6 Myths About Freelancing in NigeriaDecember 31, 2021
Myths are outcomes of man’s beliefs and intuition swayed by his surroundings. According to Christian Jarett, myths gave rise to countless stereotypical views in the world. Owing to this, some aspects of life have been addressed with stereotypical views across the world. The freelancing career is one of these aspects. There are several myths about freelancing in Nigeria, an important topic that we need to tackle.
Scepticism and Tales: The Root of Freelancing Myth in Nigeria
Nigeria is a developing country with a large populace. Most career opportunities available in Nigeria are not enough to employ everyone in the country. Due to this, Nigerians resort to finding other means of income aside from being a salary earner. This is where freelancing comes in. Online jobs like freelancing are not most Nigerians’ cup of tea as they are quick to believe any false news about it. Many unemployed Nigerians refuse to choose freelancing as a means of income and keep living in poverty. This is probably one of the reasons why Nigeria has not yet attained the qualifications for a developed country.
Stories tend to travel faster than anything else and this is why most people fall victim to myths. There are a lot of freelancing myths nowadays, each struggling to prove its superiority. This makes most people feel reluctant to give in to the idea of freelancing in Nigeria. The few who are interested may also get discouraged after hearing some myths about freelancing in Nigeria.
Are you a freelancer? Or do you wish to dive into the world of freelancing? As long as you’re ready to challenge the myths about freelancing in Nigeria, you can be the next world’s biggest freelancer. Who knows?
Now, what are those freelancing myths and why are they wrong?
6 Myths About Freelancing in Nigeria
Freelancing gets you cheap jobs
The belief that freelancing gets you nothing but cheap works that are more or less like free jobs is wrong. One thing you need to understand about freelancing is that you choose who you render your services to and you decide if a price range is worth your expertise or not. The people that hire you for your services are called clients and they only become clients when there’s a mutual understanding.
There are a lot of sites where a freelancer can get hired. Fiverr and Upwork are good examples. You submit a proposal or cover letter to posted jobs on these sites. Before your client hires you, you both would agree to a certain pay rate, be it hourly or per project. You proceed with the deal if it is okay with you and back out if you are not interested.
So, who is deluding you here? The mode of payment for a freelancer is clear and safe. The rates are yours to decide. Moreover, the platform or site you used to apply for jobs, especially Upwork, are always ready to protect your money in case of any issues with your client.
You can see that getting cheap jobs or working for free is simply one of the myths about freelancing in Nigeria that will never be true.
Read also: Upwork tutorial for Nigerians
Competition rates are threatening
Irrational fear of competition gives rise to one of the myths about freelancing in Nigeria. The truth is that there is competition in every goal achievable. Since you are not the only one in your freelance niche, you need to stand out to compete effectively. Competing to get gigs in the freelancing world is not as frightening as people think. When you have all it takes to be distinguished amidst a million freelancers, competition becomes a sweet ride.
Guess what? Your client might be interested in your skills more than any other freelancer for a peculiar reason. It depends on how you portray yourself. For instance, as a copywriter or a writer, make your proposal unique and completely free of error. You can’t expect a client to hire you when your proposal has a lot of grammar errors and misplaced tone.
As a graphic designer, make your elevator pitch engaging. Let them visualize how your services will make their lives better. All these will make your profile stand out, and make it easier for you to compete and get jobs.
Freelancing is risky
The most believed myth about freelancing in Nigeria is that it is a risky job. Perhaps you’ve once believed this, you’re not completely wrong. Life is all about taking risks. Do you think your full-time job isn’t also risky? For someone who has a full-time job, there are rules laid down by the boss that you must follow. Failure to abide by these rules might warrant your dismissal.
What happens when you are a freelancer? First, you have a lot of bosses or clients. You get the freedom to set time and do jobs at your pace even if the jobs have a deadline. You are like a semi-boss to yourself. If one of your bosses fires you, you’ve got another. Now analyse, which is better? Freelancing can be way better and more secure than your full-time job.
High level of education requirement
One of the common myths about freelancing in Nigeria that you need to discard is that you need a high level of education to start freelancing. Well, that’s a total no-no! You don’t necessarily need to hold a Bachelor’s or Doctorate to be a freelancer. While some clients might strictly stress the need for particular education, some only need you to showcase your skills. All you need is to master your skills well and be able to display them as the need arises.
Freelancers must be engrossed in social media
A freelancing myth you should endeavour to ignore as a Nigerian freelancer is the idea that you have to be obsessively active on social media before you get a job. You indeed need some public presence to build connections. However, it is wrong to believe that you won’t succeed as a freelancer without it as it can be a huge source of distraction.
While building your so-called connections on social media platforms like LinkedIn and Indeed, you might get distracted by other freelancers’ profiles. Their achievements might bewilder you and make you lose focus if you haven’t achieved a lot. So why look for oppression on social media in the name of getting visibility when there are a thousand ways to get clients? You can connect with a client by showing your guest posts on a blog or sending a direct email to clients to pitch an idea.
There are no limited routes to a successful freelancing career as a Nigerian. If social media isn’t working for you, walk away from it and find a better way.
There are no good jobs for a freelancer
If you’re of this generation, you know that this particular myth about freelancing in Nigeria is just a myth. It will never be the reality. Do you know how many successful freelancers are in Nigeria? People of different educational backgrounds, age groups and skill sets are making a fortune from the freelancing world. How is that possible if there are no good jobs?
People that spread this myth around may have applied for jobs that they can’t do. So, they have an unpleasant experience and conclude that there are no good jobs in the freelance world.
As a freelancer, you have full control over the kinds of jobs you get from clients. You can apply for internships, short-term contracts or long-term deals. As long as you have a skill that is in demand, e.g. copywriting or making voice-overs, there are good jobs for you in a lot of places.
There are a lot of myths about freelancing in Nigeria to ignore as you can see. That is the only way you can see the glittering future of your career as a freelancer. Drop your thoughts in the comments section or start a conversation on freelancing myths on our WhatsApp community.