Have you ever wondered how other freelancers find clients, boost their productivity or manage their time? I have! And this was among the reasons to start the series “Freelance Tips With…”.
Every week I interview a freelancer who has somehow inspired or impressed me. Today I’d like you to virtually meet Rosanne Schipper from The Netherlands – a freelance content strategist and a copywriter with her own company, Content Creation Studio.
She is also the founder of the blog De Happy Freelancer, which is a platform for freelancers to learn from each other and get inspired.
Furthermore, she runs an Instagram account with drawings and jokes about the struggles of freelancing life. Her hilarious illustrations resonate so well with the freelance reality! Here’s what Rosanne shared during our conversation.
The beautiful photo of Rosanne (above) was taken by Yvonne Apeldoorn.
This article may contain affiliate links, for more information, read the Disclaimer. If you click on any of them, I might get a tiny commission. I’ve tried all of the mentioned products and services, and my opinion is sincere.
What’s your freelancing niche?
As a content strategist and copywriter, I help my clients to grow their business by setting up a content plan and marketing strategy. During a brainstorm session, I get to the heart of their content strategy needs. I put together a unique content strategy plan and rewrite web copy, ads and blog posts to create more exposure and increase personal branding.
Why did you decide to become a freelancer?
For me, freedom is the most important thing in the world. As a freelancer, I’m not only free to work where- and whenever I want, but I am also free to design my own path. I can choose which clients I want to work with and which projects give me energy.
What was your job before that?
After my studies, I worked in museums and art galleries. I have always loved art and I thought that working in the world of art would give me inspiration. But I found out that what actually gives me inspiration is being a creative myself. That’s why I got into writing.
What would you say to the people who hate being trapped in their office from 9 to 5 but don’t see another option to make a living?
If you don’t feel comfortable quitting your job and taking a plunge into the unknown just yet, try to work part-time at your office job and start freelancing on the side. This way, you get to feel how it is to find clients, manage your own time and sell your services. By comparing, you will find out what makes you most happy and it will feel easier to quit your office job.
What’s the best advice you can give to the people who’re making their first freelancing steps?
Don’t feel like you have to be perfect in order to start. You don’t need a fancy website, your strategy doesn’t have to be all written down and your service doesn’t need to be finalized. While you’re making your first steps as a freelancer, you will learn more and more and you can polish your work to perfection over time.
What’s the best part of being a freelancer according to you?
The best part is definitely the freedom. Even though I work a lot and I have to meet deadlines all the time, I still have the freedom to choose how I’m going to get things done and when. I can decide to be a digital nomad, or stay at home. I can dress up or work in my pajamas.
What’s the biggest challenge you face as a freelancer?
Balancing work and personal life. I’m always excited to start up new projects, I read business books before going to sleep and love to brainstorm with friends during the weekend. But sometimes it’s good to focus on other hobbies. It’s hard to find a balance if your work is your biggest hobby, but I think I’m getting better at it every year.
What advice would you give to the freelancers who’re struggling to find clients? What’s your secret to finding clients?
My secret is to build a network. And I don’t necessarily mean that you have to go to networking events. Just say ‘Hi!’ to the person working next to you with their laptop in a café, have a coffee with someone working in the same field, go to a coworking space and meet their community… the more you tell people about your work, the higher are your chances of getting hired.
What’s the biggest mistake you’ve ever made as a freelancer?
I made many mistakes, to be honest. When I started, I had to figure out so much by myself… But the biggest mistake was thinking that I have to do everything on my own. That’s not true at all!
Other people are much better at developing your website, designing your logo or doing your taxes. By paying other people for their skills, you save yourself a lot of time and frustration.
When are you the most productive: when working from home, from a coworking space or from a cafe? How do you stay focused?
I’m definitely most productive when working from a coworking space. A coworking space offers a community of like-minded people. It’s like having colleagues, without the obligations. During a coffee break, you can make friends and even find clients. I work through Croissant, an app that offers membership for coworking spaces all over the world.
What are your best time management practices?
I’m a huge fan of the Productivity Planner. With this paper planner, you can set priorities and therefore manage your time. I use it every day and it gives me a lot of structure.
How do you boost your productivity? And creativity?
I really believe that productivity and creativity are just a matter of getting things done. I never have a writer’s block, because I just push myself to focus and the creativity will come.
How does one of your best days look like?
I wake up early because I’m excited to get started. I go to a coworking space and get some work done before everyone else arrives. My most productive hours are during the morning until the lunch break, so that’s when I work for my clients.
In the afternoon, I like to be social and have coffee with clients and other freelancers. I draw an illustration for my Instagram page and write an article for my blog. After a great and productive day, I can check off all the tasks on my to-do list.
How do you stay zen?
I stay zen by traveling a lot. Because I can take my work with me, I’m able to travel the world whenever I want. I found out that I need to travel a few months during the year to stay happy and focused. After every trip, I feel so much new energy and that’s when I usually set up new projects.
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