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Advertising yourself

ok, due to the current situation, it looks like everybody who works with me won't have a job, as of next week maybe.

This is basically me asking for tips on social networking, I know there is no one perfect solution, but any input would be great.

Basically I'm thinking of doing consulting, with my main focus on putting in open/free software, as well as changing the code to suit the requirements. I hope to make my money off the install and support.

I have basically been doing this for a number of years, doing either the support or coding, but it's time I get out on my own. I am ok with a number of programming languages, I've written a lot of unix in general and have that to back me up. I have done high end ISP networking, to server support, to designing how clusters should work.

Anyway, my outgoings are tiny, which puts me in a great position, I've been thinking about this for a while, I've avoided ANY debt and paid off everything I did owe, to put me in this position. So basically I'm wondering how to advertise myself, and get the initial business, I am professionally and technically competent to do this work, but I need to start getting customers.

Any tips?

anonomouse
Tuesday, April 20, 2004


"I've written a lot of unix in general"

I've written a lot of howto's/help/articles on unix in general.

anonomouse
Tuesday, April 20, 2004

try to post on the relevant newsgroup,
build a personal web site with a portfolio of your work, backgroung, opens sources projetct

case studies, success stories, testimonials

__ IceMan __
Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Low budget ? 'guerilla marketing' is your friend. Decent budget ? 'permission marketing' is your friend. (both best sellers, available at most book stores) ..but don't just read them - DO what they say !

Joe Hendricks
Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Write books and technical articles.

If you have an idea for a book and can write well, it's pretty easy to get a book published. Computer programming magazines, journals, and websites are always eager to get writers, and they don't pay too well, so most of the professional authors supplement their income through consulting or use the book/magazine writing circuit as a means of advertising.

Go to trade shows and conferences, as a speaker. They'll usually pay your airfare and you can use the intermissions to shmooze with people and get clients.

Joel Spolsky
Fog Creek Software
Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Wait, before you start penning a book - think about the time you will be spending on it. Computer books can take months to write. And if you're going solo, even longer.  It's a rewarding project and if you do decide to embark on this, be prepared - it can penetrate your entire life.

Hey, why not, consider a blog instead? It doesn't give immediate cash returns but at least you write on your own terms and could get you noticed.

dogcat
Tuesday, April 20, 2004

The book/article suggestion is very good.  I've never had a published article fail to generate calls.  I haven't written a book, so I can't speak to the success of something like that.

On a more direct level, join clubs and organizations that interest you.  You'll meet all kinds of people, and it's at places like these where you'll find people who need your services.  Churches always have a need for volunteers, and they're absolutely phenomenal for meeting people from all walks of life.  Whatever you pick, make sure it's something you enjoy.  Your enjoyment will change it from the dreaded marketing work to having fun and helping out friends/associates for profit.

Clay Dowling
Wednesday, April 21, 2004

> dreaded marketing work

?? Come on ! The only thing more fun than sales/marketing is coding :-)

Joe Hendricks
Wednesday, April 21, 2004

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