Stop the Slump: Marketing Tips for Freelancers

Sunday, November 25, 2012
Okay, okay, I'll admit it.

The marketing aspect of freelancing drives me bonkers.

There, I said it. Happy? Well, I'm not. Trust me, I know it's a necessary evil, it's how I make bank, and it needs to become a daily habit, especially if I want to keep developing relationships with editors.

But, it's marketing. Ugh. And let's face it, I would rather be writing.

If you're a freelancer and you don't always make time to market, you may want to rethink that strategy. Try these tips to conquer marketing and keep assignments rolling in.

  1. Write it down. If I don't schedule marketing time, it's not going to happen. Trust me, penciling in a 15-minute period on my daily planner reminds me that I need to connect with editors. Try to establish a daily schedule and make marketing a priority at the same time every day. Eventually, it will become routine!
  2. Surf with a purpose. How many times have you gone to a website to check out writer's guidelines, and an hour later, you still haven't reached the original destination on the info superhighway? When I'm developing a pitch, I allot a set amount of time to check out contact information and writer's guidelines online. Checking Facebook or Twitter can wait til another time - neither social media market pays my bills. 
  3. Find a friend. Writing can be a lonely profession. That's why I found a writing buddy, and when we have ideas, we share them and help each other fine tune our critiques. Maybe it's just the dialogue with another writer, maybe it's both of us pushing each other, but my writing partner always has fresh ideas for marketing a piece when I'm at a standstill.
  4. Push the "SEND" button. You can dissect each word in your query, but unless you send it, you'll never have a chance to market yourself and your ideas to a potential editor. Write the pitch, proofread it, and hit send. 
Taking advantage of basic marketing skills and ideas will decrease downtime while increasing the bottom line.

Okay, okay, I"ll admit it.

The cashing-the-paycheck aspect of freelancing makes me happy. . . and ready to write.

by LuAnn Schindler


Anonymous said...

My published writing has been primarily freelance to this point. You are so right about the marketing aspect. Sometimes it can smother me to a place of inaction. Other times, it's like a dogged challenge to win. In terms of productivity, I prefer the competitive attitude!

Marcia Peterson said...

Great tips! You're right about scheduling it in. If something's not on my calendar/to-do list, it doesn't stand a chance with everything else going on.

Sioux Roslawski said...

Finding a friend and sending are two crucial things to do as a writer. Why do we hesitate to send?

Thanks for the reminder, LuAnn.

Margo Dill said...

I really like the idea of allowing a certain number of minutes to explore a market and find the guidelines. I am going to do that from now on. Thanks, LuAnn!

LuAnn Schindler said...

I like scheduling time to check out new markets and guidelines. Otherwise, I get caught up in other stuff and never make it that far. Even 15 minutes a day has led me to several new-to-me markets!

Anonymous said...

Sigh. It is necessary, isn't it? I don't mind writing queries and researching markets. What actually bothers me more is that by the time I've heard back, I've sometimes lost interest in what I was going to write. (Of course, I write it anyway. I am a professional, after all.) But I much prefer submitting things I've already written.

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