Like many people out there, I have been looking at motivational, self help, and career advice sites and blogs. There is always the hope that one of the places will help me make up my mind about something (anything.)
Recently I came across a post on one of the many self help business blogs that I check out. The post was about 30 signs that you are going to fail, or are going wrong. Once I started reading the post, I was a bit angry with the author.
The post listed out 30 signs that you are sabotaging your endeavors. The problem that I had with the post was that there were not solutions. Yes, the person sells consulting services. Yes, they have a business to run and are going to use the solutions as income. But really, couldn’t you provide one or two easy solutions for a problem or two? * The posts were broken down into 5 or 6 sections. Could you not provide a solution for one problem listed in each section. Give us a sample of what you are selling.
One of the points was about being unsure or wishy-washy on your goals or plans. This is a pretty good one to do a sample of your solution. There are tons of goal setting posts and articles out there. Give us your idea or method on setting goals. This will help the person realize that they may really need your help. Maybe they will realize that they can do this part on their own.
Another point was about being embarrassed by your work and being afraid to “put it out there.” Confidence is not something that you can gain over night. Many artists seem to struggle with feeling “good enough,” no matter how talented they are. This is not something that they are really going to be able to overcome after reading a blog post or article. This is not something that they will be able to overcome without a lot of work, certainly more than one or two workshops. This person may want to find some people they trust and go with what they suggest.
This blog/article did have some good points. Ones that could be developed as separate article or workshops.
A basic understanding of marketing principles is important for freelancers. In this day and age it is impossible to get anything done without knowing the basics of marketing and marketing with social media. Marketing has a larger impact on the overall success of a freelancer than many people realize. It helps start sales and close them. It well help you understand your customers, new and current. Marketing is important.
Another point that I liked was about “your books.” Keeping your accounting, customer lists, budgets, schedules and anything else organized will help you get your business off the ground. I am most certainly not qualified to give any solid advice on this one. My schedule is a mess and I have no customer list (well I have 2 people, does that make a list?) to maintain. This point is defiantly worth investing some time into if you are going to freelance.
I am not trying to pick apart one particular post. These types of posts/articles are all over the internet. Focusing on the negatives and trying to sell people solutions. For all the talk about marketing and knowing your audience, many of these authors do not seem to know what their audience is looking for.
We want solutions! Most of the time we know what the problem is. We may even have an idea on how to fix it. We just do not know what steps to take or are looking for confirmation (darn low confidence.) Telling us that all these things are keeping us down, is not helpful. Give us a reason to pay for your help, give us a taste of your solutions.
Thank you for reading my rant.
(* Oops. I accidental posted this before I was done. I was so tired I forgot to hit Draft! * indicates the start of the new addition to my post.)