Promote Your Services
Before anyone will hire you, they’ll want to get a sense of who you are and what you can do for them. Here are some ways to help put your best foot forward in marketing or promoting yourself and your services:
- Make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date. Your profile should be informative and free from grammatical errors. Look for ways to highlight your best and most relevant accomplishments, work experiences, and education. Consider joining LinkedIn groups specific to your field. See more about maximizing LinkedIn.
- Create a website. If you are building a business, this is a must, but even if you are promoting your freelance services, a professional, attractive website will go a long way toward establishing yourself as a professional. Unless you have significant web development skills, you will probably not want to build your own website from scratch; view our list of website creation services to work from a template. If possible, showcase examples of your best work on the website so that potential employers or clients will be able to get a sense of your capacity for high-quality work.
- Create a great bio. You should have a professional bio that you can repurpose across a number of platforms, from your website and LinkedIn page to online services where you can post your services to physical copies that you will have at the ready when meeting with potential clients or employers. See below for tips on how to make the most of your bio.
- List your services where people will see them. A great website, bio, and LinkedIn profile may help get you an interview and, ultimately, a job, but you won’t get to that point if someone can’t find out about you first. Conduct research to find out where people in your field look to find talent, and/or consult with the Berklee Career Center for ideas. View our online job listings and job boards; many of these sites allow you to post your skills and services so that potential employers or clients can find out about you.
- Make business cards. It’s amazing what a small piece of card stock with your information and branding on it can do. A business card can instantly distinguish you as a professional when you're meeting with potential clients or employers. There are many online services that can help you design polished business cards, such as Vistaprint, Canva, and MOO, among others. Be sure to triple-check your business cards for typos or errors before submitting your final design.
- Meet people. Attend a conference, seminar, or workshop hosted by a professional association, organization, or society in your field. Don’t go empty handed; bring your resumé, bio, and business card so that if you meet someone who's looking for services that you can offer, you'll be ready. Don’t underestimate the importance of getting out there and networking face to face as a personal connection lies behind most business relationships.
- Be careful with social media. When networking on social media, be friendly but cautious. Don’t include (or allow others to include) anything on publicly visible social media sites that you wouldn’t want a potential employer or client to see. Also, don’t agree to meet with anyone you’ve connected with on social media unless you've carefully vetted them to ensure that they are who they say they are.
There is no correct template for writing your professional bio, but here are some guidelines to keep in mind:
- Do your homework. Find examples of at least three bios of successful professionals in your field. These may help you define the format that is expected in your line of work.
- Keep it brief. Potential employers and clients have limited time, so a lengthy bio that lists everything you’ve ever done will probably not get read, and your best accomplishments and qualities will be buried amidst the text.
- Write in the third person. Even though you may be writing your bio yourself, it should read as if someone else wrote it, so avoid the use of “I” to be in line with professional standards.
- Let others do your bragging for you. If you’ve received awards or positive press coverage, including that in your bio will help demonstrate that you’re not the only one who thinks you’re great.
- Avoid hype. If you don’t have awards or press quotes to include, that’s okay, but don't feel that you must include adjectives praising your own abilities. Show, don’t tell; point people towards examples of your work rather than telling them how great it is.
- Exercise good writing skills. Vary your sentence structure, avoid run-on sentences, trim clutter, and adhere to common standards of grammar.
- Include a picture of yourself. This should be a professional headshot.
- Create multiple versions. Rather than adopting a one-size-fits-all approach, consider that your bio length should change depending on where it will appear. For instance, a one-page bio may be appropriate for your website, but you may need a one-paragraph version or even a one- or two-sentence version for some online listing services. Brevity can be difficult, so consider the two or three most important points that a potential employer or client needs to know about you.
- Get a second opinion. Have someone with an eye for good writing review your bio and make suggestions. Don’t hesitate to reach out to a Career Center advisor for bio help.
- Keep it fresh. Your bio is not a “write once, done forever” exercise. You will want to update it periodically as you gain more experience and accolades. Be sure to remove outdated information in favor of that which is current.