december 2016

How to find higher paying clients

Organize & Automate: Need to streamline your design process? Want to learn how to use tools like Streak and Asana? It’s all covered in my course, Organize & Automate!

The Freelance Marketing Plan: Need to find more clients? In my 50-page workbook, I share the marketing strategies that have worked for me over the last four years!

When you should and shouldn’t raise your rates

Behind the Scenes: December 2016

In these posts I share:

    •    My blog growth
    •    My newsletter growth
    •    How I did with last month's goals
    •    My goals for next month
    •    Lessons I've learned throughout the month
    •    My current obsessions
    •    My traffic report compared to the previous month

My website growth

Visits: 335,151

Pageviews: 576,328

Audience size: 240,591

My most popular post published in December: 3 myths about project management - BUSTED

My top 3 traffic referrers: Direct, Google, Pinterest

Google is my second best traffic referrer. I’ll admit: I’ve never paid much attention to SEO. Ever. I’ve always preferred putting effort into things like Pinterest marketing because I know a lot of my target audience uses Pinterest.

Everyone uses Google, and that fact has always put me off putting more effort into SEO, because you just don’t know if you’re attracting the right audience to your posts.

I’ve decided to make the most of my search engine traffic now, though. My most popular post gets most of its traffic from Google, but that post was just gathering dust in my archives. I didn’t put an opt-in in the post, or even try and lead people to other related posts! I only recently realized what a waste this is, and decided to put some time into improving the post so it converts that search engine traffic into customers and subscribers.

I lengthened the post, added more keywords, and added two opt-ins (one halfway through the post and one at the end.)

The opt-in is for 5 free moodboard templates they can get if they subscribe, and the post is a tutorial on how to create moodboards in Photoshop.

Since I made those simple improvements, I’ve been getting about 20-30 extra subscribers per day. I’ve noticed that a few of them have been opting out as soon as they get the moodboards, but most of them remain on my list. Just from taking 30 minutes out of my day to improve an old blog post, I’ve boosted my daily subscribers and sales!

If you have an extra half hour today, go through your most popular posts and make sure they all include opt-ins, links to related posts, and links to your products. It’s worth the time investment!

My newsletter growth

Number of subscribers: 9,177

Most popular opt in: The Designer's Guide to Project Management

Behind-the-scenes this month

I haven’t done much for my business other than what I’ve already shared, so I want to share something I did before I came to Nicaragua.

In my Organize & Automate Facebook group, one of the designers said she was going away and wanted to know how she could prepare her business if something morbid happened to her. Until she’d said this, I hadn’t thought about it!

After I saw her post, I decided to get prepared for the worst too- just in case.

Here’s how I prepped:

  • I left my parents with a Google Doc that includes passwords to all my logins, including my Facebook login so they could inform my groups if something bad had happened.
  • I left them with a script they could add as my email autoresponder.
  • I left instructions on how to turn off social media automation
  • I left a script they could send to the clients I’m scheduled to work with when I return
  • I left them with access to my banking
  • I gave them my assistant’s email address and told them which tasks to delegate to her and which account to pay her from, just in case something terrible happens and I need her to take on extra tasks for a long period of time but I can’t tell her myself.
  • I gave them details on how to end or ‘pause’ The Shelancers Club and how to end/pause payments.  
  • I gave them instructions on how to cancel all my business expenses.

I recommend making sure your business is prepped for emergencies, even if you’re not going away. It’s morbid to think about, but bad things happen. Have you thought about what will happen to your clients, customers, and their money if something happens to you?

Set aside a day to create a Google doc of instructions, tutorials and passwords and give at least three close friends/family access to it.

January goals

Work on my Pinterest marketing. Pinterest is responsible for most of my best customers and subscribers- almost all of them tell me they found me through Pinterest! I took a course called Infinite Growth last year that really helped me boost my Pinterest traffic, and I’m going to go back over that course next month (if I can find some time!) and see if I can make more improvements to my Pinterest marketing. I want to make the very most out of it! Pinterest is a goldmine. If you’re not utilizing it, you’re reeeeally missing out.

Find a way to boost my passive income. Since I’m in Nicaragua at the moment and always so busy (either with volunteer work or socializing with new, lovely friends!) I haven’t been able to take on much one-on-one work. I’m making a decent amount of passive income, but I want to boost it so I can save more income for my next trip (Asia!).

Celebrate a good year! I always focus so much on what’s ahead that I forget to celebrate what I’ve already done and who I already have. I’m going to use January to reflect on the life that I’m blessed to have, the business I’ve built that allows me to live this kind of life, and the great friends I have.

Current obsessions

How to fight fatigue by prioritizing tasks: This year, my biggest business struggle was not WANTING to work. I sat back and really enjoyed this year soaking up the sunshine, spending time with friends, reading books, watching my favourite shows and learning a new language. But because I was enjoying myself so much, I found it really hard to motivate myself to work. This article really helped me.

How to attract your ideal clients.  I stumbled back across this post recently and knew I had to share it. Not only does this designer write great posts like this, but her aesthetic is really pretty and inspirational. Check her out!

Disclaimer/Truth: I do earn a commission if you purchase any of the products with an * next to them. There are obviously other products available like these, but these are products I love and they are my recommendations based on my own experience. If you do purchase through my affiliate link, thanks so much for your support!