Being a freelancer of any kind always has the weight of “what-if” even in your most successful months! “What if I don’t get any new clients this month?” “What if work is slow, and I have to cut back on items that make my business run so well?” “What if a high paying client has to make budget cuts and I am one of them?”..... I’m sure the more specific question, “what if there is a pandemic?” was not one of them.
Weddings and events are being cancelled or postponed. Small businesses are hurting and have to make cuts on their marketing efforts. People are cutting back on their home projects, or personal trainers. In a broad statement, business is slow and it’s affecting many people.
So if you work for yourself as a photographer, marketer, graphic designer, interior designer, personal trainer, etc. I am here to tell you, there is a lot you can be doing to improve your business in this downtime. There are actually a lot of things we push off because it is less exciting than proposals, new clients, the actual work! Your list of things needing to be done is probably full and now you have the time!
1. Catch up on invoices and bookkeeping
If people are behind in their payments, send them an understanding e-mail about the current circumstances and find a way to get everyone on track with their debts. Take time to organize your bookkeeping from last year and make it easier for yourself moving forward.
2. Finish your taxes
Even though tax day has been delayed it is still coming. Gather all of the information you need to correctly file this year's taxes. For us freelancers it can be much more involved in recording your earnings and deductions. Get it off of your plate so you can focus on moving forward into the new year.
3. Review your packages and prices
Have you been freelancing for a while? It may be time to promote yourself! If you aren’t ready for a pay raise then review your packages to make sure they are as profitable or desirable as possible. Hopefully, you are able to do both!
4. Clean your workspace
And we don’t mean grab the Lysol can (although you should probably do that too.) But get rid of the clutter! File or get rid of old paperwork, organize your physical space, organize your desktop, and make some office space improvements!
5. Reach out to current and previous clients
Build stronger relationships by asking how your clients are doing, ask if there is any way you can be of help to them, and let them know about the status of their project or service. A great thing to ask for, (that’s FREE!) is a review of your service!
6. Update your website (if you are able) and work on your social media
Update your website with your most current work or success stories. Social media is a very critical part of any business in today’s time. Be sure you are engaging with your followers to let them know you are still here. Provide them with something of use in this time (virtual workouts, posing tips, diy decorating ideas, etc.)! People will remember your kind heart and out of the box thinking when things go back to normal!
7. Finish any projects you currently have
Catch up on photo editing, lingering design projects, proposals, summaries, etc. If you can do anything in advance do it! The more you stay in your work the better you will feel about the status of your business.
This is a scary time, but it is also a time to reflect on how far you have come thus far and gives you an opportunity to make a plan for the future! Your business and you as the business owner can gain from this time of quarantine! It’s time to get better.