Holiday Slump? Ten Cash Flow Kickstart Ideas

Holiday time is often slow-down time for freelancers, especially in this craptacular economy we’re in. Are you having trouble scaring up new gigs? Here are some things you can do in the meantime to help you get some cash flow going–even if you have to wait til the warm weather starts to cash in.

10.  Start cold calling. Try to get yourself hooked up with some local businesses who need your writing skills for press releases, ad copy, web copy or other commercial writing.

9. Pro bloggers, start checking out your fellow bloggers to do more guest posts. Driving traffic to your site can help you with your Google Adsense and any affiliate programs you’re signed up for. What’s that? You aren’t signed up for any affiliate programs? See #8.

8. Add affiliate programs to your blog. Many writers have a bad taste in their mouths about using affiliate programs, but if you do it tastefully and don’t go overboard you may find your readers responding to your affiliate links–especially if you have personal experience with the items you place on your site. Affiliate programs include Commission Junction and Amazon Associates.

7. HIt Craigslist. Yes, I know there’s a large amount of crap on CL, but if you wade through the nonsense to find that one gig that’s worth looking at, you may find yourself with some good cash flow coming in to tide you over in the leanest time of the year. HINT: Don’t search just in YOUR AREA on CL. Look in other cities including the overseas listings.

6. Call your local radio station and see if they are hurting for script writers for local commercial spots. You can do the same for television and production houses. If you have any experience in media at all, you could find yourself looking at an opportunity you never even considered before as a writer.

5. Write seasonal articles for your local newsweeklies and alternative magazines.

4. Hit up your old contacts at magazines, blogs and other places–when was the last time you asked for or called in a favor from a friend in the biz? If you need the money, don’t be ashamed! Tell your friends you’re looking for work. Pride keeps many people from going back to the well, so to speak…don’t be one of them.

3. Call your local arts district and ask if they need a PR writer or any help with their next newsletter or special publication. You’d be surprised at the opportunities here for a writer who can sell themselves well. Artists know a lot about visual communication but often have a real problem with the actual writing of show proposals, grants, press releases, etc.

2. Write an e-book and sell it on your site. Hey, if you are struggling in a time where there’s no work coming in, the least you can do is create a product you can try to sell yourself!

1. Start writing seasonal articles for spring and summer. Pitch them now and set yourself up some good income for later. You can’t go wrong getting a head start on those editorial calenadars!

3 thoughts on “Holiday Slump? Ten Cash Flow Kickstart Ideas”

  1. Here’s a question for you. Sometimes, I try to market myself as a proofreader. Whenever I find a business website with a lot of typos or poorly written content, I email the appropriate contact and let them know about some of the errors. I approach it in a tactful, polite, helpful manner (or so I think) and offer some ridiculously inexpensive proofreading/ retooling service. I even include a free redo of some section of the site. No one seems to like this. Why? Is it my approach? The last site was a real estate site that had typos GALORE. I explained that in this market, you really want to be at the top of your game, and that I could help them. No response. I’m about to do a follow up email and wanted to know, could you or Catherine could tell me how you would approach it?

  2. Hey there….

    This is a tricky situation. From my experience, many people take offense to having errors pointed out on their site. This may not make sense (I don’t think it does), but it has been the general consensus from what I’ve heard. Perhaps you may want to skip the part where you tell them about the mistakes and offer to “upgrade their content” or “write custom content” for them? Evaluate and update are words that may work well….

    Another thought is to offer a group of services and let them customize it to what they need. Proofreading and correcting existing errors can be one of several services you offer…..

    Does that help at all?

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