Do your clients really want you to succeed as a freelancer?

succeed as a freelancerWhat does your ideal freelance client look like? Great (and fast) payer…high-profile (and rewarding) projects…lots of positive feedback…sends plenty of referrals…prompt, responsive, and easy to work with? I agree. Over the course of 18 years of running my own business, though, I’ve found it comes down to this: Do your clients want you to succeed as a freelancer? And do you want them to succeed, too?

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Is your freelance client serious? Here’s the test

serious freelance clientDr. Freelance: I have a prospective freelance client — an author who needs his book edited — and he appears to have the money and desire to hire me. He keeps pressing me for a price estimate, but I haven’t seen the manuscript, just one sample chapter that I edited. I’m concerned about extrapolating, because it’s a long book and I’m not sure of the overall quality. What’s my next step?—Hurry Up and Wait [Read more…]

Is BookGrabbr the answer for self-published book marketing?

bookgrabbr freelance booksAs you may have seen on social media, I’m experimenting with BookGrabbr. (UPDATE: The promotion is over as of March 8, 2016.) It’s a relatively new book marketing tool that provides readers a free preview of a book in exchange for sharing the link. (I’ve uploaded the first 7 chapters of The Science, Art and Voodoo of Freelance Pricing and Getting Paid.) Before I get into my initial take on the tool, though, I want to discuss why I’m giving it a try. In short, it’s because I believe experimenting is a critical component of freelance success. [Read more…]

Size doesn’t matter (when it comes to rates)

size doesnt matterDr. Freelance: I’ve been freelance writing for several large, successful companies. I have established rates with them that are manageable for their budgets, but definitely high on the pay scale. Now I’ve been contacted by a mid-sized company in the same industry; they’ve very interested and asked for my rates. My question is: What pay/rate scale do you find is most palatable for mid-sized companies? They would be looking for me to create information manuals, website content, and other consumer-facing collateral.—Dot

Dot, I’d never assume that the pay is lower just because a company is smaller! If it’s a successful organization, size doesn’t matter: They understand the fact that high-quality, professional writing (and the level of service you deliver) is about value, and doesn’t come cheap if they want to compete with their larger peers. [Read more…]

How to use pricing to avoid red-flag clients

red flag client pricingI recently received a call from a marketing person who was eager for me to provide the content for a few of her clients’ websites. I knew about two minutes into the call that pricing was going to be an issue, when she spoke the classic phrase you’ll hear from many red-flag clients: “We have a small budget…”

I didn’t want to be rude and cut her short, because that’s not the reputation I want to have in the business community. Anyone who calls me for writing or editing services needs to be treated with dignity and respect. I did, however, need to find a polite way to let her understand that I wasn’t going to be interested in having her as a client. [Read more…]

Free ebook: The Smooth-Sailing Freelancer

The Smooth-Sailing FreelancerI’m pleased to announce the launch of the newest Dr. Freelance Guide: The Smooth-Sailing Freelancer—How To Find, Sell, and Retain More Freelance Business. For a limited time, I’m offering it as a free ebook…simply go to this page to download your copy. (It’s a 40-page pdf, no e-reader required. There’s also a Kindle version, if you prefer.)

Rest assured, you don’t have to know a bow from a stern or port from starboard to understand the strategies inside. [Read more…]