7 Simple Steps to Help Scale Your Income as a Freelancer

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Let’s take a little “am I ready to scale as a freelancer” quiz, shall we,

  • ✅ Have you hit an income ceiling?
  • ✅ Do you need a new challenge?
  • ✅ Are you bored with your current tasks?
  • ✅ Do you feel like you’re on the edge of burnout?

You’re ready to scale your freelance career with these 7 steps if you nodded your head to any (or all) of the above questions.

I was so pleased with myself when I first started working as a freelancer, earning a lofty $10/hr. Seriously! Strangers offered to pay me to work for them from the comfort of my couch? People who had never met me in person and had no idea what I could or couldn’t do.

I had officially arrived – well, at least I thought I had.

Until I was working 25/8, hitting an income ceiling, and looking longingly at my little laptop friend wondering, “What happened to the freedom I was hoping for?”

If you want to see how I started freelancing online with no experience here’s a Youtube video all about my humble beginnings.

Ok, back to scaling!

Here are 7 steps you can take to help scale your income as a freelancer,

🎯 Step 1: To Help You Scale, Develop a Niching Strategy

To niche or not to niche? To Neesh or to Nitch?

Niching is a weird subject – people have so many opinions – niche, don’t niche. 

Here’s my best advice – Take your time and try it all! 

Unless you’re certain about what you want to accomplish, try everything in the first few months of your freelance career.

After you’ve tested out a variety of services to various types of business owners, you may begin to slowly niche by filtering everything you’ve done according to your personal priorities.

You can filter tasks by, how easy they are? how interested you are in them? are you passionate about what you are doing? is there enough profit? and so on.

Finding a niche can be beneficial to you as a freelancer in the following ways:

  • You become easier to refer & you’ll be well known for doing the thing that you do
  • You will be more skilled in that niche, platform, service overall
  • Confused people don’t buy; clients who aren’t clear about what you offer and what you can do to help their business, are less likely to move forward – clarity and simplicity

📈 Step 2: Invest in Your Most Valuable Asset

Guess who it is? It’s you! 

You know it gif

Investing in yourself is probably the best thing you could do, not just for profitability and sustainability but also for your personal interests and passions. Don’t underestimate how important your passions are to your success.

It’s not surprising that this is one of the most significant things you can do to scale your freelance business. After all, you are the B-U-S-I-N-E-S-S 😉

What does investing in yourself look like?

Investing time – if you have access to Youtube or Google then those are two amazing places to start to learn about E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G

Investing time can look like,

  • Looking for internships to take that will help you practice the freelance skills you want to offer 
  • Learning from the right people in your industry 
  • Doing free classes 
  • Reading articles and blog posts
  • Listening to podcasts 
  • Doing your research – hello again, Google and Youtube 
  • Building your NETWORK with people in your industry through online events and Facebook groups with your target audience

💸 Investing money 

  • Hire a mentor/coach 
  • Buy a course that will get you from point A to point B faster
  • Buy templates or resources 
  • Get tools training
  • Join a coaching program or Mastermind
  • Networking in paid Facebook groups and networking sites

Clients will notice as you improve yourself and invest in learning and growing as a freelancer and this will, in turn, lead to being able to scale your income. 

🔍 Step 3: Understand the Client Experience + Psychology

Understanding what matters to your clients and reading between the lines is a valuable talent to have in order to scale your freelance work. If you can get to the root of what they secretly fear, or secretly dream of in their business you will be able to specifically address those details and become a huge asset to their business.

What are clients looking for?

  • Value! “What do I want out of this hire?” 
  • Outcomes! “What’s the end goal or result I want?”
  • Can this person do the job? “Is there proof?” “Are they the best person for this job?” (Gather proof – testimonials, portfolio items, relevant skills – it is what mitigates risk for new clients)
  • Cost – “How much is it? Is that worth the result I want?”
  • Efficiency – “When can they have it done by?”

Address their key concerns, find out what they need help with and work on finding a solution for those specific things

Don’t overcomplicate. Understand their objections and thought processes and then do your best to deliver.

Important: If you want to scale then DO A GOOD JOB. Underpromise, overdeliver. Don’t do the bare minimum.

💥 You can overdeliver on the timeline – deliver something early. 

💥 You can overdeliver on quality – do something better than they expected. 

💥 You can overdeliver on quantity – give them a little extra.

If you’re doing an outstanding job – you’re more likely going to be referred to more of your dream clients.

Good [reliable] talent is hard to find.

🤑 Step 4: Don’t Just Focus on Money

Start low and focus on scaling your income as you go.

When freelancers focus too much on money, they lose sight of the things that will make them more profitable in the long run – be strategic.

Take on lower-paying jobs at the beginning of your freelancing journey and use these as paid learning opportunities.

The faster you learn the faster you can begin to scale. 

Taking lower-paying jobs, in the beginning, will also get your foot in the door with the right clients.

Then work on having these clients refer you to their amazing network where you can raise your rate and scale with more of your ideal clients.

Use your time to invest in building relationships with the right people – fellow freelancers, mentors, and business owners that you relate to and see yourself working with.

In the beginning, you will probably take on every client that comes your way – 🚩 🚩 🚩 even those red flag clients who may be paying you higher than others. 

Always remember that no amount of money is worth your mental sanity, mental health, or mental energy

If you take on clients that drain you completely – you are destroying your biggest asset in your business – you. That won’t be sustainable for your business in the long run and will affect your ability to scale.

How to raise your rates as a freelancer? 

Ask for a salary evaluation every 6 months in the first 1-2 years. Then re-evaluate every year. 

The great thing about freelancing is you have so many eggs in so many baskets – you can grow your rates on a much more frequent basis than in the corporate world where you have 1 egg in 1 basket with a 3-5% annual raise.

I have a salary re-evaluation email template in the Digital Business Manager Bootcamp shop if you need a guide. 

🏃‍♀️ Step 5: Accept It’s About Numbers – And Get Yourself Out There

Be ready to hear “No” and know that at the end of the day it comes down to math. Don’t let rejection cause you to give up or feel stuck. 

On your marks, gets set, go gif

Remember: You’ll send 100 applications, you won’t get all of them. that’s a fact.

So what do you do? You cast a wider net and chalk it up to experience.

PROS:

You’re getting good at interviews

You’re getting comfy with rejection and failure 

🧠 Step 6: Work On Your Mindset

Yes, this one sounds like a “blah blah” one but there is no doubt that working on mindset is the most profit-generating task in a freelance business.

Your mind will tell you so many stories, make so many excuses, and do all it can to hold you back. 

That is why it is SO IMPORTANT to work on your mindset when trying to scale your freelance business. It’s safe to say that a positive, healthy mindset is essential to your freelance success.

Start by journaling, and being aware of what’s going on in your head. What are you most afraid of?

  • Are you struggling with imposter syndrome? 
  • Do you have a fear of failure? 
  • Do you have a scarcity mindset? 
  • Are you a perfectionist?

Write these down and then ask yourself if these are rational fears that are going to prevent you from doing what you dream of doing?

You are not alone in these. Find accountability and research resources that will help. If you need a little pep talk from a biz bestie, check out my free private podcast.

👩‍💻 Step 7: Find Your Freelancer People

You are my people gif

Find your tribe – people who are doing the same thing you are. The ones that will help pull you out of that self-doubt spiral, the ones that cheer you on when you need it most!

I joined a lot of Facebook groups and connected with people on Instagram and Linkedin, as well as attending local networking events, coworking spaces, and cafés. There are a plethora of ways to connect out there.

I have a free Facebook group just for freelancing peeps just like you – The A-Team Collective, come on in and join our community.

There are also paid options like memberships, paid communities, retreats, events, and conferences. 

🚀 BONUS: Just Do It

Stop creating *fake* hurdles for yourself and go for it.

Too many people wait until they have a perfect website, or they’ve taken that other course, or when they’re posting consistently on Instagram – you get the picture. 

Listen up, you do not need these things to start moving the needle. It’s very tempting to wait until you feel ready or until everything is perfect to begin.

What moves the needle is – getting out there, applying, pitching, and getting yourself out there.

The great news is, you don’t have to wait. You can start with these 7 steps to scaling your freelance income now. Before you know it you’ll be on your way to salary re-evaluations and landing the clients of your dreams.

🎥 If you’d like to watch a full video on 7 things I did to scale my income from $10hr to 6 figures as a freelancer as well as more freelancer tips then hop on over to Youtube – don’t forget to say hi 👋 and let me know if you have any questions in the comments.

Want ALL the juicy details on how to work online as a digital business manager?

Check out my FREE intro class which goes over what exactly a digital business manager does day-to-day, how much I make as a DBM, my 5-step plan to get you started and more!

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Want ALL the juicy details on how to work online as a digital business manager?

Check out my FREE intro class which goes over what exactly a digital business manager does day-to-day, how much I make as a DBM, my 5-step plan to get you started and more!