Adem Hodzic

Full-stack Developer Specializing in B2B SaaS Startups
Heyo πŸ‘‹ Thanks for a visit internet stranger! My name is Adem and I'm a freelance software developer based in Southern Europe. My entire career I've been working with startups of all sizes and I'm incredibly lucky to be able to work for myself.

I've made $1844 in October of 2020

When I first started freelancing I didn't have anyone to turn in for advice. I've had to learn everything myself.

And no one shared the "dirty" parts of running a freelance business.

So I want to change this.

I'll try to be as open as possible in these posts and share the struggles of everyday life as a freelancer.

I'll try to write these posts every month.

I'll NOT share any sensitive information about my clients.

With this said let's get started.

TL;DR made $1844 for ~ 70 hours of work on three different projects. Have two other projects in the pipeline.

Income


I've made $1844 this month.

This seems pretty low for a freelance software developer and honestly, it is.

September was a super-busy month so I burnt down a bit this month and didn't feel like working a lot.Β 

Projects


Client #1 ($1739 for ~49 hours of work)

I've been working on this client's project every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday as a part-time developer.

I charge him $35 an hour which is lower than my usual rate of $50 an hour. The reason I'm charging so low is the founders of this company are ex FAANG employees, they have a super cool and useful product and they're gaining a lot of traction in their niche.

The problem is they're 100% bootstrapped so they can't pay me my usual rate but it's fine for now.

Client #2 ($105 for 3 hours of work)

Client #2 is also a bootstrapped SaaS company.

It's run by one person with half a dozen freelancers.

I'm charging this client $35 an hour because we've been working for quite a while and the work I do is pretty chill so there's no real reason to increase my rate.

We've done a lot of work during September and I didn't hear back from him until a couple of days ago so that's why I've worked with him for only 3 hours.

Client #3 ($0 for ~18 hours of work)

Client #3 doesn't like paying freelancers hourly so we agreed on $1000 for about 20 hours of work.

I've already charged him $300 dollars and I expect to invoice him the rest sometime next week.

It's a classic board game made in React and WordPress.

Future Leads


Work was slow the first three weeks of October.

I was about to start scouring IndieHackers, Reddit, and HackerNews for new opportunities.

Fortunately, Client #2 reached out if I'm available to do some work on his side project which I've accepted.

Also, Client #3 is pretty satisfied with the current state of the project and he's planning to hire me for another project once we're finished with the current one which is pretty cool.

Conclusion


I hope this post was fun to read as much it was fun for me to write it.

I'm looking forward to reading your feedback so please don't be shy in the comments.

If you want to read these updates as soon as I write them, you can sign up for my newsletter.

Thanks,
Adem
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75 Tips For Building Your Freelance Business

https://tiiny.host/75-ideas-freelancers-agencies/

Stumbled upon this while browsing IH. Good stuff.
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Anyone using Quora to get clients?

I see a lot of people reccomending it

What's Wrong With This?

OK, so I'm writing the next edition of my newsletter. I choose to write about how to get leads via Reddit but something is just not right. I've posted the article below if you have 3 minutes to read it and give some much appreciated feedback.

Hey there,

As you may know, I'm a big fan of Reddit.


90% of my clients come from Reddit.


Today I want to share with you how to write effective Reddit posts for getting leads.

Give, give, give, ask rule

Reddit and Redditors hate self-promotion but they are more relaxed on that rule in cases when a post has tremendous value.

Here's an example of how such a post looks like.

u/malchik23 is promoting his marketing agency but he's so providing such an in-depth guide for SEO for startups that it's okay.

You want to be like u/malchik23.

Give, give, give, ask rule states that you should provide three times the value before asking for something in return.

Use Correct Format for Your Posts

r/forhire is my main source of clients. It's heavily moderated and has very strict rules which in the end make a great community for freelancers and clients alike.

But I noticed that a lot of people write posts that are not converting readers into leads.

Now, I'm not some kind of marketing/sales guru but my [For Hire] posts to get at least two or three responses.

I can thank my formula for that which goes:
  1. Make headline super-specific so that only your target clients will click to see the whole posts. For example: *[For Hire] Freelance JavaScript Developer for B2B Startups*. This way the only people who click to read my post are founders or hiring managers of B2B startups that use JavaScript (pretty self-explanatory when I think about it XD).
  2. Introduce yourself and what you do. You don't any copywriting magic here. Just explain who you are, what do you do, and how long have you been doing it.
  3. Showcase your portfolio and your past clients. Tell your readers where can they check out your previous work (portfolio page, blog page, dribble page, etc). Also, tell them a bit about your previous clients and what did they get by hiring you.
  4. Answer any questions a potential client could have. I usually use a different subheading for each of these questions. For e.g. "You want to hire me but it'd break your budget?". You can answer something like: "I'm a business owner myself and I understand the struggle of finding good talent without breaking my budget. You are still free to message me. I'm sure we can arrange some kind of deal. If not I can direct you to some other freelancer from my network that would more than happy to help you out."
  5. Create a call-to-action. Leave a way a client can connect with you. I usually let people know that my DMs are open and leave my email.

Clean Up Your Profile

Whenever I want to connect with a fellow Redditor I can check out their profile. I'm sure other people do this as well.

You need to remove any NSFW or edgy content you have on your profile.

Be Active in Communities Where Your Clients Hang Out


After you've defined who your clientele is you should join subreddits where they hang out.

My clients are usually startups so I tend to spend a lot of time on subreddits such as r/startupsΒ or r/saas.

Be active, comment on posts (don't spam of course), and give feedback when people ask for it.

Hope you've had fun reading this email as much as I had fun writing it.

Do you have any Reddit tips that you'd like to share?Β 

Have a nice day,

Adem
Like Comment
How do you follow up on ignored emails when doing cold outreach? I couldn't find any good examples online. Care to share your follow-up email?
https://cssfordesigners.com/articles/things-i-wish-id-known-about-css

It's amazing that even after 5+ years of working with CSS you can learn something new about the basics.
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How a 19 Year Old Made $11k in a Month

Just stumbled upon this on Indie Hackers. Very inspirational.

https://samuelstancl.me/blog/how-i-made-11k-in-5-days-with-an-open-source-project/


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Hello Guys!

What brought you here?
I really don't know. I've seen Jay around IndieHackers and I've read some of his articles and now I'm here

What kind of work do you do?
I do MVP development for B2B bootstrapped startups.Β 

What is the biggest challenge you're facing right now?
I never had issues finding leads but I'm terrible at sales calls and converting leads into customers. I always mumble and step over my words since English is not my native language.

I'd also LOVE to learn how to do content marketing as a freelance software developer.

Where can we follow you online? (blog, social, etc...)
Portfolio: https://ademhodzic.com/
Blog: https://kodeblok.com/

BONUS: What is one of your favorite things on the internet?
IndieHackers (https://www.indiehackers.com/) is one of the strangest places on the internet. People are so nice to you, they want to help and they have awesome staff. I love it :)