FREELANCING / DEC. 29, 2014
version 2, draft 2

How to Handle Freelance Writing Clients

Clients management is very important when it comes to freelance writing. Your success will be determined by how you deal with your clients. Here are 5 awesome tips for client management:

1. Have everything in writing

When it comes to freelance writing, contracts or letters of agreement are very important. A proper contract should outline your client’s expectations, deliverables, billing procedures and terms of work. Make sure the document is dated and signed. Keep a copy for yourself and also provide your client with a copy. If at any point the terms change, take time to draft a different contract. You can search using “Freelance Writing Contract” or “Freelance Writer Agreement” to find samples of contracts online.

2. Set your rates in advance

Before applying for any job, you should first decide how much you are going to charge. When a client asks about your rates, you should respond with professionalism and confidence. If you are well qualified and experienced, many clients would be willing to pay you for what you are worth. Avoid the temptation of accepting very low pay or working for free. People will not take you seriously and are likely to take advantage of you. Clients use several tricks to ensure that they pay you as little as possible. Some will guarantee exposure to thousands of readers, while others will promise higher payment in future. Don’t fall for any of these ruses. Approach the negotiation in a professional manner and don’t settle for less.

3. Set realistic deadlines

Before accepting any project, find out how much time you have to complete it. Don’t take anything which has an unrealistic timeline. If you fail to deliver within the agreed time, you might end up losing the client. Therefore, you need to be wise when setting timescales for projects. Remember to factor in time for research and revision. However, if the client has a deadline which cannot be adjusted, you could consider working longer hours or putting other projects on hold.

4. Be ready to say ‘No’

At times, freelance writers are tempted to take more work than they can handle. As a result, they end up overworking themselves, submitting poor quality work and ultimately losing their clients. If a client wants to hire you but you are not busy with other projects, you can say no politely citing your reasons. Remember to mention when you can be available. If the client values your work, they might be willing to wait until you can fit them in your schedule.

5. Make time for administration

There is more to being a freelance writer than just creating web content, blog posts, sales copy or press releases. You are also the employee, manager, director, marketer, secretary, accountant and even tea boy! Therefore, you need to put in place some systems which will ensure the smooth running of your business. Make time every week for administrative tasks such as bookkeeping, applying for new jobs, updating your website, interacting with readers and sprucing up your portfolio. Being organized will enhance your chances of success as a freelance writer.  

Applying the tips above will help keep your freelance writing business stress free, organized and legally protected.

Image source: transitionblog

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