Have you ever taken the time to look back at your former client list and think about the question, “How much does losing a client cost a freelance writer?” If you are looking at only the lost income that you will need to replace, you are missing the point. There are also hidden costs associated with losing a client that have an impact on your business.
Archives for June 2015
Not too long ago, I shared some writing-related tweets that I thought would inspire you and give you ideas.
This morning, it occurred to me that I haven’t checked my Twitter feed for writing quotes/articles in the past couple of days. I don’t have to tell you what happened next.
Here are some of the most interesting writing-related tweets I came across this morning. There’s some good reading material in this list, as well as some fun stuff. Enjoy!
Writing-related tweets to welcome the weekend
If you’re a screenwriter, or you’re trying to break into the screenwriting scene, these two tweets will help you.
— Richard RB Botto (@RBwalksintoabar) June 26, 2015
— The Script Lab (@TheScriptLab) June 19, 2015
This next tweet is really sweet.
You don’t know what love is until someone lives with you while you write a book. ~Thulani Davis #writing
— Alex Myers (@Alex_Austin) June 25, 2015
Novelists who live with partners under one roof, what do you have to say?
This next tweet shares a link to an amazing article showcasing some of the most creative books, past and present. They really are amazing!
— Apostrophe Books (@ApostropheBooks) June 23, 2015
Because I like to lighten things up, I’ll leave you with these.
— Katherine King (@KingmeKat) June 26, 2015
What do you say when you finish a plot or a piece?
Spontaneous is what you get after the seventeenth draft. ~John Ciardi #writing
— Alex Myers (@Alex_Austin) June 18, 2015
When revision after revision after revision gets to you, remember the definition of spontaneous.
Have a great weekend, everyone. See you on Monday!
Editor’s note: This post was written by Aby League, a qualitative researcher and a passionate writer. She is an innovator and technology enthusiast. She has been writing about health, psychology, home improvement and technology. You can see more of her articles on Elite Daily. To know her more, follow @abyleague on Twitter.
Everything in the virtual world is intended for humans. These humans are not merely numbers, projections, or KPIs. They are real and they decide whether to love you or leave you, whether your brand rocks or sucks. Every single piece of content you put out there must have the H factor, the human factor. Forget B2B (business to business) or B2C (business to consumer) in your content marketing strategy, from now on it is H2H, human to human. [Read more…]
We all have bad days. You feel like you’ve run a marathon when you wake up. The kids don’t cooperate, and they’re late for school. The computer doesn’t work, or the Internet goes down. An ongoing personal problem suddenly weighs heavier on you than usual.
The list can go on and on.
As freelancers – especially seasoned ones – we learn how to deal with these bad days, and usually, we can hack away at the vines that make the day bad.
But what about those days that are particular awful? Those days when you really feel that you just want to disappear into thin air and forget about it all?
Here are some things you can do when you’re having a particularly bad day – at least enough to get you working. I hope they help.
Remind yourself why you became a freelancer.
Whether you used to have a day job, or you stayed at home to take care of the kids and then decided to be a freelancer, there was a reason you made that jump. I cannot say what your reason was, but for me, it was always my dream to be free of sitting behind a desk all day, having to file for a day off way in advance without the guarantee of approval, and being in a formal environment.
When I have a bad day, I think of this over and over again. Usually, it gives me enough of a boost to start working.
Think of the financial repercussions.
This may sound harsh and greedy, but it’s a practical thing to do. You work not only because you enjoy it, but let’s be honest, you work because you need the money. You have to pay the bills, send the kids to school, buy food, and take care of all your living expenses.
You may be having a bad day, but if you’re the type who takes financial responsibilities more seriously than others, then this may light a fire under your bum. You may not exactly be the most cheerful person in the world that day, but at least you get your work done.
Think of your work/personal ethic.
If you take pride in your work ethic – and I am pretty sure you do – then thinking about this will help you deal with a bad day. Think of your happy clients who have praised your work and thanked you for being a good writer. Think of the sense of accomplishment that accompanies every great piece you write and publish/submit on time.
Reminding myself of this gives me a better attitude to face the day.
Complete the most important tasks.
Again, let’s be brutally honest. All of the above usually works to get tasks done, but there really are days when you know you can’t deliver everything you have to. Those days when you know you will crash at some point.
Pro tip: Do the most important tasks. Work on the pieces that are truly essential. If needed, let your client know your situation (details depend on your relationship), and then give yourself a break. You don’t always have to force yourself to perform at 100 percent when you’re having a bad day.
Let the ‘mood’ run its course.
I am using ‘mood’ in the loosest sense of the word. Whatever it is that is making your day horrible or weighing heavily on you, sometimes, you just can’t shake it off.
It’s easy for others to say ‘mind over matter’ and a host of other cliches that are supposed to be motivational. I’m not going to tell you that because when you’re in the midst of a crisis, it’s a totally different story.
In this case, when you really can’t get up, just crash. Allow yourself to go through the day (or maybe several hours) to feel the negative emotions. Let the storm wash over you, and at some point, you’ll feel better and get up again.
I do hope that you are not having one of those particularly bad days, but if you are, try doing the things above, and remember, you are not alone.
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Becoming a freelancer is something that many people try at least once during their lifetime. It’s an appealing situation—becoming your own boss, choosing your clients, and working from home are all definite positives. But depending on how successful your freelancing career is, you may want to consider actually starting a business at some point. You may want to go from freelancer to founder.
Though it might seem like an overwhelming endeavour, it can actually benefit you in many different ways. Take a look at this post to see when you should consider turning your freelancing life into an actual business, including what types of businesses you can choose from, and what you will need to get started.
When Should I go from Freelancer to Entrepreneur?
The biggest difference between a freelancer and a business owner is that a freelancer works under their own name, with no office location or employees. A freelancer works for clients and may subcontract work to other freelancers on occasion. An entrepreneur builds a business by hiring employees, developing products, and registering a company.
You should consider switching from being a freelancer to founder if:
- You want to be able to provide services in multiple areas within an industry.
- You have a product or service that may perform better as part of a business.
- You would like to have a business name that is not your personal name (such as Content Queens Communications Inc.).
- You wish to hire employees to assist with the workload as opposed to contractors.
- You would like to build a business based on a partnership or an investment.
- You are in high-demand with clients.
- Your clients consistently request other services.
What Type of Business do I Need?
There are a few different types of businesses out there, and which is right for you depends entirely on your goals and preferences. Most freelancers who wish to transition to a company should either start with a sole proprietorship or a partnership.
A sole proprietorship is when you, as an entrepreneur, start a business as the sole owner. That means that you are responsible for all aspects of the business, including debts and liabilities.
A partnership is when you and another individual (or more) all wish to be co-owners of a business. The percentage of your ownership can vary based on your capital contribution. You and your partner(s) share responsibility for the company.
While you might have big dreams to start a thriving corporation down the road, starting out small will help you to scale your business while still giving you the time you need to grow.
Where Do I Start?
After you make the decision to start a sole proprietorship or a partnership, you’ll need to get a few basic things in order, such as:
- Choosing a business name and web domain.
- Learning what your startup costs will be.
- Talking to your local government to find the registration process.
- Creating a Partnership Agreement and Business Plan, if necessary.
If you are going from freelancing to starting a sole proprietorship, you likely won’t require a lot of funding to start. However, if you plan on expanding by offering products or in-office services, you will need to consider what that will cost and how you will pay for it.
When building a business, it is best to scale conservatively, so don’t worry about hiring all of your employees at once, or about having the most expensive or trendy office space. You need to create a business model that provides you with repeatable income first, and the only way to do that is to spend every penny wisely.
What Basics do I Need to get Started?
Once you have planned out your business and decided on the perfect name, you can get involved in some of the more creative aspects of your business. Before your official launch, take some time to consider whether you want or need any of the following:
Business profiles on social media. You can start with the most common, such as Facebook and Twitter, and expand down the road if need be. Match the platforms to your industry so you don’t waste time building audiences on platforms that won’t provide you with any benefit.
Website. Virtually every business has a website. Whether it’s a simple one-page site with a summary of services, or a large, multi-page e-commerce site, your customers will expect you to have some kind of online presence.
Business email addresses. This might seem like a small thing, but having a business email that matches your domain name adds validity to your business. It will also help you to organize your professional communications down the road.
Business cards. These will definitely come in handy when you start networking, and they are perfect for referrals, as per this post. You can also get them for relatively cheap, depending on your taste, so it’s a small investment that could provide you with a lot of positives.
Logos. The visual aspect of your business is what makes the biggest first impression on your potential clients. A simple logo can go a long way in adding to your site, business cards, and brand presence.
Consultants. Chances are that your clients may end up wanting services that go beyond your skills, so it’s probably a good idea to meet a few consultants and add them to your roster. This could include designers, writers, editors, web developers, marketing professionals, or others.
Taking the First Step
Starting your journey as a freelancer is hard enough, but once you have a solid foundation, don’t limit yourself. You can still grow your business as a professional without having to invest a large amount of money. As long as you scale slowly and adjust your goals according to your performance, you could end up building a successful and lasting business that could benefit you and yours for years to come.
Are you planning to go from being a freelancer to a founder? What prompted you to go ahead?
This post was written by Brittany Foster, a Marketing Writer for LawDepot.
Everyone knows that those who have chosen blogging careers working at home is the ideal setup. You get to work whenever you want, wherever you want. You have all the freedom in the world, and you don’t have to shower and dress up first thing in the morning.
Whether you’re rather new to working at home or you’ve been doing it for a while, you know that while there is some truth to those ideas, working at home isn’t all sugar and spice.
There is always the temptation to procrastinate, which is not made easier by the plethora of distractions present at home as opposed to a real office.
One piece of advice that every work at home person receives is to create a space dedicated to work. This we all know to be true.
But how do you do that?
It’s easy enough to say, but in reality, some of us may not have the luxury of a study, like the ones we see on TV or in the movies. Fortunately, we can make a working space out of what we have – whether it’s a corner in the living room or the guest bedroom.
If you need a little inspiration on how to create your home office when you don’t have a lot of space, take a look at this infographic. It gives you ideas on how to transform different places in your home to a working space. More than picking the space, it also gives you tips on tools and equipment to ensure maximum productivity.
How to Create Your Home Office
What’s your working space like? How did you create it? If you want, share photos with us!
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Online portfolios are necessary for freelance writers, and one way to build an online portfolio is to have a blog. As discussed in an archived post, Why You Need an Online Portfolio, a blog is not the only means of showcasing your work, but it is one of the most efficient and easy ways. It can also be part of your website, a dedicated section for your thoughts and experiences as a writer.
Where does a blog directory come in all this?
A blog directory is a website that lists blogs, provides information about them, and links back to the blogs. It’s much like a high-tech version of a phone directory, except that, in this case, there are other benefits to submitting to a blog directory.
What do you get out of a blog directory?
It is rather straightforward.
First of all, you get a link back to your blog. Link building is one of the ways to get authority, which means you get Google to like you more. The key word is “authority”, because it’s easy enough to get links, but that doesn’t mean they’re from quality and trusted sites. With blog directories that have high authority, you are sure that you get a quality link back.
Second, you get more exposure for your blog. This is corollary to the first point. If you get quality links to your blog, the higher the chances of ranking well in Google. That means that more people can discover your blog when they conduct a Google search. Additionally, depending on the blog directory, blogs are highlighted so that its visitors can discover new blogs as well.
Recommendation: EatonWeb blog directory
There are many directories to which you can submit your blog, but one of the oldest and most reputable is EatonWeb.
Much like other blog directories, EatonWeb provides various categories so that it’s much easier to find relevant blogs. As you can see from the screenshot of the homepage above, there are sub-categories as well.
So why EatonWeb out of all directories out there?
More than listing blogs and placing them under categories, EatonWeb has its own special sauce. It ranks blogs based on 3 metrics.
The Strength Metric
This metric is calculated by looking at various web sources to see how strong a blog is. When browsing EatonWeb, you will see the strongest blogs first.
The Momentum Metric
This metric is calculated by looking at the growth of the blog over time. A blog may lose visitors and authority or it may gain them over time. This way, you can easily see the rising stars and the “dying blogs”.
The Overall Metric
This metric combines the two metrics above to give viewers an general view of how a blog is performing. It takes into account the age and growth of a blog.
Take a look at how the blogs are displayed based on the metrics.
So you have a blog…
What are you going to do about it?
For sure, you write a lot of great things that other people would want to read – whether they’re fellow freelancers or just individuals who like connecting via blogs. They can even be potential clients, whom you might not find even if you look at freelance writing job boards.
Don’t let your writing go to waste when you can get more exposure by submitting to a blog directory.
So we all know that what we post on social media can kill your chances of landing — or even keeping — a great job. We’ve all been admonished to keep the photos of drunken exploits off Facebook, to lock down our privacy settings to avoid being tagged in unflattering photos, and to be careful about what we say and do online.
As a freelancer, you might think that you’re exempt from those warnings. When you work for yourself, you can do what you want. Think again. Plenty of freelance writers inadvertently torpedo their own careers by the way they communicate and interact online, even if they don’t post photos of themselves doing naked keg stands.
Since social media is so important to building and sustaining a brand, before you post your next pithy status update, make sure you’re not making any of these mistakes. [Read more…]
How active are you on Twitter?
I don’t think it’s wrong to say that, while it is not mandatory to be on Twitter, it does help. A lot.
Some of you may even have stories about you made connections with other writers. Others may have found clients via Twitter (or the other way around). Then there is the constant stream of information that you can find – articles, ideas, quotes, thought-provoking questions, and so on.
As you can see from my Twitter stream, I am not that much of a tweeter, but there are times when I do find myself reading tweets a lot. Today is one of them.
I found a bunch of writing-related tweets that I think you’ll want to read as well, so I am sharing them with you.
First, some useful reading.
This one is a good article for those who are writing stories or novels.
— Blogwriter365 (@Blogwriter365) June 4, 2015
This next tweet is targeted at crime writers. Perhaps some of you already use the idea.
How crime fighting provides clues to crime writing http://t.co/Y3I2Tm9py6
— The Guardian (@guardian) June 4, 2015
Do you write personal essays and hope to get them published? Here are tips on how to do it.
Writing a Salable Personal Essay: 5 Key Questions to Ask Yourself http://t.co/eX8Hl2ixkH
— The Write Life (@thewritelife) June 3, 2015
For sports writers, here is a contest for fantasy football.
— The Fake Football (@TheFakeFootball) June 2, 2015
Who doesn’t love quotes? Whether they’re inspirational or funny, they can you a boost. I hope you like these two.
— Quotes For Writers (@quotes4writers) June 4, 2015
— The UnNovelist (@TheUnNovelist) June 3, 2015
Have a great day, everyone. I hope you enjoy these tweets!
Editor’s note: This post was written by Jennifer Parris, career writer at FlexJobs, the award-winning site for telecommuting and flexible job listings. FlexJobs lists thousands of pre-screened, legitimate, and professional-level work-from-home jobs and other types of flexibility like part-time positions, freelancing, and flexible schedules. Jennifer provides career and job search advice through the FlexJobs Blog and social media. Learn more at www.FlexJobs.com.
After years of working in other industries, you’ve made the decision to look into pursuing a writing career. Writing is truly one of those fulfilling careers that is attainable if you know how to go about it. If you are thinking how to start writing in retirement, this article is for you.
How to start writing in retirement
Jump-start your writing career during your Golden Years with these tips!
Decide what you want to write.
You know that you want to write. But what exactly do you want to write about? You might have a passion for fishing or want to write service stories about how grandparents can connect with their grandchildren on a deeper level. Unlike some other careers, writing is the type of job that you should feel passionate about in order to write compelling copy. So determine what it is that you love, and then write about that subject.
Think outside the “book.”
Back in the day, writers didn’t have many options as to whom they could work for—and get paid to boot. They either wrote for newspapers or magazines, or they were novelists. Today, writing jobs are available in almost every career field, from accounting to zoology, and in various mediums, too.
You might love non-profit work as much as you love writing and combine your two loves to write newsletters for non-profits. Or you might believe in a company’s mission and write its press releases. You may love connecting with an audience via blogging, or decide to try your hand at working for traditional newspapers and magazines—but as an online writer.
Consider your needs.
Before you begin putting pen to paper—or whipping out your laptop to type out the next Great American Novel—you need to figure out what you want to get out of a writing job. Do you want to make it into a full-time career, or something you do part-time when you’re not spending time with your family and friends?
If you’re looking to supplement your income with writing jobs, take a look at how much you would need to earn and then compare it with the types of paid writing jobs that are out there. Do you want to work in an office, or do you want to work from home? Once you figure out why you want to write, how often, and where, you can begin your job search!
Use niche job boards.
Once you realize that you want to write, well, you’ll want to write right away! So you won’t want to waste a lot of time clicking through job postings in order to find the perfect position. That’s why it’s important to use niche job boards (such as FlexJobs and Freelance Writing Job Board) to help expedite your job search. You’ll avoid job scams, which are common in the world of remote work, and find a job that you’ll love, too.
If you haven’t already worked as a writer, you’ll need some help in order to launch your writing career. Talk to friends and family about this next phase in your career and get them on board to help you. You should also get on social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.
Your LinkedIn profile should be up to date and include in your bio that you’re currently looking for writing work. And, of course, you should have your resume and cover letter designed to spotlight any previous writing work you’ve done (volunteer, freelance, and unpaid work all counts!).
You can write your way to a fun and exciting writing job! Take the time to prepare yourself for this next step in your career, and you can write yourself a happily-ever-after ending!