The “problem” of more work than you can handle

Finding enough work to fill your pipeline can be a challenge, especially in the early days of your freelance career. But if you do your marketing work consistently, provide great service, and eat your Wheaties long enough, your business will eventually reach a point where you’re pushing the limits of your capacity. This doesn’t mean...

Time for a Marketing Reboot?

If your marketing has slowed down lately, you’re not alone — and there are lots of possible reasons why…. It could be the effect of the summer lull. Or maybe you’re coming off a monster project that consumed every bit of your time and energy and you literally couldn’t focus on anything else while it was going on...

Summer Lull = Time to Improve Your Proposals?

If you’re experiencing a little “summer slowdown,” please don’t use it as an opportunity to panic. Instead, use the little August lull to work “on” your business instead of “in” your business. Let’s start with your proposals — I’ll be they can use some improvement. Well, I have the perfect solution to that problem: Monday, August...

[Podcast] The Art & Science of Pricing

There is an art and a science to pricing your services and to do it well, you have to have both! As a creative professional, the art part shouldn’t be a problem, right? I wrote about the “science” part in a HOW article published in the magazine and excerpted here. And I recently recorded the entire...

Two visitors, two calls-to-action

Your website can have the world’s most awesome content. But if you’re not giving readers a next step—what’s the point? For a website to work (funnel ideal clients and projects, weed out tire-kickers, gather info and save you time)—it’s got to ask something of your visitors and encourage a next step. But not all visitors...

Here’s what happens when you don’t ask the budget….

Love this short video of Bill Carney speaking on determining your value at Creative Mornings. In it he tells the story of a lesson he learned when he didn’t ask for a client’s budget and instead blurted out a number…. The post Here’s what happens when you don’t ask the budget…. appeared first on HOW Design...

Freelancers: It pays to charge what you’re worth

Several years ago I got a call from one of my favorite clients, who I’ll call “Frank” because it’s not his real name. “Tom,” he said, “we’re going to have to start working with someone less expensive. We simply can’t afford your rate anymore.” Was I disappointed? You bet. Frank had been a great client...

How to Start Your Freelance Career With oDesk

For a while, I’ve avoided posting about online freelance marketplaces, but this take on it from freelancer, Jake Jorgovan, answers the real questions freelancers have so you can know who should use it, when and how, as you build a freelance business. Plus, a recent report states that 10% of businesses (up from 3%) are now...

Benefits for Freelancers — thanks to Freelancers Union!

Last month, The Freelancers Union did something no one else has cared enough to do — they launched a National Benefits Platform for Freelancers. The National Benefits Platform will enable freelancers across the country to access a suite of curated, freelancer-focused benefits, including: 401(k) plans Health insurance Dental plans Disability insurance Term life insurance Liability...

Email Newsletters Are Not Dead — Far From It!

There was a discussion recently in our very active “Creative Freelancer Conference” LinkedIn Group about the current thinking on email newsletters as a marketing tool for freelancers. I haven’t weighed in yet but David Carr has a great article in the New York Times (6/30/14), “For Email Newsletters: A Death Greatly Exaggerated,” on the fact that they...

Last Day of Best Price for 2015 CFBC and HOW Design Live

One last chance to get the best discount available for the 2015 HOW Design Live and Creative Freelancer Business Conference to be held in Chicago, May 4-8, 2015! We had our full-day planning meeting last week with all the program directors and I can tell you, it’s going to be awesome! We can’t yet say...

CFBC Connecting Continues for Enterprising Freelancers

I got this message last week from designer (and veteran CFBC attendee), Nancy Ruzow of Ruzow Graphics about the follow up she’s done in the month since the conference…. I have been working very hard to follow-up with some of the contacts I met at the Creative Freelancer Business Conference (held May 14-16, 2014 in Boston). Jenn Cole...

Proposal Due This Week? Read These 2 Articles First.

If you’re working on a proposal this week (and even if you’re not), check out these new articles and make sure your next freelance proposal is a “winning” proposal — otherwise, it’s a waste of your time! Here are excerpts… On PaperSpecs.com, read “Should I Even Write That Proposal?” Many of the problems that arise over...

Freelancers on the term “Freelancer”

More than 3 years ago, one of the posts that got the most comments was one called, “Is Freelancer a Negative Term?” It’s 2014 and there are more and more freelancers taking the leap into full-time freelancing. And this question came up again in the online course I’m teaching through HOW Design University, “How to...

Professional Headshots – What a Difference!

I needed a new headshot. Like fellow CFBC attendee, Jill Anderson, mine was old. But, unlike Jill, who hired a professional photographer, I had my husband take a picture of me with my iPhone against my office door!   Did I know I should find a real photographer? Yes. But time kept passing, and my...

Tips to Conquer the Rest of 2014 via @PhotoShelter

Can you believe we are already almost halfway through 2014? The good news: You still have six months left to bring in business and end the year strong. Actually, there’s just over 200 days left, so you’ve got a lot to work with. If you didn’t make it to HOW Design Live or the Creative...

Why Every Freelancer Should Take a Vacation

Being self-employed means you can take a day off—or a week, or a month, or even more—whenever you like. Yet ironically many freelancers find it stressful to take a vacation. Even mentioning the subject typically triggers one of two intense visceral responses in a freelancer’s “lizard” brain: “Ack! I don’t have enough work! I can’t...