4 places to find freelance translation jobs
So, you’re just starting out as a translator. You’ve got the skills, but now you need the clients.
And you’re wondering where on earth all the successful freelance translators you see online find them.
The truth is, all those translators were once in your shoes. And just as you will, they quickly discovered that no translation career was built overnight.
Building your client base will take time and dedication.
At the beginning, you have to be willing to put yourself out there and treat looking for clients and marketing yourself as your full time job.
But if you’re willing to put in the effort and you know where to look, it won’t be long until you’ve got a solid base of happy clients coming back for more.
Places you can find freelance translation jobs
Job boards or ‘content mills’ in general often get a bad rap.
And it’s true that you’ll find some terribly paid jobs on ProZ, and it can often be a race to the bottom. There are plenty of posts asking for your ‘best rate’ - a phrase that should always set alarm bells ringing.
But that doesn’t mean you have to take those jobs. You’ll also find some great jobs available, many of which will lead to repeat work.
Translation agencies especially often turn to ProZ when they’re looking for a translator to help with a specific language pair or have a big job coming up they need extra hands on deck for.
One thing to bear in mind is that it can be tricky finding work through ProZ if you’re a free member, no matter how good your profile is.
Pro members often get advanced access to all the best jobs, leaving slim pickings for free members. But if you’re a budding translator, then a pro membership might well quickly pay for itself.
Pro member or not, ProZ has an extremely handy tool called Blueboard, where translators can rate the LSPs they’ve worked with.
However you get in touch with an agency, make sure you check out their rating before working with them so you don’t get any nasty surprises.
2. Translator’s Café
This is fairly similar to ProZ in many ways, but the upside of it is that you don’t have to be a paid member to get access to some good job options.
Again, there are plenty of extremely low paid jobs floating around here. But there’s plenty of good stuff too.
You can get alerts set up both on here and on ProZ meaning you get jobs relevant to you straight to your inbox.
Moving away from the classic job board sites, LinkedIn has really come into its own in the last few years.
It’s no longer the mind numbingly boring, weirdly formal place it once was, and it’s no longer just a place to find full-time jobs.
More and more remote, part-time positions are being posted on there, so keep an eye out for them.
But unlike job board sites, LinkedIn isn’t all about applying for or pitching for jobs.
It’s about making your profile the best it can be and consistently sharing relevant, insightful and helpful content.
With a little dedication you could start making a name for yourself more quickly than you might think, and work will soon start coming your way.
It might be in the form of agencies or direct clients, but it might also be fellow translators who are in need of an extra pair of hands for a project or want to refer someone reliable for a job.
4. Twitter, Facebook and/or Instagram
LinkedIn is having a moment right now, but that doesn’t mean you should be ignoring all other forms of social media.
Of course, it’s not a good idea to spread yourself too thin. Keeping up an active presence on LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram would be a full time job in itself.
But Twitter, Facebook (especially Facebook groups!) and Instagram are great places to build your network, which can in turn lead to referrals and collaborations.
Pick your focus depending on the platform you prefer, but whatever you do make sure you’re giving, not just expecting to receive.
Share advice and wisdom with others, comment on their posts and just be a lovely human being.
That way, people will be lovely right back, and jobs are far more likely to come your way as a result.
You have to play the long game with social media, but if you stick at it then you will eventually start reaping the rewards.
Managing your clients with LSP.expert
Once you’ve tracked down a client, you need to keep them happy. Because getting repeat work from an existing client is far easier than going out and finding a new one.
But that can be tricky, especially if you’ve got lots of different jobs on the go. It can be hard to keep track of deadlines, invoices, different requirements… The list goes on.
LSP.expert is designed to help you offer the best customer experience possible. It’ll make it easy for you to keep all your jobs organised, manage your time well and keep your clients coming back for more.
Take advantage of our free trial to see for yourself just what a difference it could make to your business.