It’s May Day! This May 1 is unlike any other we’ve ever witnessed in our lifetimes – and hopefully will never experience again.
I’ve always held a special place in my heart for May Day. It unofficially ushers in springtime. When May Day arrives, my head dances with visions of flowers filling my patio containers, dripping their colorful blooms and greenery over the edges and trailing to the floor.
This May Day, of course, many of us toil under a stay-at-home order. Others – those brave nurses on the front lines – expose themselves to the real threat that has forced the rest of us indoors. I salute each of you.
If you are quarantined, you at least have plenty of time available to work on your business. I’ve compiled this list of 12 things you can do in just a few hours this weekend to prepare your freelance business for launch or to build it up to the next level.
1. Write a month’s worth of blog posts
If blogging forms part of your marketing strategy, then devote a few hours this weekend to penning all of May’s posts. Batch-writing like this will help you learn to write faster and more efficiently – plus, you’ll feel great watching every post roll out like clockwork instead of feeling anxious you have no content to publish.
2. Write a month’s worth of LinkedIn posts
Authoring posts on LinkedIn represents a great strategy for increasing your authority and showing off your knowledge to prospective clients. Again, by writing a whole month of posts in advance, you’ll develop a writing system to be fast and efficient.
3. Work on your LOI
If you’re in pre-launch mode, spend some time this weekend writing a killer LOI. It’s a time investment you won’t regret when you start getting great responses from those cold leads.
4. Prioritize your launch tasks
With so many details involved in launching a freelance writing business, you might feel overwhelmed. Devote some time this weekend to making an exhaustive list of every detail you believe must be accomplished, and then prioritize them so you can focus on knocking them out one at a time. Before you know it, you’ll be through the whole list!
5. Check into business licensing and tax requirements
Does your state or municipality require you to get a business license? How do you pay quarterly estimated taxes to the IRS? And what does your state require, in terms of tax withholding by the self-employed? If you don’t know the answers to these questions, use this weekend to find out.
6. Create a marketing plan
Whether you’re preparing to launch or you’ve been in business for a while, you can’t go wrong by investing time in creating a formal marketing plan. This document will help guide your marketing initiatives so you avoid wasting valuable time on a scattershot approach.
7. Learn how to use Canva
If you plan to do a lot of social media marketing, you can do yourself a favor by learning how to use Canva. I use their free plan to create ebook covers, social media graphics, and things like that. Find stock photos and images at places like Pixabay and Pexels, then upload them yourself to create entirely free graphics for promotional purposes.
8. Update your clips at your website
Once you start working for clients, it can be hard to remember to update your work samples at your website. Spend some time this weekend adding fresh clips, removing stale ones, and showcasing only your very best work.
9. Create a social media calendar
If you spend a couple of hours mapping out your social content in advance, you’ll find it’s much easier to keep up with posting.
10. Make something artistic
Freelancing writing is a creative career, and I encourage you to feed your creative soul as often as possible. Under different circumstances, I would suggest you visit a botanical garden, museum, or antique store for creative inspiration. But right now, when those things are out, you can still nourish your creativity by making something – anything – artistic at home. Bake and decorate a cake. Make a crayon drawing. Paint your bedroom. Use your imagination to keep your creative juices flowing.
11. Get some sunshine and fresh air
If you’re able to where you live, get outdoors this weekend. Gosh, I rely so much on nature to inspire my creativity – and science even supports the therapeutic value of exposure to sunshine and fresh air as a mood booster.
12. Relax, take a bath, drink wine
Downtime is another thing that’s very important to me, in terms of my business success. Don’t think that “doing nothing” is a waste of your time. Doing nothing, taking a bath, sipping wine (or a Cosmo), reading a book…these things give your brain time to recharge and work on big-picture business issues. If you’ve been spending a lot of time grinding away at your nursing job or your business, carve out some time this weekend to unwind.
I hope this May Day finds you and yours well in body and spirit! How is your business going? Have you launched yet? Post in the comments – and to tell me how I can help!