps users hooked onto your video.

Since people like structure and know what to expect in your video it should be no suprise that list videos can keep users attention more. Even if a list of “10 Favorite free PC programs” would include things that don’t interest you; you may still stick around to see the other 9 programs.

On YouTube retention and watch time is king. So being able to cast out that hook and reel in users can really pay off big dividends for you.

4. Statistically it is more clickable.

Making a list video and using some numbers in the title is not just a good idea, it’s a freaking great idea. Independent studies have proven that number based titles are more clickable in test groups. Seeing that most people see the title and thumbnail first, it wouldn’t hurt to use this to your advantage. Take the following title names for example:

  • 6 ways to make the most amazing Martinis
  • Ways you can make your Martini more amazing
  • How to make some amazing Martinis
  • Ways to make a Martini amazing
  • Are your Martinis as amazing at these ones?

According to the people involved in the study, there is a huge preference towards the titles with numbers in them. In fact, this list is in order by effectiveness. It surprised me because I always thought my question titles were awesome. Apparently no one else thinks so.

 

So there you go, 4 reasons you need to start pumping out the list articles. Take a close look at news articles, YouTube videos, and search results. Before long you’ll notice so many people are using this list format to their advantage.