How’s your freelance income?
If you’re working for low-paying clients barely getting by, it’s a pretty frustrating place to be.
But if you want to change your situation and increase your freelance income, you can’t keep doing the same things, working for the same clients, and expect anything different.
If you really want to grow your freelance income, sometimes you have to take a step back, and take a closer look at what you’re doing right, and what you need to change.
Improve your marketing efforts. Find better clients. Get a better handle on how you’re using your time. Raise your rates.
It might seem like big to-do list, but you don’t have to change everything all at once. You just need to be strategic about it to move up and earn more.
When freelance writer Sylvie Tremblay’s found herself tired, broke, and desperate for work, she made a mindset shift, changed her approach to running a business, and managed to triple her freelance income. Here’s how it’s done:
Note: If you’ve been looking for freelance writing jobs on content-mill sites and job boards, you’re probably frustrated. Most pay bottom feeder rates. It’s something I’ve been hearing from writers for a long time. But great freelance writing jobs are out there, you just need to know how to find them. Check out this post from the past to learn how. —Carol.
Do you feel like it’s a pipe dream to find freelance writing jobs that pay pro rates?
I hear a lot of comments like this from writers who are about ready to give up on their writing dreams.
They write me to say:
“It just seems like there aren’t any good-paying clients out there.”
Have to say, I disagree. But whether you think freelance writing is a land of unlimited opportunity or a field no one can earn a living at seems to depend on your personal experience.
If you want to start landing well-paying freelance writing jobs, you probably need to do two things. Here’s what you need to know:
When I became a professional writer 5 years ago, I had no idea what I should charge. I had an inkling that I needed to raise my rates, but how?
Then I joined Freelance Writers Den. I hadn’t been a member for a week before I realized that I was vastly under-charging. That was easy enough to fix for new clients – I would start quoting appropriately for new work.
But how could I apply what I’d learned about rates to existing clients who were paying me $45-$55/hour for ongoing work of varying types–emails, websites from scratch, blogs, newsletters and more?
I felt especially resentful of my $45 per hour client. I knew I needed to ask for more money, but I didn’t know how to ask for a raise.
Every time I tried to imagine how this conversation would go, it became an ultimatum, which I knew I wanted to avoid.
Then, I searched around the Den and found three key pieces of inspiration that enabled me to craft emails that got me the raises I wanted. Here’s what I did:
Stepped into my Wayback Machine and found this post from 2010 on productivity habits. And you know what? It’s still current. These habits have helped me and many other freelancers move up and earn more. Enjoy!–Carol
Time. We’ve only got so much of it each day. For freelance writers who are also parents, we’ve certainly never got enough of it. Or if you’re working a day job and freelancing on the side, you know you’ve got to use your time wisely.
Whether you have a wide-open schedule or just a few hours a day for freelancing, your productivity habits can have a huge impact on your writing career.
What’s the best way to spend your precious work hours? I’m often asked this question by writers during coaching calls. I had one say, “I wish I could follow you around all day and see how you do it!”
While I don’t think that would be pleasant for either of us (and might reveal an embarrassing amount of screwing off and/or snacking on my part!)…I realized that after a decade of freelancing, I have developed some strong opinions on productivity habits for freelance writers.
Here are what I consider to be the seven most important productivity habits a freelancer should spend their time on, in order of importance:
There comes a point in every freelance writer’s life when they get sick of writing for pennies. You look up one day, realizing you’re burning out fast, and that you need to be writing for money — real money. The kind that pays the mortgage.
Helping writers move up and earn more is my favorite pastime, so I love it when writers tell me they’ve hit this point.
I’ve written a ton on how to grow your writing income here on the blog. But over the years, with 900+ posts, it’s gotten harder to easily find my best tips for leaving the gerbil-wheel of lousy gigs behind.
So I’m happy to announce that I’ve now got my very best ‘earn more from writing’ material organized on a single page.
If you’re ready to earn a serious living at freelance writing, read on for details: