How To Find Jobs & Write Proposals on Upwork | Sílvia Pinho | Skillshare

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How To Find Jobs & Write Proposals on Upwork

teacher avatar Sílvia Pinho, Social Media Manager & Online Educator

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Filtering through jobs


    • 3.



    • 4.

      Writing your proposal


    • 5.

      BONUS TIP!


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About This Class

This class will teach you how you can filter through jobs on Upwork & write killer proposals that get you more jobs. This is a follow-up to my How To Start a Virtual Assistant Business With Upwork TODAY! & How To Create an Impressive Profile on Upwork classes.

If you haven't seen those two and you don't have an Upwork account, or your profile isn't complete - I highly recommend watching them first and coming back to this one.


Do you:

  • Want to know how to find the best jobs for you?
  • Avoid some of the common red flags?
  • & write killer proposals that have more chances of being accepted?

If you've answered yes to any of these questions, then this class is for you!


In this class I'll go through:

  • How to filter through jobs on the platforms
  • What red flags to watch out for
  • What to write in your proposals
  • & a BONUS tip!


Who am I to teach you?

  • I’ve been working on Upwork since 2013
  • I’ve worked on 100+ projects
  • & earned $40K+ on the platform

You can check out my Upwork profile for inspiration!

Meet Your Teacher

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Sílvia Pinho

Social Media Manager & Online Educator

Level: Intermediate

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1. Intro: name is Sylvia. And welcome to my skill shared class. In case you don't know me, I'm a virtual assistant and social media manager from Portugal, and I've been working through up work since 2013. So I'd say I know a thing or two about the Platte firm, and now I'm here to teach you. So if you're completely new to up work and you don't have an account yet, I have a class just for you, so you should start off with that. It's only 12 minutes long, but in it I go through the mindset. A couple questions. Ask yourself in order to determine if working from home is really for you. I also ask you a couple questions to determine you the skills you want, a market and the services you wanna offer on Leslie. We go through how to set up your account. So if you have an account already or if you've watched that one already, I have the next level course. That's all about what you put in your profile. So and that one. We go through every single step of your profile so you can have it 100% complete and ready to attract new clients. So if you're either totally confident about your profile right now, or if you've watched those ones already, you are definitely in the right place. If not, go back and watching those and then come back to this one. But basically, this one is going to be all about suffering two drops on the platform and determine which ones you should apply to and also how to craft your proposals so you can win more jobs. So without further ado, let's get on with the class. But before you go, I just want to let you know that my comments are always open so you can ask any questions you have during the class. Or you can also make any suggestions that you have for future classes. I love to hear from you. So, yeah, let's get on with this class 2. Filtering through jobs: ID. So let's start off this class five. Learning how you can filter through jobs on the platform. So, basically, once you log in, this is your up work. Uh, dashboard. You can see your feed with some recommended jobs based on your skills and your past job experience. Um, you can also see here later down the line. Once you have some safe searches, they will show up here, and I'll teach you that later. But basically, let's start off with a simple he work search virtual assistant. You could be this church here or up here, either. Waste fine. So let's search for that. You need a bit of time. So it found me 5682 jobs. So those are a bit too much to filter true, so I'll have to use the upper filters so I don't have to look for all 5000 job pose. That's a bit unrealistic. So some of the filters that I like to use RG experience level, so I usually like to put expert sometimes intermediates as well. But sometimes that's those science are a bit for were budgets to what I what I'm looking for So let's get this act expert right now. But a force that is to your experience level. Um, here, you can choose hourly or fixed price as well, if you have a reference. Uh, here. I don't really mind that much of how many how many hires a client has? Um, one thing sometimes I like to see is if any of my previous clients are hiring, because that gives me, of course, an advantage. Because usually we have good experience this together, so I don't see why they wouldn't hire me again. Um, another thing I really liked filter through. And this especially useful for new accounts, um, is the number of proposals, so I usually go up to 15. But if you're a countess breeding you, I say go up to five or 10 at most. If you can find anything you like under five proposals because this is this is going to give you some advantages because you can be the 1st 1 or one of the first ones to apply. So if you don't have that many that much experience, you can get ahead of the proud by being the 1st 1 to apply. So these ones are pretty. Andi over. Overcharge, ready like they are overfilled. So you shouldn't aim for these, even if you're really experienced. Um, but basically, if you're working on fixed press jobs of budget is a good sultan. True. Have, um but I don't usually mess around with this that much. Also, if you're looking for hourly job, um, if you want to filter through your availability, you can, um, they usually clients don't have that that good of an idea of how long the drop takes. So this isn't usually that helpful, helpful? I've found um, and also the project like that's something that's relevant to you. So, as I said, these are kind of the ones I usually do. So let's put the number of proposals as well. Let's keep this one out. Um, so yeah, that's basically what I usually dio and you see, we narrowed down the search from 5600 to 420 jobs, which is still a lot but a lot more manageable. So basically, that's it for filtering through jobs and in the next lesson will go on to do how to find out which one of these you on a apply to I almost forgot. You can come in here and say this search for later so you can show in your feet. Let me just show you how it looks before we get into the next lesson. Basically, it will show up here, and some of the jobs here are now from that sea search, so 3. RED FLAGS: we filter through the jobs on the platform and we narrowed them down to something a bit less daunting. Let's go on to figuring out now, which one of these do you really want to apply to now, Off course, That will depend on what you're looking for. Who's your ideal client and only you will know that. But basically ill We'll be talking to you on this section a bit more about what to avoid and what to look out for. If you if you don't know which are the red flats on the platform Now I see here on something that is actually not a red flag for me. Ah, it's this plan has payment. Unverifiable. Now that only means that the client is probably you on the platform. As you can see here they have $0 spent and basically they created the account. They created the job posts and they haven't set up their payment yet. Now the only thing I would say here is proceed with caution. Make sure you don't do anywhere before you get an offer and you accept that offer because I believe the client needs to have the payment verified in order to make offer. So once you get that, you're totally fine and up work will make sure that you get paid on time. So, yeah, basically, you could see this one has been verified, but to me, that's not a red flag, but some. I've seen a post here that had some red flags, so it was actually this one. So you can come here in here and click on a job that you want to learn more about. In this case, I just want to use this one. And as an example, I don't really wanna I wouldn't apply to this one because I've seen it before. Uh, but using it as an example. So the first red flag I want to talk to you about his clients that are to the mending. So this one, you can see the man's or request, um, 10 years of experience. Now, that's fine. I mean, it's totally in the right to be looking for someone with experience on, and they do say they want an expert level freelancer, so that kind of matches up right? But it's kind of d combination with another red flag that I usually look out for which is the past budgets. You can come in here and see on this right column the average hourly rate the client has paid to previous freelancers. So, as you can see here, $5 an hour isn't exactly worth or some enough to pay an expert level freelancer with 10 years of experience. That's just that doesn't make any sense at all. So basically what we're looking for, its clients are too demanding and budgets that don't match their expectations. So, yeah, you can say that. Oh, this client has been paying for other services that are in, uh, they don't need someone that experts, and now they're looking to splurge on a freelancer that is highly skilled. And if you think that's the case, of course you will be able to evaluate a case by case. And if you think that's the in the case with the client you're looking at, I say, Yeah, I can still submit a proposal, but again, proceed with caution. And what I mean here is that you can go ahead and talk to the client, but make sure that as soon as you can, you double check with them. Hey, just wanted to know. Um, ever use checked my rate? Is that okay with you? I don't think this is rude. Adult ask. Just make sure you're protecting both of York Times because you don't want toe continue on with the conversation, maybe get on a call, maybe waste a week talking to this client back and forth, and then they send you an offer for $5 an hour and you're like, this came out of nowhere. But if they never tell you like directly that they were willing to pay your rates, just double check it with them. Just to be clear, just to make sure you're both cool on the same page. So that just sales you both so much time on basically what I say when I mean the client is too demanding is not just this. There are clients that want everything under the kitchen saying and then war. And then they say, Oh, I want someone with 10 years of social media management experience. I want someone that learned that knows how to code, then does website design that can draw like a pro. Uh and I want all of that for $3 an hour. Trust me, there are a ton of those clients, but they are also clients that are willing to pay your rates. So basically want to run away from those clients that one. Everything for cheap, um, nos clients. If they are too demanding or if they seem to the Manning on the job post. Trust me from experience, they will only get worse with side. So usually those clients they are more stressful to deal with because you wanna please them and that their expectations are too high usually and they only get more demanding with them that want you to do everything. And can you do this more? Can you do this more and they're not worth your time? There are clients out there that will be worth it dying. These ones are in. So another one another red flag I wanted touch on is you can scroll a bit down here and see the clients of feedback. So if you don't know, it's not only clients that can we feedback to freelancers the other way around applies as well. So these are the jobs that they have posted before and hired someone, so these ones are pretty vague. Thanks for the opportunity. Great clients. This one went left of that feedback, but said no comment. So it doesn't really help me That well, a plus that that, um I'm pretty sure I have seen a bad one here. Yeah, As you can see, this one is the 1st 1 I found that goes a bit more in depth about their experience. Um, I didn't read it it all, but you can pause it to read it. Basically, you want to look for the comments, if possible, that are the most the most descriptive of their experience. So, yeah, I would trust this one a bit more compared to these ones that only leave either when we leave stars or say I enjoyed working on this project, it doesn't really tell me that much. And sometimes you'll find clients tohave, um, different feedbacks on their page, and it's obviously up to you to determine whether you wanna risk it or not. Usually, I'd say it's not worth the risk, because yeah, this one goes a bit more in that. But still, I'm not sure I would trust this client based on that other feedback. So think about it like the free Lester. Dozens have any reason to leave bad feedback. And last, the client was bad. So again, proceed with caution. Use your best judgment. But I personally wouldn't apply to something like this. So look out for clients are to the Mandy, um, best budgets that don't match what they're looking for now and passed feedbacks that are either confusing or just straight up bad. So if you look out for those three years should be fine. If you have maybe, uh, Japanese that you're considering applying to and you have some doubts about it, you can leave the link and the comments if you want, and I'll give you my opinion. But then again, it goes on a case by case spaces. So I'll see you on the next lesson where we'll talk about how and what to write on your proposals once you find the right job for you. So soft to you on that one 4. Writing your proposal: all right. Now let's say you found your ideal job and that it's this one. Let's say you want to submit a proposal. Now, What should you dio? But before we get into that, I have a challenge for you. I'm using this job pose as the ideal job close, and it has a couple of good things in it. And I would definitely if I were only looking at the job description. I would probably apply for it if it was in my skill set. Um, but I found so far two of the three red flags that I've shared before on the previous lesson. So I challenge you to find those two and leave them in the comments. And, of course, justify your choice. And if you get those right, I'll send you a template for your proposals. So good luck with that. And let's get on with the rest of the lesson. So let's say this is your ideal job post. First of all, what you want to do is you wanna read it again? Yes, there's never enough times that you can read through job pose, so read it again and this time focused on understanding if this is really your ideal clients and your ideal job also, if you're exactly the ideal free lesser toe looking for because you don't want to be wasting any anyone's time again. So after you've done that, you didn't read this carefully. Um, you probably notice something that some fines like to add to their proposals in order to filter through club to free Lester's a bit more, which is the secret word. So in this case, the secret word is incredible, and you wanna include that word and the first line of your proposal. What this does is when the client is looking through all the proposals they've received, they will be able to see which ones have incredible at the beginning, and they'll just consider those ones. So any proposals that don't have that at the beginning means that the client, the freelancer, bid and created through the drop post and the ones that did are probably the best suited once. So hopefully they didn't just skip to the last line and found the secret words, but hopefully they read through job post, so that makes the clients work is here. But let's say you really wanna submit a proposal to this job, and you found the secret boards. So that's the first thing you include in the proposal. But the second thing or the first thing, if they don't have a secret word, will be tried to include their name. Try to call them by their names. It makes it that much more personal. And since not every freelancer is going to do that, it gives you an advantage. So how you confined her name now? As you can see here, it only says their location and a couple of informations, but they never says their name. It may say the company's name, but that's not that helpful. So sometimes they do sign the job post. So if that's the case, it's easy for you. But what I like to dio and sometimes it doesn't work, and that's too bad. But what I like to do is coming here in the feedback. And as you can see, this client is probably named still Tony. So I knew condole ahead and double check it. Um, so, yeah, it's safe to say that this client's name is Tony, So yeah, let's get onto applying, knowing the word incredible and their name is Tony. Let's submit a proposal that that ago. So once, Once you're submitting your proposal, you can select here. Ah, the profile. We want to use none of those match in my case, but this is just the example. Uh, also, you can set up the your bit so you can either set up different milestones for the project. Or you can say you want to be paid for the entire project at once. So here you'll determine Keep the clients budget in mind. Of course, on you'll say how much you want to be fate, and you also can say on this is for the case of ah, fixed price job. How long it will take you so you can give the client on idea of your term around time. So let's say less than a week, and here you want to say, Was it important or I forgot? You can always go back and check the job details. You can't go back and check the feedback. You have to scroll to the blessed spaces. It's incredible. Let's start off with Incredible, And then I continue and say, Great Tony, then you continue on with your proposal. So some things you want to add to your proposal will be you want to look through the droppers. So in this case, you usually one address any of their concerns. So in this case, they hot. They have some requirements. So what I usually like to do so I don't have to be scrolling back back up every time because I like to copy the requirements so I can easily address them in my proposals. So I'd say like, Hey, my name is Sylvia and I'm a native English speaker, which I'm not, um I I'm meticulous. I'm experience that that that that and I can make them reassure them that I've read through the drop owes and that I m exactly what they're looking for. So and if they ask any questions, they can ask questions in the drop pose or, um, in here as extras. Make sure your answer all their questions to the best of your ability. So that's pretty much what I like to include again, if you wanna. If you want me to send you that template for the proposal, feel free to comment with what you're saying. Argue to red flags on this shop post and next up, I'll be sharing with you a bonus tip for your proposals. So stay tuned for that. 5. BONUS TIP!: now onto my last tip for this class. It's kind of a bonus tip. I always like to include a video in my proposals whenever I can. So what I like to do is I have loom, which is a chrome extension. And it looks like this. This is what I'm using to record this scores. And basically, you can share your screen as well as your your camera at the bottom, and you can move it around or you can make it bigger or even bigger. Um, and you basically again share both of your screen in your face at the same time. Um, and what I'd like to do with this is I like to go through the drop post and kind of mention key points and the video. I like to talk directly to the camera again, call the client by their names. So Hey, Tony, my name is still get. And I just wanted to record this quick video to kind of introduce myself to you and kind of say, talk to back why? I think I'm the perfect fit for this job. Um, yeah. Just say I came across your drop those and I thought It was a perfect fit for me and maybe mentioned in this case, they say they are. They are looking for a one time saying so I would say a dis point in my life. I'm definitely looking for you more long term relationship with any client. So and this one sounded great to me. So I'd like to actually get a better understanding if you're the perfect line for me. So why don't we book a call sometime next week? Let me know your availability. Um, And that way, you can also hear from them not only the them hearing from you, you can mention. Oh, I've always loved completely contemporary romance. So that's what stood out for me. Ah, you can show them maybe your favorite book. I don't know. I'm not much of a book person. You can reassure them. Oh, I'm a native English figure, which again I'm not, um I I've done this before, and I'll actually lank in my proposal. Um, my past work, my four folio, and you can keep going on, but don't go on for too long. I say 1 to 2 minutes is ideal. Oh, and again, some of the rules apply that I said in my previous class about video for your profile, So keep it well with felt directly to the camera. Had a smile on your face. Just I've tried to locus professional as you can, but also friendly Um, yeah, that's basically it for this. For this bonus tip, uh, video will always be like an up sell because not every freelancer will include video and their proposal, and it will put you in front of so many others. So Oh, and with bloom, once you're done, you don't need to download the video. You can just share the link to the video in your proposal, and you'll actually get a notification once the client watches your videos. So that's a good thing because you get to know they checked out your little So that's always nice. And, yeah, with that being said, I think it This is the end of this class. So again, like I said in the beginning, my comments are always open. They'll forget to try to enter that challenge on the previous lesson and let me know of any questions you have or any suggestions for future classes. And I'll see you on the next one by