Whatever you are doing, make sure you’re visible. Don’t fear embarrassment and publish yourself, in whichever form. Here are three stories:
As I wrote in an earlier post, I became iPhone developer by chance. Just for fun, we created a game called CookieCombo to play around with the iPhone SDK, which came out a few months earlier. We tweeted about it, and got two instant gigs out of it: we built the app for Wakoopa and the app for NRC (a leading Dutch newspaper). After that, we were the guys who built NRC, and got many gigs out of that.
Since I started blogging, I got a lot of followers on Twitter, on Tumblr and a lot of email. I’m definitely not the best developer out there (although I consider myself competent enough), but I am easy to find. People stumble upon my blog, and come to me with their iPhone idea.
By speaking at small meetups or conferences, I made a lot of friends. If you write or speak about a topic, people consider you an expert. When I was freelancing, a lot of people referred potential clients to me, because they remembered me from one of these events.
The key takeaway point is: be publicly visible. Put yourself out there: write, speak, blog, tweet, help, teach, email, whatever works for you. This has the awesome side effect that people find you. Instead of having to search for clients, they come to you. Instead of having to find a good designer for your project, they might approach you because they want to work with you.
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