At Everleads, we monitor hundreds of different websites, job boards, aggregators, online communities, and more to find the best freelance jobs to deliver to you every day.
(Psst: If you haven’t signed up yet, get started now and find freelance work)
Every one of these different sources of freelance jobs has its own particular ways of doing things, so maximizing your value from them can be tricky. That’s why we’ve put together this guide to the different sources we cover on Everleads and how you should use them to get the best response.
Below you’ll find links to mini-guides for the major websites and other freelance job sources we cover. These guides will teach you how to use Craigslist most effectively, or what you need to know when you see a Reddit post you want to respond to, etc.
However, there’s also a “long tail” of thousands of random websites that we find links to job postings on. It might be a small web agency in Wichita that needs a part-time remote designer, or a Boise job board that posts 99% local full-time job, but just happens to have a great post for a remote freelance Go developer. You get the idea.
The point is, we can’t really write guides for every single website that we post links to, so here are some general principles to keep in mind when you’re looking at the links we post.
We also cover some of these principles in more detail in our free course that shows you step-by-step how to get the most out of Everleads. Every new subscriber (free or paid) gets the course when they sign up.
General principles that apply to all freelance job posts
Read the actual post
This is important: don’t rely on the “metadata” on the job site. For example, they may have fields for whether the job is remote, what the pay is, whether it’s full-time or contract, etc. These are usually listed on the right side or just under the title.
In our experience, a lot of people leave those blank or put in the wrong values, perhaps because they just leave the default values when posting their job.
Regardless, the best way to find out if the job meets your criteria is to read the title and description, since those were written by the client.
We very commonly see posts that say “no pay” or “remote only” that are specifically NOT that when you read the actual post title.
Don’t spam things that are definitely not a good fit, but be biased towards responding.
If you’re not sure how flexible they are on location, send the email. If they said they want three examples of work and you’ve only got two, send the email. If they’re looking to pay $60 / hr and you normally charge $75, send the email.
If you’re on the fence, send the email.
Email is best
If you have a choice of methods to respond and email is one of the options, use that one. It usually goes directly to the inbox of the decision-maker and you’ll be less likely to get lost in some huge virtual stack of applicants on some job board software.
Private is better than public, doing both is best
If you don’t have their email and you have the choice between a public channel and a private one (like leaving a reply tweet or sending a DM), I recommend sending them a private message that’s short and casual and links to one or two of your best pieces of work, and then also leaving a public note letting them know you sent them a private message and the most impressive thing about your work, plus a link.
For example, leave a public comment link this:
“This project sounds great! I just did something similar for Nike last year: link-to-case-study — I sent you a DM if you’d like to chat more”
The reason for this is to help you stand out more, to ensure you don’t get lost in their private message notifications (especially if you’re not a contact), and to message to other freelancers and potential clients that you’re available and awesome.
But it’s also good to do the private channel because you can immediately be more personable and 1-on-1 in a private channel.
More on this in the guides on Twitter and Reddit specifically.
Don’t spend more than a few minutes on any given post
If you’re going to send out 5-10 posts per day (which we recommend if possible), you can’t spend 15 minutes on each one. Scan the post to make sure it’s a “fuzzy fit”, Have a solid template, customize it lightly for each person, and then move on.
Also, try and get into the habit of taking 15 seconds to scan a post quickly for any red flags (like them screaming “NO REMOTE!!!”), then go back and read it more carefully if everything sounds good. Don’t spend five minutes reading a post carefully and thinking about how you’ll respond before reaching the end and finding out it’s not a qualified lead for some reason (no remote, full-time only, low pay, etc).
Don’t pay to respond
We try to never post links to anywhere that requires you to pay to respond, but if we miss one, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know!
The same applies if we send you a link to a post where it just links to another post and then another post and so on. We try to follow these chains and just link you to the ultimate job post directly, but again, we may miss the mark sometimes so let us know!
Note: These are in-progress, and will be posted here as they’re completed.