It ain’t easy, being freelance, and especially in the long run! You’ve got clients coming and going, new opportunities to chase down at every turn, and to top it all off you’re going to have to work harder than ever just to stay afloat.
Also, freelancing is one of the few ways to be a full-time digital nomad. The flexibility (and ideally stability) freelancing provides is enough to get anyone started on their journey to digital nomadism. Freelancing life has its ups and downs but it is great work and we advise anyone who gets the chance to freelance to do so at some point in their careers.
I’ve asked 5 friends to chime in for this article on their advice for freelancing longterm. Enjoy!
Jack Stubbs (Freelance Publicist)
“Don’t get negative if you lose a client or don’t get to close a deal, just do your best work with each case you get and things will work out great. Just keep griding and sending those emails and all will work out for the best. And above all else, believe in yourself!”
Sean Paige (MIKEN PR)
“The key is to fully test your strategies and sales ideas before giving up on them. It can be all too easy to call it quits too early when things to go the way you predicted initially. For example, if you are trying to close new clients in a certain sector, you’re going to need to email at least a hundred of them. And keep in mind that mass email does not work very well if at all. It can be useful for initial brand awareness emails before speaking with the prospective client directly, and other than that you are going to want to stay away from it, and never use it for the PR work! ”
Mike Chan (Grayling PR)
“I spent 5 years freelancing while traveling the Americas. I’d recommend it to anyone who wants to get out there and see the world while gaining valuable work experience! It won’t be easy and the road might get rough, but digital nomadism is not for the faint of heart.”
Chester Dorsey (Resound Marketing)
“I would advise anyone who is considering freelancing to truly consider if it’s right for them. It usually isn’t. Agency work is some of the most fulfilling and well-paying careers out there, and frankly, I can’t see why that wouldn’t be enough for a person who takes their job seriously.”
Not the response I was hoping for from Chester with Resound, but I am a firm believer that opposing viewpoints can and should be heard. Freelance work is not right for everyone, some are better suited to starting their own team rather than working solo, and some of us are better suited for remote jobs with a bit of flexibility. It all depends on your personality type and what you want out of a career.
Michael Brent (Earned Media Consultant):
“I think the hardest part really is just finding the clients. If you’re good at your work, the public relations isn’t that hard, but what can be hard is hounding down clients all the time, and as a freelancer you’re going to have to do that – sales is going to be part of your day to day work and there is just no way around it.”