🤑 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


📲 Is TikTok a national security threat?

Happy Monday! This is your friendly reminder that you can’t control circumstances, only how you react to them.

Mentioned in today’s newsletter: TikTok, Instagram, LinkedIn, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Plus what we’d do if we had to restart our freelance business from scratch, diversifying your client & income streams, and a common retargeting mistake even seasoned advertisers make.

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes and 47 seconds


Making the Rounds

  • Leaked audio reveals U.S. TikTok user data accessed from China. The recordings of 80 internal meetings exposed multiple instances where U.S. employees lacked the permission or knowledge to access local user data without help from Chinese colleagues, and to a Master Admin in Beijing who apparently had “access to everything” — disclosures that amplify fears about TikTok’s potential threat to national security.
  • Instagram tests new full-screen mode to compete with TikTok. Members of the test group will see videos full-screen in the feed, mirroring the user experience on TikTok (but hopefully without the foreign data breach that comes with it).

  • FBI warns of cryptocurrency fraud schemes on LinkedIn. Fraudsters gain trust by directing victims to legitimate investing sites first, then convince them to move to a fake site where their assets can be drained. The World Wide Web can be a dangerous place. Stay safe out there.

Working With Clients

What We’d Do if We Lost it All and Had to Start Over

Hypothetical scenario:

We lost it all — skills, clients, connections, crypto portfolio, testimonials, etc…

What would we do to rebuild our freelance biz as fast as possible?

Here’s the gameplan:

STEP 1: Pick one high-income skill

High-income skills give you proximity to the sale.

This means your work has a direct impact on whether someone buys or not.

And the closer you are to the sale, the more money you can make.

Our top suggestions:

  • Copywriting
  • Paid ads
  • Remote sales
  • Graphic design

Choose the one that aligns most with your personality (introverted vs extroverted) and strengths (creativity vs analytical).

STEP 2: Daily study & practice

The next step is to map out a daily plan to study and practice your high-income skill.

Aim to spend at least one hour a day on this.

For example:

  • Read a sales letter
  • Write an email
  • Find an ad to include in your swipe file
  • Design a IG story for your favorite brand

Daily practice is the fastest path to mastery.

STEP 3: Pick one client acquisition channel and go all in

There are two main ways to get clients:

  • Freelance platforms / job boards
  • Cold outreach

Each has its pros and cons…

But we’re partial to freelancing platforms.

Why?

Because we believe in going where the paying clients are when you’re just starting out.

These are people looking to hire ASAP.

But cold outreach works too.

Either way, pick one and spend at least an hour a day on it until you’ve landed your first client.

Then rinse and repeat until your roster is full.

BONUS STEP: Diversify

There are a few ways to diversify your freelance business and income once you’ve established a baseline level of security:

  • Build an audience on social media
  • Promote other people’s products
  • Create your own digital products
  • Start a side business

Keep reading for more on how to do this 👇


Working For Yourself

Diversifying Your Client & Income Streams

People follow leaders, not experts.

That’s why creating content on social media is so important for freelancers…

Because content creation is leadership.

And even if you’re not an A-List service provider with a track record full of big wins…

Sharing your perspective on social can help establish credibility and authority…

Which can lead to lucrative deals you may not have landed otherwise.

You never know who’s watching.

But here’s an important piece of advice related to our “start from scratch” plan above:

Pick one social media platform and go all in on it.

Don’t try to be on Twitter, LinkedIn, TikTok, and Instagram all at once.

Each platform has their nuances…

And unless you’ve got 2-4 hours you can dedicate to creating content every day…

The sacrifice isn’t worth it.

So take the time to learn the ins and outs of your platform of choice.

As an added bonus, once you’ve built a following and created some top-performing pieces of content…

You can easily repurpose them on other platforms.

For example, Dickie Bush recently shared these impressive results just from posting his top 50 tweets and threads on LinkedIn.

Moral of the story:

Focus on getting traction one platform at a time.

Then move on to conquer the next one.


From The Paid Ads Gig

Avoid Making This Retargeting Mistake

Retargeting is a key part of any paid ads strategy.

Even in a post-iOS 14 world.

But there’s one common mistake we see even experienced advertisers making with their retargeting strategy:

Not retargeting people to a different offer.

If someone sees your ad, clicks on it, hits your lander, but doesn’t opt-in or buy…

Retargeting them with same offer again and again amounts to saying:

Hey, I know you decided you didn’t want this the first time you saw it… but how about now??”

Can this approach produce *some* results?

Yes.

But as a skilled media buyer, you can do better…

By retargeting them to a different offer (and ideally, one that lowers the commitment.)

For example:

  • Retargeting ecom buyers with a free + shipping offer
  • Retargeting info product buyers with a quickstart guide
  • Retargeting SaaS buyers with free 7-day trial
  • Retargeting coaching clients with a low-ticket group challenge

Presenting them with a new offer creates a “reason why” for your ad…

And increases the chance they’ll take action.


Quote of the Day

“Life is very short and anxious for those who forget the past, neglect the present, and fear the future.”

Seneca


👑 Ad market empresarios

Happy Wednesday! Did you catch the Strawberry Supermoon last night? We normally jump at the chance to observe celestial phenomena, but it was a school night after all. So these pics will have to do.

Mentioned in today’s edition: Amazon, Meta, Google, TikTok, Alibaba, Apple, Twitter, and Elon Musk. Plus what NOT to do when you make a mistake, a scary stat for anyone working at a desk, and an apple a day for media buyers.

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes and 9 seconds


Making the Rounds

  • 53% of all global ad revenues in 2021 went to just 5 tech companies. Faithful Gig readers can probably guess 4 of last year’s ad market empresarios: Amazon, Meta, Google, and Bytedance (TikTok) —  with Chinese firm Alibaba rounding out the list.
  • $100M settlement finalized in class-action case against Apple’s app store. The suit was originally filed in 2019 by developers who claimed Apple’s 30% fee was an abuse of market power. But now app developers will have the option to contact users by phone or email about alternate payment options.

  • Elon Musk set to field questions at Twitter all-hands meeting tomorrow. It’s the first time employees will get to hear from their prospective new owner. We predict details of the Q&A will leak to the press approximately 4.2 minutes after it concludes, so stay tuned for more.

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

The Force is Strong With This One

Spoiler alert: sitting for 5+ hours a day isn’t good for you.

According to Stanford neurobiologist Dr. Andrew Huberman, sitting for 5 hours or more per day is enough to erase the benefits of doing 180 minutes of cardio per week.

Fortunately, you can use a standing desk to avoid sitting for so long…

But one thing you can’t avoid?

Typing and mousing all day long.

That’s why it’s so important to have a daily strength and stretching routine for your hands and wrists.

Luckily, our friends at GMB have got you covered with this excellent tutorial on how to keep your wrists healthy and injury free.


From The Paid Ads Gig

One Ad a Day Keeps the Low ROAS Away

Coming up with killer ad ideas doesn’t always require creative genius.

You just have to be savvy enough to save a great ad when you see one in the wild.

Add one new ad to your swipe file every day and you’ll never lack for creative ideas.

Whether it’s going to the Facebook Ad Library and checking in on your favorite advertisers (because you do keep a list of them, right?)…

Or simply grabbing a screenshot when you see a killer ad in your news feed…. 

It only takes a few minutes each day.

Get yourself a tool like SnagIt and/or the GoFullPage Chrome extension and you’re all set.


Quote of the Day

“Intelligence without ambition is a bird without wings.”

Salvador Dali


👀 Privacy state of mind

Happy Monday! Another pole position, another race loss for Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc in Baku yesterday. Meanwhile, Jurassic World: Dominion topped expectations with a $143M domestic opening.

Mentioned in today’s newsletter: Facebook, AdBlock, Gen Z, Ghostery, Google Chrome, and YouTube Premium. Plus why new client onboarding matters, the #1 attribute of high-performers, and a copywriting tip that would get you an F in college.

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes and 20 seconds


Making the Rounds

  • Ad industry pushes back against federal opt-in privacy proposal. The bipartisan proposal would prevent companies from tracking users online without their explicit consent. 
  • Facebook facing steep drop offs in user activity. As Gen Z flocks to Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok, eMarketer is projecting Facebook’s adult users will only average 30 minutes per day on the platform this year, down 7% compared to 2021.

  • Chrome planning to end support for legacy extension platform. Popular ad-blocking extensions like AdBlock and Ghostery may no longer work as well — if they can even make the transition to the new platform in the first place. Could this be Google’s top secret plan to juice YouTube Premium subscriptions?

Working With Clients

Is Your Onboarding Process Making New Clients Seasick?

What’s the most high-stakes aspect of working with clients?

A) The sales process
B) Submitting your work for approval
C) Seeing how your work performs
D) Getting paid

Answer:

None of the above.

The most high-stakes aspect of working with clients is the onboarding process.

That’s because the onboarding process sets the tone for the rest of your work together, including what expectations they have, and how they perceive your work.

In fact, according to ZenDesk, 62% of B2B customers buy again after a good customer service experience.

But unfortunately, most freelancers don’t have a structured onboarding process in place.

So new clients are stuck feeling like they’re prepping to cross the Atlantic in a rubber dinghy…

Instead of a $40M yacht that will get them safely and smoothly to their final destination.

If you want to give your clients clarity and confidence that the project is going to be a smashing success, develop a rock-solid onboarding process.

This should include:

  • Signing an official agreement
  • Filling out any worksheets + background docs you need to start the project
  • Getting access to any software tools, ad accounts, shared folders, etc
  • Discussion of timeline, budget, project expectations
  • A kickoff call to review and make sure everything is in order before you begin

If your onboarding process could do with a little bulking up, share the newsletter with just 3 friends and we’ll send you the Digital Marketer’s Template Toolkit — a bundle of worksheets for new clients to fill out so you can extract all the information you need to knock the project out of the park.


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 etc

Then do it.

Prove to yourself you are in control.

And save the excuses for later.


From The Copywriting Gig

Your English Teacher Wouldn’t Approve

Good news for anyone who couldn’t stand studying Shakespeare:

The art and science of writing words that sell has nothing to do with what you learned in English class.

In fact, it breaks pretty much all the rules.

Some key points to focus on:

  • Keep paragraphs short (1-2 lines)
  • Avoid using big words (3 syllables or less)
  • Ellipses are your friend

It may feel funny at first…

But if you want to sell more stuff, train yourself to write conversationally and in plain English.

Looking to speed up the process? Put your copy through Hemingway before submitting it.


Quote of the Day

“Ambition is a dream with a V8 engine.”

Elvis Presley


💦 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


⚠️ Tesla job cuts

Happy Monday! On this day in 1944, Allied troops stormed the beaches at Normandy, marking the beginning of the end of World War 2.

The oldest known living U.S. veteran of WWII was Lawrence Brooks, who died this past January at the ripe old age of 112. When asked about the secret to his unusually long life, he replied “be nice to people.” Amen to that 🙏

Now let’s get you caught up on what’s happening…


Making the Rounds

  • Ad spend on search ads for ecommerce in the U.S. set to double by 2026. Intelligence from eMarketer projects 55.72 billion in ecom search ad spend in 2026, compared to 27.10 billion this year.

  • Elon Musk announces plan to cut 10% of Tesla jobs, share price drops 8.5%. He wants to cut staff due to a “super bad feeling” about the economy. Musk later walked back his remarks, saying the 10% cut would only apply to salaried staff and not factory workers. But that didn’t stop the stock price from plunging 8.5% on Friday. Conflicting analysis on whether we’re headed for a recession or not continues to fly…

  • Facebook and Instagram Reels can now be up to 90 seconds long. It’s a 30 second increase from the previous limit of 60 seconds, mirroring a similar update from TikTok, as they scramble to compete with the short-form category king. More on this in today’s Paid Ads section.

Working With Clients

What Makes a Great Hook, Email, or Ad Angle

Mainstream wisdom is everywhere.

Your audience is bombarded with the same advice all the time.

– cut back on lattes
– eat more vegetables
– go to bed earlier
– etc etc

But what sets you (or your client) apart from everyone else is where they disagree.

So ask yourself: what controversial opinions can I highlight?

What mainstream advice do I (or my client) DISAGREE with?

That’s often what makes for the best hooks, emails, or ad angles.

Now, a caveat:

You need to be able to make a logical case for why you disagree.

Don’t just disagree to be a contrarian or to grab attention… unless you can back it up.


Working For Yourself

Sorry, I’m OOO

The numbers are in:

For many of us, working from home often means working (a lot) more than 8 hours a day.

And with notifications pouring in from dawn ‘till dusk (and sometimes even long past then)…

Maintaining more than a shred of work/life balance is a constant battle.

So here’s a simple tip to help you stay stane:

Use “work speak” to set effective boundaries.

Since your home and your office may be the same place, being “out of office” doesn’t have to apply only when you’re away from the computer. 

It can simply mean you’re unavailable.

Whether that’s because you’re doing deep work on a project or going deep into the latest season of Bridgerton.

And “meetings” don’t always have to be work-related — they can also be calls to catch up with family or friends.

Bottom line is:

Many people have an easier time understanding (and respecting) your boundaries when you use the right language to set them.


From The Paid Ads Gig

A TikTok Lead, a Facebook Lead, and a YouTube Lead Walk Into a Bar…

Advertisers have got plenty of options when it comes to running paid traffic on social these days:

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
  • TikTok
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter

Some are a helluva lot more popular than others these days (*cough* TikTok *cough*)…

But what many paid ad experts don’t realize is:

Different platforms produce different kinds of leads.

TikTok may be the ad platform du jour…

But because it emphasizes short-form content, TikTok leads are naturally less qualified compared to leads from Facebook or YouTube.

Now that doesn’t mean running ads on TikTok won’t work for you…

In fact, we know lots of people who are having success there…

Largely because the traffic is so much cheaper.

Cost per click is typically much lower than Facebook, YouTube, or LinkedIn.

So the economics still work out.

Especially if you’re selling ecom products or low-ticket impulse buys that don’t require a ton of context or qualification before making a purchase.

But if you’re selling a high-ticket product or service? 

Not so much.

Ultimately, this is one of the reasons why Facebook is still our weapon of choice when it comes to running paid ads…

Because the amount of context people can get about your offer between long-form copy AND video is hard to beat.

Moral of the story is:

Not all leads are generated equal.

So keep that in mind when crafting your paid ad strategy.


Quote of the Day

“There is no failure. Only feedback.”

Robert Allen


🤼 The battle for livestream supremacy

Happy Thursday! Welcome to The Gig — your daily fix of freelance news, tips, and memes. If you know someone else who’d enjoy the newsletter, use your referral link at the bottom of today’s email to share it with them.

Now here’s the latest…


Making the Rounds

  • TikTok launches LIVE subscriptions. The new program will allow viewers to subscribe to livestreaming creators for a monthly fee, just like Twitch. Beta users have said the pricing is similar to Twitch’s as well.
     
  • Meta announces update to Ad Library insights. Soon you’ll be able to see more information on advertisers running social issue, electoral, or political ads, including the total number of ads run and what audiences they targeted.

  • Social media censorship law blocked by Florida court of appeals. The law aimed to essentially prevent social media platforms from moderating content, similarly to the one currently being appealed in Texas. Were either one to become law, it could trigger tectonic shifts in the social media landscape.

Working With Clients

Big Marketing Budgets Got Us Like…

If you’re on the hunt for the perfect freelance client, here’s a quick tip to narrow your search:

Bigger companies can afford to spend more on marketing.

You may have an easier time convincing a local business to hire you if you’re brand new…

But big companies always make better clients.

Why?

Three reasons:

1 – Their products and services have already been validated by the market (people want them)

2 – They usually have lots of existing assets for you to work with (copy, videos, past promotions, etc)

3 – They’re used to spending money on marketing (and freelancers)

Pro tip: put together custom sample pieces for every big client you’re pitching free of charge.

This delivers value up front and will help you immediately stand out.


Working For Yourself

If Only 2FA Was This Easy

Managing lots of logins comes with the territory.

But in addition to keeping track of usernames and passwords, you’ll often have to enable 2-factor authentication, which means getting a verification code via text or email.

Problem is…

If you’re traveling, you may not be able to receive a text to your normal phone number.

And if the account is in your client’s name, you’ll need to wait for them to send you the 2FA code in order to access it.

Either way, it can jam up your workflow bigtime.

That’s why we recommend setting up an authenticator app like Google Authenticator.

All you have to do is scan a QR code, and then you’ll be able to quickly get a 2FA code from anywhere in the world.


Tools We Love

WTF Am I Looking At?

Even if you’re not a graphic designer or funnel builder…

If you work in marketing, chances are you’ll need to map out funnels for clients from time to time. 

Good news is, there are lots of tools out there to help you do that. 

Bad news is, most of them suck. 

They’re clunky, laggy, and not intuitive at all. 

That’s why we love Whimsical. It’s fast, free, and easy to use. 

So whether you’re using it as a part of a proposal for a prospect…

On a kickoff call with a new client…

Or to collaborate with a contractor to make sure they build the next funnel properly…

Whimsical can help you get it done.


Quote of the Day

“I’ve found that luck is quite predictable. If you want more luck, take more chances. Be more active. Show up more often.”

Brian Tracy


📱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


👴 TikTok users are growing up

Happy Wednesday! Today is International Museum Day. To celebrate their first anniversary, Cairo’s two International Airport Museums are receiving transit visitors free of charge. And yes — there are mummies. 

In other news, here’s the latest…


Making the Rounds

  • 40% of TikTok users are over 30. Advertisers haven’t just been blowing smoke about TikTok ads: a new survey by the Pew Research Center found 40% of TikTok users are at least 30 years old, and 14% are 50+. No wonder #TikTokMadeMeBuyIt is a thing.
     
  • Illinois users sue Snapchat over faceprint storage. Two Illinois residents have filed a class-action complaint against the social media platform alleging they store face scans within the Lenses app. The suit is made possible by a 2008 state law requiring companies to notify users about the collection of biometric info, which has led to several other pending suits against Meta. Who knew Illinoisans were so litigious when it comes to social media?

  • Apple users can now send and receive money from their Wallet app. The Apple Cash update is included with the launch of iOS 15.5, along with a handful of new Apple Podcasts features.

Working With Clients

You Could Be Waiting a While For That Referral (Unless…)

The best clients always come from referrals.

They’re typically more qualified, more trusting, and more fun to work with.

But most freelancers have never given a second thought to incentivizing them properly.

So, what’s the answer?

Create an attractive referral bonus for existing clients.

A cash bounty is the simplest way to do it…

But you can also get creative if you want to spice things up:

  • Gift boxes
  • WFH upgrades
  • Dinner at their favorite restaurant
  • Etc

Bottom line: if you want more referrals, give your clients a good reason to send them your way.


Working For Yourself

Don’t Forget the Basics

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.


From The Paid Ads Gig

23 Sentences to Make Your Paid Ads More Profitable

1. Don’t test away all your profits

2. Retarget warm audiences to lower-commitment offers.

3. Build separate funnels for each traffic source.

4. The most important part of a video ad is the first 5 seconds.

5. The most important part of a Facebook ad is the first 125 characters.

6. If you want to get attention, disagree with mainstream wisdom.

7. Study the advertisers in your niche who spend the most money.

8. Reposition your offer to reach new segments of the market.

9. Create a swipe file of all the best ads you see in the wild.

10. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is not touch anything.

11. Analyze leading metrics (CPM, CTR, CPC) to find out where the boat is leaking.

12. Preview your ads and landing pages on desktop and mobile before you launch.

13. Memes make for great creatives but can also get you banned, so be careful.

14. Winning ads can run for much longer than you think.

15. Run low-budget retargeting campaigns on other platforms to capture more of the top-of-funnel interest you’re generating.

16. First-mover advantage is real, so don’t ignore new platforms.

17. Compliance gets stricter as a platform matures.

18. Low CPMs usually mean junk traffic.

19. Manual bidding still works.

20. Thinking outside the box is how you create breakthroughs.

21. Don’t change too many things at once.

22. Always test the link.

23. Paid ads can’t fix a bad offer.


Quote of the Day

“We don’t develop courage by being happy every day. We develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity.”

Barbara De Angelis


🤝 50/50 rev share deal for creators

Happy Friday! Over 300,000+ race fans are expected to descend on Miami for its first ever Formula 1 race this weekend. And with Sunday’s forecast at 91 degrees, it’s gonna be a hot one. Here’s a fun fact: drivers can lose as much as 10-12 pounds over the course of a hot race like this one.

If you’re looking to catch any of the action, practice begins today. Qualifying takes place tomorrow, and then the race starts on Sunday at 3:30 PM EST.

Here’s the latest… 


Making the Rounds

  • TikTok offers 50/50 rev share deal to creators. The platform announced a new ad placement called TikTok Pulse, which allows brands to run their ads next to videos that rank in the top 4%. Creators will need at least 100k followers to qualify, but they’ll get a 50/50 split of the ad revenue.

  • Will commercial users be forced to pay for Twitter? Elon Musk hinted recently that there may be a “slight cost for commercial/government users” to use Twitter once his takeover deal closes.

  • Advertisers say TikTok ads > Facebook ads. Traffic to TikTok’s ads manager shot up almost 200% in Q1 compared to 2021, according to Similarweb. Facebook saw a 22% increase, while Twitter only got a meager 3% bump. Consumers are the ones leading the way, though: TikTok Android users reportedly spent an average of 1h22min per day on the platform in March 🤯

Working With Clients

How to: Fire an Annoying Client

So you’ve got an annoying client.

They’re blowing you up with emails, Slack DMs, and voice notes left and right…

Every single request is urgent…

And no matter how hard you try, nothing you do seems to be good enough for them.

In other words, it’s time to let them go.

But how, exactly? What’s the best way to fire an annoying client?

Well, for starters, it’s never easy…

Even if you’re already past the point of wishing a pox upon their house.

Send them an email or DM that hits these key points:

– I’m not the right person to help you achieve XYZ
– I hope you’ve gotten some good value from our time together
– Happy to get on a call to discuss if need be
– Still believe in your mission/product
– Will be rooting for you to succeed

The reason to send them a message instead of getting on a call right away is to give them a chance to digest it…

And (hopefully) eliminate the need for a call.

But this way, even if they insist on one, you’ve already got the hard part out of the way.

And if you have a 30-day cancellation policy in your contract, you can always offer to let them out of it if you’re really eager to end the relationship.


Working For Yourself

Don’t Shoot the Messenger

Part of being a marketer or entrepreneur is a steady stream of “aha” moments where you go…

Why didn’t I start doing this sooner?!?”

Such as…

  • Retargeting non-buyers
  • Adding a phone number to your opt in
  • Creating a referral program for your newsletter
  • Etc

Another one is upgrading the size of your laptop screen or computer monitor.

Now, if you’re traveling, that’s one thing.

But if you’re spending 40 hours a week working on an 11 or 13-inch screen…

You’re not doing yourself any favors.

In fact, you’re making things much harder on your eyes than they need to be.

Squinting causes your eyes to tire quickly…

And craning your neck to look down or get closer to the screen can lead to stiffness and soreness…

Both of which can lead to tension headaches.

So, our recommendation?

Grab yourself two curved 24-inch monitors  (setup permitting, of course).

Bonus points if you get monitor arms so they actually sit at eye level.

You (and your eyes) will thank us later.

And if you’d like to learn more about just how much the vision system affects our mind and body, listen to this eye-opening podcast with neurobiologist Dr. Andrew Huberman.

(sorry, couldn’t resist 😉


From The Copywriting Gig

How to Write 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


Quote of the Day

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.”

Thomas Edison