Are you a freelancer? Maybe you’re stuck in a 9 to 5, dead-end job at the moment, and you’ve got a side hustle to keep you going for the time being; would you want to take that on full time one day?
Are you worried you won’t be able to make ends meet if you do? What would it be like to be self-employed? Would you even enjoy making every single decision, both big and small, by yourself? It’s a lot of responsibility, after all, and you’ll have to work twice as hard to make them all pay off.
It’s a tough decision to make, and no can blame you for hesitating as long as you have. But then comes the idea that your freelance business plans could be made a little easier, and a little faster, thanks to some tips and tricks well known in the freelancing world. So let’s think about a few of those below, and how they could make your self employed ambitions a lot more realistic to manage.
Imagine being able to set up shop inside a local cafe you love to get your work done – it’s possible to freelance from anywhere in the world, as long as you’ve got a wifi signal at your disposal. (Image)
#1 Not Having to Quit Your Day Job
You don’t want to lose the income you’ve already got on your plate, and you especially don’t want to lose it when you know you’ve got a pay cut on the horizon. After all, if you’re choosing to set up a freelance business, it’s going to be hard working two full-time jobs at once, and something’s going to have to give.
But thankfully, there’s no need for you to quit your day job in the here and now. Not whilst you’re setting up your new business – you can do plenty of the necessary legwork in your free time after work and on the weekends, and you can take these moments as downtime you’re using to set yourself up for a better future. You’re choosing to pick up a side hustle you absolutely love working, and that means it’s not going to feel too much like hard grafting.
You won’t have to look for outside funding, and you won’t have to secure any investors just yet – you’ll be funding yourself just fine.
#2 Building Relationships within a Niche
You have a niche to work in, one that you picked out well ahead of time, and now you want to try and conquer it with your skills and talents. After all, you need to be known for your good work in a specific area, if you’re going to build a reputation and an income your parents would be proud of. Based on these thoughts, what kind of niche would you like to work in? What do you see when you search within it? Do you see clients that have worthy budgets to work with and ones you can price highly for? How much work do you realistically see coming your way?
Because it’s these questions that determine whether the niche you’ve plumped for is a profitable one or not and whether it’d be worth your time and finances to build some relationships within it. You want to have all kinds of network contacts, to make sure any and all opportunities come filtering through the grapevine back to you, and that your name and number can be immediately passed onto anyone who might be in need of it.
Focus all your efforts on this one niche, if you’ve found it to be suitable. You want to put plenty of legwork into sending friendly and enquiring emails back and forth, and for making sure all the relevant publications have your details on file. You never know when they might contact you for work in the future, but you’ve at least set up the foundation for this to happen!
#3 Transcribing Your Interviews
If you’re someone who ever has to interview people, whether for a book you’ve been asked to write or for opinion pieces on the website you help to run, you’re probably going to need to look into hiring on a transcription service. After all, you don’t want to spend all that time yourself picking through the numerous recordings you’ve taken to make sure you’ve got a log of the information you need to work from – not when you’ve got a lot of writing to do on the other side as well!
Think about this option for a moment: it might seem like an unnecessary expense on the surface, but there’s a lot of benefits that follow along after this thought. For example, say you’ve got five different articles to write, and they all need to be done by the end of the week; either you can work some serious overtime and exhaust yourself, meaning your good work might actually suffer as a result, or you can ask someone else to focus their time and effort on doing it for you. They can then deliver the results in a faster time than you would be able to, and you can get on with the foundation work for what you’ve got to write without any distractions.
#4 Working Out Your Prices Beforehand
You want to have prices that compete well, and you want to have prices that rely on a good sense of value to any potential client who comes across your service. But in a digital world inundated with content mills and freelancing websites where people can list their services for a few dollars a piece, it can be very hard to try and set yourself a fair wage that people will both pay attention to and respect.
So you’ve got to take that idea into account right now and make sure you’ve got at least a ballpark figure in your head over the kinds of prices you want to set, and how you can make a pricing system work for you. And you alone can come up with these prices – based on your skills and expertise, and the amount of money you need to bring in to pay your bills and feed yourself, are going to be the biggest factors in the amount you come up with.
But to help with this process, let’s go over some general rules that you might find useful. Decide what kind of rate you want to work off of – whether you want to earn money on a project by project basis, or you’d like to have an hourly rate to back you up.
Then, you need to decide what you’d like to earn year by year – maybe it’s a few thousand right now, maybe tens of thousands a little bit down the line, and then maybe a whole 6 figure sum within the next five years. Then comes the expenses, and the kind of administration you’ll have to fork out for that any employer has done for you in the past.
So, Do You Feel Ready to Become Your Own Boss?
There are quite a few useful methods out there that can make your freelance business plans a lot easier to manage, simply because they help to speed up the process and get you used to be your own boss a lot sooner than usual.
A lot of people trick themselves into thinking they need to get all the right resources together before trying anything like this, and that slows them down and puts a stop to their ambitions.