As a freelancer, it can be easy to get set into the mindset that you’re an employee. This can be particularly common when you have a couple of clients who make up the bulk of your work over a long period of time. However, it’s important to remember that you are not just another worker; you are running your own independent business. Just like any enterprise, you’ll find that you tend to be most successful when you regularly apply attention to how you can improve your approach to your business. [Read more…]
Living the gig life but yearning for a bit more stability? Learn how to be an entrepreneur for as low as $1 with this book bundle. [Read more…]
The post-pandemic gig economy is ready to grow, with remote work and freelancing leading the way. Freelance writers as well as other freelancers have had their lifestyles and work choices validated by the remote work and work-from-home trends prompted by Covid-19. [Read more…]
There is a time when your choice to be a freelancer and work from home could impact your right to live in your house. It seems so simple nowadays. You can use the internet to connect with clients, and from there you can earn a wage without commuting. One in four people in the UK agrees with you, as the gig economy continues to grow in influence. However, with the increased numbers comes increased scrutiny from the Government and the taxman. Therefore, it is not so simple as just getting started and seeing how it goes. Let’s guide you through some of the essentials. [Read more…]
In this era of super-fast internet, information is available all around, and every piece of data is competing to make itself visible to a broader audience. SEO or search engine optimization is widely used by freelancers to make their content stand out and gain organic traffic.
But sometimes, good content is not enough to get a high search engine ranking. The latest method of perfecting SEO is by using expired domains, and it is being used by freelancers very commonly. [Read more…]
If you’re like most writers, you enjoy the part of your job that entails putting pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard). You’re probably, however, somewhat less fond of marketing. Many of us squirm at the idea of cold calling or attending networking events.
That’s why it’s so important to have a strong professional website. Once it is up and running, it can bring you a steady stream of referrals with little or no further effort you your part.
These are features that will help your website attract customers [Read more…]
The popularity of social media in today’s job market has made everybody believe they can talk their way to a job. It gives them an excuse to visit their favorite social media site and say they are doing it as a part of their job search. While freelancers and job seekers can find jobs on social media sites, it needs to be handled carefully to be successful.
When looking for freelance writing gigs, it is important to let people know you are open to receiving new clients. One of the benefits of social media is the people you are associated with know others and those people know more people. You never know who you can reach within your network on a social media site just by telling people you are looking for a freelance position. [Read more…]
I usually have about seven projects at a time, and they’re not all created equal. As a successful freelance writer, I’ve been on the wrong end of a bad job. However, there are some warning signs that are easy to miss. If a job posting requires numerous, generic forms, you’ll be drowning in paperwork and red tape for the entire project.
Trust your gut during a phone interview. If the client doesn’t know what they want, they’re not going to be happy with anything you produce. The most lucrative jobs are from either well-established corporations or start-ups with solid investors. Tread carefully if a job posting seems too broad or it requires you to sign up for an account. [Read more…]
Business purchases are expensive, especially for startups and small business owners without deep pockets. Rather than trying to have it all, look for ways to reduce what you have to buy without actually losing any functionality. It is all about getting more bang for your buck when you are dealing with running a business on a shoestring budget.
Start by Introducing the Sharing Mentality
Via Flickr by BlockSim
This is not kindergarten again, but one effective way of reducing IT and technology costs are simply to not buy as many. Communal computers are often just as effective, especially on split shifts. Sharing computers, especially as freelancers, is easy enough to do and can save a business thousands of dollars especially at startup. Sharing resources like this cuts costs but does not usually impact productivity or customer service. If it works for your organization, it’s one of the most effective ways to trim the budget.
Forget the Computers Altogether Instead
Via Flickr by all.promising
On the other hand, find an easy to use Android phone or tablet for each employee. Use cloud software to connect databases and resources to the tablets. Tablets often cost a fraction of the cost of a PC, but may have every program necessary. In addition, they keep your staff or clients by your side so you never miss a beat. Tablets are the “in” thing, but be wise about this purchase. Buying a bigger name brand does not always mean a better product. Buy business-smart tablets with total functionality for what your needs are.
Don’t Forget the Smartphone Plan
Via Flickr by Roberrific
With a tablet in hand, it makes sense to link your staff together with smartphones. Instead of paying for individualized service, though, maximize profits by using a shared plan. You’ll cut the costs and make sure everyone is always connected to serve the client’s needs within moments. Seek out an affordable phone plan right for your group. You will want to investigate options for shared plans such as shared data plans, too. Depending on how much your staff is using their phones, this may be a significant money saver. Some providers want your business so much that they will offer a significant discount.
Move in Together, Too
Via Flickr by Salil1365
Not really, but why not share space with other freelancers or small businesses. It is a simple idea that can work very well for some small businesses. If you and the business owner down the hall already work in the same building, have non-competing businesses and like each other enough, sharing a space will save you money. This is especially efficient when you do not need to have a customer storefront. Sharing space means cutting costs on property taxes, rent, equipment, furnishings, and even customer service staff in some cases.
Every penny counts for today’s small business. With a sharing mentality and a frugal business plan, the goal is to focus on each purchase. How can you effectively trim that purchase price down just a bit more? The more creative you are (and by moving in together with fellow freelancers, you are being creative!) the more likely you are to make your goals and skyrocket to profitability.
Recently Carson Brackney wrote this wonderful article about getting more work from existing clients. The advice he gives is excellent, and I have followed most of it unconsciously for some time, but it got me thinking about what happens on the opposite end of the spectrum when we must deal with an unresponsive client.
This has been on my mind recently because I have been worrying about a client who suddenly dropped off the face of the earth. Fortunately, he went incommunicado shortly after he paid the balance he owed me on our latest project, so I’m not concerned about chasing down my money. But now I can’t reach him through email or the phone, and he hasn’t returned my messages. Of course, I haven’t been pestering him; I’ve kept my correspondence polite and professional, and it has been just enough to let him know that I’m thinking of him and his business.
But still, I’ve been frustrated with the potential loss of more work and income. When the client and I first discussed working together, he described three other projects that he wanted me to help him accomplish, one of which sounded like a steady weekly gig, and so I had looked forward to the future income. I’m still hopeful, but every day that my messages go unanswered my hope weakens.
So, at what point do you tie up the loose end and amicably severe the relationship? At what point does the worrying about the client become more than a simple worry? Naturally, several factors will influence your decision. You must evaluate your other projects, their current income, and their earning potential, and weigh it against this current problem project. If you have other clients from whom you feel you can expect future work, then perhaps your efforts should focus on them and you can take a loss here. Also, you should consider the professional relationship you had with the silent client. Was he or she a joy to work with on past assignments? Did you collaborate well on projects or were you mostly on your own, struggling to understand your client’s needs? If the client was someone with whom you worked well, it might be worth it to stick it out a little longer. After all, everyone goes through weird slumps once in a while. And finally, how could severing the relationship harm your ‘brand,’ especially if you work in a specific niche? Could you get away with not severing the relationship, but merely leaving the ball in the client’s court?
In my case, I have decided to write the client one last email and let him decide what to do. I’ll be sure to thank him for his business. I’ll tell him that I’m currently ready to begin work on the other three projects, and that he can contact me when and if he wishes to pursue those projects. I’m happy with the current state of my freelance business, so I’ve decided to no longer worry about this one project. I like to think that I’m not cutting the link; I’m simply unhooking it for now.
Photo Credits: Photo by RW Photobug.