Three experienced editorial business leaders spoke about sound strategies for growing a freelance business in "Financial Strategies to Grow Your Business" at ACES2018.
Melanie Padgett Powers, owner of MelEdits, Michelle Lowery, owner of Sevillana Publishing, and Sea Chapman of Sea Chapman Creative, offered advice and economic tips that have helped them to become--and to continue to be--successful business owners.
Know your hourly wage. This is an important step into being able to hire assistants, not only for your business but to help you in your personal life as well. Knowing your hourly wage allows you to know how much you can spend on an assistant and still have money left. -Melanie Powers
Take a business retreat, even if your business is just you. This gives you time to focus on your goals, clients, and overall business in a setting that doesn’t feel like work. Powers says she tends to retreat to her dining room, but recommends anything from coffee shops to hotels. According to both women, there is no wrong time or amount of time to take a business retreat. -Melanie Powers and Michelle Lowery
If potential clients can’t find you, they can’t hire you. You need to be accessible and online with a website so those seeking an editor can easily find you. -Michelle Lowery
All three panelists agree that you are allowed to raise your fees, but they warn editors to give clients advanced notice. For clients who have a set yearly budget, springing a price increase on them can cause them harm. Give them plenty of time to plan price increases into their budgets or to decide if they need to look elsewhere.
Header photo credit: ONA USFSP/Emily Bowers