This is the question I ask myself every day.
As a freelance writer and now an entrepreneur (I’m going from mom to mompreneur) I’m suddenly faced with too little time and a growing list of personal projects I want to do on top of my client work.
So, why do I have four blogs, two of which I write every week on? Most of these blogs don’t generate income for me, yet I continually update them and write on them.
You may be in a similar situation as a freelance writer.
Maybe you started out blogging and learned that the quickest way to make money as a blogger is to blog on someone else’s blog.
Now you have two blogs – your personal blog that you love writing for but doesn’t really generate much income, if any – and your client work that is paying your bills.
You don’t want to give up blogging – you love it and it’s a viable way to make a living. What do you do? How can you build your platform and still have time to freelance write?
For me, my time is very limited, yet I’ve found hacks or productive strategies to build my platform as an entrepreneur helping moms and freelancers and still write for my clients.
Here’s how I do it.
1. I Type Fast
I can write 1,000+ words in an hour or less. And since my twins still nap in the day – for an hour and a half or more – I can typically get a post or half a post done during this time.
When my children go to sleep for the night, I can finish it up. Other times, I have shorter posts and I can whip those out fairly quickly in a day.
How can you get your typing speed up? Practice by taking a typing test. Go to KeyHero and take a typing test.
Work on getting to 60wpm at first. Make sure you:
- Have the proper hand placement on your keyboard. You won’t make it as a freelance writer if you’re a finger-typer.
- Can type intuitively. This means not looking at what you’re typing. This can be hard – I know! I still occasionally look at the keyboard.
- Remove distractions. When writing my client pieces, I put on music. I listen to the same album I’ve been listening to since Christmas. And that’s intentional because that primes my body and gets it ready to focus and write.
Once you are comfortable with that, work your way up to 90wpm or more. The faster you type the more work you can do, which also generates more money since you can do more work in the same time frame.
2. I Batch My Tasks
I actually talk about this a bit over on Twins Mommy, but if you don’t know what batching is, it’s the process of grouping similar tasks together.
The saying is, if you mix tasks up it just takes longer than plowing through one task. So, in your freelance writing biz, this might mean doing all your blog images on Monday then pitching on Tuesdays, writing on Wednesdays, etc..
For me, I tend to batch graphics and research. If I can get all of that out of the way, then I can focus on the writing aspect during the week.
I find that is has helped me save time and be more productive overall.
3. My Clients Ask Me to Write About My Success
Something happened this year that’s new – my clients view me as a digital marketing expert because I have a course now.
And because of this, some clients have asked me to write about my success. For example, one client emailed me this:
I love what you’ve done with the sales page for your course, so I think it’d be really cool for you to share how bloggers could do something similar. The sort of elements they need, tips on copy etc. Maybe some brief tips on a few tool recommendations thrown in would work well.
On one of my client’s blog, I was able to talk about my free email course and how that is the beginning of my sales funnel.
And you know what? Writing about my stuff is easy and I don’t have to do any research! This cuts my time in half and I can create a post easily.
But, what if you don’t have a course or certificate to show you’re an expert? Well, you can be an expert in your niche without any of that. It just helps.
For me, I was surprised that some of my clients wanted me to write about my journey to become an entrepreneur. But, I didn’t shy away and I found that I can write these posts quickly, which helped make time to build my platform.
4. I Have Help
Now, don’t think I do this all my own. I have a ton of help and I’m not ashamed to let people know. To take your business to the next level, you’re going to have to loosen the reigns and enlist others to help you.
My biggest help comes from my family. My husband helps with web development, some editing and business tasks. My extended family helps by playing with the twins many days after they wake up from their nap. I’m able to squeeze in a bit more work, then work on dinner.
I also outsource some research and writing. This helps me grow my business because I can take on more clients. I’m also testing the waters with a copyeditor. I need someone to fact check my work, make sure I spell names and products correctly, check my links, and overall flow. They also need to know about digital marketing.
So far, I’m happy with the results and will see if it’s in the budget for me to have a copyeditor full-time.
5. I Have an Editorial Process
Do you have an editorial process? If you’re a freelance writer and don’t, start thinking of one now. Having an editorial process for your client’s posts or projects can help you focus on what you need to do and not waste time.
I don’t know about you, but staying productive during slow periods is hard…well, for me it is. That’s why I’m not the best when it comes to time management. If I don’t have a plan or a process, I tend to dawdle, daydream and peruse.
That’s why my editorial process is important. From inception to publication, I have a step, a plan and a process. I don’t waste time and if I know the plan I can easily write it out.
Having this process is a learned skill. New freelance writers may not have it yet until they have a client under their belt.
For me, my editorial process includes an outline and a lengthy editing process. Knowing the steps helps me keep on track.
I also rely on Trello to keep me organized.
I’m able to create topics and assign dates. I’m also able to have a to-do list for each post, which helps me remember to optimize my post.
Everything Takes Time
As a mompreneur, one thing is clear, I have a ton of ideas! I just don’t have the time to do them all. But, that’s okay.
I work from home so I can spend time with my twins before they head off to school. I don’t have to do everything. I feel what I’m doing isn’t a lot. Yes, I have five blogs but two of them are multi-author sites and one of them is my writer website, which doesn’t have a blog.
So, really, I have this blog and Twins Mommy. Those are the blogs I regularly write on and I have my client work. In a given week I write about 10-15k words.
Is this a lot? I have no clue. But it’s standard for me.
Over to you – how are you managing your freelance work and building your platform? Share your tips with me!