Raunak Hajela


Issue 08 – I made 1M+ from fake projects 🤑

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Back in 2013, when I started freelancing I’ve been looking for good clients who let me make a decent income. 

A decent income that help me finish my 4 goals (without a loan):

  • Buy a Macbook pro
  • Flight travel to Hyderabad, and Goa
  • Gift a car to dad
  • Pay good salaries to the team

My action plan looked something like this:

  1. Hunt good projects on Upwork and Fiverr
  2. Ask friends and family
  3. Create partnerships that help me land good clients

After trying this plan for 2-3 years, I realized that I had a serious problem with my process. 

I landed some projects and made a little money but I was barely close to my goals.

Except, I bought the Macbook Pro which gave me some motivation 😊

You see, when I hunt for projects on freelancing websites there was high competition and I had barely any good projects. 

So, when I send a cover letter or someone asks me for work I just share everything I did including He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named projects 😂 

I was not filtering stuff and doing enough to get good clients. 

To fulfil my goal I need at least 12 clients in 12 months who pay me 1L or more. 

Then, I planned to fake it. 

I used my side projects and started naming them as legit projects with a good mission, vision, branding, and the problem I solved.

I used them everywhere in my portfolio and landed some big clients. 

I believe fake projects aren’t wrong and how you structure them and use them is what matters.

You should not use it always but when you are beginning you should at least consider it. 

Pick any random website, see what’s missing, and write a case study about it.

Pick any mobile app, see the problems, redesign it and pitch it.

Pick a bad logo, change it, and pitch it. 

On the bright side, you’ll get practice and enjoy the process 🤤

A lot of friends complain about not getting clients, and they don’t have portfolio but don’t look back at their process. 

Brett Williams from Designjoy says, Create fake projects. Try ProductHunt and make things better in his recent podcast episode. 

It took me almost 4-6 years to fulfil my financial goals the way I wanted. 

It took more time than expected, some new goals are incremented, some decremented but I did it 💪🏻 

You can too!

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