For freelancers, the feast or famine cycle is just as common as chicken pox when you are a kid - problem is, staying in bed waiting for it to go away won't work. However, there are a few things freelancers can do to ease the pain and keep their mental sanity throughout the year. This new article from the Marketing pills series will provide you with some quick tips to help you through this well-know freelance disease.
1. MARKET YOUR SERVICES CONSISTENTLY
When you're drowning in work, it's way too easy to forget about marketing your services. Marketing, however, shall be an ongoing activity, through good times and bad times alike. If you're a freelance translator applying for new collaborations with translation agencies, it will take some time before you even get an answer - that means work won't flood in just because you sent out 56 new freelance application yesterday morning.
Your actionable tip: Schedule two 30-minute marketing sessions a week. This will keep your marketing juices flowing throughout the year.
2. SAVE FOR RAINY DAYS
Two weeks ago my laptop decided to go nuts and my hard drive took an unexpected journey to the heaven of broken appliances. I got a few projects on file, so what would have happened if I couldn't afford to replace it straight away?
Moreover, when money gets tight all your attention is focused on paying bills and keep it up - and the awful truth is you never know when famine will strike again.
Your actionable tip: Save 10-15% on each payment you receive and use a separate bank account to keep your savings safe and sound.
3. SPECIALISE, DON'T IMPROVISE
When times are tough, the idea of "grabbing all you can" can be quite tempting. Improvising expertise, however, can have a huge negative impact on your business and reputation. Expanding your fields of expertise and skills takes time, dedication and focus. Planning ahead your professional development can help you improve your skills and will provide you with new tools to suit your customer's needs.
Your actionable tip: Don't run yourself too thin on a thousand courses and webinars - your time is valuable and you still need time to work on projects, do your marketing and still have a personal life. Schedule your training carefully (ideally one course at a time), focusing on your "gray areas".