Write ‘Purple Potatoes’ So I Know You Read the Job Description

Many jobs on UpWork include silly statements like this.

Write “I read the job description” at the beginning of your message.

It’s one of the reasons I’m not worried when I see that 30 people have applied for a job. So many freelancers are spamming the same generic proposal, it has forced clients to use little tricks like this to try and weed them out.

What is too bad for the clients is tricks like this push good freelancers away. I am a professional. If I apply for your job, I will use a custom proposal. You will know I read the job description because I’m going to talk about your specific problem and what my strategy is to solve it.

And if you ask me to write ‘purple potatoes’ somewhere, I’m not applying.

To me, it starts the whole relationship off on the wrong foot. It makes me wonder if you have a negative view of freelancers. Or you are used to dealing with low-paid freelancers. Honestly, I think it would be so easy to spot generic proposals that you can just remove them when you see them, rather then seeing a silly message at the top.

What it Means for Freelancers

First, you should ALWAYS write a custom proposal. Tailor your content to the job and client’s specific problems. Doing this will automatically put you towards the top of those in consideration.

Second, have some self respect and just avoid the jobs that call for silly things like this.

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