Branding Yourself: Choosing a Niche

Have you ever wondered why people talk so much about branding yourself and your business?

I used to wonder this a lot.

branding yourself as a freelance writer

Maybe you’ve heard it in terms of choosing your niche (or “niching down”) or becoming an expert in a certain area or industry.

Or maybe you’ve been told to choose one thing and go all-in on it rather than being a generalist writer.

If you’re like most people, you resist the idea of branding yourself because you don’t want to miss out on paying work.

And I get it! However, today I’m going to tell you my story and why I took the advice to brand myself.

For my freelance business, focusing both brought in more paying work and the kind of writing I love to do. Amazing. Want to know more? Read on.

I got into freelance writing in a roundabout way.

Sort of.

When I was finishing my journalism degree I pitched stories all over the place, trying to get enough legitimate and varying clippings to be considered employable post graduation.

But once my portfolio was in good shape I stopped pitching articles and settled into blogging on my personal site instead.

After blogging for a while I began receiving emails requesting collaborations or offering sponsored post opportunities. How flattering! Also surprising.

I didn’t have any reason not to work with these people, companies, and brands so I did a variety of guest posts, sponsored posts, media events and promotional activities.

Lots of them over the years. And I enjoyed doing them, they gave me interesting experiences, allowed me to try new products, and I was able to meet a lot of interesting people.

For the most part, I was happy with my site. I wasn’t trying to make money so anything that came in was a plus.

Do you want the worksheet that goes with this training?

I’ve created a worksheet to complement this training, available for download. This is a free resource but it’s part of my resource library and you’ll need a password. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Then once you’re in the library, navigate to the blogging section and look for the worksheet called “Brand Elements.”

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And then everything changed

I would look at my blog from time to time and wonder what it was all about. Since it was always a general “lifestyle” blog (a word here, which is an umbrella term for personal website consisting of whatever I felt like writing about) I didn’t have much direction so I meandered about over the years.

A little writing about my journalism career, a little writing about my random jobs, a little writing about my travel adventures…whatever! And some promotional brand candy sprinkled in as it came up.

But then one day all the traffic stopped. Comments stopped. The money stopped. In stunned silence I looked around trying to figure out what had happened.

I realized my site had been punished for a search engine infraction. In fallout from one of the Google search updates, my site was no longer considered a positive contributor to the Internet.

From one day to the next I fell off the face of the blogosphere faster than…well, fast.

Branding Yourself: Choosing a Niche

Now, this was a few years ago.

And once I figured out what was going on and why I had a difficult decision to make. Do I start from scratch and rebuild everything or do I give up on my blog and try something else?

I knew it was time to start working on my freelance writing career and getting more clients but I wasn’t sure what to do.

Up until now clients had come to me and I was happy to write for whoever would pay me.

But now I had to put myself out there and try.

What kind of writer was I? What kind of clients did I want? And what kind of work did I need?

To be frank, it took me a while to decide what to do. I felt lost and ashamed.

Starting over seemed so difficult and I was afraid to go through all the work of building a website only to see nothing from it. But could I give it up? I loved blogging. Or did I? Was it just something I did because it was easy?

I had some soul searching to do.

And soul searching I did. For a couple years. I studied blogging, I took branding and social media courses, I learned about marketing and business, and I wrote down my writing and career goals.

And from all of this came a new direction. A clearer direction.

Towards a destination.

Even when I started down the path I had plotted out, I still wasn’t certain I had decided right, if that makes sense. I had a sense of direction and purpose but the view was still foggy. Also I was embarrassed. It was awkward to admit I was struggling.

When you’re feeling vulnerable it’s easy to compare yourself with others and allow that to hold you back and not get the help you need. But somehow I managed to push through it and kept asking questions and moving forward, step by step.

From this experience I’ve learned a lot about how branding yourself on your website or blog is good for search engine optimization as well as for attracting your ideal clients. But more than that, branding yourself is important for growing your business in the direction you want it to go.

When you’re desperate for work and a potential client approaches you waving wads of cash it is so easy to grab the money and take the gig so you can meet your immediate needs. And sometimes that’s just the way it is.

But if you want your freelance business to grow and mature then you need to work on branding yourself and that means figuring out what you want to write and for who.

Before you can figure out your brand you have to know a few things

  • Your ideal client
  • What problem you’re solving for your ideal client
  • Your focus/niche (what type of writing do you do? And what do you write about?)

When you know what you write and who you want to write for, it makes it a lot easier to attract those types of clients.

It also makes it easy for you to turn away work that doesn’t fit your brand. I know that sounds counter-intuitive but here’s the rationale: if you become an expert at one type of writing (aka really really good at it) then you become FAST at it.

And you don’t have to do as much prep work, pre-work, or research before you can dive into a job. When you’re writing about anything and everything you have to learn all about it before you can get to work. And while that’s fun sometimes, it’s not super efficient.

An online friend was telling me about how she does one kind of writing work: email sequences and sales pages for entrepreneurs. Now, that is quite specific.

However, she’s specialized in this type of writing and she knows exactly what she’s doing. She’s quick, she’s confident, and she has many, many happy clients.

By zooming in on this particular type of writing she’s able to maximize her writing time doing what she loves and what she’s good at. And she’s able to say no to the writing jobs that she’s not specialized at without feeling like she’s leaving money on the table.

I admire my friend because this is where I want to go. She’s a little further down the road from me and this helps me see the value in branding yourself, in choosing a niche, and in sticking with what you’re good at.

So, today I’m pitching you this idea of choosing a niche and branding yourself. And trust me, I know how much you might be resisting this idea. Because I did too

But here I am a couple years into my new and improved writing journey and I’m telling you, it’s amazing what a bit of clarity and direction can do for your writing business. And I’m only getting started.

Other posts related to branding yourself

Have you ever wondered why people talk so much about branding yourself and your business? Maybe you've heard it in terms of choosing your niche.

One more thing. I think you’ll enjoy my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

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Have you ever wondered why people talk so much about branding yourself and your business? Maybe you've heard it in terms of choosing your niche.

Networking Tips for Introverted Writers

Here are some of my favourite networking tips for introverted writers.

Are you an introvert?

Are you a writer?

Do you know you need social skills in order to grow your business?

Me too.

networking tips for introverted writers

Networking tips for introverted writers

In November 2017, Jon Acuff stirred the introvert pot when he Tweeted,

“Is an introvert really an introvert if they won’t stop telling you they’re an introvert?”

It was a weird thing to say but I guess he was trying to be funny about it. If you’re an introvert you understand this is a basic misunderstanding of what an introvert is.

Part of the problem is there’s a dictionary definition for introverts saying they’re shy. But it’s not that.

Introverts have these basic tendencies

  • They enjoy alone time
  • They think best when they’re alone
  • Introverts wait to be asked for their opinion
  • They start shutting down after too much time out
  • OFTEN they are called “too intense”
  • They find small talk cumbersome
  • Being in front of a crowd is less daunting than mingling with those people afterwards
  • They feel like phoneys when they network

The last three points are the ones I’m interested in today.

How on earth do you network in a way that’s true to you when you hate small talk, making small talk with acquaintances is your worst nightmare, and you feel like a huge fake when you drag yourself out and do networking events?

Here are a few strategies I’ve implemented for not just surviving networking events but coming out of them with new relationships, clients and boosted business skills.

Networking tips for introverted writers

Networking tips for introverted writers

Tip 1: Set mini goals

Networking events are overwhelming but I’ve learned to manage my stress and anxiety by setting mini goals to help me feel like I had a successful outing. Here are a few I’ve used in the past.

  • Introduce myself to one new person
  • Collect three business cards
  • Explain what I do to one person using my elevator pitch

I love mini goals because the MOMENT I achieve it all the pressure is off and I can go back to being a wallflower. Because I did what I came there to do.

networking tips for introverted writers

Free elevator pitch templates

I’ve added the two elevator pitch templates from this post as a free download to my resource library. This is a freebie you’ll need a password to access the library itself. You can get the password by popping your email address into the form below.

Once you’re in the library, navigate to the “Freelancing” section and download “Elevator Pitch Templates.”

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Tip 2: Be a helper

I love learning and I love attending conferences. However, the networking and being around people part is tricky.

Here’s how I turn things around: I volunteer. It gives me a purpose. When I have a purpose then speaking to people I don’t know is EASY. In fact, it’s fun.

Tip 3: Prepare ahead of time

Sometimes there are people-intensive things you just have to do. The best way I’ve learned to succeed in these times is to be over prepared. I research my location, the people I’ll be meeting with, the places I can retreat if I need some space.

By being prepared I don’t have to worry about what to expect…I already know.

Tip 4: Bring a friend

This sometimes feels like a cop out but if you have an extroverted friend who loves networking events…why not ask him/her to be your plus one?

You can’t use this as an excuse to stick to your friend all night but you can allow them to take the lead and help you network at your event. I’ve found this useful, especially when I’m attending media events.

Tip 5: Work out your anecdotes ahead of time

OK, this may feel silly and don’t go so far as writing them out on index cards unless you have to. But what if you prepared in advance for small talk? Think of opening lines, a few projects you’re working on, and some questions you can ask people you meet.

When you have it worked out ahead of time you won’t stress when you’re in the moment, panicking because you know you need to say something but you have no idea what would be appropriate.

Tip 6: Plan an exit strategy

This can be a strategy to get out of a conversation or a strategy to get out of the event altogether.

Think through what you’ll say or do so you don’t come off as rude or abrupt. “Powdering your nose” is one of those strategies, by the way, although I’ve never been brave enough to use it.

Here are a few networking tips for introverted writers. Maybe one of these strategies for networking and doing the people stuff  will work for you.

Networking tips for Introverted Writers: REMEMBER, NO ONE CARES ABOUT YOU

Yeah, maybe that’s not very nice but it’s true! Everyone else at your networking event is just as wrapped up in him/herself as you are. Let this truth SET YOU FREE and relax.

Many introverts are drawn to writing as it’s—in it’s purest form—an isolated career path. Also introverts find self-expression easier with a pen than their vocal chords.

However, when you’re a freelance writer there’s all this…people stuff. So much people stuff. And it’s important if you want to do anything with your career like grow it. Or get clients.

Along the path of my freelance writing journey these are some of the strategies I’ve created for networking and doing the people stuff even when it’s not a natural skill for me. Maybe one of these will work for you.

Do you have any networking tips for introverted writers? I know this can’t be the only ideas out there and I’m always looking for new ways to get better at this skill.

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Here are a few networking tips for introverted writers. Maybe one of these strategies for networking and doing the people stuff will work for you.

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

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Many introverts are drawn to writing as it's (in it's purest form) an isolated career path. Along the path of my freelance writing journey I've learned a few strategies for networking and doing the people stuff even when it's not a natural skill for me. Maybe one of these will work for you.

Get More Clients Fast With These 7 Ideas

How do you get more clients fast? This is the ultimate question and when you’re in this position, you don’t have time to try things that “might” work. You need it to work. Now.

get more clients fast

Let’s dive right in: ideas to get more clients fast

Get more clients fast with these seven ideas. I can’t guarantee they’ll work, but they’ve worked for me so at least it’s a starting point.

1. Reach out to your long-lost clients

This tip only works if you’ve had clients before, but assuming you have this is an excellent place to start. If you haven’t worked with a client for a couple months you can classify them as “cold” and they qualify for this tactic. Go through your cold clients and send them an email asking how their project/magazine/website/etc. is going and if there’s anything you can help them with.

If you had positive experiences with clients in the past and they didn’t call you back for more, it may not be because they don’t like you or don’t have work. Sometimes they’re too busy to reach out…sometimes they don’t think of you…and sometimes they have a project but haven’t got to letting you know about it yet.

Do it!

Extra reading: Overcome the Fear of Marketing Yourself

2. Ask for referrals

Sometimes this can feel awkward but when you need clients it’s time to get over it and as for referrals. Ask your current clients if they have any colleagues who could use your services. Tell them you’re looking to add a few more clients to your roster. Either they’ll tell you they don’t know anyone, they’ll give you a couple leads or they’ll give you more work themselves. THIS WORKS!

Extra Reading: Want to Work from Home? Consider Freelance Writing!

3. Tell your network you’re open for business

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the best way to let people know you’re available is by saying you’re available. Mine your friends and family list for leads. Remember, you NEED clients NOW. You’re in a spot. Lay it out in an interesting, polite way so it’s easy for them to think of you when they hear about someone looking for a writer.

4. Run an ad

I have a friend who does this and swears by it. Whenever she’s looking for a couple more clients she runs a Facebook ad for a week or two to a super-duper targeted audience and gets her money back tenfold. You have to know what you’re doing, and target the right audience, but this can and does work.

If you do want to run ads as part of your prospecting strategy, make sure your pricing includes that overhead!

For extra help on the subject, I co-created the course How to Price Your Work. Setting your prices takes a bit of effort and guts but it will help you stay away from jobs that don’t pay enough. So you can make a living from your craft!

5. Apply to job board postings

Yes there are horror stories from job boards. Yes I would say you don’t get the strongest clients from job boards. However, you’re in a situation where you need clients now and job boards are filled with businesses looking for people just like you. You’ll have to look hard and put out a lot of inquiries but you’ll find clients.

Here are a few suggestions for job boards I’ve found good.

Extra reading: How to Find Great Freelance Writing Jobs

This next one is going to blow your mind.

6. Do a Twitter search

Using a Twitter search (or browse my helpful Twitter list for Writing Jobs) you’ll find real-time tweets from businesses looking for writers. Here are a few hashtag searches you can try.

  • #writerwanted
  • #ghostwriter
  • #hiring #writer
  • #writingcommunity
  • #journalismjobs
  • #writingjobs
  • #remotejobs
  • #freelancejobs

I’ve connected with quite a few awesome clients through Twitter so I’m a fan of this one to say the least!

Extra reading: Get Noticed by Influencers on Twitter Using Lists

7. Write guest posts

I should qualify this with write paid guest posts. Writing free ones is a good long-term strategy but doesn’t work when you need clients now. Different goals.

There are lots of websites and blogs that pay for content although there’s no set rate. But if you need cash flow…this is one way to get ‘er done. You’ll have to do the pitching so get ready to hustle.

Extra reading: Content Marketing Ideas to Keep Your Prospect Funnel Full

So? Did you get some great new ideas to get clients fast?

These are emergency strategies for when you’re in panic mode and need clients quick. Even people with the best referral programs and ongoing marketing strategies run into this from time-to-time (but…not as much).

While these are all effective I’ll encourage you not to rely on them strategies as your entire freelance approach—you will burn out! Too much hustle is unsustainable. Plus you’ll be hustling so much you may not find time to do the work!


Get more clients fast with these seven ideas. I can't guarantee they'll work, but they've worked for me so at least it's a starting point.

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Get Access to My Free Resource Library

* indicates required
How do you get more clients fast? This is the ultimate question and when you're in this position, you don't have time to try things that "might" work. You need it to work. Now.
Get more clients fast with these seven ideas. I can't guarantee they'll work, but they've worked for me so at least it's a starting point.

How to Find Great Freelance Writing Jobs

When you’re a new freelancer, finding freelance writing jobs may seem like an overwhelming task. And I understand how finding a gig—any gig—can feel a bit like luck.

Where do you even start looking? And when you find someone looking for a writer, how do you know the job is any good?

How to Find Great Freelance Writing Jobs

The good news and the bad news about online freelance writing jobs

OK, here it is. The good news is, when you Google “freelance writing jobs” you’ll find a lot of postings.

The bad news is, when you you’ll also find a lot of low-paying postings and straight up bad gigs.

Learning to tell the difference is an important part about finding success as a freelance writer.

Finding gigs that pay what you need is another important part.

How to discern a good freelance writing job from a bad one

The first thing to keep in mind is “good” and “bad” gigs are subjective. You need to know ahead of time what kind of job you’re looking for and what type of client will suit your needs.

If you’re new to the freelance world you may not know this yet and will learn through trial and error. That’s OK! But take a few minutes to think about the types of freelance writing jobs you’d like to have.

  • Writing blog posts and articles?
  • Media releases?
  • Business profiles?
  • Journalism?

Think it through and write it down

After you know what type of writing you want to do take a few minutes to figure out who your ideal client is.

  • Are you looking for someone who is hands off?
  • Someone to collaborate with?
  • Do you want to be able to meet in person?
  • Do you want one-off clients or ones you have an ongoing relationship with?

There are no wrong answers here, just what’s right for you. Knowing what types of clients you’d like will help you avoid overwhelm as you comb through the vast array of freelance writing jobs out there.

It will also keep you from applying for gigs that aren’t a good fit for you.

Extra Credit: Platform Building: Smart and Strategic Tips for Writers

Bonus tip: keep a close eye on how the job postings are written. If you see phrases like “looking for hungry writers,” or a value attributed to the quantity of articles they’re looking for rather than quality of writing, these should trigger warning bells in your head.

These gigs are often low paying (pennies per word, if that) and demanding. Even if you don’t have much experience yet, you can do better.

How to figure out what you need to earn as a freelance writer

Even though many writers aren’t numbers people, it’s important to learn how to budget so you know how much income you need in order to reach your goals.

Do a bit of number crunching and determine what you need per month to get by.

Also figure out how much time you have to dedicate to your freelancing. From here you’ll have a good idea of how many clients you can take on and how much you need from each one.


If you’re wondering how to set your prices, I think you’ll like the course I co-created, How to Price Your Work. Setting your prices takes a bit of effort and guts but it will help you stay away from jobs that don’t pay enough. So you can make a living from your craft!

When you look at online postings you may feel like you have to lower your prices or standards in order to get work.

Don’t give up!

There are great freelance writing jobs out there but sometimes you have to know where to look.

Where I look for great freelance writing jobs

I encourage writers to think outside of the box when looking for work. Even when you need to get clients fast you shouldn’t lower your standards.

The main ways I find work are from referrals, networking with other writers and Twitter (really!).

There’s always someone looking for a writer but people have to know you’re a writer in order for them to think of you and reach out.

Job boards are a great starting point for freelancers who don’t have established networks. The good gigs are scooped up quick so if this is your go-to then you will need to check often and apply a lot.

It’s a numbers game so don’t become discouraged if you don’t hear back from many or most of the places you pitch.

Here are a few suggestions for job boards I’ve found good.

Parting words: I’ve learned it’s important to keep looking for freelance work even if you have a full client load. Developing strategies to keep the marketing machine going during busy times ensures you won’t have so many dry spells. And the better your clients are, the less you’ll need in order to reach your financial goals.


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When you're a new freelancer, finding freelance writing jobs may seem like an overwhelming task. And I understand how finding a gig—any gig—can feel a bit like luck. Where do you even start looking? And when you find someone looking for a writer, how do you know the job is any good?

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Get Access to My Free Resource Library

* indicates required
When you are a new freelancer, finding freelance writing jobs may seem like an overwhelming task. And I get how finding a gig can feel a bit like luck.

How to Create a Social Media Portfolio

Portfolios. In general I understand them—a collection of your work assembled to demonstrate your experience and expertise in an area.

But I’ve struggled with social media and figuring out how to create a social media portfolio.

Because although it’s my work it’s not for me.

Most of my social media experience is creating content and strategies for other people or brands. It’s like ghostwriting. It’s ghostsocialing. (I sure hope that’s a hashtag.)

My mission is to figure out how to present my social media portfolio in a way that demonstrates my experience and expertise but doesn’t break client confidentiality.

How to Create a Social Media Portfolio

How to create a social media portfolio

As I searched the Internet I didn’t find a lot. Most how-to create a portfolio advice is for writing clips, marketing, or how to display your personal social media stats.

All of this is good and useful, but off topic. And I guess I shouldn’t be surprised because it’s a tricky balance.

So I started asking writing friends how they add ghostwriting credits to their portfolio. Short answer, they don’t. They leave it out and just refer to “ghostwriting services” or “x amount of books/blogs ghostwritten for x amount of clients.”

Vague but what else can you do?

But I want to do more for my social media portfolio

The golden rule when you create a social media portfolio:

Show don’t tell

You know you need to do it in your writing but it also is important in your portfolios. But how do you show (or even create a social media portfolio) when your clients don’t love the idea of admitting they don’t run their own accounts?

Or what if you did strategy work with a client, how do you display that?

And what if you worked with a client at one point and their feed looked amazing but now they manage their own and it isn’t so awesome?

How do you show that?

Here are my best ideas for building an awesome social media portfolio

Create a social media portfolio by starting with your services and expertise.

First, showcase the services you offer

The best social media portfolio’s I’ve seen break the services down into bite-sized pieces.

Here are a few tips for creating this section of your social media portfolio.

  • Images are your friend. Find generic stock images representing the services you offer and the types of clients you serve
  • Highlight the services you offer
  • Make it interesting

You can expand on and explain the services you offer, or not. It depends on your target client and what will speak to him/her.

Second, list your clients

Gulp.

I know, we’ve been talking about the situation where you can’t name your clients or you aren’t sure how to talk about them. We’ll just do our best here.

Remember how you listed your services a few minutes ago? These are now our categories for organizing our clients.

So, in my case it’s Consulting, Social Media, Blogging and Platform Strategy.

Divide your clients into categories (they can be in more than one) and make them look pretty.

If you can’t name your client then describe them.

You can list them as a Wellness Company in Vancouver, BC for example.

If you can’t show their logo or brand then find a nice stock image that represents the type of business they are. Now list how you worked with them according to your categories.

Bing, bang, boom.

When you create a social media portfolio you can't always showcase your clients. If you can't, find an image representing their brand/business and describe how you served them.

Here are a few tips for creating this section of your social media portfolio.

  • Describe the types of clients you’ve worked with and the types of services you provided
  • Include links to client websites if you can
  • Include client testimonials where you can

In my mock-up example I haven’t expanded to this point but you can see how more is more here.

However, if you can’t say more due to client confidentiality then a beautiful image and a short description of the work you did will suffice.

Update: Here’s how I’m working around this in 2020

Third, make sure your personal social media profiles are optimized

I’m listing this third but your social media profiles are the first and best part of your social media portfolio.

You don’t need them optimized to create a social media portfolio, but this is where many of your future clients will find you for the first time.

You want to make a positive, memorable impression here.

Wherever they find you.

In a previous training I outlined how to optimize your social media profiles but here are the highlights.

  • Choose a professional/standout profile picture and cover photo
  • Make it easy for people to know who you are/what you do
  • Link to your website
  • Include keywords about your services
  • Be clear on your location/contact info

A few other things to consider when you create a social media portfolio

  • Think about what you want to be hired for. Is it social media management? What about content creation, content curation, platform development, strategy, etc. Curate your portfolio to display that—you don’t need to list EVERY client or every freelance job you’ve ever performed (I mean, you can, but put some thought into it)
  • Things to cover: who you are (about), your mission, what you do, and who you serve (aka who you want to work with)
  • Is there an area you’d like more work in? Highlight this throughout your services, experience, expertise, and even which clients you mention

While I’m still building my social media portfolio, here’s what I’m doing with my writing portfolio on social media.

After I wrote this post, Thema asked this question about social media portfolios

Hi Robyn! I ran across your article about social media portfolios. I am pursuing a career as a Public Relations Specialist but only have the social media pages I curated for my internship to show. Any suggestions on how to create a portfolio with very few work examples?

This is such a great question and while I have answered Thema’s email I also want to provide my general tips here in case it’s helpful.

What if I have very few work examples?

Question: How do I create a portfolio with very few work examples?

Answer: Depending on what type of job you’re going after this answer changes but I can tell you in general what I would do.


First, make sure the curated items you have for your portfolio are presented in a compelling way

As in, make sure they look great and are easy to skim and demonstrate the scope of your skillset.

Perhaps you don’t have traditional clips right now because you’re just getting started. Think about what you CAN present to demonstrate your skills and abilities.

For example, if you’re looking to run a client’s Instagram account, then what are some things you can showcase on your Instagram account to demonstrate your proficiency? 

Do you have a good amount of followers? Then highlight that.

Do you have a posting strategy that generates leads? Unpack that.

Have any of your posts gone viral? Take some screenshots and write a case study on what you did and what happened.

Speaking of case studies, this is another excellent way to showcase your social media portfolio.

Even if you have many examples, breaking some key campaigns into case studies is a great way to showcase your results, your strategic knowledge and your competence.

For more on this specific approach, read How to Write a Case Study.

How to Write a Case Study free ebook

I’ve also turned this cast study training into a free ebook, which you can download in my resource library.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

Once you’re logged in, navigate to the “Writing” section and look for “How to Write a Case Study for Marketing Ebook.”

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OK, back to Thema’s question.

Second, work on adding new samples/clips as much as possible 

If you’re not able to get clients/paid work then I recommend writing blog posts (or something similar) to beef up your portfolio and showcase your knowledge.

One of the big reasons I continue updating my blog and improving these posts is because they showcase my writing and expertise to potential clients.

These days, most of the work I do is without bylines and difficult to demonstrate in a portfolio so having regular bylined blog posts is an asset.

Third, networking! Always be networking

Get to know the people who work in the industry you want to be working in. Also get to know the people who work for the types of companies you’d like to work with/for. 

When you know people then the breadth of your portfolio doesn’t matter as much.

True story. Once you’re established, see how many new clients ask for your portfolio. 

I mean, someone you have no previous connection with might want that. Or if they’re from a big agency where that is par for the course. 

But most people will either be going off of a referral from someone they trust or they’ll want one or two samples from similar projects you’ve worked on.

I hope this answers your question! Let me know if there’s anything else to add about social media portfolios.

PS if you want to see how this works in real life, here’s an example from mine. Look for the section in this post titled “Start small, focus your efforts on ‘connectors’.”

How do you create a social media portfolio in a way that demonstrates your experience and expertise but doesn't break client confidentiality? Here are my best ideas for building an awesome social media portfolio.

One more thing. You may be interested in my free resource library. This is where I keep my files, downloads, ebooks, worksheets and whatever else I manage to create. I love sharing what I learn and want to keep adding to this library so it becomes a wealth of helpful goodness.

This is a free resource but I do require a password to access the library itself. You can get access by popping your email address into the form below.

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How do you create a social media portfolio in a way that demonstrates your experience and expertise but doesn't break client confidentiality?

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