Thanks to the awesome world of the internet, everything you need to know is right at your fingertips. But with so many blogs and websites to choose from how do you know which ones will benefit you the most as a freelancer?
As a business owner, you wear a lot of hats and have to constantly learn new things in order for your business to flourish. Yes, there are design blogs for inspiration and social media sites for news updates, but what about the real meat and potatoes of what it takes to run a thriving business?
Over the years I’ve been keeping tabs on where to find the inside scoop on running your own business from some of the best brands and freelancers in the business. They each bring something special to the table and offer practical insight into how to become a successful business owner, no matter what creative industry you’re in.
5 Blogs Every Freelancer Should Follow
I can honestly say that each one of the blogs listed here have changed my life and I highly recommend that you check them out and get on their newsletters right away.
This blog is run by seasoned freelancers that each contribute their knowledge of business and marketing in a personal and upbeat way. Every 2 days a new article is up and running with each new piece of content better than the last.
Each author runs their own successful design business, and reading about their real life experiences with clients has been so incredibly helpful in launching my own career and this is why they are number one on my list of blogs to follow.
They also have several e-books I’ve personally read and absolutly love. Right now when you sign up for their newsletter you’ll receive an ebook “ 10 Mistakes Designers Make with Clients” completely free.
Here are Design Blender’s most valuable articles:
- 4 Big freelancing mistakes I’ve made and what to learn from them
- 5 Contract terms that will keep you safe as a freelancer
- The simple change that brought my design blog to life
- 11 ways to grow your design business in less than an hour
- How I got tons of new design clients with this small freebie
A few of you may have already heard of the Buffer App, and if you’re social media savvy you’ve already installed their awesome free tool for scheduling your posts throughout all your favorite platforms. But aside from offering a great and helpful product, they also produce a daily blog that features amazing insights into how to get the most out of your social media marketing.
I’ve been using Buffer and reading their blogs for a few months now, and the traffic to my website has almost tripled, not to mention I get about 6-20 new followers every day on Twitter since. Not too bad huh?
Here are Buffer’s 5 most popular articles:
- 53+ Free Image Sources For Your Blog and Social Media Posts
- The Ideal Length for All Online Content
- The Science of Emotion in Marketing: How We Decide What to Share and Whom to Trust
- 3 Data-Backed Twitter Strategies For More Followers, Better Tweets, and Maximum Engagement
- Small Business Marketing Tips: How To Succeed on Social Media When You’re Strapped for Time and Money
This blog is ran by Alex Mathers, a gifted illustrator in London who has written four books on attracting clients and standing out. He writes about 3 posts a week on topics that range from maintaining quality in your work to creative ways of finding new clients.
I got to work with Alex personally a few months back when I signed up for his Client Accelerator program, when he provided custom tips on how to better advertise my hand lettering service to a smaller niche demographic.
Since we’ve worked together I’ve experienced a high level of inquires for my services that I know I couldn’t have done without him. So I know for a fact that this guy definitely knows his stuff.
I’d provide a link, but Alex’s Client Accelerator program did so well, he had to take the landing page down due to an extreme overflow of inquires he received. But don’t worry, I’m sure he’ll open spots for it again really soon.
Here are Alex’s 5 best articles:
- Being Completely Ready to Attract New Clients and Win New Work
- 11 Powerful Ways to Motivate Yourself, Right Now
- 19 Reasons Your Online Portfolio Gets Barely Any Visits
- 50 Ways for Creative People to Get Great Clients
- 6 Subtle Things You Do that Lower Your Perceived Value and Diminish Opportunities for Work
Every good business owner knows that content is key, and the folks at Copyblogger have pretty much perfected the written word. Everyday they post articles showcasing their professional knowledge around the art of storytelling and how we can use copywriting to land new clients and build a loyal following.
In addition to their value rich articles, they also provide free courses and ebooks around topics like Email Marketing, SEO Copywriting and Landing Pages when you sign up for their Free Copyblogger Membership.
Here are Copyblogger’s 5 must read articles:
- SEO is Dead: Long Live OC/DC
- An Internet Marketing Education in 16 Ebooks and 20 Emails. No Charge.
- The 5 Stages of Writing Irresistible Landing Page Copy
- 53 Freelancing Mistakes That Are Costing You Clients, Cash, and Credibility
- 5 Subtle Writing Strategies That Drive Email Signups
Now, I’ve saved the best for last.
Sean McCabe has become more popular than ever, not only due to his amazing talents as a hand lettering artist but also as solo entrepreneur. With a twice a week blog, podcast and now upcoming video show, it seems that Sean can’t share all his amazing business tips with us fast enough.
And if you’re wondering how Sean manages to do all that every week, he even has a podcast on how to help you manage your time so you can almost get as much done as he does.
His insights range from Value Based Pricing – so you can price your designs on the value perceived by your clients instead of just your hourly rate – all the way to properly building up a client base using the Overlap Technique so you can focus on getting the right type of clients.
He has even created an online Community where fellow creatives can get together and share ideas and critiques through discussion forums, gain exclusive access to Sean’s live podcast and even chat via the Seanwes Live app with other members from your mobile phone.
I’ll always have the utmost respect and admiration for Sean. He was the one that inspired me to start Letter Shoppe in the first place almost 2 years ago. The first day Sean’s Community page went live, I immediately signed up for a year membership and it was honestly worth every penny.
Here are my favorite 5 pieces of content from Sean:
- “Too many people already do what I want to do.”
- Freeloaders: The Relationship Marketing Caveat
- 046: How to Make More Money Freelancing by Pricing Your Projects on Value
- 108: Creating Ambassadors for Your Brand When You’re Not Well Known Yet
- 086: Why You Should Quit Your Job
It can be hard to find honest insights on how to better your business online, especially with how crowded the “How To” marketplace has become lately. But it is my hope that these blogs will help you with your business the same way they helped me with mine.
Just remember, you will have to do more than just read these articles, you have to actually follow through with their tips and experiment with your own marketing to see results. Then maybe one day you can pass on your knowledge from your own success stories so we can continue the circle of helping people build a business they love.
Each of these insightful blogs have a email newsletter you can sign up for where you can get all their awesome content delivered right to your inbox. So what are waiting for? Sign up today!
So what kind of blogs have changed your life? I’d love to hear your story in the comments below.
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