Insider Secrets: Freelancing Shortcuts That Really Work

Let's be honest: freelancing isn't easy. It's not that it's actually hard to be a freelancer or do the work… it's the getting started, getting set up, getting clients, and getting a solid business foundation for sustainable growth that complicates everything. There's a lot more to freelancing than just… well, freelancing. So I've put together an insider guide to my favorite freelancing shortcuts that … [Read more...]

15 Brilliant Tips to Help You Earn More

I often hear freelancers say they'd love to earn more money. They want more clients. More passive income. More revenues. And frankly, who doesn't want more money? The more money we have, the more we can have what we want from life, whether that means more free time, more cool gadgets, a better house… you name it! Earning more money isn't always that easy, though, and sometimes it seems like freelancers … [Read more...]

How Negative of a Freelancer Are You?

I was reading an email that offered me an opportunity to partner up on a joint venture and I was thinking I should jump on board the opportunity--until I read a crucial little phrase that swerved me in the other direction. It was right in the wrap-up: "Don't hesitate to contact me." Suddenly something in my mind shifted. My relaxed expression shifted to a mild frown. "Mmm. This isn't a good fit for … [Read more...]

How Chilled Is the Branding for Your Freelance Business?

Freelancers typically struggle with branding. They think great charisma and good skills with a nice, zen-white site are all they need in the ocean of competition out there. And sometimes, that works. Charm and skills goes a long way in business. But to think that this is all it takes, especially in an online environment... well, you'd be wrong. Branding goes a long, long way in the great big world of … [Read more...]

How to Keep a Mistake from Losing You a Client

Every freelancer makes mistakes. You miss a phrase in the client’s specs that expressly says not to use any blue in the design, and your first mockup has blue all over it. You miss a deadline, and you don’t even have a good excuse--you just forgot the project was due on that date. You accidentally copy someone who most definitely should not have been copied on that email you sent, and it created an internal … [Read more...]

How to Know When to Walk Away

Remember when you first started as a freelancer? You were probably desperate for a gig--any gig--where you could show that you really could do this. You wanted to show the world that you were good. That you were worth hiring. You needed money, sure, but the money mattered less than proving that you were a serious freelancer who should be paid money in the first place. Your first client offered you an … [Read more...]

How to Give Yourself a Bonus Day (and Get Clients to Love You)

Under-promise, over-deliver. We’ve all heard that before, but how often do you actually apply it in your freelancing? We promise ourselves that the next time we get a project, we’re going to go beyond our clients’ expectations. Then the car breaks down or we get a cold and the next thing we know that project is delivered just like all the past ones--squeaked in just under the wire, with no extra shiny to … [Read more...]

How to Ask for a Referral Without Sounding Like a Jerk

It’s a lousy truth, but if you want referrals, you have to ask for them. No matter how great your work is, no matter how wonderful you are, most clients aren’t thinking about referring you to anyone. In this post, we'll share the story of one talented designer who failed to get a referral. We'll also tell you an easy way to get your clients to give you referrals. … [Read more...]

How to Approach Big Clients

When we first start out as freelancers, we tend to be tentative about approaching new clients. In fact, one of the biggest obstacles to growing a freelancing business is that most freelancers are terrified to pitch themselves. They’ll go after job postings on major boards or on craigslist.org, but they won’t go out and find the clients who need their services unless they see an ad somewhere. Most of us get … [Read more...]

How to Tell When It’s Time to Take a Break

I threw my neck out something fierce not long ago. I don’t know how it happened. I must have been fighting this big monster in my sleep, rolled over so I could grab a rock to clonk him over the head with, and was suddenly awake, clutching my neck in pain. Either the monster got me or I twisted my head so fast in my sleep that I pulled a muscle. Either way, I was in serious pain. And I had work to do the next … [Read more...]