Journalists make great marketers

A person jumps in the middle of a road.
A person jumps in the middle of a road.
Photo by Caleb Woods on Unsplash

As a journalism student in college, I dreamed of interviewing high-status individuals, breaking important stories, and drafting my next masterpiece of an article over late-night drinks.

That romantic view of the profession was quickly squashed by a seemingly endless job search, which included driving ten hours in one day to interview for a job in a region I previously didn’t even know existed.

When I eventually did land some paid work, it was often thankless. …


Be objective about your work

A man sticks post-its on a wall.
A man sticks post-its on a wall.
Photo by You X Ventures on Unsplash

Far too often, companies create content that focuses primarily on pushing their products or services. They think they’ve created masterpieces, but no one bothers to read their work.

Or, if they do, hardly anyone takes action, like subscribing to your email list or following up to learn more about your offerings.

If you want your content marketing to go further, look at your content objectively. If you or your colleagues didn’t create it, would you bother to engage with it? For example, if a competitor created the same type of piece, would you find it equally interesting and something you’d…


Figure out win-win pricing rather than squeezing freelancers.

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If you run your own business and want to hire freelancers, you need to walk a fine line when it comes to price negotiations. Squeeze too hard and you’ll sour the relationship before it’s even had a chance to develop. Accept bids blindly and you’ll end up overpaying at times.

The good news? As someone who’s been freelancing for over a decade, I’m here to tell you there are ways to negotiate rates in a way that helps your business long term.

Understand Freelance Pricing

Freelance rates tend to not be uniform. Yes, you can look up guides and surveys of what freelancers…


Use your flexibility to create more environmentally friendly work.

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As important as it is for large businesses to do their part to protect the environment, individual freelancers should not overlook the impact they too can make. Not only can freelancers live sustainably in their personal lives, but by operating a business of one, you can have direct control over the sustainability of your work.

Being more environmentally focused can even help you grow your business by differentiating yourself and attracting clients who also value sustainability. You don’t have to flip your work and your life upside down to make a positive change. …


Diving into data can help create more engaging, effective content.

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What sounds more convincing?

A) Consider using content marketing because it helps B2B companies generate revenue.

B) Consider using content marketing because it helps 53% of B2B companies generate revenue, according to a Content Marketing Institute (CMI) survey.

As these examples show, the subtle addition of data can provide crucial context and make your position sound more credible. The world is flooded with unsubstantiated claims like Example A, particularly online, so including trustworthy data can be the difference between your message resonating with your audience vs. getting written off as conjecture.

This lesson can apply across industries and professions, such…


Use tech to help handle the many aspects of being a freelancer

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As a full-time freelancer, you don’t just have one job. You might consider yourself to be a writer or a graphic designer or a web developer, but on any given day, you can be all of those things, plus an accountant, project manager, salesperson, and more. In a way, this variety can make freelancing fun and invigorating. But it can also be stressful and cause you to work more hours than you’re comfortable with.

That’s why your rates need to reflect all that it takes to run your freelance business, rather than charging an hourly rate equivalent to what a…


Instead of working more to recover from a down economy, the solution might be to work less.

Photo by Kristin Wilson on Unsplash

Although businesses are starting to re-open in many areas around the world, the economic effects of COVID-19, let alone the public health effects, appear likely to linger for the foreseeable future. But one strategy that could help move the recovery along, and which is starting to gain traction with leaders around the world, is making the shift to a four-day workweek.

Shorter workweeks can provide benefits such as improved productivity and employee experience, as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce reports, along with more equitable childcare among men and women, as The Washington Post notes. …


A decade of experience boiled down into one article.

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Being a freelancer can leave you feeling exhilarated, frustrated, rich, poor, and everything in between — sometimes all within the same day. But with experience comes wisdom, and while I’ve by no means mastered freelancing, I’ve learned enough along the way to be comfortable sticking with full-time freelancing indefinitely.

Fortunately, I’ve had the chance to learn from the perspective of both a freelancer and as an employee…multiple times. In fact, I’m currently in my third stint of freelancing as my primary source of income, which brings me to the first tip…

1. Gain Marketable Experience as an Employee

If you’re currently a full-time employee, soak up the…


To create stories about subjects you’re unfamiliar with, be inquisitive and do your research like a journalist would.

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Being humble enough to admit what you don’t know is generally a great trait, but if you only stick to writing about topics you have deep expertise in, you can paint yourself into a tiny, frustrating corner.

While you don’t want to write about topics you’re unfamiliar with just for the sake of it — look on social media to see how exasperating and potentially dangerous it can be when someone shares an uneducated opinion — there are plenty of legitimate reasons to wade into unfamiliar territory.

For example, maybe you want to change your career path, such as if…


Be proactive to avoid endless rounds of editing that wear you and your clients down.

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

As a freelancer or service provider such as a marketing agency, constant back-and-forth with clients on edits for deliverables like blog posts, infographics, or website designs can turn a great opportunity into a nightmare.

For one, if you’re using a project rate, which generally is the way to go to maximize earnings, then the longer the project takes due to multiple rounds of edits, the less you’re effectively earning due to lost time. …

Jake Safane

Content writer living in LA. Sports fan. Coffee and tea lover. Puppy parent. https://www.jakesafane.com

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