An independent or freelance translator needs to develop an extensive network to find work and there are many steps to do so. The services of a translator is very much need by businesses and individuals these days. However, competition is fierce, particularly for the freelance translators and even for startup translating firms. Thus, it is highly suggested to find ways to extend your network as a translator through various platforms. Don’t just rely on your friends and relatives to spread the word about your services. You need to make constant efforts to keep up with the competition. Here are some helpful suggestions.
1. Be visible in various events related to translation. If there is a translation fair or conference, attend it. During the event, take time to speak with other translators. This helps a lot in extending your network within the pool of translators. You can also share your knowledge and views with them. You might find translators who have been looking for other translators to recommend to their clients since they cannot translate in all languages. Thus, they won’t hesitate sharing clients who need your services. Chances are you will find potential clients during these events. They are just waiting to spot the right person to work with.
2. Be an expert in the languages of your choice. You will have better chances of extending your network if you have proven expertise in your chosen languages.
3. See about getting certified and join associations related to the industry you have chosen. Having your name listed in industry-specific association sites will greatly help in getting your name out there.
4. Try joining a translation agency if you an expert in specific languages. These companies are always in need of translators, since they do not employ translators on a full time basis. Learn about the company and see where you can fit in.
5. Make your online presence felt. Set up accounts in various social media platforms. Make sure that you update these accounts regularly. Share articles, important information, and write stories or posts that your followers will most likely benefit from. You can also provide some links to sites that may be of help to them. You also need to create something unique and attractive in your accounts. This will make you stand out from the rest.
6. Always take the time to interact with your followers. When you have already set up your accounts, make sure that you spend some time responding to queries or just saying thank you if someone appreciates you or likes what you have posted. Write customized responses always and not just a generic response to all queries. Make them feel important to you. In doing this, you will hold their attention and attract them to avail of your services.
7. Don’t hesitate to use traditional means of advertising to target potential local clients. Post ads via bulletin boards or walls (with permits), set up a booth during local fairs, distribute flyers and brochures, and have free consultation during local activities. This might be tough, but it can still be effective. You will definitely have a strong hold in your local area. Besides, these people you have met locally will most likely share online what they have gotten from you. Thus, it can still be spread after all.
8. Just be confident! When people see that you are extremely confident in your craft, then it will be easier for them to trust you. You need to display a sense of authority in everything that you do.
Extending your networks as a translator might not be easy. However, if you are serious in your efforts to build a network while honing your craft, you can reach your goals in no time.