🤑 3 pricing tips for new freelancers

Happy Tuesday! This is The Gig, where omnipresence is a work in progress. Follow us on IG and TikTok for even more freelance news, tips, and memes in your life.

Mentioned in today’s newsletter: Facebook, Instagram, Amazon, eBay, TikTok, and Oracle. Plus three pricing tips for new freelancers, the importance of ABCs for service providers, and how to become an overnight celebrity in your niche.

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes and 49 seconds


Making the Rounds

  • Internal memo reveals Facebook’s plan to take on TikTok. The biggest shift to the algorithm will focus on recommending popular posts from both Facebook and Instagram over ones from people you follow.
  • Resale of stolen goods on Facebook, Amazon, and eBay is big business. Retailers like Louis Vuitton and Nordstrom have recently been the victims of large-scale robberies, and claim many of the stolen goods are being resold on ecommerce sites. A national task force of state attorneys has been convened to investigate cases across state lines.

  • TikTok moves U.S. user data to Oracle servers. After leaked audio revealed Chinese employees had accessed U.S. user data, the company announced it’s moving the data to Oracle’s cloud storage platform. 

Working With Clients

3 Pricing Tips For New Freelancers

TIP #1: Charge by deliverable (not by the hour)

If you’re a new freelancer, you may be tempted to start off charging by the hour.

But charging by the hour incentivizes you to work slower.

Instead, charge clients per:

– email
– image
– video
– landing page
– sales page
– etc

This way, there are no unexpected surprises for them if the job takes longer…

And you get rewarded if you can get it done quicker.

TIP #2: Ask for a 50% deposit.

Asking for a deposit helps weed out low-quality clients.

So if they’re not willing to pay you a portion of your fee up front, proceed with caution.

But if the idea of asking for money up front makes your palms sweaty, you could always reduce the amount to 25%.

One final caveat: 

If it’s a small project (like under $100-$200), just ask for the full amount up front instead.

TIP #3: Get approval on pre-work if possible

Since you’re asking for a deposit, you want to make sure your first draft isn’t way off base so the client doesn’t feel like they’ve paid you for nothing.

The best way to do this is get pre-work approved.

In the case of copy, this could be an outline.

In the case of an image or video, this could be a creative brief

In the case of an ad campaign, this could be a campaign mockup.

Regardless of what your service is, getting the greenlight on pre-work will save you time and make clients happier.


Working For Yourself

Don’t Forget Your ABCs

If you’re a freelance service provider…

Learning new things is essential to staying competitive:

  • New marketing strategies
  • New ad platforms
  • New skills
  • Etc

But don’t let shiny objects distract you too much…

Make sure to review the basics of your profession at least once per year.

We’re willing to bet you’ll be surprised at just how much you’ve forgotten.

And while marketing and advertising are two dynamic industries in constant flux…

The fundamental principles still apply.

So if it’s been a while since you re-read Breakthrough Advertising, The Ultimate Sales Letter, or any of the other classics, carve out some time this month to review them.


Tools We Love

How to Become an Overnight Celebrity in Your Niche

Case studies and social proof are great.

But there’s one thing holding most freelancers back from charging premium rates and commanding an elite position in the marketplace…

Credibility (or a lack thereof).

And the fastest way to build credibility is to “borrow” it from somebody else…

By getting booked as a podcast guest.

Studies show podcast listeners are typically more educated, affluent, and active on social media than the average American.

And when prospects see (or hear) you being interviewed by someone else they trust, those feelings are instantly transferred to you.

That’s where Guestio comes in.

Their guest booking and interview platform allows you to cut to the front line and book yourself on shows like:

  • Entrepreneurs On Fire with John Lee Dumas
  • Build Your Network with Travis Chappell
  • Franchise Secrets with Erik Van Horn
  • And many more

No more jumping through hoops or sending out cold DMs.

So if you’re looking for the simplest and easiest way to build credibility and attract more of your dream clients…

Head over to Guestio:

Find your first (or next) podcast booking on Guestio today.


Quote of the Day

“The best revenge is not to be like your enemy.”

Marcus Aurelius


💲Buy now, pay later

Happy Friday! Congratulations to the Golden State Warriors, who won the NBA Finals last night. Hopefully our favorite Formula 1 driver Charles Leclerc can channel some of that championship energy in Montreal this weekend at the Canadian Grand Prix.

Mentioned in today’s edition: PayPal, Apple, Firefox, Twitter, and Elon Musk. Plus why one is the most dangerous number in business, 3 criteria for finding fulfillment in your career, and the secrets of a high-converting FAQ.

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes and 47 seconds


Making the Rounds

  • PayPal Monthly offers monthly payment options for up to 24 months. The new installment program lets users break down the total cost of a purchase into equal monthly payments over a 6 to 24 month period. With Apple recently throwing their hat into the “buy now, pay later” ring, this space is really starting to heat up. If you listen real close, you can hear the collective sigh from all the other VC-backed BNPL firms in the middle of massive layoffs.
  • Firefox launches Total Cookie Protection. The new tool prevents third-party tracking across multiple websites. When a cookie is deposited into your browser, it’s “confined to the cookie jar assigned to that website.” In other words, no more reaching into other website’s cookie jars to access any data they might have collected. Womp womp.

  • Elon confirms “strong bias” towards in-person work in Twitter all-hands meeting. He didn’t elaborate on what the new remote work policy might look like. But he did hint at the need to reduce headcount so the company can “get healthy” — something a strict in-person policy might help with.

Working With Clients

Why “One” is the Most Dangerous Number in Business

One big advantage of freelancing is being able to diversify your income streams.

There’s a reason they say “one” is the most dangerous number in business…

Because if you rely exclusively on…

  • One traffic source
  • One ad account
  • Or one client

… for all of your income, then you’re in a very precarious place.

And it wouldn’t take much to knock you off your perch.

So…

A word to the wise:

Avoid relying on one client for 100% of your income.

Aim to have at least two — this way you have something to fall back on if things go sideways with Client #1.

Plus, as you build your track record…

The list of clients you’ve worked with in the past will grow…

Which can also serve as a back-up plan if you need to drum up work.


Working For Yourself

Finding Fulfillment in Your Career Starts By Checking This Many Boxes

Finding fulfillment is something many freelancers struggle with in their careers.

If you’re one of them…

Look for work that aligns with these three things:

1 – What you enjoy doing 🙂

2 – What you’re good at 💪

3 – What you can get paid for 💰

We like to think of this as the “fulfillment trifecta.”

Pursuing a paycheck at the cost of personal enjoyment is just as bad as choosing a career you enjoy or are good at, but has minimal market demand.

The road to happiness starts by finding alignment between all three.


From The Copywriting Gig

Secrets of a High-Converting FAQ

The frequently asked questions (FAQ) section is like the red-headed stepchild of any landing page or sales letter.

Most copywriters get lazy here because:

A) They write it last
B) They’re tired of repeating themselves
C) They assume anyone who’s gonna buy doesn’t need it

But the truth is, the FAQ gives you a perfect opportunity to overcome objections.

Especially since most readers will skim to the bottom first, then return to the beginning and read the page from top to bottom.

So here are some conversion-boosting answers to include in your FAQ:

– “Why should I choose over something else?”
– “How do I use ?”
– “Which order option is right for me?”
– “Is safe?”
– “How soon can I expect results with ?”
– “How soon can I expect to arrive?”
– “Why should I trust you when I’ve been burned by others in the past?”

Make sure to finish off every answer with a strong call to action.


Friday Recap

Time flies when you’re making money online.

Here’s a quick recap of what happened this week:

Monday: 👀 Privacy state of mind
Tuesday: 🐻 Bear with me
Wednesday: 👑 Ad market empresarios
Thursday: 🛒 Amazon influencers


Quote of the Day

“The question isn’t who’s going to let me; it’s who’s going to stop me.”

Ayn Rand


💦 Twitter unleashes the firehose

Happy Friday! Formula 1 is in Baku this weekend for the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. And Jurassic World: Dominion aims to unseat Tom Cruise at the box office with a projected $125M opening. 

Mentioned in today’s newsletter: Elon Musk, Walter Isaacson, TikTok, Twitter, and Ready Player One. Plus the one thing that can make or break your freelance portfolio, four ugly truths about being a digital nomad, and an old school trick to keep your attribution clean even after iOS 14.

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes and 23 seconds


Making the Rounds

  • Twitter unleashes the firehose on Elon Musk. The board has finally caved to Elon’s demands and will give him access to its massive internal data stream of 500M+ daily tweets. Will Musk be satisfied? Or will it prompt him to formally pull out of the deal? Either way, one person loving all this drama (aside from Elon himself) is probably Walter Isaacson, who’s been working on a biography of the Tesla CEO since 2021.

  • TikTok introduces Avatars. Similar to Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat, TikTok users can now set up and “become” their avatars when recording videos. Ready Player One takes place in 2045 in a world where people spend most of their time living as their VR avatar, and so far, the timeline is looking pretty accurate.

  • Twitter launches Product Drops. As we’ve reported in recent weeks, the push into shoppable ads and content continues to heat up. And now Twitter is entering the fray with Product Drops, which allow users to sign up for reminders about upcoming launches right from the feed.

Working With Clients

The One Thing That Can Make or Break Your Freelance Portfolio

Want to increase your chances of getting the gig?

Make sure you’ve got relevant sample pieces in your freelance portfolio.

There are two ways to think about relevance:

1) Task-specific
2) Market-specific 

Task-specific relevance means that if you’re applying for a job to write emails, you should highlight email work you’ve done in the past (instead of sales pages or video scripts).

Market-specific relevance means that if you’re applying for a job to run ads for a health company, you should highlight previous work you’ve done in the health space (instead of another niche like finance or relationships).

And if you want to pull a Mike Tyson and hit the bullseye…

Aim to have both.


Working For Yourself

4 Ugly Truths About Being a Digital Nomad

The laptop lifestyle is what attracts a lot of people to freelancing and digital marketing.

But it’s not everything it’s cracked up to be.

Here are a few ugly truths about digital nomadism we’ve learned the hard way:

#1: Everyone else is in vacation mode

Working from exotic locations is tough.

Spending 8 hours a day glued to your laptop while everyone else is partying, sightseeing, and having fun isn’t exactly what most people have in mind when they board a plane overseas.

Temptations are everywhere.

Staying focused when you’re surrounded by distractions is less fun than it looks.

#2: You have to work odd hours

Having clients in the West means you might have to stay up until 12-1 AM to take calls and attend meetings.

This can be brutal.

If you’re an early to bed, early to rise kind of person, this will really jam up your normal rhythm.

Which leads us to…

#3: Routines are hard to maintain

As Jocko Willink says, discipline equals freedom.

But when you’re living overseas and often on the move, it’s hard to maintain structure.

You’re always on the lookout for good coffee shops, gyms, grocery stores, etc. near your new place.

Which sucks up more brainpower than you might think.

#4: Relationships are transient

You can meet lots of cool people while you’re traveling.

But it’s unlikely any of those new relationships will compare to the ones you have back home.

You can’t recreate that kind of depth in a week or a month.

Everyone’s headed in different directions, so nothing lasts.

Now this isn’t to say that it can’t work for some…

In fact, your humble newsletter writer spent a life-changing 8 months in Southeast Asia.

But the digital nomad lifestyle isn’t for everyone.

And since it’s always glamorized so much on social media…

We think it’s important to shine a spotlight on the not-so-sexy parts of it.


From The Paid Ads Gig

iOS 14? Never Heard of It

Apple’s iOS 14 update detonated a bomb on browser-based tracking last year.

Paid ads haven’t been the same since.

And even though every SaaS company and their grandma claims to have “solved iOS 14,” the truth is that the ad tracking capabilities we used to have ain’t coming back.

But the good news is…

There’s an old school strategy that can help you combat Apple’s anti-ad agenda:

Building separate funnels for each traffic source.

If you’ve only got traffic from one source (like Facebook, YouTube, organic, etc) coming into a specific funnel, attributing ROI is a cakewalk.

There is a bit more work up front to get this set up…

But as you (or your client’s) company grows, you’ll be glad you did it.


Quote of the Day

“The only thing that overcomes hard luck is hard work.”

Harry Golden


♟️ 3D chess

Happy Wednesday! This is The Gig, where it’s hard to go more than one day without Elon Musk making news. 

Here we go…


Making the Rounds

  • Elon’s Twitter takeover may be in jeopardy (again). He sent a letter to the SEC claiming that Twitter was “actively resisting and thwarting” his attempts to get more info on the number of fake accounts. Is the Tesla CEO playing 3D chess and secretly negotiating for a better price? Trying to back out of the deal? Tune in tomorrow for the next episode…

  • Apple wades into “buy now, pay later” with Apple Pay Later. The iPhone maker announced Apple Pay users will now be able to split payments into four over a period of six weeks, with no interest or late fees. The timing probably couldn’t be any worse for BNPL companies like Klarna and Affirm, who’ve been forced to lay off employees in recent months despite sky-high valuations.

  • UK launches major 4-day work week experiment. 70 companies and 3,300 workers are participating in the 6-month experiment. Workers will get 100% of their normal comp for working 4 days instead of 5 — but with a promise to maintain 100% of their normal productivity. Bets on whether the trial will succeed? Reply and let us know what you think.

Working With Clients

The Secret to a Successful Freelance Sales Pitch

… is to ask a barrage of questions during the “discovery” process.

Here’s why:

What’s important to a new client may not be the same as your last client.

So by asking things like:

  • What’s the #1 biggest challenge right now?
  • What makes this a priority right now?
  • Have you hired anyone else to help with this in the past? How did that go?
  • Is there anything else you think I should know?

… you can tailor your pitch to address their specific concerns and desires.

On a related note —  if you want to take your sales pitches to the next level, share the newsletter with just five friends and we’ll send you a copy of our Ultimate Freelance Sales Call Cheat Sheet.

It’s a step-by-step roadmap to closing freelance deals over the phone, complete with specific questions and word-for-word transitions to help you navigate sales calls like a pro.


Working For Yourself

Can’t Decide What Business to Start? Here’s Some Food For Thought…

Everyone you meet in life is selling you “their way” — whether they realize it or not.

But don’t forget there are lots of different ways to reach your destination.

Especially in business.

As Rich Schefren says, it’s all about tradeoffs vs payoffs.

For example:

With ecommerce and affiliate marketing, the results can be quick…

But you’ll need startup capital to fund your paid traffic costs…

And you’ll need to navigate the steep learning curve of how to run paid ads at a profit…

Otherwise you could lose it all.

Plus the margins are typically on the low end, around 15-20%.

With service-based businesses like coaching, consulting, or agencies…

You can start landing clients and getting paid with virtually ZERO startup costs…

The margins are much higher…

But that means investing time on cold outreach and freelancing platforms…

Always being on the hunt for the next client…

Plus now you’re on call + have to be available for meetings, answering emails and DMs, etc.

Don’t get us wrong — both businesses can be wildly profitable.

Ultimately though, you have to decide what your priorities are and what you’re willing to sacrifice to achieve them.

Because no business model is all upside.

And measuring yourself based on the games other people play is a recipe for unhappiness.

Figure out what game YOU want to play and commit to it all the way.


From The Copywriting Gig

What NEVER to Do When Writing Words That Sell

WIIFM is one of the most important concepts in copy.

It stands for “what’s in it for me” — a reminder that your readers don’t actually care about you…

So if you want to get someone’s attention, appealing to their self-desire is key.

But according to Gary Halbert, author of the Coat of Arms promo that ran for over 30 years and generated millions of dollars in the 70s and 80s, and someone who’s often listed as one of the best copywriters of all time… 

There’s ONE element of persuasion even more important than self-desire.

Something that can make readers burn through 50 pages of copy in a frenzy…

Something that can turn an underperforming ad or email into a customer-generating machine…

And something that separates pro copywriters from wannabe Don Drapers.

Can you guess what it is?

I’ll give you a hint: it’s not a killer price, money back guarantee, or added bonus…

And it’s got nothing to do with scarcity, urgency, or even storytelling…

Instead, that special something is:

Curiosity.

You see…

You never want to reveal everything in your ad, email, or sales page right away.

Learn how to talk about something without giving away what it is.

Because if your readers aren’t curious to discover your secret, hack, trick, tactic, strategy, or 7 magic words to achieve a desired result…

They won’t be motivated to buy.

A few tips to execute on this:

  • Talk about what it’s not
  • Talk about what it’s better than
  • Talk about what you can do it without

But no matter how you create curiosity…

Just make sure you can actually pay it off inside the product — because that’s what separates compelling copy from cringy clickbait.


Quote of the Day

“Above everything else I’ve done, I’ve always said I’ve had more guts than I’ve got talent.”

Dolly Parton


📱 Social media mysteries in the metaverse

Happy Wednesday! And welcome to June. This is The Gig with news, tips, and A+ memes to help grow your freelance biz.

Here’s the latest…


Making the Rounds

  • Substack abandons $75M fundraise. The newsletter-biz-in-a-box company was attempting to raise $75M to $100M in new funding at a valuation of $750M-$1B. But with VCs and Wall Street bearish on tech companies these days, it looks like they’ll have to wait.

  • SpaceX president defends Elon Musk against sexual misconduct allegations. Gwynne Shotwell, who’s also COO, came out in support of Musk in an email to employees, saying she believes the allegations are false.

  • Foursquare founder announces $4M in funding for mysterious new social media metaverse company. The project is called LivingCities and aims to integrate web3 technology into a “mirror world” you won’t be able to find in app stores. Not sure exactly what that means? Don’t worry – us neither. 

Working With Clients

What to Do When a New Client Questions the Strategy

Kidding.

While you may want to Force choke a client on occasion…

(we’ve all been there)

Client success can be boiled down to one thing:

Learning how to manage expectations.

It’s the bedrock that long-lasting relationships are built on.

Here are some tips to help you to do it better:

  • Be transparent about the process
  • Offer multiple options or strategies
  • Set deadlines with wiggle room
  • Overcommunicate
  • Avoid getting carried away with too much excitement or enthusiasm 

And if a client is eager to pursue their own strategy instead of the one you’ve suggested…

Make the potential risks clear.

Explain that it’s your job as the expert to speak up.

Then establish clear criteria to determine whether the strategy is successful or not.

If it pans out, they’ll appreciate you pushing forward despite disagreeing.

And if it doesn’t, they’ll respect your judgment for being right.

Win-win.


Working For Yourself

The Dark Side of a Short Commute

Blurred lines are an occupational hazard when working from home.

Sure, the morning commutes may be a breeze…

But when the office is always just a few steps away, it can be tough to turn off your work brain.

That’s why one of the best ways to stay sane is…

Create a structured work schedule and stick to it.

That means getting up, starting, and finishing work around the same time each day.

Establishing boundaries like this will not only help you be more productive…

But you’ll sleep better too.


From The Paid Ads Gig

Ads Not Working? Try This

Ads not performing?

First things first: check to make sure the link isn’t broken 😂

But assuming that’s not the problem…

The next step is to analyze the leading metrics so you can figure out where the dropoff is happening.

This includes:

  • CPM
  • CTR/CPC
  • Page speed
  • Landing page conversion rate

A sub-1% CTR + high CPC could mean a market-message mismatch or a weak creative.

Slow page speed could mean visitors are exiting before the page loads.

And if your landing page is converting at 20% or less, that’s a sign you may need to do some conversion rate optimization (CRO) before the campaign hits your KPIs.


Quote of the Day

“A great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position.”

John Maxwell


🐦 Elon ups the ante

Happy Friday! You made it. LFG 💪

Now let’s get you caught up before Happy Hour starts…


Making the Rounds

  • One-click checkout company Bolt announces layoffs. Despite raising $355 million in new funding at a valuation of $11 billion dollars a few months ago, the fintech unicorn is handing some employees their walking papers. Timez iz hard on the boulevard for tech companies these days.

  • Jack Dorsey says ✌️ to Twitter’s board of directors. His exit was made official on Wednesday. TBD whether he’ll roll over his 2.4% ownership stake into Elon’s bid to take the company private or cash it out. Speaking of the takeover…

  • Elon steps up personal Twitter commitment to $33.5 billion. In a new filing that sent the price of Twitter shares up and Tesla shares down, Musk revealed he’s increasing his own commitment to the deal. He’s also expected to serve as a temporary CEO. Because it’s not like he has anything else to do.

Working With Clients

3 Pricing Tips For New Freelancers

TIP #1: Charge by deliverable (not by the hour)

If you’re a new freelancer, you may be tempted to start off charging by the hour.

But charging by the hour incentivizes you to work slower.

Instead, charge clients per:

– email
– image
– video
– landing page
– sales page
– etc

This way, there are no unexpected surprises for them if the job takes longer…

And you get rewarded if you can get it done quicker.

TIP #2: Ask for a 50% deposit.

Asking for a deposit helps weed out low-quality clients.

So if they’re not willing to pay you a portion of your fee up front, proceed with caution.

But if the idea of asking for money up front makes your palms sweaty, you could always reduce the amount to 25%.

One final caveat: 

If it’s a small project (like under $100-$200), just ask for the full amount up front instead.

TIP #3: Get approval on pre-work if possible

Since you’re asking for a deposit, you want to make sure your first draft isn’t way off base so the client doesn’t feel like they’ve paid you for nothing.

The best way to do this is get pre-work approved.

In the case of copy, this could be an outline.

In the case of an image or video, this could be a creative brief

In the case of an ad campaign, this could be a campaign mockup.

Regardless of what your service is, getting the greenlight on pre-work will save you time and make clients happier.


Working For Yourself

Early Morning Slack DMs Beware

Do you know what your chronotype is?

According to Healthline, a chronotype is “…a person’s circadian typology or the individual differences in activity and alertness in the morning and evening.”

In other words…

Your chronotype reflects when your most creative and productive hours are.

For your humble newsletter writer, that’s typically between 6 and 9 AM.

But for you, it might be later in the day.

Either way, the bottom line is:

Find out what time of day you’re usually at your best, and protect those hours like your very own Time Stone.

Because not all time is made equal.

And the secret to maintaining peak productivity is focusing on energy — not time.


From The Paid Ads Gig

Trust the AI? I Think Not

Ad platforms like Meta and Google have been shepherding media buyers away from manual controls for years now.

One example of this is automated bidding.

Instead of setting your own bids or cost caps, they encourage you to use automated bidding instead.

But here’s the problem…

Ad pixels are typically trained to optimize for the lowest cost per conversion.

And which do you think costs less to acquire…

The crap leads or the high-quality leads?

We’ll give you a hint: it’s not the high-quality leads 🙃

So the end result is you get more volume, but lower quality.

How do you fix this?

By testing manual bid or cost caps instead of (or alongside) automated bidding.

This lets you take back the wheel from the pixel AI so you can improve your lead quality and reduce wasted ad spend.

Now in case it’s been a while since you toyed around with these settings…

You can find one-pagers from Meta and Google on this topic here and here.


Quote of the Day

“Luck is a very thin wire between survival and disaster, and not many people can keep their balance on it.”

Hunter S. Thompson


🎯 Politicians take aim at Google’s ad biz

Happy Tuesday! On this day in 1883, the Brooklyn Bridge was officially opened for the first time. Connecting Manhattan and Brooklyn, it took 14 years to build and cost $15 million to make — approximately $320 million in today’s dollars. HBD, BB 🎂

Now here’s what’s going on…


Making the Rounds

  • Twilio CEO suggests opening coffee shops instead of offices. With 50% of his workers going remote during the pandemic, Jeff Lawson wants to experiment with a different approach to in-person work.
     
  • Etsy announces SEO update for product listings. Retailers can now optimize their search engine ranking based on keywords.

  • Will Google be forced to break up their ad biz? A new Senate bill would prevent companies generating more than $20M in yearly ad revenue from participating in more than one part of the process (i.e dominating both the buyer and seller side of the transaction).

Working With Clients

3 Magic Words to Make Clients Trust You

If a client asks a question, you should always have the answer… right?

Wrong.

In fact, trying to weigh in on something when you’re out of depth is the fastest way to make yourself look silly.

So, what’s the answer?

Don’t be afraid to say “I don’t know.”

Being open about what you don’t know shows honesty and will give you credibility.

This is known as the “damaging admission” in copywriting…

And it’s often used on purpose to build trust and reduce skepticism.

Plus it creates an opportunity for you to find the answer and demonstrate your resourcefulness to the client.

A win-win for both of you 💪


Working For Yourself

Level 10 Productivity: Activated

When the kitchen, the couch, and the TV are all just a few steps away…

Or the hustle and bustle of the coffee shop rises up to the level of a dull roar…

It can be tough to focus on work sometimes.

That’s why listening to non-lyrical music can help you put the blinders on, drown out distractions, and get sh*t done.

Some of our favorites include:

  • Lo-fi
  • Chillwave
  • Binaural beats
  • Atmospheric sounds

Experiment with each and see what works best for you.

If you’re looking for an eclectic mix of lo-fi, chillhop, house, and spacey vibes, check out The Future Beats Show.


Tools We Love

Simplifying Split-Tests

Running split-tests is key to extracting maximum profits out of your marketing and advertising.

But if you’re working with a site built on WordPress… 

Or you’re operating on a lean budget… 

Or if you’d prefer not to use traditional solutions like ClickFunnels, VWO, or Optimizely, which can often hurt your page speed…

Then it’s time to check out Google Optimize.

It’s a simple and free split-testing tool that lets you run experiments, track conversions, and analyze results.

Optimize integrates directly with Google Analytics…

So there’s no need for any fancy funnel building or split-testing software…

Making it the perfect choice for freelancers.

Set up your next split-test in minutes by setting up Google Optimize for free today.


Quote of the Day

“The harder I work, the luckier I get.”

Samuel Goldwyn


📱Frequency-capped ads

Happy Friday! Our eyes will be on Barcelona this weekend as Formula 1 touches down for the Spanish Grand Prix. Here’s to hoping Gig favorite Charles Leclerc and hometown hero Carlos Sainz can fend off surging world champion Max Verstappen. What are you up to? Hit “Reply” and let us know.

In the meantime, here’s what’s going on as we head into the weekend.


Making the Rounds

  • YouTube announces new Frequency campaigns. The new frequency-capped campaigns promise to cut down on over-delivery and wasted ad spend. Now you’ll only have to see that one annoying ad 47 27 more times before the algorithm lets you off the hook.
     
  • Texas law banning tech platform censorship could throw a wrench into Elon’s Twitter takeover. The law would force social media platforms to spread content that is typically moderated (like violence, murder, hate crimes, and propaganda) and allow any user to sue if violations occur. Elon’s Twitter, along with Facebook, Reddit, and others could soon be flooded with lawsuits if it survives a legal challenge.

  • Branded Missions let advertisers on TikTok crowdsource user-generated content. After launching TikTok Pulse earlier this month, the platform appears to be racing to build out its ad offerings. While the Pulse program requires creators to have at least 10k followers, Branded Missions are open to micro-influencers with as little as 1,000 followers.

Working With Clients

Know Your Numbers

What gets measured gets managed.

That’s why, when it comes to working with clients…

You should be tracking your prospecting numbers on a weekly basis.

  • How many people you reached out to
  • How many calls you booked
  • How many proposals you submitted
  • How many clients you landed

This allows you to identify where the constraint is — just like analyzing a client’s underperforming sales funnel — and then try new things until you crack the code.


Working For Yourself

Be Right Back

One of the biggest benefits of working remotely is being able to shift your schedule to suit your lifestyle.

Whether that’s running errands in the middle of the day…

Hitting the gym at the precise moment that all the squat racks are free…

Or just taking a much-needed break from staring at the screen.

But as you may know…

Stepping away from the computer instantly increases the chance you’ll be needed for something by approximately 92.47%.

Especially if all’s been quiet.

So, here’s how to make sure you’re ready for anything:

Download all work apps on your phone so you can be available even when you’re away from the computer.

  • Zoom
  • Slack
  • Telegram
  • WhatsApp
  • Messenger
  • Google Drive
  • Ads Manager

Get everything you could possibly need to communicate or collaborate.

This way, you can step outside with peace of mind.


From The Copywriting Gig

Don’t Forget to Make it a Steal After You Twist the Knife

Humans are emotional beings.

And the limbic system (where we process emotions in the brain) is a key factor in helping us make decisions.

In fact, UCLA neuroscientist Antonio Damasio once had a patient who, after having a tumor removed, couldn’t make decisions because he was unable to process emotions.

Talk about analysis paralysis.

But a common mistake in copywriting is to focus exclusively on the emotional side…

And ignore the logical side.

That’s why it’s important to win both the hearts and minds of your prospects.

To win their hearts… 

Focus on how it feels to be struggling with the problem (shame, guilt, embarrassment, envy, etc) AND what it will feel like to solve it (confidence, happiness, freedom, etc)

Then, to win their minds, focus on why your solution is the smartest and most logical choice (how it will save them time + money, make them look smart, is discounted for a limited time only, etc).

A winning offer or marketing campaign always has both.


Quote of the Day

“If you aren’t in over your head, how do you know how tall you are? “

T.S Eliot


📺Ads incoming

Happy Friday! Today marks the only Friday the 13th of 2022. Can somebody tell the crypto markets?

In the meantime, here’s what’s going on as we head into the weekend.


Making the Rounds

  • Elon plans to reinstate Trump’s Twitter account if the deal closes. At the Future of the Car conference, the Tesla CEO said he thought it was wrong for the platform to ban the former President. Trump claims he’ll stay on Truth Social even if he is reinstated, but if there’s an over/under on him coming back once the deal closes, we’ll take the over.

  • Netflix warns employees that ads are coming. After losing 200k subscribers in Q1 (along with $170 billion in market value over the last year), Netflix is moving quickly to launch an ad-supported tier of streaming service by the end of 2022.

  • Google announces the first-ever Pixel Watch. The new smartwatch will launch this year alongside the Pixel 7 and will integrate with Fitbit accounts.

Working With Clients

When in Doubt, Refer Out

Got a lead you can’t help?

Don’t just send them away…

Refer them to someone else in your network.

Becoming a “connector” helps you build goodwill and social capital with both parties — the lead and the person you refer them to.

Something that often comes back around to you…

Whether it’s a referral fee, a client being referred to you, or something else altogether.

And if you don’t have a network of other service providers you can refer to, it’s time to start building one.

Aim to have at least one person you can refer to for all the services adjacent to yours.

– If you’re a copywriter, get to know someone who runs paid ads
– If you run paid ads, get to know someone who does graphic design or video editing
– If you’re a graphic designer, get to know someone who builds funnels

A bigger network always means more opportunities.


Working For Yourself

If Ifs and Buts Were Candy and Nuts

One of the hallmarks of high-performers in any arena is a high say-do ratio.

When they say they’re gonna do something…

They do it.

Plain and simple.

No ifs, ands, or buts.

Following through on what you say you’re gonna do builds confidence and centers your locus of control.

So if you keep saying you’re gonna…

– apply to more freelance jobs
– start doing cold outreach
– post more on social media
– find a mentor
– go to a live event
– grow your network
– raise your rates
– etc etc

Then do it.

Prove to yourself you are in control.

And save the excuses for later.


From The Paid Ads Gig

The Lazy Media Buyer’s Guide to Riches Winning Video Ads


Hooks are often what separate winning video ads from creatives that won’t convert.

So…

If you’re producing video ads, or having someone else produce them for you…

Record the first 5 seconds separately from the rest of the video ad.

This way, you can easily transplant new hooks onto an existing video to test new angles.

And what you’ll find is…

A new hook can extend the life of a winning video ad, sometimes by a lot.

Eliminating the need to create entirely new videos from scratch.


Quote of the Day

“I do not know anyone who has got to the top without hard work. That is the recipe. It will not always get you to the top, but should get you pretty near.”

Margaret Thatcher


☠️ Rest in peace

Happy Thursday! The latest Consumer Price Index Report dropped yesterday, revealing inflation has cooled a bit, coming in at 8.3%.

Speaking of things that are cooling, crypto darling LUNA and its companion stablecoin UST entered into a full-blown ice age this week: LUNA shed over 95% of its value in the past 7 days, going from $87 down to as low as $0.90 yesterday. Meanwhile UST, a stablecoin (meant to be) pegged to a $1 USD value, dropped as low as $0.24. Ouch.

Here’s what else is happening…


Making the Rounds

  • R.I.P to the iPod. Apple is officially discontinuing the iconic device. They’ll continue to sell the iPod Touch, its final model, while supplies last. The market for a dedicated music player ain’t what it used to be.

  • Twitter announces Copypasta Protocol. Kidding — it’s actually called the “Copypasta and Duplicate Content” policy. But we think protocol sounds better. Title aside, tweets found in violation will be unable to feature in Top Search and Trends results, and users responsible for sending the violating tweet will be deprioritized in the algorithm.

  • Instagram starts testing NFTs with creators this week. A limited number of creators, including Gary Vee, Jaden Smith, and a bunch of other people we’ve never heard of, will be able to share verified NFTs in their feed, Stories, or DMs. Functionality is limited to Ethereum-based NFTs, for now — but the company aims to support NFTs on Polygon, Solana, and Flow in the future.

Working With Clients

How Not to Fall On Your Sword

If you’ve been freelancing for a while, chances are you’ve screwed something up when working for a client.

And if you’re new to freelancing, well… give it time.

Either way, mistakes are inevitable.

They can’t be avoided.

But what most freelancers don’t realize is…

How you respond to a mistake can make or break your client relationship.

So own up to your screw ups.

If your sales letter went live with a typo in the headline…

Or you embedded the wrong video on a landing page…

Or you launched ads with a broken link…

Then take responsibility.

Don’t try to deflect the blame.

Clients will respect you for it, and — assuming the offense wasn’t firing-worthy — it will help to build trust and strengthen your relationship over the long term.


Working For Yourself

Find Your Yoda

The best thing about freelancing is that you can teach yourself the basics of almost any skill for free online.

Unfortunately, that’s also the worst part about freelancing.

Why?

Because you’ll often pick up a lot of bad habits along the way.

Things you’ll need to unlearn in order to progress and eventually master your craft.

That’s why finding a mentor is so important.

It may not make sense to look for one at the very beginning of your journey…

But once you’ve got a few paying clients and steady work coming in…

You should be looking for someone to learn from.

There’s a reason Tony Robbins says “the fastest way to achieve success is to model it”…

Because finding someone who can show you the way and help you avoid common pitfalls will shortcut your learning curve.


Tools We Love

Cut Back on Endless Email Chains and Pointless Zooms

Efficiency is key when communicating with clients.

If you went back and forth via email or jumped on Zoom every time a client had a question…

You’d never get any work done.

Good thing you don’t have to.

That’s because SnagIt lets you quickly record and share videos of your screen so you can add context and communicate efficiently with both clients and colleagues.

It also helps you screenshot ads, emails, and sales pages for your swipe file…

So you don’t have to start from scratch on your next project.

If you’re looking to streamline your freelance workflow…

Sign up for a free trial of SnagIt today.


Quote of the Day

“Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work.”

Stephen King