3 Things All Freelancers Should Avoid
If you’re starting off as a freelancer, you will definitely meet a learning curve and experience plenty of mistakes as you build up a career working for yourself. No matter how skilled you are, you will run into challenges that could end up costing you time, money, and peace of mind. Today, we’re looking at 3 tried and tested things that all freelancers should avoid doing, and hopefully have a smoother freelance journey ahead.
1. Not actively looking for clients
Consistency is key in the freelancing world. Unlike with a traditional job, where you usually receive a paycheck at regular intervals for a fixed amount of money, being a freelancer means that your income might fluctuate. As such, you need to maintain a balance between getting in too many clients and not enough clients. However, you need to also actively look for and diversify your clients.
For example, if you’re a graphic designer with a few high-paying and steady clients. You’ve been working well for these clients for a few months when suddenly, one of your clients decides to stop using your services, for whatever reason. Suddenly, you’re missing out on a huge chunk of your monthly income. This is a scenario that happens all the time with freelancers. Although you may not have control over your clients’ needs, you can have some backup plans in place to quickly replace any lost revenue. You can use your extra time to generate leads and find new clients.
For doing both the above, you can consider using Rtist as a service. For one, you get to keep your portfolio updated and connect to potential clients looking for talents.
2. Not charging according to your value
Traditional companies get a pay raise every year or so; it’s one of the things that many people often look forward to. However, as a freelancer, you might just go years without increasing your rates. This means that after a year or two, you may be earning less than your actual value. We understand that new freelancers may be nervous about charging too much because they are afraid of pricing themselves out of the market. However, you should know that no matter how low you may think your prices are, there will always be someone willing to do it for lower. Yes, you need to be reasonable, but burning yourself out by doing lots of work for low pay is definitely not worth it.
Your rates will often depend on your self-worth. Are you average? Or are you reaching for something better than average in your life? Start believing in yourself and the high quality services you provide, and give yourself a pay raise. If you’re still unsure, check out our pricing tips for freelancers which may help you out.
3. Not saying ‘No’ enough
While it can sometimes feel like you have to say ‘yes’ to every client’s request, or risk losing them, this sometimes may not bring the effect that you want. Taking everything that comes your way and never declining an opportunity can lead to demanding clients asking for more and a poor work/life balance. You will no longer be in control of your own career path, which is often the reason you escaped the working world to do freelance.
When you know what you are worth and have decided the minimum amount you can accept, stick to it. There will be times when your prices are too high for a client. It’s okay, just accept it as it is and move on to your next client. If you have a client who is pushing you to lower your prices below what you expect from the work, politely decline the work. The same goes for clients who want constant revisions or little tweaks. Try to add in a limited amount of revisions per project, or if they keep asking, just tell them no. Continually meeting every little demand from a problematic client will drain your energy and your time, both of which you need in order to create balance and happiness in your life.
So there you have it. If you are having trouble with your freelance career, follow these tips and get your freelance journey on track. This will help you create a more balanced work/life freelance career.