The main reason why most freelance writers are successful because they fail to recognize freelancing as a normal business. And every business, you need to have a business plan customized and in place. The purpose freelance business plan is to help you identify business goals and good strategies to stabilize your writing business.
Developing excellent strategies will act as your roadmap to making money through freelance writing.
But have you ever imagined how a freelance business plan looks like?
We have shared the key components that you should add to your freelance business plan. The business plan covers the critical aspects of your business: marketing, team, marketing strategies, competitor analysis, and corporate or social responsibilities.
All business plans provide solutions to two questions:
For the writing business you are planning to start, it should give you an idea of what to pursue. Whether it is copywriting, blog writing, or academic writing, you need to decide what interests you most.
Always consider your previous experience when writing your business plan. If you’ve been writing essays all along, that is what you probably need to start since you already know the pros and cons of essay writing and how to get better results. Your previous achievements and experience will help you identify your strength and passion.
The overview of your business will help you create a list of services you will offer to your potential clients. Are you planning to provide article writing, copywriting services, press releases, or white papers? You need to capture it in your business overview section.
Before you jump into any business, you need to do research and analyze the industry. Check on the market size and trends developing within the industry. According to the records from Technavio, the content writing niche is the top industry that generates annual revenue of $412 billion. This shows the vast viability of the market.
It is always essential to research, brainstorm and explore industry trends. The U.S is among the countries with a growing and stable creative economy. The demand and new trend now lean towards SEO content writing in the last couple of years.
If you master the suitable trends, you can make excellent decisions about your growth strategy. For instance, you may plan to pursue a complete SEO course and market your brand as an SEO content writing specialist and increase your rates at the same time.
In this phase of a freelance business plan, you can identify your targeted market you want to serve. Check what your competitors are offering and the writing styles—benchmark on competitors’ strengths and weaknesses.
Again, think about your past clients and figure out what you disliked or liked about them. Find ways you can use to attract and serve new clients. Once you have enough idea, put down the needs and wants of such clients. Some clients may need things like:
Once you identify your ideal prospects and their needs, you will attract more clients effortlessly.
For competitive analysis, you need to document all your key competitors. As a freelance writer, you need to know the services you offer and the clients you want to work with within your writing business. All your competitors are most likely to become employees at your client companies or even other freelance employees.
Additionally, you need to think and document your areas of competitive advantage in your freelance writing business plan. The key areas include:
Always think about how you can adjust this list better and bigger than others. Improving these areas of competitive advantage will provide you with a steady flow of clients for an extended period.
The marketing part of the business plan entails the “4Ps” as shared below:
Product/Service: Here, you mention what you will offer to your clients.
Place: It talks about the geographical locations of your clients. Where you will find your clients, whether, in online platforms like Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, all define the place in the marketing cycle.
Price: In this area, you talk more about your rates. The charges you will create for your services- for standard and premium packages.
Promotions: The promotion aspect cover the techniques you will use to reach out and attract new prospects. You can decide to use emails, social media, or freelance job boards like Fiverr.
The 4Ps of marketing will help you have a good business plan and strategy that will push your business to the next phase of success.
Business Operational Plan
The way you will be conducting your business matters a lot. Develop a list of continuous functions and future milestones for your business—plan how to complete your writing projects, prospecting for new customers, and the invoicing aspect.
Make a list of tools you need for your freelance writing business. Ensure they are excellent tools that make your activities to be more efficient. Think about the work you can handle by yourself and the ones you can outsource from other freelancers. For easy financial operations, you need the best accounting software to relieve you from excessive financial planning work.
For future milestones, ensure you document the accomplishment you admire to achieve in a given time. If you want to add 200 new clients onboard, record it and work hard towards it.
Team And Financial Plan
Document the number of team members and their area of specialization. There are many positions you need to fill to make a complete freelance writing team. Remember your workload will improve with time, and you will need to outsource for some help.
The most critical angle that you must give much attention to even if you are hiring a team, is financial planning. Develop a sound financial plan for your business and make decisions that won’t hurt the economic viability of your business.