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Making Money The "All Things Freelance" Thread
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CleanSlate Offline
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Post: #76
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
I've sent 17 applications so far on Upwork, still no bites. But there was a good match that Upwork notified me about via email, so I applied today. It's a small time $100 job.

But the more I use Upwork, the less I like it. Not because I haven't been getting jobs, but it seems like a race to the bottom with pricing. I refuse to charge less than what I make at work, since I already make that money.

Besides, even if I got paid 2k to program an iphone app, the client might make millions off it. I rather be on the other end of that deal.
06-04-2015 06:38 PM
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Post: #77
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
It's a tough racket, but that is how I pay the bills as of late. At first I was stunned anyone would want to pay me to write fiction. Then one of my clients sent me a story to revise and I was shocked at how ungodly bad it was. I mean the person who wrote it had no concept of paragraph structure or dialogue. My advice to her was junks the thing, but she wanted me to revise. I spent two hours on it and no more. Seriously, it should have been rewritten.
So now I realize the competition might not be all that intense in my niche. I just have to find ways to make bank.

"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
06-04-2015 08:25 PM
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Post: #78
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
Hey guys. I started my freelancing gig a month ago after losing my job and deciding never to use my brains again for an employer. :-)
So far, for being a starter who doesn't charge bottom rates my business is going quite well. My question for the more experienced ones over here though: how do the summer months work out for you guys? You still got a steady flow of work, or do you experience a decrease in demand?
06-05-2015 05:31 AM
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Bushido Offline
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Post: #79
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
CleanSlate, just do what you gotta do to get started. Do you really want this freelance thing or do you want to stay in your current job?

With zero reputation or contacts you might struggle getting top dollar jobs on those sites from the very beginning. I'd be the last person to tell you to join the race to the bottom, but it would help to think of this as the beginning stage for just getting started. It's a business and doing some jobs for a little less than usual is an investment in that business.

I also recommend reading through the other freelance threads (the Elance one in particular). Lots of gold there. BB has given good strategies on getting started on multiple occasions.

Here is the amazing story of a guy who went from 45k a year as a coder in Japan to being a highly successful consultant and later entrepreneur. I won't spoil it here, but I thought his case was insightful and inspiring. Maybe it could be of help for your situation.

PM me for accommodation options in Bangkok.
06-05-2015 06:29 AM
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CleanSlate Offline
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Post: #80
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
(06-05-2015 06:29 AM)dreambig Wrote:  CleanSlate, just do what you gotta do to get started. Do you really want this freelance thing or do you want to stay in your current job?

With zero reputation or contacts you might struggle getting top dollar jobs on those sites from the very beginning. I'd be the last person to tell you to join the race to the bottom, but it would help to think of this as the beginning stage for just getting started. It's a business and doing some jobs for a little less than usual is an investment in that business.

I also recommend reading through the other freelance threads (the Elance one in particular). Lots of gold there. BB has given good strategies on getting started on multiple occasions.

Here is the amazing story of a guy who went from 45k a year as a coder in Japan to being a highly successful consultant and later entrepreneur. I won't spoil it here, but I thought his case was insightful and inspiring. Maybe it could be of help for your situation.

Yes I do want to go freelance, and my goal is to unplug within 12 months from now. Actually 11 months, because I set that goal a month ago.

I have been offering pro bono work to people who work with copywriters, in order to build my portfolio to show online, so I can start showing samples and then charge for my work.

I've been practicing coding at home 3 hours a day to strengthen my skills to make it easier to jump into a project that I do land.

On top of all this, I've been reading ebooks on coding, freelancing, and copywriting. That's 4 hours a day of extra grinding, outside of my regular work hours.

I'm hesitant to post every little minutiae of my activities because then I'd feel like I'm spamming this thread... but I assure you that I'm all over this thing.
06-05-2015 08:21 AM
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Post: #81
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
(06-05-2015 05:31 AM)TimRiggins85 Wrote:  Hey guys. I started my freelancing gig a month ago after losing my job and deciding never to use my brains again for an employer. :-)
So far, for being a starter who doesn't charge bottom rates my business is going quite well. My question for the more experienced ones over here though: how do the summer months work out for you guys? You still got a steady flow of work, or do you experience a decrease in demand?

Anyone?
06-11-2015 07:16 AM
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ColSpanker Offline
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Post: #82
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
Got some steady work, just haven't found any big paying jobs. Since I write fiction for a living these days, I am in a particular niche. I think the only way to stage a break-out is publish you own works on your own website. But it's hard to find time to do that when you're cranking out 8K of words of a day.

"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
06-11-2015 03:09 PM
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Chick Magnet Offline
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Post: #83
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
ColSpanker,

I write a little fiction on the side for pleasure, but it's just not something people will pay you big bucks to do. Unless you self-publish and get a big break as you said.

Look more into the copywriting/marketing side. It's boring. But well paid.

Also, if you're writing copy for industrial boilers (my last project), it's just "work". When you write fiction for other people, you're giving them the fruits of your creativity.

I'd find that pretty soul-destroying, personally.
(This post was last modified: 06-11-2015 03:38 PM by Chick Magnet.)
06-11-2015 03:35 PM
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ColSpanker Offline
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Post: #84
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
With all due respect CM, soul destruction for me involved twenty five effing years in a lab making corporate types rich while they tossed me the occasional bone. No copy writing for me, I am an older dude and I plan on going out doing what I want to for a change. And right now I like writing fiction.

"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
06-12-2015 12:19 AM
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CleanSlate Offline
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Post: #85
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
I'm getting into copywriting and looking for jobs to do for a nominal fee to build my online portfolio.

It may be boring, but no more boring than my current job.
06-12-2015 08:06 AM
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Post: #86
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
Guys, a few things I'd like to share that have been instrumental in growing my current business.


Testimonials

I mentioned before that you want to always ask for testimonials from your clients.

Not sometimes, not once in a while, but always.

Make it a systematic part of your work relationship with a client.


You complete a job to the client's satisfaction => Immediately request a testimonial while their enthusiasm for your work is fresh.

Always request a *video* testimonial.

Video testimonials are simply more impactful than written testimonials, which can be easily faked.


I had one guy leave me an absolutely glowing and incredibly genuine video testimonial and I instantly noticed an uptick in inquiries from my WaFo thread.

I even had somebody reach out to me and tell me specifically that the video tipped them off to finally get in touch.

All the big name marketers get video testimonials.

If it's good enough for them, it's good enough for us.


Now, some people are camera shy and they'll demure from getting in front of a camera on your behalf.

In this case you just 'downsell' them and request a written testimonial instead.


Another advantage of getting a video testimonial is that you can reuse these videos in all of your marketing materials.

Most of the time people are praising YOU rather than your specific service, so you can use these videos out of context to establish your trustworthiness in a completely unrelated venture.

Yes I know that may *seem* shady to some people, but I think it's perfectly ethical.

You've basically proven that you're a quality service provider and a man of your word.

There's no reason to assume that this would change from service to service, particularly if your personal 'brand' is attached to what you're doing.


Lead Generators

One of the reasons why I'm a big proponent of Warrior Forum is because your business thread ranks in Google.

You have a ton of text, media, and relevant keywords for Google to use as ranking fodder right in your thread.

PLUS the authority of the domain itself bolsters the threads rankings.


And just like any other page on the web, you can also link to your thread from various sources (including your signature, your website, etc) to prop up your Page Authority and incoming links profile.

Both of which are ranking factors for the big G.


Can you do all that in your Upwork profile?

Can you embed text, video and testimonials in your upwork profile?

Can you position yourself as a premium provider and have people contact YOU instead of bidding for jobs with a hundred other IRTs?

I haven't looked for a while...but probably not.


A Warrior Forum thread, on the other hand, or your website, or a super valuable post on a forum (like this one), or a guest post on a popular blog, or a podcast appearance (more on this in a second); all of these stick around after the content is created.

They drive leads on autopilot.

People will visit these pages, follow the links to your site or your thread, and potentially become clients.


Case in point:

I recently had a guy contact me on Facebook because he listened to a podcast on which I did a guest appearance over a year ago.

It was a really spur the moment podcast and I *think* I was the one to reach out to the host (although it might have been the other way around).

I went on, told my story of coming to Thailand with fuck all in my pocket, pimped my book a little, and that was that.


This recording, and others like it, are generating leads for me with no further work required.

In fact, I haven't actively worked for a lead in over a year.

But I *have* worked to create these lead *sources*, which is more the approach you want to take.

(Obviously, if I see a big opportunity to land a big'un, I'll hustle for that lead. But for the most part it's hands-off now).


Podcasts / Guest Appearances

If you're the least bit interesting and good at what you do, congratulations, you can go on people's podcasts.

Podcasting is a bigger source of traffic than Google for a lot of bloggers.

It's also more targeted traffic in my opinion because people are hearing your voice, getting to know you, and coming to trust you more readily.


Did you ever notice how much people hang off Joe Rogan's nuts?

It's "Joe Rogan podcast" this, and "Joe Rogan podcast" that.

Do you get that kind of brand loyalty from blog posts? Fuck no.


I've done a podcast for all of my ventures, including my seduction blog.

Unfortunately, I had a falling out with my co-host so it fizzled out, so if anybody is interested in hooking up to start it back up, PM me!

Point is, what's easier: writing a bunch of words or having a nice chat with your buddy?

And more importantly, what's easier for your audience to consume: a wall of text or a fun audio/video recording?

Exactly.


Podcasting is a pain in the ass because of all the technology involved but there are now services to whom you simply send your raw audio, and the produce the whole thing for you, including embedding it on your site for you.

So no excuse not to start one.


In terms of guest appearances:

If, for the sake of example, you're a copywriter, reach out to podcast hosts who have business blogs, writing blogs, digital nomad blogs, etc.

A lot of these guys who have big ass audiences are way more approachable than you think.

When you connect with these folks try to get their facebook and PM them.

If you email them you're trying to get their attention on the most saturated medium.

But everybody answers Facebook PMs.

If you have some kind of "in" like a mutual friend, or you met in NYC, or whatever the case may be, it helps tremendously to get a response.

One thing I like to do is subscribe to their email list, and then when I get their autoresponder email I respond to that.

It goes straight to their inbox (most of the time) and looks like a conversation they were involved in because it'll read "re: Title of the email" (2 replies). You dig?


Doing a lot of these guest appearances makes you appear to be 'everywhere'.

Whenever people search "email copywriting support" or "Forum setup service" or whatever your thing is, and they see your name and face popping up all over the damn place, they'll quite naturally assume you're the big, bad guy to go to.


Naturally, it helps to be super-competent and really BE the guy to go to.

But if you're still learning the rudiments of your craft, it's not a good reason to ignore marketing.

If you think about it, most of your professional growth happens from biting off more than you can chew and somehow rising to the occasion.

So building a bit of a reputation before you're sure you can walk the walk won't hurt you.

It'll just challenge you to grow into the role you're portraying.

This is a well-studied psychological principle called commitment and consistency (see Robert Cialdini's Persuasion: The science of influence, required reading for online business types AND seducers).


If you claim to be able to do XY and Z, and then somebody asks you to do it and gives you a bunch of money for it, you're sure as fuck not giving that money back.

So what do you do?

You buckle down, gird your motherfuckin' loins, and work your nuts off.

Result? You've just experienced growth.

Now you may have a beer.


The takeaway is this: you can't neglect marketing.

You could be the next Pat Flynn or whoever the fuck else, but if nobody knows you, you don't exist.

You ever meet people in your day to day life that are absolutely brilliant at something?

A musician, a mathematician, a ladies man, whatever - but nobody knows them?

Genius is all around us, but being seen is the name of the game.


If you build it they will come, right?

WRONG.

If you build it - and put a giant neon fucking billboard on the road with an arrow pointing to it - THEN they will come.

But just building it isn't enough.


This thread is becoming a real value bomb.

Let's keep that spirit going!

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06-12-2015 09:39 AM
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Post: #87
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
(06-12-2015 12:19 AM)ColSpanker Wrote:  With all due respect CM, soul destruction for me involved twenty five effing years in a lab making corporate types rich while they tossed me the occasional bone. No copy writing for me, I am an older dude and I plan on going out doing what I want to for a change. And right now I like writing fiction.

I feel you on that, 100%.

And hey, if you like fiction/ghost writing...go for it,

My aspiration is to write a "The Sun Also Rises"-esque expat novel.

Copywriting/marketing is just a temporary means of stacking paper. But I do feel like a mercenary at times.

If I had to luxury to just write fiction all day...that's exactly what I'd do. So kudos for doing what you want to do, man.
(This post was last modified: 06-12-2015 12:25 PM by Chick Magnet.)
06-12-2015 12:24 PM
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Post: #88
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
It has started to amuse me how my current method of earning my bread is interpreted. I usually get "They pay you to do that?" or "Guess you got it easy". I wish it was easy. I generate 8-10,000 ghost written words a day of fiction and just about none of it in the genres I like to read. Publishing had become feminized to the point where Gold Eagle, the big action imprint has been shuttered. When Harlequin was sold last year, the first thing the new owners did was shut down the Gold Eagle division. Now it may be a little strange that a romance publisher was even creating action adventure novels, but the money was there. No longer. All current titles being issues were ones that were bought last year.
And the man who paid for me to launch a detective series has told me it's hardly moved any digital copies at all.
So what does this mean? I'm writing for women. Lucky me.

"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
06-12-2015 03:01 PM
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Post: #89
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
Thought I'd give this thread a bump because I'm curious how the other freelancers are doing. Things are starting to slow down for me and I don't know if its due to a seasonal adjustment or just the way the market works.

"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
07-22-2015 07:35 PM
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Post: #90
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
I'm looking to hire some freelance writers for a fitness site I am creating. If interested, then PM me with your rates.
09-24-2015 04:39 PM
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Beyond Borders Away
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Post: #91
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
(06-12-2015 03:01 PM)ColSpanker Wrote:  It has started to amuse me how my current method of earning my bread is interpreted. I usually get "They pay you to do that?" or "Guess you got it easy". I wish it was easy. I generate 8-10,000 ghost written words a day of fiction and just about none of it in the genres I like to read.

Haha

I know this is a tad delayed, but let's be fair, Man - I admire that you've gotten yourself out there and actually taken action, but you've chosen your approach. There are many others you could have taken.

But I get your frustration with people who say shit like that. People tell me all the time how "lucky" I am. I feel like that's one of the biggest insults you can make to someone who deliberately sacrificed and worked their ass off to design their life the way they want. You don't just stumble and fall into this type of freedom (unless you were born with a silver spoon).

People just don't like to admit that their life is mostly of their own making.
(This post was last modified: 09-25-2015 12:31 AM by Beyond Borders.)
09-25-2015 12:13 AM
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Beyond Borders Away
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RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
Update here.

Contracted a client to write a sales page for $5K. They hired me through one of my websites, which I hadn't written on or marketed forever, and we never got on the phone or Skype. I'd been meaning to make a concerted effort to get up to $5K sales page rates - but I guess it just happened on its own.

Yet another reminder not to listen to anyone who tells you this biz can't be 100% location independent if you want it to be.

I guess it's time I gave that page some real attention.
(This post was last modified: 09-25-2015 12:33 AM by Beyond Borders.)
09-25-2015 12:26 AM
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RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
Hey BB,

For someone looking to hire freelance writers, what is the best strategy for hiring someone quality from Upwork? What do you as a freelancer look for in an ad? I'm looking for writers in the .03 cents a word range.
09-27-2015 08:44 AM
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RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
(09-27-2015 08:44 AM)zoom Wrote:  Hey BB,

For someone looking to hire freelance writers, what is the best strategy for hiring someone quality from Upwork? What do you as a freelancer look for in an ad? I'm looking for writers in the .03 cents a word range.

I'd have my profile filled out as completely as possible. I'd also be from North America if you are wanting to hire people from the United States, but it depends on the job. I'll check to see where they're from if for no other reason than I worry about communication with someone who doesn't speak English as a prime language. I also check and see how many jobs they've posted and how much money they've spent. It's a good idea to escrow the cash too as it helps to establish trust. The ratings are something I check into as well.
And a quick response time is a plus. I've had too many clients to "ghost" on me when we start talking strategy.

"We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately."
09-27-2015 07:06 PM
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RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
^^ Nice insight, thanks.
09-27-2015 09:51 PM
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Post: #96
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
(09-27-2015 08:44 AM)zoom Wrote:  Hey BB,

For someone looking to hire freelance writers, what is the best strategy for hiring someone quality from Upwork? What do you as a freelancer look for in an ad? I'm looking for writers in the .03 cents a word range.

Quality and low prices doesn't really go together.

If you can find someone who has articles already published online with their name accredited to the article, and the article is well written and makes sense then I'd go and hire them.

Personally I find it extremely difficult to find quality writers for $0.03.
09-28-2015 04:14 AM
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RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
(09-28-2015 04:14 AM)Afarang Wrote:  
(09-27-2015 08:44 AM)zoom Wrote:  Hey BB,

For someone looking to hire freelance writers, what is the best strategy for hiring someone quality from Upwork? What do you as a freelancer look for in an ad? I'm looking for writers in the .03 cents a word range.

Quality and low prices doesn't really go together.

If you can find someone who has articles already published online with their name accredited to the article, and the article is well written and makes sense then I'd go and hire them.

Personally I find it extremely difficult to find quality writers for $0.03.

I'm cheap but writing is one thing you don't want to be cheap about as like you said quality and cheap don't go together.

Surprisingly I've found some amazing graphic designers for $5 on Fiverr, actually have done better work than similar stuff I've paid over $150 for.

The good sellers on Fiverr are really diamonds in the rough. My favorite design guy's profile name was texaswebdesign, if anyone wants to check him out to see what a reliable person who does good work looks like take a look. Unfortunately he has had his profile set on vacation mode for like the past 8 months or more, I'm assuming he's got some regular clientelle and doesn't need to work for 5 bucks anymore.

I've done fairly well selling on Fiverr, for me it's more a hobby than anything else and I connect with others and sometimes try to partner up, share resources, trade skills, etc so for me ther's more to gain than just $4 a gig, however I'm making between $300 and $400 a month on Fiverr doing gigs where I'm not putting in much time, some are premade reports all I have to do is email, the others maybe take me 5 minutes per gig max.

I'm thinking about expanding onto some other platforms, figure if I can bring in $300 on Fiverr if I go to another 2 or 3 sites and sell the same gigs basically just replicate that.

My ultimate goal is location independence but right now my ecommerce biz keeps me tied down so trying to get some different types of income comming in.
09-28-2015 11:31 AM
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RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
I agree that you can find some excellent graphic designers on Fiverr. Most of them are from southeast asia but they speak proficient english.
09-28-2015 12:09 PM
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Post: #99
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
I have never worked on these but I have hired out over 50 jobs on upwork which used to be odesk, including one girl who has worked for me for 4 years.

When I post a job I have three major reasons I will straight up delete an application.

Cleanly unqualified, as in a lot of applicants hardly can write in English.

They do not read the job post and spam apply for everything. I have a technique against this which is to ask for the applicant to state their favorite color in the application so I know they read it. The question is nicely hidden in the end.

And lastly blatantly overpriced.

So my advice at least from the buyer perspective is that apply very concisely in a manner that lets you know you are writing direct to that job.

Jobs can be spam too so don't waste time with a job you think there is something wrong with.
09-28-2015 04:25 PM
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shameus_o'reaaly Offline
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Posts: 348
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Post: #100
RE: The "All Things Freelance" Thread
Has anyone tried selling services without a freelancer framework? I closed my peopleperhour account because I wanted to set my own delivery time and charge more for work-like editing and ghostwriting, which might take several weeks, and can't be offered through PPH, which limits me to five days max.
Obviously there are work-arounds but there's a limit to the amount of work I could deliver in five days, whatever I charge via PPH or Odesk or anywhere else.
Are there any solutions that would protect a customer as well as me, and let me set a contract for how long work would take to deliver?

"The woman most eager to jump out of her petticoat to assert her rights is the first to jump back into it when threatened with a switching for misusing them,"
-Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary
(This post was last modified: 10-12-2015 03:26 PM by shameus_o'reaaly.)
10-12-2015 03:14 PM
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