A Social Media Business Model for Compensating Freelancers

Freelance contractors – The New American Job - make up an increasing proportion of the U.S. work force.  According to Newsweek, "In a freelance-based job market, talented, skilled and energetic people can still do great work and make good money."

Since our jobs at Handshake 2.0 are exclusively for freelance contractors, we've devised a compensation system that blends the best business use of social media with rewards for talent, skill and energy.

We define "best business use of social media" this way:  The business use of social media allows individuals, operating either for themselves or on behalf of their companies, to convey their knowledge, experience, expertise, skills, vision and best selves through a plethora of media - words, images, videos, and more – to share their value and to connect with others.

In other words, through social media, individuals can establish excellent personal brands.

Each of us has a personal brand. As Fast Company puts it in The Brand Called You, "Big companies understand the importance of brands. Today, in the Age of the Individual, you have to be your own brand… We are CEOs of our own companies: Me Inc. To be in business today, our most important job is to be head marketer for the brand called You. It's that simple – and that hard. And that inescapable."

Most of us have been unconscious that for all of us with Me Inc. franchises, the quality of our content - whether in blog posts, Facebook page updates, or Twitter tweets – establishes the quality of our personal brands. Rewards for excellent content can be high.  So can be the risks of creating mediocre or lousy content.

Handshake 2.0's compensation system takes this unconsciousness, makes it conscious, and rewards those who execute excellent business use of social media for our site.

Handshake 2.0 compensates content creators per post with a base payment plus a bonus for the number of Unique Views of the site, measured through Google Analytics.

What that means is that the extent to which freelance content creators are willing to create excellent content and share that excellence through their social media channels, the more they establish the excellence of their personal brands and the more they can be compensated by Handshake 2.0.

In a freelance-based job market, for Handshake Media, Inc – parent company of Handshake 2.0 – and Freelance Content Creator, Inc., creating excellent content becomes a business model of mutual, enlightened self-interest.