7 Tips to Start Off a Successful Freelance Business

Old picture imagining myself with "then" futuristic hardware.
Looking back at seven years of freelancing, I always knew this was the right thing for me. But how do you explain to the world that what you want to do is living on your own terms? How do you even determine when your career began? In my case it is really difficult, as my decision to go freelance happened when I turned 16, making that a reality took 13 more years. This made me aware of some hard truths that may help others to create their business and get rid of some inherent doubts.

Here we go, below is a list of tips for emerging freelancers and small business owners. This list may not be complete and be amended as I get aware of useful additions. 

  • You Are Not Too Old.
    The older we get, the more we stick to safety – but the older we get, the more new tricks we should learn. So essentially this means; age should not be a reason to NOT start a business, the exact opposite is true! Your life-experience is a great time - and lifesaver.
  • Start Small And Grow Big.
    If you limit yourself all the time, you will reach nothing more than the reality you created yourself so far. Learn to develop yourself into the person you can become, not the one you already are. Thinking of -and believing in- a better self gets you there.
  • Embrace Transformation.
    Our lives are already transformational (from childhood to adulthood, etc.) being aware that you can control the outcome, makes the transformation process more enjoyable.
  • You Don't Need Big Ideas To Succeed.
    Building a business around an idea will only get you that far (insert name of hyped startup here). The thing is that once your idea/product is not trendy anymore, you need something new. Building a business around your skill will limit your reach, but you can adapt to trends more easily and this is a much needed power to create resonating content and connections.
  • Always Invest In Yourself.
    Learn to see what is a liability or an asset. When you set out to do a business besides a day job, invest in your business instead of vacations. What you do after your day job, determines your future.
  • Manage Time By Finding Your Own Pace.
    Don't track time. Everyone needs their own pace to get things done. It is part of your freelance-personality. Educate your clients about your pace so they can adapt. If you don´t explain your pace, everyone settles with the bad standard in life that is "time".
  • Get the right mindset.
    Most people go to work with a TGIF mentality, which inevitably leads to an unsatisfied lifestyle. A great mindset helps you to attract better clients by being a person everyone wants to do business with. It can be obtained by working continually on your personality, be it through coaching, books or workshops.

These are pointers that I would like to send to my younger self, but inherently I know it would not change anything as everything went the way it should and at the right point in time. If you can´t say that from your route, you should start changing things step-by-step using these tips. If you are on the right track, these might still be good reminders about the things that are important for your business.

We live in great times, that is a wonderful thing to remember. 

Everything we need is at our fingertips! Be it reviews about companies to work with that ArtPact offer insights about - or be it invoice templates that make life a lot easier as a one-man (or woman)-business.

What is your story? When did you start your own business? And what is your biggest trouble so far?
Do you know a web-service you can´t survive without?
Let´s discuss in the comments!

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Oliver aka Fantasio is a creative blogger who likes to share his insights about art, marketing and social media. Follow Fantasio on twitter or facebook


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