freelance

When are youtubers going to stop getting away with it?

Happy Sunday! Today’s blog post comes in light of the recent Alfie Deyes scandal. I watched that video and left a comment which said ‘this video has so many things wrong with it I don’t know where to begin’; a statement which pretty much sums up my feelings about the behaviour of lots of big Youtubers at the moment.

To be fair, this isn’t going to be a blog post that goes into detail why making a video about living of £1 for lols (and then proceeding to get loads of free stuff and spend money on a beard comb) is terrible; because if that’s not clear to you then I’m not sure what to say. But more to discuss why, in an age of social media where everyone can have their say, how are these massive YouTubers still getting away with this shit? How are they still getting subscribers, advertisements, brand endorsements and succeeding-when they continue to make mistake after mistake? (and not acknowledge or rectify them?)

Problematic Youtubers

(more…)

Why outsourcing can help your blog and how to get started

Happy Sunday all! Today I wanted to share my journey of outsourcing work-how it’s helped my blog, how easy it is to get started and why you don’t need to be a limited company to do so. Outsourcing is something I’ve been experimenting with since the start of the year and it first, I wondered if I was doing it far too early (I worried I was being a bit pretentious or felt it was only something huge bloggers did).

However, it’s revolutionised the way I work and has helped me take on so many more projects. Today I’ve teamed up with App Paye a super-simple, effective payroll solution for small businesses and bloggers like me- to share my journey of outsourcing and tips to get started.

Why you should Outsource

‘Outsourcing’ is when you take the jobs you hate the most (or perhaps the ones that are the most time-consuming or you know that you aren’t great at) and pay someone else to do them instead. The beauty of freelancing today is that this can be super flexible. You don’t necessarily need to take on permanent employees but might want to find some ad-hoc help for things like…

  • Making pins: If Pinterest is part of your traffic strategy, it can be way quicker to pay someone to create a bundle of Pins for you.
  • Checking broken links. Who has time for this?
  • Social Media scheduling: Even more important now Twitter doesn’t allow duplicate tweets.

It might seem counter-productive to outsource these things, but they’re often things that take the most time and could be done far more efficiently by someone else. If you spend an hour faffing around finding the perfect pin-then you may well be able to earn more money in that time; if you dedicated an hour to pitching for sponsored post or networking, and paid someone who’s much better at it to create a bundle.

How to manage outsourcing

So far, so good. But how to go about it? Do you need to set up as a limited company? How can you do everything above board? Here are some of my top tips for managing outsourcing…

-There’s no need to set up as a limited company-unless you want to. A limited company has many benefits but if you’re happy as a sole trader, you can still outsource and pay workers! App Paye is a new payroll system that allows you to pay workers without being a limited company.

-Sometimes it’s worth spending a little more. When I first outsourced, I used sites like fiverr and also found a VA that offered low rates. I thought it made sense to pay as little as possible, but the time I spent chasing them and redoing the work meant it was actually worth spending a little more!

Now, I outsource a lot to my lovely friend Emma (here’s her blog; I’d 100% recommend her for VA work) and we’ve built a great working relationship. It was worth taking the time and money to find someone reliable; it will SAVE so much hassle and money in the long run.

-Make sure payment is secure. One thing that worries me about Paypal is that things can obviously be refuted and I’m always nagging people to send invoices. Once you invoice, you’ve no idea if that person is declaring it on their taxes etc and  AppPaye keeps payment in one place; with payslips and the ability for them to upload hours and then helping ensure tax is deducted.

The freelancer/contractor can also just press ‘pay me now’ button; making payments secure and so much easier than faffing around with bank transfers. I can log on to the app and see the hours I’ve outsourced and clear record of payment. I’m hoping that companies I work with in the future might also consider this as a payment method-as freelancers are offered benefits like BUPA healthcare that regular employees would have!

 

-Use the time gained wisely. The whole point of outsourcing is to maximise your time; so make sure you put the time you’ve gained to good use! You might choose to dedicate one hour a week to a passion project or tackling introductory emails! There are a few books worth reading about outsourcing, such as The Four Hour Work Week (although that takes it to the extreme!)

I hope you’ve found this blog post useful. And remember: don’t be afraid to outsource! You don’t need to be earning lots of money to do it and you may very well find it boosts your blog traffic and earnings! Once you’ve set up, do take a look at App Paye to help you navigate payments. I’d love to hear your experiences of outsourcing:would you do it? has it helped?

*This post is in collaboration with App Paye*

Pin It

what to do when your invoice is overdue

I’ve been meaning to write this post for ages but have only just got around to doing so. It’s something I’ve mentioned many times on Twitter or in my Facebook group but I wanted to sit down and write a proper post about everything payment related-and specifically what to do if you’ve not been paid.

When should you expect to be paid?

Blogging is a funny old business as we do all the work before the post goes live. Therefore, it’s frustrating that we’re often waiting for payment when the post is doing its thing and getting traffic and engagement! Sometimes a company will specify payment conditions upfront but otherwise, you can revert back to the government who state: Unless you agree on a payment date, the customer must pay you within 30 days of getting your invoice or the goods or service.

(more…)

The ultimate freelancing handbag (and WIN your own)

A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to be sent a handbag by Mia Tui. This couldn’t have come at a more perfect time: as I’ve been massively struggling when taking trips to London and meeting my blogging pals for a day of co-working in Birmingham. It got to the point when I booked a massage after my last trip to the capital-as a day trying to lug my laptop, notebooks, food (since I’m gluten and dairy-free) and various chargers in a bag that wasn’t suitable had wrecked my back and neck.

In my opinion, there’s a massive market for handbags that look beautiful but also double up as functional work bags. I’ve tried with plain, sturdy laptops over the years and I’ve alternated between my handbag and tote bags; but as soon as the Mia Tui Elise arrived; I just knew I had found my freelancing handbag for life!

I’ve taken this bad boy everywhere over the past few weeks and am completely in love with it: from hospital appointments (great if you have lots of paperwork and prescriptions like me) to meetings to days out. I opted for the new rose gold colour-and at first was worried it might seem a bit too over the top for everyday; but as you can see, it’s a beautiful muted shade.

The thing that I’m most excited about is the bags practicality. As demonstrated by my handy diagram.

The reason I’ve gone into teacher mode and provided an annotated diagram is I just wanted to show how functional this bag really is. When I’ve been looking for a bag, I’ve never known how roomy it is until it arrived. So, with the Mia Tui Elise you get…

  • ample laptop space (I have a google chromebook and you can see there is room to spare here!)
  • A dedicated space for water bottles-no more leakage.
  • A slot with a free plastic wallet; big enough for keys and mobile phones.
  • A second slot which comes with a gorgeous matching purse.
  • A zip slot on the outside of the bag.

This has literally changed my life! First of all, the plastic wallet is SUCH a simple idea but it has saved me so much time. Everytime I go out, I make sure my keys are in the wallet so there’s no rooting around (and as it’s clear I don’t even need to open it to check). I also store all those bits of paper in here that I’d otherwise lose: parking tickets, prescription forms etc. No more panicking over whether I’ve lost my keys!

The water bottle holder is also amazing! No more leaks! Although I just wish it was a bit bigger. It holds a regular plastic bottle but I’ve recently started using a Hydratem8 water tracker-and it’s just a little too big for that.

The only thing I haven’t used yet is the matching wallet-I imagine this would be great when travelling as it’s the perfect size to stash your passport and travel documents.

I’m so grateful for Mia Tiu sending me this because it’s the bag I’ve been looking for since I went freelance last year. What’s more, it’s made from vegan leather and they’ve also teamed up with Disability Campaigner and Actress Samantha Renke-as their bag is wheelchair friendly too!

As well as gifting me a bag for review, the lovely folks at Mia Tui are offering my readers the chance to win an Elise bag in a colour of their choice (subject to stock availability). Enter via Rafflecopter below-and good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This is what it is REALLY like to be a freelancer

 

 

Today I wanted to shine a spotlight on the realities of what it’s like to be a freelancer. I write a lot about things like ‘how to get into freelance writing’ or my monthly and yearly business updates. I’ve been lucky that my career has kept building from strength to strength, but I’m also conscious that my blog posts might just surmise ‘be a freelance; it’s great’ without actually sharing the realities of it.

Last week, one of my favourite bloggers, Cat from More About Cat  (who also does amazing weekly freelance vlogs) dropped a bit of a truth bomb.

(more…)

How to create a privacy policy for your blog

GDPR is just a few weeks away from being implemented! Hopefully, you’ve read my The Ultimate Guide to GDPR for bloggers’  and have understood a little more about what GDPR means and the consequences for your blog. If you’re still feeling overwhelmed, one of the simplest things you can do today is to get your privacy policy sorted!

Why do you need a privacy policy for your blog?

(more…)

5 ways to save money as a freelancer

I don’t blog about it much on this blog, but I’ve been really into ‘money saving’ for a few years now. Over on my main blog, you can find my ‘how to get FREE gluten-free food series’ where I share my tips on being gluten-free on a budget. Starting out as a freelancer, money can be tight so I’ve teamed up with Latest Deals today to share my top tips for saving money and budgeting.

(more…)

6 ways to be proactive during quiet blogging periods

Quiet periods and lulls are so common in the freelancing and blogging world- the summer months can be frustrating for bloggers as traffic can be down due to the hot weather and there are so many bank holidays which means communication can grind to a halt (especially when it comes to unpaid invoices and accountants not being in the office!) All of this can leave you feeling a bit deflated, so today I wanted to share some of my top tips to be proactive during these quiet periods.

This blog post is in collaboration with Boost Capital, who like me, are champions of small businesses and help them with flexible funding via their Merchant Cash Advance (which you only repay when you’re paid!). As a small business owner myself, they’ve asked me to share my own experiences and suggestions on how to keep proactive during these quiet periods to make sure your blog keeps ticking over and of course- money is coming in.

 

(more…)

The Ultimate guide to GDPR for bloggers

It’s officially May and you know what that means: GDPR month! Now I must admit that this has come around far too quickly for my liking (although don’t panic, you’ve got until the 25th May!) However, I also think that this is going to be such an adjustment for everyone; we’re all in the same boat and I’m hopeful that when it comes to GDPR for bloggers, we aren’t going to be first on their hit-list (mainly because none of us has the 20 million euros to pay the fine!)

If you’ve not heard the term, GDPR is all about data protection and how we handle and use the data we get from our readers. Where does GDPR for bloggers come in? Well, most of us bloggers aren’t handling reams and reams of data but we do deal with comments on our blog, running a newsletter and more.

Therefore, it is super important that we do our reading too! I’ll be honest, I had initially hoped for this post to get a lawyer to answer all of your in-depth questions about GDPR. But what do you know, I struggled to find one who understood GDPR for bloggers and not huge companies: which again suggests, no one is really quite sure what it actually means for us lot yet!

(more…)

My top tips for staying productive when working from home

When it comes to blogging, it’s safe to say that you’re always going to want to be able to do a good job. With more of us blogging and freelancing from our home officers (Aka: our sofas!)we tend to find ourselves dealing with a lack of motivation and lots of distractions. So to make sure that you can become your most productive self, my top productivity tips should help…

(more…)

1 2