There’s no better time to expand your freelancing business than now. We’re living unprecedented times. While the world is kept on lockdown and the markets are shutting down, the world still needs people to work and do their jobs. Freelancers have a knack for staying indoors and doing their jobs from their desks. They’ve been doing it for years. But still, even we are hit by this global economic crisis that is still yet to have an end in sight.
Luckily, freelancers know a thing or two about adversity. We’ve been facing it since day one of us quitting our full-time jobs and going for freelancing careers. It’s always been there, adversity, riding the wave with us and getting ready to push us off the water at our smallest sign of unawareness. Because of this we freelancers can even expand during these times.
I know it sounds impossible. How are you, a freelancer, going to expand during a global pandemic when companies worth millions are shutting down? Well, for once, I’m just me. I’m my company and my employees. Which means, it’s much easier to manage me. Second, I’ve always had more than a plan B. I’ve created plan B-Z, just to be sure, in times of peace.
When it comes to not just surviving but actually thriving and expanding your freelancing business during these times of uncertainty, I’ve come up with 5 practical ways in which you can move on with your business like it’s just another day at the home office. Here are my techniques that I’ve put into practice since the start of 2020, which happens to be a crazy year thus far.
In this guide:
Find new whales
In freelancing, a whale is a client who simply has your back over a period of a long time, usually for at least 6-12 months. The whale sees your potential, so he cuts a deal with you based on the number of hours you’re going to be working for him each day, which means you’ll be working for them for the foreseeable future. Financial stability, mutual trust, productivity and respect.
But how do you find a whale during these times? Luckily, since you’re working online, the rules haven’t changed that much. Maybe there are less requests but the actual rules of finding and pitching a whale are the same. Be the best at what you do. Don’t waste time with frugal clients. Hunt for the clients that show interest and respect for what you do. Pitch a long contract/deal.
Start a podcast/social media channel
When disaster strikes, it is important that you don’t stay put. If you were to sit exactly where you were when a tornado strikes, you’d be dead in seconds. It’s important to move, to face adversity with action. Inaction is debilitating. This is why, regardless of your domain, starting something completely new, like a podcast, or joining a new social media platform, is crucial now.
I myself have bought a microphone and am happy to report that episode 1 of the “I Write Stuff” podcast is all ready to be published! It will most likely happen on the first or second Friday of May but I’m still not sure. I will keep you posted on Instagram and Facebook. To summarize, expand your horizons beyond your own imagination when things go south. Go for it!
Improve your message, website or freelancing profiles
Having a personal website or a blog for your online business is a great idea. You can’t just rely on pitching endlessly, or worse, on freelancing platforms. I’ve done that for years and struggled with it for years. Your own website, your own online presence, brand, whatever you want to call it. That’s the way to go here, regardless if you are a writer, designer, accountant, and so on.
The thing with a website is, most people have it made, and then forget about it. This is so very wrong. As you become better at what you do, you should note that on your website. You should update working hours, prices, add more testimonials, better portfolio pieces. As you get better, your message and your website should also keep up the pace. Don’t let them fail you!
Cut longer deals with your clients
As mentioned on point 2 about the whales, during harsh times the best thing that can happen to you is to cut longer deals with your new or current clients. I somehow predicted 2020 was going to be hard. Somehow, I was coming after two years of bliss, financially and work-wise. I knew nothing about the pandemic but something told me that it was time to pitch my main clients a long deal.
Which is exactly what I did right after New Years. I pitched a long, one-year deal for a great prize for the two most important clients that I have. Also, two smaller deals for two smaller clients that are still going on, with much less work but still a great deal of it. And yes, they all said they wanted to do it. All I did was, I asked for a longer, better deal. It works. If you do your job right, and people who you work for notice this, it will work for you too. 100%. Just ask!
Become the best at what you do
Finally, the best way to pass through a pandemic when all of the economies are falling apart is to become the best at what you do. Even if you are left with one client, and are reaching deep into your savings (if you have no savings, especially as a freelancer, please go to your room and rethink your entire business!) you still have the possibility to grow, to expand, to perform.
Don’t sleep on the idea that it’s so bad, you’ll never grow out of this situation. That’s just a false claim your tired, fearful mind is making. It is not true. The world has been through far worse pandemics and wars and all that is wrong, and it was still able to come out of them. Keep your head high, practice on what makes you a great person, and freelancer, and keep on growing!
Hi! My name is Gabriel, nice to meet you.
I run Gabriel Iosa Writing Services, my online dream business that’s now 4 years in the making. I’ve also worked as a journalist for 9 years and counting. My job is to come up with the best content for you regardless if it’s for your blog, website, book, social media posts or anything else. I can also help you with organic or paid reach so that you can put your products or services right in front of your future clients.
If you enjoyed this article, shoot me an email with a few details about your project. We’ll take it from there.