Eleni Kyritsi is a Content Writer from Greece.
- Hi Eleni, tell me who you are and what do you do as a freelancer?
I am a freelance translator and content writer, working for individual clients, companies, organizations and festivals. My working languages are Greek, English and French.
- How long have you been working as a freelancer now?
I started translating professionally 4 years ago, when I was in my second year of studies in the faculty or Foreign Languages, Translation and Interpretation of Ionian University.
- Why did you decide to become a freelancer? Did you think about it for a long time or did your decision come suddenly?
I always wanted to work as a freelancer. It is a flexible job that can be very rewarding, provided that you are ready to challenge yourself with strict deadlines and always be in quest of opportunities and partnerships.
- What is your competitive advantage, which makes your clients hire you?
Translation is no different than any other freelance job, in that one has to be very punctual and detail-orientated. Beside that, my priority is professionalism: I do my best to be consistent and clear about the way I work and provide a disclaimer when necessary. I also ask for feedback, which is available to prospective clients.
- Who are your competitors? What do they have that you don’t?
Even though my studies were focused mainly on technical and legal translation, my 4-year experience has not given me the chance to specialize in a particular field. The content I translate for my regular clients is mostly historical and medical, but real specialization takes time. This is why I never stop educating myself through seminars and looking for challenging projects that help me develop my skills.
- John Wanamaker said: Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is, I do not know which half. Do you gain your clients by advertising or in another way?
I gained my first clients by advertising, mostly through internet and by posting ads in my local area. I keep doing this regularly, even though the last year or so my clients contact me because someone recommended me or they met me personally in some seminar, conference or volunteer action. Networking is vital to succeed, but you always can get some good gigs by advertising.
- The best marketing move, you’ve done?
As I said, I believe networking is the key to success, so the best thing a translator can do is get out there and participate in conferences, volunteer, offer his/her services to as many people as possible. Having a good business card at hand is always a powerful advertising tool.
- What would you do differently if you would start again?
The number one mistake all freelancers make at first is, I think, undercharging. Had I the opportunity to start again, I would ask more experienced translators for advice and look for pricing guides.
- The place where you find your peace?
Since I started working at home, my room is not my “haven” anymore. A glance at my computer is enough to remind me of all the tasks waiting for me. So when I need some peace of mind, I escape outdoors -thankfully, the place where I currently live is full of hidden corners to read a book, listen to music or enjoy a meal with friends.
- What do you do in your free time?
The last few months my schedule is very busy: I work on some translation projects, I participate in a volunteer action for refugee education and I study for my Italian language certification. Therefore, my scarce leisure time consists of working out, meeting friends and reading some good literature.
- Your plans for the future?
Since I have already worked as a content writer in several occasions, I plan on specializing further in journalism and web content writing. Also, as soon as I obtain my Italian language certificate, I plan to take up Turkish, in order to increase my working languages over the years. Finally, there are always plenty of festivals and events in need of volunteers, and I have already applied for some of them.