Getting a client or a gig that you want is a breakthrough in the world of freelance writing. As you know, it is recommended that you do everything in your power to win, and be hired by clients. However, you must be careful of the red flags that might crop up. Sometimes the gig can be too good, to the pay too enticing. Such things, however attractive can be shady. You can tell if a client or a gig is not straight if:

  • The deal sounds too good

  • If your client promises you heaven, it’s time to run. If you find that they are not objecting to any high price you might place for your services, scram! These types of clients know you none too well, which is why he throws some enticing benefits to make the bait more attractive. It becomes to go to be true if the clients promise bountiful earning, more with little efforts and big bonuses once you meet certain conditions.

  • You did not apply or register

  • You may receive an email out of the blues or receive a call the same way. My friend, if you do not remember sending any application or entering some freelance writing competition (like there are any) but you happen to be a jackpot winner, walk away.

  • The client or the gig is connected to Amazon, Google or other big entities

  • Scammers understand the amount of trust bestowed on these big entities by people. As such, they tailor emails to look like they have come from big companies like Google, Facebook, Yahoo and so on. You have to scrutinize anything unsolicited especially if you want to remain sane I the world of freelance writing

  • Being asked to pay

  • Legit clients do not ask you to pay for a resume or an interview. As a freelance writer, be wary of freelance job listings that demand a pay to give you a gig. For instance, if a company says it will facilitate you with a work laptop once you wire some cash, run. Wiring money is not even the safest mode of payment. Many job listing help freelancers find work without asking for a fee. If you find yourself faced with such a situation, stop right away.

  • Intimidation

  • Some scammers tend to frighten their victims before fleecing them. They can warm you that the account that you use for payment is about to be shut down unless you meet certain conditions. They put it to sound like its end of everything, and you end up feeling as if you are forced to do something.

  • Research and verify the company

  • You need to visit the website of the company and see what they do. This is a good way to tell you that the company is legit and what they offer is real. If what is listed on the freelance job listing does not match the information in the company’s website, that is a serious red flag. You have to do your homework before you can accept anything from them.
    Use social media to see how the company markets itself and if their accounts are sketchy or look like spam that is another red flag.

  • Read the application carefully and closely

  • Identify overly vague descriptions when searching for a gig in a freelance job listing. You ought to feel and be sure of your ability to do the job. Enquire from the clients about the deadlines and if there are several projects or which you can take care. If they are unable to provide an estimate or they do not have the slightest idea of what you are supposed to work on, consider withdrawing.
    You have to avoid being cornered and if possible, get you, client, to sign a contract that outlines terms of operation.

  • Avoid spec work

  • Some of the application processes take advantage of job hunting freelancers by demanding speculative work. This refers to when a client wants to see examples or a free finished project before they pay or hire you. It is okay to provide samples, but if a company asks you to provide complete, standalone tasks with specific prompts, that is free work.

    Spec work can put you in a tough situation and can be an indicator of a fake job. If you have a site on an online portfolio, you can link them to those samples there. If your pieces are strong, then you need not have samples.

Freelance writing is all about self-sufficiency. However, a lot goes in becoming a good and get freelance gigs. Although you need money, it is good to be one step ahead of scammers to avoid falling into their trap and wasting your time for nothing. If an incentive is too good to be true, run!!

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