The future of work as we know it is undergoing a massive shift.
57.3 million people freelanced in 2017 according to a U.S. study conducted by the Freelancers Union and Elance-oDesk. By 2027, it is estimated that 86.5 million Americans – or over half the population – will be freelancers.
If you’re thinking about joining the freelance movement, there are some big truths about freelancing you need to know.
For starters, freelancing isn’t as crazy as your friends, parents, and boss make it out to be. In fact…
- 63% of freelancers agree that having diversified income is more secure than being tied to a single employer.
- One-third of professionals worldwide say that work-life balance is becoming more difficult to find in the traditional workplace.
- 26% of U.S. workers say they are likely to become a freelancer or independent contractor.
- 63% of full-time executives say they would switch to become a contractor if given the opportunity.
So, if you’re unhappy following the path that everyone else tells you is “right” just because that’s the way it’s always been, you’re not alone, and you’re definitely not crazy.
On top of that, there are a TON of opportunities out there that can give you the freedom to earn 6 figures from your couch, pants optional (just ask these freelancers).
The best part?
You don’t have to go back to school or turn back the clock to enter the Freelance Economy. You can get started right now using skills that you likely already have or that you can teach yourself online in a matter of months.
You don’t have to be a master to start freelancing, you just have to be good enough to get someone results.
Still, the question is: “What skills will make me money in my pjs?”
Lucky for you, I’ve dug through all the things to find 20 tried and true, ultra-marketable freelancer positions you can use to start or grow your dream career in 2018 – and beyond.
Freelancing isn’t just for writers and graphic designers. There are all sorts of ways to solve problems and help people from the comfort of your own home.
That being said, here are 20 freelancer jobs that could be the perfect fit for your skills and desires:
1. Analytics Expert
Love taking loads of complex data and turning it into something useful?
Data is one of the most important pieces of the digital marketing puzzle, and businesses are becoming more and more aware of how it impacts their bottom line. Freelancers who know how to read data from places like Google Analytics, social media, and email service providers, are a valuable resource for businesses looking to continually improve their marketing practices.
A data-driven business enables you to know more about your customers, target more effectively, improve sales, and take your marketing budget further. In other words, the return on a data and analytics expert is huge – which means it’ll be easier for you to secure clients on retainer.
The demand of this position will only increase in 2018 as new platforms are introduced, digital marketing becomes more complicated, and businesses are looking for more ways to get the most out of their advertising dollars.
2. Brand Identity Designer
If you have an eye for design and enjoy storytelling, then this could be a great fit.
Businesses are more visible than ever to customers, and they need a way to consistently promote themselves and maintain their mission across all platforms. This is where brand identity designers come in. These freelance creatives help a brand present themselves beautifully and consistently across all platforms.
This is about way more than designing logos and graphics on Fiverr. This is about partnering with a brand to ensure all aspects of their branding – color scheme, logo, font, graphics, etc. – work together to form a coherent and cohesive message that tells the story they want to portray.
3. Instagram Marketer
Wish you could get paid to play on Instagram all day? Check this out…
2017 brought with it lots of new changes for Instagram, and it seems everyone’s getting on board. It’s estimated that more than 70% of brands will be on Instagram before the end of 2017. Instagram stories and live videos are a great way for businesses to get in front of audiences and really show their true colors. Brands and companies will need freelancers who are passionate about learning the ins and outs of the platform so that they can maintain their brand’s identity and create engaging content strategies to grow their business in 2018.
4. Project Manager
Far too many people go straight to their technical skills when trying to figure out what to do as a freelancer. But what about this:
Are you incredibly organized and reliable? Are you a super communicator? Do you enjoy working with teams of people and collaborating? If so, then Asana work tracking/project management might be worth a second look.
You see, businesses are always looking for ways to increase efficiency and improve communication. That’s why many of them are hiring freelancers to manage their teams and workflow using software like Asana.
Asana is a free to use software that many teams are using to collaborate, brainstorm ideas, and stick to deadlines. In fact, Upwork ranked Asana work tracking as one of the fastest growing skills in 2017. As more and more teams work remotely, project management software (and the ability to delegate and organize) will continue to be crucial.
5. Virtual Assistant
According to an article in Entrepreneur magazine, Virtual Assistants have been called the “fastest ticket to growth” for entrepreneurs.
Many business leaders try to do everything and be involved in every project, which is almost always a recipe for disaster. Fortunately for us freelancers, that’s where a talented VA has the chance to shine.
Although there are exceptions, most Virtual Assistants are a Jack (or Jill) of all trades. They are skilled at running interference, being the wing(wo)man, and simply being there for their clients.
If you like wearing many different hats and playing the superhero sidekick to successful business owners, a VA position could be the perfect fit!
6. Content Marketing Specialist
Have you noticed just how much NOISE there is on the Internet these days? With all the ads, pop-ups, and offers, how can businesses cut through the clutter and reach their ideal audience?
With valuable content!
According to an article from Blue Corona, “While content marketing costs 62 percent less than outbound marketing, it generates more than three times as many leads.”
That means there’s a big opportunity for you to provide incredible value to business owners, who will be happy to pay you for your services.
Content marketing goes way beyond planning and writing blog posts. Today, businesses need creative, problem solving individuals who can strategize what types of content (infographic, blog post, vlog, live video, etc.) are going to be the most effective and then create that content on time.
This means it’s important for you as a freelancer to be good at figuring out a marketing strategy, researching target audiences, and either creating the content yourself or hiring other freelancers to do that part for you.
Bottom line is: Content is super valuable to businesses. If you can help them get the right content in front of their audience, you’ll be super valuable as well.
7. Online Community Manager
Love helping people and building community? Businesses need your help. Badly.
According to the Digital Marketing Institute, 78% of small businesses get at least 25% of new customers from social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram.
Times have changed. The relationship between customer and businesses has changed. And now everyone needs to adapt.
Customers can now contact businesses publicly and complaints can quickly escalate into PR nightmares. That’s where you come in to save the day. An online community manager makes sure the customer is heard while also building relationships and creating a positive online environment for consumers and business owners alike.
8. Video/YouTube Marketing
Did you know that 300 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every minute!?
If you can create video content that engages an audience and gets them excited about taking action, you’ll be in high demand by business owners of all types.
There are over a billion people who use YouTube — that’s a third of the interwebz… and doesn’t even count other video platforms. Just imagine how many opportunities are out there waiting for you!
Storyboarding, video editing, script writing, and video production are just a few of the skills that can make for a great video marketer!
9. Shopify Developer
As more and more people shop online, Shopify continues to grow at an incredible rate. There are now over 500,000 businesses on the ecommerce platform.
And they’re bringing in a lot of money.
Revenue for the second quarter of 2017 was $151.7 million dollars which was a 75% increase from the same time the year before. If you’re able to create stores on this ecommerce platform, you’ll have a lot of businesses needing your services in the next year and beyond.
Shopify is pretty slick and easy to learn. Having a tech background helps, but isn’t a requirement since you won’t be doing coding.
10. Video Animator
We know that video is powerful. As a matter of fact, it drives purchasing behavior, it’s engaging, it builds trust, and it’s also a valuable training tool.
So why animated video?
Because the cat’s out of the bag. Everybody is catching onto video, which means animated video can be a great way to stand out from the crowd and showcase a particular style.
Plus, animated video can be a great way for businesses to explain what they do in a more entertaining, easy-to-grasp way that sucks in more viewers (and customers). For many businesses, animated video is a recipe for success.
You can take a look at https://www.headspace.com/ to see it in action. Something seemingly complex and intangible seems a lot more inviting with their simple videos and adorable characters.
11. Sales Copywriter
Copywriting legend Gary Halbert once said, “the written word is the strongest source of power in the entire universe.”
Whether it’s 2018 or 2080, people always have stuff to sell. And HOW do you sell? With powerful little words.
The medium may change. It was newspapers and direct mail, now it’s online sales letters and video scripts.
But the methods won’t. Studying great copywriting to understand the underlying psychology triggers that make it work is always a smart investment for a freelancer.
Copywriting is a great career to explore if you:
- Are already a decent writer/enjoy writing
- Can crawl “inside the mind” of someone else
- Have strong empathy
- Are fascinated by psychology and persuasion
Businesses make money, and that’s the fun part. But what about all of the paperwork? The expenses? Deductions? Tax brackets?
Many small business owners are overwhelmed with all of the different aspects of running a business, and sometimes keeping track of finances is just not a priority. If you can take the burden off business owners and calm their fears, you’ll have no shortage of happy clients as a freelance bookkeeper.
Statista found that services related to accounting would equal around 160 BILLION dollars by 2018!
13. Voiceover Artist
Ever been told you have a voice for radio?
Voiceover talent is nothing new, but its range has greatly increased over the last few years due to content marketing and tech advancements. There are more animated video, audiobook, dubbing, and video game opportunities for voiceover artists than ever before.
Speaking more than one language? Because of the rise in online video streaming, there’s also been a push for more multilingual audio content!
14. WordPress Developer
Nearly a third of the internet is running on WordPress. Designs may come and go, but a fast and functional website is a necessity. If you can create these (or fix them when they’re broken), your freelancing future is bright.
15. Facebook Ad Campaign Manager
Most businesses now realize the power of Facebook ads. With 1.71 BILLION monthly active users, it’s hard to miss. The only problem? They have no idea how to advertise to those people.
That’s where the Facebook ads specialist comes in.
Sometimes it can be hard to show the value you bring to the table, but not with Facebook ads. For every $1 they put into ads, you get them $2 in revenue. It’s a no brainer!
If you understand click-through rate and cost per action or you can target the right audience at the right price, businesses will be lining up at your virtual doorstep begging you to take their money.
16. Search Engine Optimization Expert
SEO (particularly when it comes to Google) is constantly changing. And despite what some may say, it’s definitely not dead.
In fact, it may even be more important than ever. Businesses can no longer stuff keywords in a site and hope for the best. They need real experts who know how to increase organic traffic without shady practices or outdated tactics.
That’s why it remains one of the top 20 skills for freelancers to have going into 2018.
17. ClickFunnels Expert
Sales funnels are nothing new, but there’s something special about ClickFunnels. It’s been around for a couple of years, but in 2017, things really took off. Just take a look at the Official ClickFunnels Facebook group — it’s grown to over 100,000 members across the world.
In the group, you’ll find people asking basic questions on design all the way up to complicated email automation using SMTP within ClickFunnels itself.
If you’re comfortable with landing page design and marketing strategy, do yourself a favor and start using ClickFunnels.
18. Online Immigration Lawyer
Told ya this wasn’t just for writers and designers 😉
If you have a background in law, there’s a huge opportunity to now take those skills online.
The demand for online attorneys has increased, particularly those versed in immigration law due to the complicated laws that are still in flux. Businesses want a specialist that understands how to keep everything above board, especially in this age of global workforces and international contractors.
19. Email Marketing Specialist
Although open rates may be lower than they used to be, email marketing is still alive and well. In fact, it’s still one of the best returns on investment for businesses, bringing in $44 for every $1 spent in 2016.
Smart business owners know the power of email marketing and today, nearly 95% of companies using automation are taking advantage of email marketing. That means freelancers who can set up segmented audiences, engage an email list, and increase clicks and opens stand to get a bigger piece of the pie.
20. Digital Illustrator
Love drawing, doodling, and sketching?
It’s easy to think that if something we’re good at is so simple and fun, then there’s no way anyone would pay us money for it. It’s just a hobby.
But the reality is, in the Freelance Economy, there are 1,001 ways to turn your passions, skills, and hobbies into profitable careers.
Take digital illustration, for example. Digital illustrators create original, one-of-a-kind artwork for brands and businesses. They actually have more in common with traditional freehand artists than graphic designers, although many are now using tablets and styluses to do their work instead of paper and pencil.
If you have a fine arts background or are simply a talented artist, don’t discount the value of your skills. You are presenting businesses with a powerful new way to connect with their audiences and stand out from the sea of competition with original, handmade artwork.
To make yourself as marketable as possible, it’s important to have knowledge of digital illustration software. You can also combine digital illustration with graphic design services to expand your offerings and increase your demand.
Advice to Live Happily Ever After By
Finding the right freelancer fit for you isn’t just about making money. It’s about finding something that actually makes you feel excited to jump out of bed in the morning and get to work – all without having to stop and put on “real” clothes.
While these 20 freelancer positions are in demand, it’s not about just picking something that’s hot right now or something that can get you uber rich in the next 12 months.
If you really want to be a successful, full-time freelancer in 2018 and beyond, then don’t just look for what’s marketable, look inside yourself. What are those soft skills that set you apart from every other freelancer on the planet? What unique life experiences and passions do you bring to the table that nobody else does?
Remember, picking a position that pays is just the beginning. The ultimate goal is to provide a service that truly helps others while giving you the freedom, flexibility, and fulfillment of your dreams.
So, if you’re feeling more comfortable with your skillset and finding the perfect freelancer job, but you’re still not sure how to stand out in the freelance economy, charge what you’re really worth, and get clients consistently, then I’d like to invite you to check out our 100% free workshop: The 3-Step Plan to Full-Time (Profitable) Freelancing.
On the training, you’ll learn how to:
- Turn your freelance skills into freelancer SUPERPOWER so you can stand out in the marketplace and charge top dollar for your services…
- Land long-term, consistent client work and charge more – without doing any marketing or bidding on job sites…
- Generate passive income that lets you earn money while you sleep or vacation with the family…
- And much more…
Hope to see you there!