Promoting your business as an independent contractor (IC) can be a challenge. While hanging out a shingle online with a new website is a solid start, it is only the beginning of your self-marketing journey. For professionals like couriers, truck drivers, home health providers, and others who rely on contracting relationships and word of mouth, getting your name out there for clients and businesses to find may require starting with a few essential steps.
1. Get established as a business
Establishing yourself as a business can help you avoid problems with “gig worker” legislation like California’s Assembly Bill 5 (AB5), which is affecting ICs across California and the nation (as other states and the federal government seek to follow suit). That’s because AB5 outlines 12 criteria, called the business-to-business exemption, that can clarify your independent relationship with contracting companies.
As a business, you can significantly increase your opportunities as you look instantly more attractive to companies that prioritize contracting with independent contractors who have an established business entity (which becoming more and more common). For drivers, setting up your LLC can move you one step closer to appropriate licensing and operating authority requirements as well.
2. Obtain professional materials like business cards and fliers
Every professional needs materials that represent your business, whether that’s business cards or fliers, so that people you meet remember your services. The more you hand out, the better. Along with your business card, you also need to be ready to provide a very brief elevator pitch about why you’re the one they should contract with.
3. Build a social media presence
Successful online marketing for ICs must also include social media. New social media sites pop up frequently, so find out which site is most likely to attract your potential clients and use it. After you have designed your personal branding for your business cards, use it to create a social media page; Facebook is an excellent place to start.
One of the most powerful things you can do to increase interest in your services is to post testimonials on social media, turning your current customers into ambassadors for your brand. Once you master the basics, try branching out into online video and social listening tools to further your efforts.
4. Set up a website
Another important step is setting up a professional website. Openforce members can access professional services for building a business website, such as getting a .com now from $4.99/year, 30% off all new products, or email marketing services with GoDaddy.