WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW: Basic HTML and web building skills - and a dictionary!
HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE?
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Promote your skills online
Build a portfolio website and show your CV to the world!
By Mike Slocombe for Internet Magazine, May 2004
Whether you're a freelance designer, struggling artist, independent plumber or unicycling juggling clown, hawking for work can be a soulless experience.
The world of the freelancer can be a tough one.
Clients rarely come knocking on your door.
Looking for jobs often involves lugging a thumping great portfolio around town or spending a small fortune on promotional materials, postage and printing.
Thankfully, the Internet offers an alternative.
A web-based portfolio site packed with examples of your work, personal details, glowing reviews and client testimonies can go a considerable way to persuading a prospective employer or client to hire you.
With your portfolio available from anywhere in the world, there's always the chance of bagging an international contract on the back of your site.
Best of all, it costs virtually nothing to update and maintain
Of course, it's one thing to build up a kick-ass portfolio site - getting prospective clients to look at it is another.
It pays to be persistent - once your site is up and running, mail and fax targeted individuals at companies, outlining your skills and asking them to look at your work. Then ring them up a week later to ask them what they thought,
Be pushy - if you've been ignored by a client you really want to work for, keep reminding them about your skills by sending out enthusiastic emails about updates to your site (but never, ever, spam)
Break out the old media tools and get some stylish business cards printed promoting your new website and leave them in the reception area of prospective clients - or anywhere else where shakers'n'movers might congregate.
If you want to really go for it, blag your way into industry bashes and press that flesh! Introduce yourself to anyone who looks vaguely useful to your career plan, slap a card in their hand - and tell them all about your fabulous website.
Such audacity rarely goes unnoticed - and if you've got a great website to back up your cheek, the job must surely be yours!