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By: Sylvie Fortin

Do you know how to market yourself? If you're like most telecommuters, the answer is “no.” If you're ready to leave the rest of your fellow telecommuters behind and find personal and professional success, you need to learn how to market yourself like a pro. To help get you started, we've identified the top 7 ways you can begin making your mark in the business world with time-tested, proven strategies for marketing success.

  1. Create a Professional Website: It is vitally important for every contractor and jobseeker to have a professional website. You must have a good- looking, professional site that represents your skills, talents, and showcases your service offerings. Once you have a site, you'll be able to market yourself in a variety of effective and inexpensive ways, including search engines, discussion boards, reciprocal link exchanges, and with articles in newsletters.
  2. Create an Online Portfolio: Creating and maintaining an online portfolio is so critically important to a successful telecommuter! Your potential clients need to see proof of what you can do. You cannot expect them to just “use their imaginations”. You need to go above and beyond the call of duty to impress the socks off of them and you cannot do that unless you have rock solid proof of your skills.
  3. Network with Local Businesses: There is nothing quite as effective as meeting with fellow businesspeople at local business networking events. This is particularly true when you are attempting to generate contracts for yourself from companies that are not necessarily looking for staff or new projects. If the service you offer is unique and in demand, spending a few hours a month making the rounds at business events can skyrocket your business and reputation as a serious businessperson.
  4. Research Your Prospective Clients Intensively: Learning all about a potential company before you make that first contact is vitally important. It is a great way to find out beforehand whether or not you and the client are a good fit, and it also helps you get your foot further in the door.
  5. Pick Up the Phone for Maximum Results: It never hurts to pick up the phone and set up appointments to show your service offerings. Too many home-based workers are afraid of marketing and this is the biggest hurdle you'll need to cross to make it as a telecommuter.
  6. Place an Ad in Your Local Classifieds: Place an ad in the business services section of your local classifieds. Running your ad constantly provides you with consistent visibility in your community. Businesspeople tend to do business with people they are familiar with, so keep that ad running to present an image of reliability.
  7. Believe in Yourself: When you believe in yourself and your ability to succeed, you project an air of confidence that will draw success to you. Fellow businesspeople can feel your well- placed confidence and trust you with their projects. When you prove to them that you are capable in every way, they'll come back again and again. Believing in yourself may be one of the most successful marketing tools you have!

There you have it; 7 simple ways to begin marketing yourself as a pro. If you can make each of these seven part of your business strategy, you'll discover just how satisfying your work-at-home business decision really can be.