A question we get asked more than any other is one that doesn't have a straight answer. However, there are common reasons why freelancers are unable to find paid work and we'd like to share those patterns with you. How many can you relate to?

Freelancing is no different to running a business and at the heart of business is sales. Seeking out new opportunities should be routinely embedded into your working week. If you're constantly getting rejected for jobs or not hearing back at all, it's time to look at why and to do something about it. Here are our top reasons why freelancers struggle to find paid work. 

An Undefined Brand Identity
Your brand is what defines your freelance business. Picking up jobs online is a common occurrence yet many freelancers don't spend a lot of time on their online brand. If you were to look at your website or social media presence for the first time, what would you think? Is it clear what you do and which services you offer? Do you think you look professional compared with other freelancers in your sector? Would you hire you? Self assessing your brand is not easy so if you struggle with this, have a professional do it for you. The other major reason why freelancers don't get the job is the portfolio. This is arguably the single most important aspect of your creative freelance business. In the eyes of a client, your portfolio represents how good you are, how professional you are and at what skill level you're at. Spend time not only producing strong work but specific work within your sector. 

Too Expensive
Pricing is another difficult area for freelancers. Of course you can look at what your competitors are offering but that's not always the best way to value yourself. You are worth what people are willing to pay, no more, no less. Many freelancers have to adjust their prices until they hit the sweet spot and see sales rolling in at a price that works for their business. Try a promotion to see if that generates sales and if so, does it work with your business plan?

Applying For The Wrong Roles
This point comes back to your brand. If you're a fashion photographer and apply for a wedding role, the client is going to have to use their imagination to know if your style is what they want. Give the client exactly what they want and choose the right images to show them. 

Limiting Your Approach
If your marketing strategy is to sit on Twitter all day and hunt for work don't be surprised if you're not having any luck. Don't get me wrong Twitter's a great source for work but there are a ton of other ways to find paid work and it's worth checking them out. You won't know what works and what doesn't until you experiment. Once you've found a formula that gets you paid work, stick to it. For a full list of where to find work, check out our Top 5 Ways To Find Paid Work. 

For more help finding work, try our Jobs Board and get applying.