This is a guest post by Nicolas Acuna and Mikka Olsson, co-founders of Ebbex.com, an iPhone and iPad apps development company. In the last year, they’ve had great success (and committed a fair share of mistakes!) creating apps for clients all over the world and decided to share their findings with the fine readers of Inspired Mag in the new Freelancing 101 series.
Sometimes, big companies find themselves looking for a reliable freelancer. This rare occasions are often caused by one of the following reasons:
- They are backed up. Their in-house teams are busy and they have a project that needs to get done.
- Lack of know-how in a new technology
If you are contacted by a big company, realize that you have a golden opportunity, go the extra mile for them and consider the following suggestions:
Charge cost or less for the first project
Big companies are deciding between multiple freelancers. If you don’t’ make money an issue, you are communicating that your priority is to solve their problems, not to get paid. By giving them a low price you are letting your work be the only thing that they see. At the end of the day, if you solve their problems and become a trusted source, money will come your way.
Don’t Worry about Scope Creep in the first project
Due to the multiple stake holders, corporate divisions, committees and bureaucratic red tape present in big companies, it takes time for them to fully define the problem they are asking you to fix. What might seem like scope creep is just the rest of the scope coming down the corporate ladder. Big companies need to know they can unload their problems on you.
Deliver Quality, Deliver Fast
This point seems too obvious to state since we are supposed to always try our best no matter who the client is. But when a big company is knocking on your door, limits need to be pushed until trust is earned.
Adjust to their Whims
The problems a big company might cause you when they change their mind, pale in comparison to the benefits they will bring your way when you earn their trust.
Envisioning the Sweet Spot
The end goal is to earn a big company’s trust, to be the one they come to every time they have a problem they can’t solve themselves. These are some of the benefits:
- Steady cash flow
- The satisfaction of creating important and influential work since a large number of people will end up using it
Great for your portfolio (If not restricted by NDA)
3 ways to land a big company as a client
1. Work your network, you never know how many degrees separate you are from a decision maker in a big company. Scan your LinkedIn contacts for that!
2. Stay current in all the trends and new developments in your field. As mentioned before, lack of internal expertise in new technologies is one of the reasons why big companies look for freelancers.
3. Have some luck.