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1
Take Care Of Your Body To Increase Productivity All Day Long
2
Four Conceptualization Points for the Innovative Freelancer
3
Freelancing: Fortune or Failure?
4
5 Top Business Tasks You Should Outsource
5
Stop Freelancing for Pennies
6
What to Ask Before You Hire Your First Employee
7
How to Start Freelancing as a Full Time Employee
8
Crazy Freelance Advice from Non-Experts
9
Healthy Freelancer: Apps to Explore
10
Top Freelance Services You Should Provide

Take Care Of Your Body To Increase Productivity All Day Long

Freelancers know that being more productive means a higher income. In order to improve productivity, it is important to take care of your body properly.

Bad habits can lead not only to more serious health issues, but also to sluggish feelings and lack of motivation.

health

Read on to learn the three things you must ask yourself to maximize productivity all day long.

What are my most effective hours?

Some of people are made for early mornings while others can’t get going until they drink two cups of coffee and relax for a while. Other people work best late at night. While some may be able to train themselves to become more of a morning person, the best idea is to examine your moods and habits and find the best work time for you.

Am I eating a healthy diet and getting enough exercise?

When stress builds up and your mood falls, do you reach for a candy bar or other sweet? Eating too much sugar during the day cannot only cause physical health problems, but also contribute to anxiety, depression, memory and attention troubles. Taking time to move around during the day and keep your metabolism revving and your brain on track.

Should you take a nap?

Power napping has become a more commonplace occurrence in the office and can work exceptionally well for freelancers who need a recharge during their day. Taking a 15 to 20 minute nap may work for some, but it leaves other people feeling groggy. It may be worth a shot to improve your freelancing productivity.

Image courtesy of [Stuart Miles] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Four Conceptualization Points for the Innovative Freelancer

Ideas equal profit for the creative freelancer. If you run out of them, your income will dwindle because you will have nothing to offer clients both old and new. In order to spark your imagination, brainstorming is an effective tool that can both create ideas and transform old ones into new.

idea

How do you start brainstorming when you have no ideas?

Solve a problem or answer a question.

Research what your target market is interested in, is worried about and what makes them curious. All products and services solve a problem for the people who use them. Knowing what they are can help you develop new ideas.

Springboard off of old work or outside ideas.

Keep a swipe file of websites, articles and pictures that inspire you. Of course, you should never copy anyone else’s work, but these things can be used to give you alternate ideas that you have not used already. Using work you have already completed as inspiration can also help.

Try word association and being silly.

Begin with a general idea and play with it so it expands into multiple directions, even if some of them seem ludicrous at the time. Using a stream of consciousness thought process to write down all ideas based on a particular topic can help you find something that will spark your creativity. 

Improve and educate.

Things you have completed in the past can often be improved upon as you learn more in your freelancing career. Not only can you teach yourself, but you can educate others about these topics by creating tutorials or educational videos.

Image courtesy of [89studio] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Freelancing: Fortune or Failure?

Not every freelancer experiences wild success. Other than the obvious poor business practices, the reasons for this failure may seem mysterious. Even if you feel like you are doing everything you are supposed to, do you still fail to get the clients and the income you deserve?

Success Failure

 

 

Ask yourself these questions to figure out how to turn that failure into success:

Is freelancing really right for you?

Do you find the freelancing lifestyle to be as positive as you expected it to be before you started? Some people get into freelancing because it seems to be the next big thing in business. Maybe you began working for yourself on a whim, but the drive and commitment is just not there.

Are your skills good enough?

There are a lot of freelancers out there hawking everything from graphic design to ghostwriting. While you may think you are competent, the real measure of future success is whether the customer base finds your work to have value. Self-examination is often done through rose-tinted glasses. Be prepared to study, practice and continuously learn if you wish to succeed.

Will you take the time to market yourself?

Many people find it difficult or uncomfortable to advertise themselves as a freelancer. If you are not capable and willing to push your skills to potential clients, your freelancing business will probably fail. No matter how well you complete projects, you will not find enough work to pay the bills if you do not dedicate considerable chunk of your time to marketing.

Image courtesy of [pakorn] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

5 Top Business Tasks You Should Outsource

Entrepreneurs may be bursting with drive and dreams, but always fall short on time.

With all of the tasks necessary to not only build a business from the ground up but also maintaining quality customer service, the hours you work each day make it longer and longer.

The answer is outsourcing. Hiring freelance workers to take care of some of the aspects of your business frees you up for more development and growth tasks to make your company more profitable. What are the top five business tasks you should outsource?

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Identifying new client areas

Freelance workers can search the places where potential clients hang out: social media and niche forums. They can handle email tasks for your existing mailing list of interested parties and follow-up with existing clients. By perusing industry magazines and websites, they can also help you identify additional marketing possibilities.

Customer service for existing clients

Most of the regular administrative work associated with servicing existing clients can be handled by outsourced workers. They can mail invoices, contact with payment reminders, chart payment plans, handle incoming mail and field questions and reply with basic information that does not require your particular attention.

Marketing services

Many entrepreneurs outsource advertising and marketing, which can include handling an email newsletter, answering telephone and email inquiries, posting advertisements on directories and social media sites where allowed and growing your online platform responsibly.

Design and development work

From designing the company website to building databases of existing and possible clients, freelance workers are ideal at completing creative, job-based tasks. Graphics experts should acquire proper licensing for images and fonts, create professional logos and design for website, social media pages, business cards and letterhead.

Customer and client contact management

A large part of any entrepreneur’s day is taken up by handling email, site and blog comments, social media posts and voicemail messages that either contain comments about a product or service, questions or spam. Outsourcing basic management of all of these things allows you to receive organized folders or files of only the content that needs your personal touch.

Image courtesy of [Stuart Miles] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Stop Freelancing for Pennies

Can we get a discount on a bulk order?

We don’t have much of a budget, but writing for us will give you great exposure.

Another writer says he can do the job for half the price.

penny

Most freelance writers have heard comments like this throughout their career and they may come to believe that their skills are virtually valueless. After enough comments and lowball offers, the $5.00 content farm grind may seem inescapable.

Many of those who devalue freelance writing work across the board also push for free test content, supposedly used to check your quality, impossibly soon deadlines and extra work above and beyond what you offer.

Before despair settles in, realize that there are potential clients who pay a decent rate for quality writing. These clients cannot be found in the same places as those that want 500 words for less than $5.00. The people who recognize that writing well is a skill worth $50, $250 or even $500 per piece do not hang around on freelancing job boards.

Many freelance writers get mired down in the content mills and come to believe that five dollars is all they will ever make from their work. In order to break out of this stagnant market and launch your freelance career into a more lucrative orbit, extra research and effort may be needed.

Freelancers should learn how to secure clients who truly understand the value of their skilled work.

Image courtesy of [Gualberto107] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

What to Ask Before You Hire Your First Employee

Entrepreneurs and freelancers often start their small businesses alone. This minimizes risk, cost and allows you to work on your own terms and at your own pace. Being a lone wolf in the business world is limiting, however, and there may come a time when hiring an employee makes sense.

Interview

What should you ask yourself before hiring your first employee?

Before you begin writing interview questions or outlining contracts, you must determine if bringing on an employee would be more of a help to your business than a drain on the budget. Ask yourself these three questions before placing an ad for extra help:

 Is there enough work to warrant a full or part time employee?

Even if you are working long hours 7 days per week, it still might not be time to hire an employee. The last thing you want to do is pay to have someone sit around bored or have to spend your precious time figuring out what they should do. Instead of hiring an employee, outsourcing specific tasks may take pressure off you without introducing more.

What will it cost to hire an employee?

Besides paying an employee a reasonable salary or hourly rate, covering benefits and taxes, you will also need to factor in the cost of additional space (if the employee will not telecommute) and equipment such as computers, phone systems and even extra coffee for break time.

Am I ready for the legal responsibilities of hiring?

Not only do you need a binding contract to hire someone, you also need to deal with state and federal laws about proper ID and citizenship, IRS tax matters, Medicare and Social Security withholding, OSHA regulations, labor laws and medical coverage laws.

Image courtesy of [Ambro] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

How to Start Freelancing as a Full Time Employee

People with full time job can still may have trouble paying all your bills and putting money aside for the future. You can’t leave one job without another, higher-paying one lined up either. Getting that better job is hard without more knowledge and experience.

Or maybe you just hate what you’re doing and wish you could pursue your dream or passion.

freelance

There is a solution: Freelance.

Even juggling family, social life and a full-time job can be hectic sometimes. How do you fit freelance work into the mix as well? Will there be a conflict between the side jobs you take and your main (for now) source of income?

Consider the following three tips to make the freelance/job balance easier to maintain:

Do not break your job’s contract.

If there is a non-compete clause in your employment contract that means you cannot offer the same services freelance that you do on the job. You also cannot solicit the same clients for outside work. Never risk being fired or sued.

Be open and honest when your boss finds out.

There is a chance your freelance work will never be discovered, but in the world of social media and networking, the chance is slim. If your boss becomes concerned about conflicts of interest or possible lack of attention on the job, be prepared to ensure him that the two do not coincide niche or time-wise. Be honest about what you do and when you do it.

Focus on freelancing’s benefits to your career.

Freelancing may help you afford a new car or explore your interests, but it can also help in your 9 to 5 job. Not only does it demonstrate your drive and strong work ethic – and help develop them if they’re not 100% – freelancing can also introduce you to new skillsets and expand your range of knowledge and experience. This can help in all aspects of your life including your career.

Image courtesy of [Goldy] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Crazy Freelance Advice from Non-Experts

The internet is full of so-called experts sharing their tips and tricks about how to build a successful freelance career. People who have been freelancing for years often find themselves shaking their heads over this bad information.

If you are at the beginning of the freelance journey, it is important to be able to weed out the good advice from the downright crazy things non-experts tell you to do.

crazy girl

Here are a few of the craziest freelance advice tips:

Don’t bother with market trends or research.

So many sites tell beginners to follow their dream or explore their passions and they will be successful. This only works if your dream and passions are shared by a large group of people ready and willing to buy. If you want to have a successful freelance career, you need to provide something the market wants.

Start small and cheap and then grow.

The problem with starting small and offering services or goods for very low amount of money is that the transition to higher-paying clients is difficult. If Bob loves your work at $10, why would he suddenly pay $50 for the same thing? While you may attract attention at a very low rate, you won’t be able to pay your bills. Start out with a reasonable living wage and attract customers with quality.

Outsource for pennies and keep the profits.

Some people adopt the business model of taking client orders at a standard price and then paying someone else to do the job for a much smaller amount of money. Not only does this cheat the client out of your quality work, it contributes to the problem of freelance wage lowering and exploitation of workers who accept these low payments. If you decide to outsource, only do so for a fair rate of pay.

Image courtesy of [photostock] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Healthy Freelancer: Apps to Explore

The health of a growing freelance business is top of the list in an entrepreneur’s mind. You spend considerable time and money making sure everything is on track for the strongest growth and longevity; the right software programs, tech gadgets, marketing and employees.

There is one thing often neglected with all this attention firmly on business: your own health.

The combination of long hours at your computer desk, working through lunch or just grabbing an unhealthy snack and the added stress of starting your own business can lead to some horrible health problems if you’re not careful.

Consider getting one of these helpful apps that can make staying fit a high-tech and important part of your work day. When you make your workouts, diet choices and habits more streamlined, you have more time and energy to work as well.

 

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Bike Brain

Enjoy cycling? This iPhone app works with your phone’s GPS system to map out the best routes. It also includes a heart rate monitor to ensure you are getting a great work out.

Breathe to relax

Whether you use an Android device, iPhone or iPad, this stress management app can help you take it easy during the workday so you don’t get overwhelmed by all the freelance business tasks that are on your shoulders. It was developed by the Department of Defense and helps you reduce stress, anger and anxiety with breathing exercises.

Healthy Out

A freelancer’s long work days can lead to a lot of takeout food and quick snack options at the desk. Get this iPhone, iPad or iPod app and find quick food choices that are nutritious and delicious. It can also help you create a set meal plan to maintain good health always.

 

Image courtesy of [KROMKRATHOG] / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Top Freelance Services You Should Provide

There has never been a better time to become a freelancer. The opportunities are endless for those who has the will to make it in the modern world. Here are the top and in demand freelance services we recommend:

Content Marketing

Practically every report you read about content marketing in some way proves how it’s growing by leaps and bounds. Companies are investing in it like never before. Proof: Most companies are allocating their marketing budget to content marketing using a combination of in-house and outsourced content creation.

Search Engine Optimization

Clients are looking for freelancers who can not only produce results, but results that can help their website get higher SERP results. This means knowing about things like how to do keyword research, what long-tail keywords are, writing themed content and the impact Google algorithm changes have on search results.

Social Media Marketers

There is a lot going on in the social media world. And we mean A LOT. A minute alone can generate substantial engagement, traffic and results based on how good your social media marketing campaign is. Businesses are always in the look out for freelancers who can produce results and leads via social media.

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