I've been freelancing off and on for over 10 years now. I have had some in-house positions in that time but well over 90% of the businesses I worked with were on a freelance contract basis.
For most of my freelance career, I have experienced firsthand what fellow freelancers call the 'feast or famine cycle. It's referring to the volatile nature of freelance work and revenue.
You're either packed full with work (i.e. feasting) or you're struggling to get another client (i.e. famine).
There never seems to be a middle ground. Most freelancers account for this and are able to live off savings when they hit a tough stretch where they're having trouble finding a new client.
For the first 8 years, I'd say most of my clients were full-time clients, meaning they were the only client I had and I was working almost 40 hours for them every week. This can be rough because it's really no different than a job and in some ways, it's worse because you can't get unemployment if you're laid off.
Either way, when I lost that client I was out 100% of all income and I had to find another client very quickly.
Feast or famine!
Fast forward to today and I have multiple clients and have 4 different agencies feeding me work.
99% of my revenue comes from Google Ad Management Services now. In the past, I'd done a lot more web design or other 'one-off' projects that didn't result in recurring monthly revenue from the same client. Once the work was done, that's it. I then had to find another client.
With Google Ad Management Services, I'm able to get paid every month for ongoing work. This helps to greatly reduce the 'fest or famine' cycle.
I've purposely narrowed the services I offer so that I can serve more clients. If I lose a client here or there, it's not as big of a deal. Each client makes up a smaller percentage of my income.
Even if you're not a PPC Ad Manager, there are usually ways to package whatever it is you offer into a monthly recurring service.
If you're a freelance web designer, for example, you could package hosting and website visitor analytics reporting in with your web design services.
Are you a graphic designer or logo designer? Put together a monthly retainer package where they get X days turnaround on any graphics they need for their business.
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