Freelancing isn’t easy life it can be perceived as if you ask any freelancer they’ve usually got a horror story or two to tell. Whether it’s a terrible client, payment issues or even legal action there are ways these issues can be avoided. If you’re new to freelancing (or just want some updates) this is a guide to nine ways to avoid having your own horror stories to tell.
Create a Business Plan
It’s not a business plan to present to anyone, you’re not looking for investors, but having a business plan can help you achieve your future goals. The business plan will help you stick to a plan and avoid lowering target or changing them. Whether you have a big ambition or not having financial, monthly and yearly goals will keep you organised and helps to better your freelancing skills.
Have a Website
Any freelancer will tell you that being credible and trustworthy is key to being successful and creating a website for potential clients to view will increase your professionalism and trust. Having a website setup ready will be the backbone of your career and give you a great start off point and place to reference back to.
Use Social Media to Network
Free advertising is always beneficial, freelancers are always required around the world and when you’re needed you want to be easily found. Social media platforms such as LinkedIn and Twitter are easy to maintain and offers another medium for potential clients to easily view your work and ethics.
For someone who is more creatively minded, like a freelance writer, staying on top of finances and be boring a tedious but is essential for avoiding getting into trouble with the taxman. Downloading reliable accounting software can reduce a lot of the stress that comes with numbers, the software will help you create invoices and stay on top of client payments.
Love Your Clients
Working hard is necessary for clients, it proves your passions to help them achieve their goals. At the end of the process you should feel the satisfaction of finishing the job, but if you’re feeling relief that a job is over and you didn’t enjoy working with this client then don’t! being a freelancer comes with the benefit of selecting clients and if a client isn’t treating you well then it isn’t helping you or making you feel good in what you do, find new clients that you want to work with!
One of the biggest nightmares a freelancer can face is having legal action taken against yourself, having professional liability insurance comes with working for a large organisation but, as a freelancer, this package isn’t free. It is vital that any freelancer invests in getting freelancer insurance to have support and knowledge on your side if a client ever decided to sue you for whatever reason they thought of. Business Insurance should also be purchased to protect your career, item tangible items that you use for work become damaged or stolen it’s always good to have insurance to rely on when these occurrences happen it’s never at the most convenient time whether its back financial of workload timing.
Enjoy Your Workload
With working hard does come success and satisfaction, but some people can work too hard and become unhappy with their careers, in freelancing having a manageable workload is essentials to continuing to love your job. There are always going to be days where you are putting extra hours in to meet deadlines but creating time to relaxing and mentally unwind is just as important to help appreciate what you have achieved, balance is key.
Keep track of finances from day one, the taxman always finds out and it never comes at a good time, freelancers are solely responsible for reporting every penny they make. When starting out in freelancing it can be tough to record everything happening, if you’re in the UK or USA then there are guides available to help you grasp everything you need to put in place.
Watch out for Content Farms
A big debate in the freelancing world is producing articles for a content farm, although they are easy at the start for making some quick cash content farm are very demanding and don’t show off your true skills as they only require simple articles that no one really gains from. Over time anyone writer for a content farm will realise that the pay is low, the writing is repetitive, they treat you like a robot and there no recognition to help your portfolio as a beginner. All of this should steer you away from content farms hopefully.
Stick to this guide and it should minimalize any problems the beginner would normally cross, avoiding these problems will give you more time to produce amazing content that will help define your future career and help you come across the ideal clients.