From the Editor
Be a Bass Player in a (Marketing) Rock 'n Roll Band
Ever thought about what instrument you would play if you were a member of a rock band?
Lead guitarists get all the glory as does the lead singer. Makes sense — they're the ones out front putting on the show.
But what about the bass player? They are often in the background getting little notice (that is unless you are Paul McCartney or maybe Flea). But their role is essential. Along with the drummer, they provide "groove" the band needs to stay together rhythmically.
Let's apply that to your freelance business marketing.
Which would you rather do? Pay for slick ads that get some momentary attention or build long-term credibility and trust by providing helpful content?
In his book, Youtility: Why Smart Marketing Is About Help Not Hype, content marketer Jay Baer asks:
"What if instead of trying to be amazing you just focused on being useful? What if you decided to inform, rather than promote?"
Now, it's certainly possible to be both amazing and useful (if you've ever seen Jay speak while wearing one of his very plaid, very bold suits, you know what I mean). But if given the choice, I'd pick useful any day (i.e. a bass player rather than lead guitarist).
With that in mind, here are three tips for credibility-building usefulness (apologies for the awkwardly forced music analogy):
- Play your own tunes. By that I mean, create original content. You can't gain notoriety, credibility, or trust if you don't put your knowledge out there in some form — video, podcasts, blog posts, feature articles, etc. — and in a place where people can find it: social media.
- Set a rhythm. Establish a regular schedule in which you publish content, whether that's weekly, bi-weekly (like this newsletter), or monthly — more often when publishing to social media.
- Pick an instrument and master it. You have a content creation style and form that fits you. For me, it's writing; for you, it could be video... or podcasting... or whatever. Regardless, go with it and stick with it. Oh, and don't try to play all the instruments at once, you'll spread yourself too thin. Concentrate on one or two at most.
I'll leave you with this link to a video of my favorite bass player Marcus Miller. He embodies all of those traits.
(Photo credit: Unsplash)
Inflation's Unexpected Dividend: More Entrepreneurs
I highlight this Inc. article for one important reason: Despite the fact inflation is driving the prices of everything higher, entrepreneurially-minded people find a way to survive and thrive.
If you need more income, freelancing could be your path forward.
Podcast Interview: Marcus Sheridan, Author of 'They Ask, You Answer'
Our guest on the latest episode of the Freelancing After 50 podcast is none other than the inimitable Marcus Sheridan, author of the seminal best-selling book, "They Ask, You Answer."
We discuss Marcus's story and how They Ask, You Answer principles apply to freelance marketing, especially for older freelancers. The episode is chock full of great advice you will want to take advantage of.
Recommended Resource: Freelancers Union
Freelancers Union is a membership organization for, well, freelancers. It's the largest in the nation, representing nearly 57 million independent workers. The organization offers a range of benefits, including insurance. It's free to join, too.
60 Million People in the U.S. Performed Freelancing Work in 2021... Including This Guy
According to a report from Upwork, nearly 60 million people in the U.S. performed freelance work in 2021. Here's some helpful advice from one of them, a recent convert.
How to Become a Freelancer
Squarespace, the website-building platform, offers tips on how to start freelancing. They include how to:
- Determine if freelancing is right for you
- Find your niche and services
- Create your website (it's a plug for their services, but the checklist is helpful)
(Disclaimer: My freelance business website is built on Squarespace. It's a good platform, but so is Wix, WordPress, and others. And, as I say later in the newsletter, if you're just getting started, you don't need a website.)
8 Easy Freelance Job Ideas For Beginners (even if you have no experience)
Here's a list of some freelance job ideas for beginners along with and tips on how to get hired.
Beginning Freelancer? No Website? No Problem.
I didn't have a website for much of my freelancing career. Only recently did I "brand" my services as Prescriptive Writing. If you're just starting, there are other ways to get your name out in the marketplace than spending time building a site. (Of course, if you already have a website... no problem.)
Do You Have WOMO? You Should.
I hope you don't have FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out), but you do need WOMO (Word Of Mouth). WOMO drives $6 trillion of annual consumer spending, accounts for 13% of consumer sales, results in five times more sales than a paid media impression, and engenders 90% more trust. Learn more.
Want to Earn the Most Revenue as a Freelancer? Head to Vegas, Baby!
A recent Fiverr study says Las Vegas is a safe bet for freelancers. It's become a major hub and the place where freelancers make more money than any other city in the country.
I meant to include these in the "un-retirement" issue but forgot. Stuff happens when you reach a certain age.
- The Downsides of Retirement Nobody Talks About - Retirement isn't all it's cracked up to be.
- 67-year-old Who 'Unretired' Talks About What No One Talks About - This sexagenarian talks about retirement challenges that led him back to work.
I would love to connect with you via social media. LinkedIn is where I hang out mostly. Also, check out the Freelancing After 50 website, podcast, and online store.
If there's a topic you would like to see covered in the newsletter or podcast, reply to this email and let me know.
Finally, if you like the newsletter, become a subscriber and share it with your 50 and older freelancer friends. Thanks!