We’re in the run-up to the Christmas holidays. How’s your freelance writing business? Ideally, not only are you fully booked before the holidays, but you’re booked well into the new year.
On the self-publishing front, you’ve published a Christmas novel, or some holiday-themed short stories. And you’re publishing something new before December 11, which is the cut-off point for most online retailers to publish your work before Christmas.
Quick freelance writing and self-publishing tips for holiday sales
Perhaps you’re less organized. You’ve been too busy to think about the holidays. You haven’t sufficient commissions, nor have you published anything new recently.
Don’t despair. It’s not too late.
Let’s look at ways you can maintain your income over the holidays.
1. Develop retainer clients and a guaranteed income now
Everyone’s busy at this time of the year. Clients are realizing that they need help. However, they may be reluctant to contact you, because they think you’re fully booked.
Now’s the time to get in touch with ALL your clients, to let them know that you’re available. You can encourage sales by offering a coupon with each commission booked before the new year.
Study your client list. Can you develop any one-and-done clients into retainer clients? Clients who are on a retainer have first call on your time, and for that benefit, they pay you each month, whether they need your services that month or not.
Clients you can turn into retainer clients include:
- Companies which have hired you for copywriting services;
- Ghostwriting clients for whom you’ve written ebooks;
- Blogging clients.
2. Self-publishing: develop a serial, or write short stories
Nothing to publish? Sales dropping?
Ouch. You’ve still got the time to write a couple of quick short stories and publish them fast.
Alternatively, consider writing a serial. A serial is (usually) novel-length fiction, which you release as episodes.
Yes, authors stumble when releasing serials, because they fail to engage readers. You must give readers a reason to buy the next episode. This means that you need cliffhangers to conclude each episode. There’s an art to successful serials. 🙂
3. Send a holiday newsletter and include a personal note
Do you send out a newsletter to your freelance writing clients? Or if you’re a self-publishing author, do you send regular newsletters to readers?
For most writers and authors, the answer is no, because:
- No time;
- Your list is too small, and it’s not worth the effort (you’re wrong);
- Your list never responds (can the list, and start a new buyers-only list);
- You never know what to send…. (and any other excuse you can think up.)
Stop it. Create a newsletter, and send it out, within the next few days. If you’re sending your newsletter to freelance clients, include a personal note. Yes, this takes time, but it’s effective.
Sending to readers? Just create and send — and please, stop demanding an instant return for your efforts. Yes, sometimes your list can function as your own personal ATM, BUT a lot depends on how warm your list is, and your past efforts.
Vital tip: you need to “touch” prospects many times before they take action. As long as you keep taking action yourself, you’re guaranteed results, and I don’t say that lightly.
You need to keep showing up; success will find you.
A freelance writing and self-publishing pattern: turn one-and-done projects into recurring projects
Are you seeing a pattern here?
It’s vital to turn one-and-done projects into recurring ones — get your freelance clients onto a retainer. And please give readers a reason to keep reading, if you’re a self-publisher.
Put your client list, and your readers list, at the heart of your freelance writing business. You can’t go wrong when you do that.
Onward. Start hustling.
Happy writing at the happiest time of the year. 🙂
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