Photo by Sebastian Herrmann on Unsplash

Embedded Freelancers, Attract Not Hunt Clients

I've been doing freelance as an embedded since 2021.

and I realize one of the important things:

There are simply too many project owners struggling to get freelancers. Yes, you read it right. We need more qualified embedded freelancers.

Many project owners send me DM offering projects, but I have to politely decline because of these 2:

  • Their projects industry isn't aligned with my interests
  • I can't refer them to anybody because my freelance circle's interests are too similar to mine

Okay, let's dig deeper into each point.

Their projects industry isn't aligned with my interests

My primary interests in embedded systems are low-power devices, wearables, portable devices, and things similar to those.

But sometimes I get this type of DM on LinkedIn:

I have zero clue about what DC001 is.

Apparently it is a protocol for high voltage charging (like 48v to 72v high).

Another potential client asked me to work on his automotive project, my task will be ensuring the system compliance with regulations and standards.

"I'm sorry man, but I know nothing about regulations," I said to him.

"Ah, no worries mate. Know anyone who qualified?" He asked me.

"Uhhm, I'm afraid I don't know anyone suitable. Really sorry"

"Oh very unfortunate, thanks mate!"

Okay, you might ask. Why would a client with an automotive project approach me?

Well, the answer is very obvious. He doesn't know anybody else! Notice his question above.

I Can't Refer Them

"You're hanging out with folks similar to yours". Yes, I couldn't agree more.

My circle of friends is pretty similar to mine: low-power, portable products, consumer electronics.

You know, the older you get, the smaller your circle will be. That also happens to my freelance friends. That's why I am active on LinkedIn, to expand my online friends.

Many followers asked me to refer projects to them, yes I've done that honestly.

But, how many of them are working with high-voltage embedded projects? Or know a lot about regulations and standards?

Even if they happen to know, how can I ensure they really know? They don't demonstrate their regulations and standards knowledge on LinkedIn.

Do you really expect me to refer my client to a random person I found on LinkedIn?

My reputation would be at stake.

"Well Rosmianto, you could ask them for their portfolio to assess their skills?"

Why wouldn't they just post it on their LinkedIn 😂

I'm not a recruiter. Vetting each person isn't an easy feat.

Attract, Not Hunt Your Clients

We need more qualified freelancers who actively demonstrate their knowledge.

You might be an expert, but if nobody knows, how could you land a client?

If you want to become an embedded freelancer, you want to plan long-term.

And reverse your question, from "How to get freelance clients?"

to "How freelance clients easily find me?"

Flipping that question will also flip your entire approach to acquiring clients.

You no longer "ask for project", you will start "inviting them to see your profile".

One of the easiest ways to start attracting clients?

Start showing off your skills on LinkedIn for 30 days straight.

Whenever you're ready, there are 2 ways I can help you:

1. Professional Firmware Development Guide. If you're looking to build professional-grade firmware, I share 6+ years of expertise developing firmware. This guide shows you the exact workflow I use to build high-quality firmware for my company and my freelance clients.

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