Become a 6-figure Freelancer Without Starving
Picture this: You are your own boss.
The Big Kahuna.
Queen of England.
No butts to kiss. No co-workers to tolerate.
Your freelance business is Microsoft and you are Bill Gates.
Sounds fun in theory. But did I mention that there’s no weekly paycheck in freelance land?
Or an effortless flow of writing jobs or design gigs? So how do you become a happy member of the freelance club?
Memorize these 7 secrets of six-figure freelancers, and dominate your industry without missing a meal.
Step 1 -Believe your freelance dream is possible
The power of positive thinking works.
It’s not a crock of foolishness preached by Norman Vincent Peale and the Dalai Lama. If you don’t believe in your freelance business, you can’t sell it, maintain it or expect any money to materialize from it. Get some faith in your dream and see the power of your own belief.
Amaze yourself. Go ahead, I dare you.
Step 2- Perfect one innate money-making skill at a time
If you were born to write, then write. If you decide to become a freelance writer, then explore every option that can use your writing skill.
* Write screenplays.
* Develop advertising copy.
* Teach a writing class.
* Create an outline for a how-to book.
But don’t launch your freelance writing career while becoming an interior decorator, chef, photographer or psychic palm reader.
You might think that you need 2 or three extra side hustles to survive as a new freelancer, but really you are spreading yourself too thin. You can have more than one job, but make sure it is in your field of interest.
Step 3- Focus on ways to expand your one money-making skill set.
Don't take on other jobs, that you are not qualified to do, or don’t have the passion to execute. Besides, you are diluting your brand by appearing to be unstable and unfocused.
Taking on extra jobs, outside of your skill set, for the money will make you miserable. Take this from a woman who was a relentless job hopper and made many career mistakes, by wearing too many hats and ignoring the best job for her personality.
Step 4- Make weekly, monthly and yearly freelance revenue goals
If you want to make six-figures as a freelancer, you’ll have to make a minimum of $50 dollars an hour per 40 hour work week. Put this goal on paper.
* Staple it to your laptop.
* Crazy glue it to your refrigerator.
* Believe this goal is possible and apply it to every hour of your day.
For example, as a full-time freelance writer, research and interviewing is a necessary evil. So I think of ways to convert my hours spent researching and not writing into cold hard cash. If I spend 3 hours writing, I should be earning a minimum of $150 on whatever I sell this week.
My three hours of research become:
* One press release for a client.
* Two 400-word how-to content article sold to an online content aggregator.
* An opening paragraph of a 500 word magazine article sold for $1 per word.
* One hour of telephone consulting for a client.
Step 5 -Study the top freelancer in your field and mimic their habits
Find a six-figure freelancer in your field and use their success for inspiration. Read their books. Buy their tools. These folks have made mistakes that you don’t have to repeat. Drink freely from the fount of their freelance knowledge.
Step 4 -Promote yourself shamelessly
Wonder why Paris Hilton is a media whore? She practices shameless self-promotion.
NEWSFLASH: The most talented person is not always the one who gets the best jobs, or the most recognition. It’s usually the person who is the best marketer, most popular or well-known.
Paris Hilton is not a brainless hottie twit spitting out catch phrases like “That’s hot” for our delicious consumption.
That Hilton is no dummy. She is getting constant attention to promote her worldwide brand. More attention equals more money.
The squeakiest wheel gets the grease. Get to squeaking.
Step 5 -Make sure your marketing doesn’t suck
Want the big bucks? Invest in your marketing. Have a professionally designed website and business cards. Dress well. Invest in a 1-800 number for your clients. Hire a virtual receptionist to maintain a professional image. Image matters.
Would you give 10,000 dollars to a Merrill Lynch broker for stock trading if she wore tattered clothes, met you at Starbucks driving a Pinto and used email@example.com as her email address? Of course not, you would think she was a phony, a fake or not serious about your investment.
Your clients are investing in your freelance talent as an investment in their future. Ask yourself one simple question, if you had one million dollars to spend and could hire yourself, based solely on your marketing presentation, would you?
I saved the best for last.
Step 6 -Create freelance products instead of using services as your main revenue stream
Time is the secret currency of freelancers. We receive compensation for our creative concepts and ideas, and the time it takes to execute them.
With only a maximum of 24 hours a day, one person is limited to the amount of time they can bill when the revenue is dependent upon the hours. If you learn how to do the work once, and sell your effort multiple times, you are increasing the amount of money you can make exponentially.
If you focus on creating multiple streams of product revenue – books, seminars, CD’s and merchandise, that can be created once and sold many times, you’ll make money faster than soliciting new clients to buy your services.
For example: A freelance writer can write an e-book in 8 hours at a cost of $400 of labor. (The writer normally charges $50 an hour for their writing services.)
The freelance writer uses 4 hours researching and writing, and 4 hours editing and creating the marketing materials. If the freelancer prices the e-book for $29.00 and sells 100 copies, the gross revenue is $2,900 and the profit is $2,500.
$2,500 for 8 hours of work for a freelance writer who thinks about products sold instead of services only.
Remove any thoughts of becoming a freelance starving artist. Practice these steps so you too can sit at the head of the table as you feast from the abundance of money, success and happiness as a 6-figure freelancer.