In our previous guide, we laid out five steps to launch your freelance marketing career. (Go back and read that first to lay the foundation for how to become a freelance marketer!) Now, it’s time to build a stellar marketing portfolio to show off your skills.
The world of freelance marketing is a highly competitive landscape. There are potentially hundreds of other marketers competing for the same jobs. You need to stand out from the pack if you want to win over clients and lock in work.
A strong portfolio will help you do just that. In this guide, we’ll cover the basics of making an online portfolio that hiring managers will love. We’ll discuss why portfolios are important, what to include, and some platforms you can use to build a portfolio that impresses potential employers.
Why Are Marketing Portfolios Important?
Marketing portfolios are a valuable tool you need as a freelance marketer. They enable potential clients to visualize your previous work experience and understand your expertise.
Marketing portfolios work in tandem with your resume. Resumes explain what you can do as a marketer and are crucial for highlighting your experience. Marketing portfolios are similar, but they’re more visual and allow you to dive deeper into your greatest achievements.
Portfolios show off all of your skills and expertise. They also help show clients your thought process so they can trust you’re the right fit for their open role.
There are some core pieces of information you should include in your portfolio to wow potential clients. Let’s take a look.
What To Include in Your Marketing Portfolio
You have a lot of flexibility when it comes to creating your portfolio. There are many ways you can design your portfolio and frame your work experience, so it will be up to you to decide what to include.
But overall, your portfolio should include a personal bio, services, work examples, and contact details with a call to action.
You should start your portfolio with a brief introduction and personal bio. This gives your portfolio some personality, builds your personal brand, and allows you to summarize your expertise.
Your landing page should include a brief summary like your name, where you’re from, and the specific marketing areas you work in. You can then dedicate an entire “About Me” section and go even deeper into your experience.
This is where you can walk through your resume and explain anything you’d want a potential client to know. This can include detailing your career progression, mentioning high profile clients you worked with, and notable accomplishments you garnered throughout your career.
This is one of the most important aspects of your portfolio. What can you provide clients who are looking for a freelance marketer?
As mentioned in our previous article, you should be focused on your services and choose the few you have the most expertise in. You don’t want to come off as the “Jack of all trades, but master of none.”
There are plenty of services you can offer clients depending on your skillset. Here are some examples that might relate to your experience:
- Social media strategist
- Graphic design
- Web design
- Content marketing
- UX designer
- Data analytics
- PPC ads
You don’t need to go into great detail regarding your services. You can simply list them out and then let your project examples show your work in action.
Project Case Studies
This is the meat of your portfolio that you should draw the most attention to. This section will have several case studies that go into great detail about your best work.
You should choose projects that showcase winning marketing campaigns with strong results. You can also bring up ideas that you pioneered or challenges that you overcame as a freelancer.
Examples of your work should cover the following pieces of information.
Start each portfolio page by giving clients the context for the marketing campaign or initiative. Mention who your client was, which industry they’re in, and why they turned to you for your services.
Challenge or Problem
Every client faces a challenge or problem they can’t solve on their own. That’s where you come in. Explain the problem you were hired to solve. For example, a client may have been struggling to rank high on Google and turned to you for your SEO and content marketing abilities.
Explain the role you played in each project. Talk about which skills you leveraged and the responsibilities you held. Then detail the steps you took to successfully complete the project. This will give a sneak peek into your thought process and how you approached the problem. It will also show the exact technical skills you employed to solve your clients’ challenges.
Project Impact and Results
Clients want to see how your work impacted your client or employer. Provide quantifiable results for every project in your portfolio. This will show clients that you approached the problem with a goal in mind and were cognizant of measuring your results.
All roads should lead to clients reaching out and contacting you for freelance work. You should provide a call to action that urges clients to get in touch with you.
This could simply be listing your email or phone number. You can also have a built-in contact form potential clients can fill out to request your services.
Additionally, you can provide a link to your resume so clients can dig even deeper into your experience. Links to social media accounts like LinkedIn and Twitter can also give clients another outlet to learn more about you.
Now that you know what you should include in your portfolio, let’s go over some easy-to-use digital portfolio builders.
Marketing Portfolio Platforms
Creating a digital marketing portfolio doesn’t need to be overly complicated. There are plenty of website builders you can use to create your portfolio and start winning clients.
Here are some popular options you can choose from to build your portfolio.
Squarespace is an easy website builder that has a stockpile of beautifully designed portfolio templates. You can simply download a template, plug in your information, and have a stunning portfolio finished in no time. The platform comes with a fee. The cheapest option is signing up for an annual subscription for $12 per month.
Weebly is another website builder that enables you to quickly organize your portfolio. Compared to Squarespace, there are fewer portfolio templates to choose from and they aren’t nearly as visually appealing. The advantage of using Weebly is that it’s completely free for a basic website.
Wix is also a free website builder perfect for designing your portfolio. Wix has more template options than Weebly and is arguably more user friendly. Wix even gives you a detailed step-by-step process to build your website from scratch. You can customize your portfolio to fit your needs and have your site up in a hurry.
Adobe Portfolio is a website builder that comes with any Adobe Cloud subscription. If you already have an Adobe subscription, this is an easy option as it will cost no additional money. However, if you don’t have a Cloud subscription, you’ll need to sign up which will cost between $5 and $53 per month. Also, there are only 12 templates to choose from, so you’re quite limited.
Once you’ve chosen a website builder, it’s time to start filling in the blanks. Let’s look at some examples.
Marketing Portfolio Examples
Everybody needs a little inspiration. Take a look at some of these marketing portfolio examples to give yourself a head start on your design process.
- Gari Cruze (copywriting)
- Sarah Karp Ward (content marketing)
- Velvet Spectrum (design)
- My Poor Brain (design)
- Melanie Daveid (UX design)
These portfolios are highly interactive and weren’t designed overnight. Your portfolio doesn’t need to be nearly as developed to wow clients, so don’t get intimidated.
Build a Portfolio That Wins Clients
A portfolio website is a valuable tool that will expedite your job search by impressing potential clients. Your digital marketing portfolio will showcase all of your greatest work and accomplishments and tell clients that you’re the right fit for the job.If you want to take your freelance marketing career seriously, then you’re going to need a portfolio. You can set yourself apart from your competitors and start winning more contracts by taking the plunge and building your own portfolio. Once your portfolio is complete, you can start finding available paid gigs on sites like Upwork.