Dan Harmon says "Find your voice, shout it from the rooftops, and keep doing it until the people looking for you find you." And he's right.
Care. Be passionate. Give a shit.
Author, journalist, and psychology expert Charles Duhigg says one of the best ways to stand out is by indulging in your obsessive compulsive disorder.
He says "People who are successful are people who are not ashamed to say, I am super passionate and interested in X and I m going to indulge that. Yes, I'm a weirdo. But I m going to figure this out, and I'll figure out what I like about it, so that I can share it with you."
Essentially, what he's saying is "be a big fat dork about whatever tickles you." Ideally, this aligns with your freelancing career.
It’s your business – do it your way.
There are dozens of tactics and advice columns on the best way to approach your business, your marketing – whatever. It can often be worth your time to listen, but rarely is this advice iron clad.
Whether you're trying to find an audience, attract prospects, or just figure your personal business out, don't just assume you need to make x posts a day on every social media channel, or a portfolio that looks like your competition's.
What you really need to do is know who you are. Know what matters to you. Chase what excites you and build from there. Look for like minded people. Reach out. Ask them questions. Listen. Genuinely get to know them. Strive to give more than you take. Leave things better than you found them.
Reflect. Reiterate. Wear your past mistakes proudly and do better in the future.
If you simply keep your word and do what you say you'll do, you're head and shoulders above the rest.