Imagine a quiet office space. There are only a few people around – not enough to distract you, but enough to ensure that you don’t feel isolated from the world. Mostly they are freelancers, typing away at their computers.
You like the music playing in the background because it is almost like someone copied your own playlist. The coffee is delicious, there’s plenty of food to choose from, the view is not bad at all…And the best part? The rent you pay is the price of the things you eat and drink.
It sounds good, doesn’t it? I’ve just described at least three of my favorite coffee shops. You might think that working in coffee shops is an obvious choice, albeit not a very convenient one. After all, several other FreelanceSwitch writers made pretty good cases about why libraries make better offices than coffee shops or why co-working spaces are the best office alternatives. But what if there aren’t any co-working spaces near where you live? And most libraries don’t really allow you to eat or drink something around their computers.
So what’s a freelancer to do? Sure, most freelancers, including me, run home offices. But working in one place for a long time decreases productivity, creativity and frankly, it gets boring and lonely.
So every time I need a change of scenery, I take my stuff and go to one of my favorite coffee shops. And if you choose correctly, they can make the most fun and positive office substitutes. Whether you don’t feel comfortable in libraries or you don’t live near co-working spaces (or just don’t want to pay $25 or more for them), here is a guide to what to look for in coffee shops so that they provide a satisfactory office experience: Continue Reading
Thanks to the internet, it is more advantageous to work as a freelancer these days. You can conveniently find clients online, market your work effectively at a low cost (or for free), network with colleagues, run your website, research, handle your accounting and a lot more.
But having such easy access to the internet is not without its drawbacks. For many freelancers, it is hard to resist reading e-mails, logging on to social media accounts, checking stats for their blogs and websites or following one link after the other. Even though we want to get ahead by multitasking, we get distracted and wind up not accomplishing much.
That’s why lots of productivity articles advise you to turn off your internet connection (or ignore it) when you need to focus.
However, we do have a lot to do on the Internet and we really get frustrated if our connection goes awry. So what do you do when the internet cuts you off? Whether you are at your (home) office or at your favorite coffee shop, it’s inevitable to run into problems from time to time.
Yes, the internet is essential for many of our tasks, but we often forget that quite a few of these can, and maybe even should, be done without it.
The next time you can’t connect, don’t get mad – get efficient. Regardless of what area of freelancing you are in, following are some ideas to get you started: Continue Reading
Compared to other businesses, freelance writing seems a lot less costly. It’s relatively much easier and considerably less expensive than opening a brick-and-mortar store, or running a restaurant.
After all, you basically need your laptop and a fast internet connection (stuff you probably had anyway), and a quality printer/fax/scanner combination. Then if you are serious about promoting yourself, you might think about a website and a domain name. Finally, you are set, right?
Well, not really. There are many more expenses than people first consider when they start thinking about freelance writing and the budget they might need. They overlook the recurring costs of improving their craft, managing and promoting their business, networking, transportation and more.
I hadn’t really considered all this when I first started freelancing as a writer. The goal here is to prepare you for the potential expenses, offer tips to avoid excess spending and help you set your finances accordingly.
If you have more than one freelance specialty, one strategy is to dedicate a separate site (blog) to each specialty, develop strong targeted brands, and grow them independently across multiple social media. With this strategy comes the question of how can we manage all our sites, keep up with our branding efforts and handle our social media accounts (such as Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin) all at once?
There are pros and cons to having different social media accounts for multiple websites. It’s important to choose a social media promotion plan that fits your business structure and future goals best.
Though I’ve been writing for a long time, I started publishing when I discovered blogging is a wonderful way to share my interests, and build a portfolio along the way. However, it is also a demanding activity that requires one to be their own blogger, editor, web designer, marketer, SEO specialist, and social media manager. While I mostly enjoy these tasks, it is becoming harder to stick to my own deadlines while I am managing multiple sites. After all, I have an entertainment blog, a writing blog, and several others. Numerous blogs mean that all these tasks are multiplied.