📲 90-second Reels

Happy Monday! Welcome back to The Gig, the morning paper for freelancers looking to acquire high-income skills and build a lucrative client business.

Mentioned in today’s newsletter: Facebook Reels, LinkedIn, and cover letters. Plus 3 ways to grow your freelance business, and the 5-part storytelling framework behind Hollywood movies.

Read time: 3 minutes and 39 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Max length for Facebook Reels increased to 90 seconds. The move follows a similar length increase for Instagram Reels, as Meta, YouTube, and TikTok continue to copy each other in the battle for short-form video supremacy.
  • LinkedIn launches new collaborative articles feature powered by AI. The surging social platform wants more people to write articles, so it’s attempting to jumpstart the article creation process with AI-powered conversation starters.
  • Freelance writer reveals unusual cover letter that landed him a gig with The Motley Fool. Despite having no writing experience, Tony Dong managed to land himself a freelance gig with a major financial publisher thanks to his unusual cover letter. Pattern interrupts for the win!

Working With Clients

3 Ways to Grow Your Freelance Business

If you’re looking to grow your freelance business…

There are only 3 ways to do it:

1) Get more clients
2) Get each client to spend more per project
3) Get more repeat business from existing clients

That’s it.

Most freelancers tend to focus exclusively on getting more clients and raising their rates.

But don’t forget…

The easiest sale to make is always to a previous client or customer.

Why?

Because they’ve already worked with you and are (presumably) happy with what they got.

So make a point to check in with past clients 30-60 days after you complete a project.

Ask them how things are going and see if they need help with anything.

Sometimes, landing another gig is as easy as that.

Even if they don’t need help in that moment, this keeps you top of mind and demonstrates proactivity.

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a great domain name

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From The Copywriting Gig

The 5-Part Storytelling Framework Behind Hollywood Movies

You may be familiar with traditional copywriting frameworks like P-A-S and A-I-D-A.

But here’s another proven framework you can use to tell stories that sell:

I-P-C-C-R.

This is the exact same storytelling formula used by almost all Hollywood movies.

This is how it works:

I – Inciting Incident

Think of this as the hook.

It’s the ONE event that sets the rest of the story in motion.

In the case of a product or service…

It’s usually a high-stakes “trigger moment” that brings the problem to the forefront.

– getting dumped
– losing your job
– having your card declined
– ripping your pants in public
– etc

P – Progressive Complications

The inciting incident creates an imbalance in the hero’s life…

So they try to restore balance (aka solve the problem).

But, ironically, this only takes them further from their goal.

This is where the prospect explores other solutions, but continues to fail.

– tries keto, atkins, IF and whole30 but doesn’t lose weight
– tries trading stocks, crypto, and FX but loses all their money
– tries paid ads but doesn’t get clients

C – Crisis

This is the hero’s “do or die” decision point.

Should they continue? 

Or are they finally ready to give up and abandon themselves to their fate?

– being overweight
– being broke
– being single
– going back to their 9 to 5
– etc

C – Climax

The climax is the OUTCOME of the crisis decision.

This is typically the “moment of discovery” where they stumble across the new solution.

– new diet / training program / special nutrient
– new trading / investment strategy
– new approach to landing clients
– etc

R – Resolution

The climax brings the story’s conflict to an end.

The resolution is what follows.

The prospect achieves their desired outcome and all the benefits that come with it:

– getting the body of their dreams

– generating consistent income

– landing top-tier clients

– etc

If you’re writing a story-focused ad, email, landing page, or video script, give this storytelling framework a try.

Based on the $26 billion dollars in global movie sales last year, it’s safe to say it works.

Gig Alerts

Looking for clients? These freelance jobs were posted on Upwork in the last 24 hours:

NOTE: We only share job postings from Upwork. We’ve found it to be the most trustworthy platform with the highest-quality clients. 

Furthermore, job postings must be for high-income skills like copywriting, media buying, funnel building, graphic design, remote closing, etc in order to qualify.

Quote of the Day

“Money doesn’t bring happiness and creativity. Your creativity and happiness brings money.”

— Sam Rosen

Top performers focus on inputs, not outputs.

Prioritize the process and the results will take care of themselves.

(Share this on Twitter)

Tools of the Trade

Looking to upgrade your toolkit? Here are some of our favorite tools we use to powerful our freelance business:

  • ConvertKit — Email marketing for creators. Simple, easy to use, and very cost-effective.
  • Kinsta — Super fast website hosting trusted by 25,000+ small businesses.
  • Fireflies — AI note-taker that can record client calls + create searchable transcripts.
  • Krisp — Eliminates echoes and background noise on calls and meetings using AI.
  • Wise — Unbeatable rates on currency conversions. Saves you a ton of money if you’re an international freelancer.

* Some of these are affiliate links. This means we may receive a small commission if you sign up for a paid subscription (at no extra cost to you.)

💲 Freelance pricing quick start guide

Happy Friday! Season 5 of Drive to Survive comes out this weekend, so know what we’ll be doing this weekend. And if Formula 1’s not your bucket of bolts, Netflix has recently released two other documentaries from the D2S production team you might like: Break Point (about tennis) and Full Swing (about golf).

Mentioned in today’s newsletter: Skype, TikTok, and 4-day work weeks. Plus the freelance pricing quick start guide, and one readability rule when writing long-form copy.

Read time: 3 minutes and 35 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Microsoft adds AI-powered Bing features to Skype. Bing has entered the chat: Skype users will soon be able to add Bing to conversations and group chats to leverage its AI-powered search features.
  • 90% of U.K. businesses in 4-day work week trial plan to continue after study ends. In one of the biggest trials to date, 61 businesses in the U.K. agreed to give employees a paid day off and shorten the workweek to 4 days. Many saw significant improvements in performance and productivity. 18% said they planned to make the change permanent.
  • TikTok launches new Top Products dashboard. The dashboard lets advertisers see performance data for a variety of product categories. This is a gold mine if you’re running TikTok ads.

Working For Clients

The Freelance Pricing Quick Start Guide

Pricing yourself as a freelancer can be tricky.

Most of us tend to undervalue ourselves…

Then sprinkle in a strong aversion to sales, and you’ve got a recipe for disaster.

So here’s a quick primer on how to tackle pricing:

STEP 1: Charge by project or deliverable (not by the hour)

Billing by the hour incentivizes you to work slowly.

Who wants that?

Switching to a per-project or per-deliverable rate is a win/win for you and the client:

There are no unexpected surprises for them if the job takes longer…

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

STEP 2: Always ask for a deposit

This helps weed out crappy clients.

A deposit can be anywhere from 10-50%.

But as a gesture of good faith, we recommend waiting to invoice for the second half until the project is done to the client’s satisfaction.

(retainer deals notwithstanding)

STEP 3: Explore performance-based deals

Once you’ve established a track record of making money for clients, it’s time to explore performance-based deals.

To be clear — this step is optional.

You don’t need it to earn a great income.

Four clients at $3k/each is $12,000.

But if you’ve developed a solid relationship with a client, and have good proximity to the sale through writing copy, running ads, or closing deals for them…

You’re likely in position to initiate this conversation.

For example:

  • Media buyers can charge a % of ad spend
  • Copywriters can charge a % of revenue
  • Sales reps can charge a % of cash collected

Avoid profit-based agreements if you can.

There are all kinds of accounting jiu-jitsu tricks a business owner can employ to lower profits on paper and starve you of your commissions.

So you’re much better off working out a deal based on revenue.

Now, we could write a whole book on the topic of pricing…

But the bottom line is:

The more proof you can rack up (results for clients), the more you can charge.

So focus on getting great at what you do, overdelivering for clients, and collecting that proof…

And the rest will take care of itself.

From The Copywriting Gig

Follow This Readability Rule if You’re Writing Long-Form Copy

Yes, people still read long-form sales letters in 2023.

But that doesn’t mean you can afford to ignore readability when writing one.

And while liberal use of subheads and line breaks is important…

There’s another trick to making your sales page read fast:

Breaking up the copy with one image per full screen length.

Because not only do images help bring your copy to life…

But they support the “skim track.”

In other words…

Between your subheads and images, a reader *should* be able to grasp the basics of your entire sales message.

So keep this readability rule in mind next time you’re writing a long-form piece.

Your audience will often thank you with more sales.

Gig Alerts

Looking for clients? These freelance jobs were posted on Upwork in the last 24 hours:

NOTE: We only share job postings from Upwork. We’ve found it to be the most trustworthy platform with the highest-quality clients. 

Furthermore, job postings must be for high-income skills like copywriting, media buying, funnel building, graphic design, remote closing, etc in order to qualify.

In Case You Missed It:

Quote of the Day

“Never assume because you put more time into something, it’s getting better”

— Rick Rubin

Time doesn’t always equal quality.

Sometimes the first draft is the best one.


Share this on Twitter 🐦

Tools of the Trade

Looking to upgrade your toolkit? Here are some of our favorite tools we use to powerful our freelance business:

  • ConvertKit — Email marketing for creators. Simple, easy to use, and very cost-effective.
  • Kinsta — Super fast website hosting trusted by 25,000+ small businesses.
  • Fireflies — AI note-taker that can record client calls + create searchable transcripts.
  • Krisp — Eliminates echoes and background noise on calls and meetings using AI.
  • Wise — Unbeatable rates on currency conversions. Saves you a ton of money if you’re an international freelancer.

* Some of these are affiliate links. This means we may receive a small commission if you sign up for a paid subscription (at no extra cost to you.)

💡 Sticky ideas

Happy Monday! It’s President’s Day in the U.S. and Family Day in Canada. If you’re off today, enjoy the R&R. You deserve it.

Mentioned in today’s holiday edition: Shopify, Bing, ChatGPT, and Twitter. Plus what all the top tier clients on Upwork are thinking, and the secret to an idea that sticks.

Read time: 2 minutes and 10 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Shopify cuts 320k hours worth of meetings. The ecommerce company slashed 12,000 calendar events in a single month, thanks in part to “no meeting Wednesdays.”
  • Bing and ChatGPT are a match made in heaven hell. Since launching its new-and-improved version infused with GPT-4, Bing’s AI chatbot has been lying, insulting, and trying to manipulate users. Sounds like there’s still one or two more kinks left to work out.
  • Cannabis ads now approved on Twitter. There’s plenty of fine print though: advertisers will need to be pre-approved before they can run any traffic, they’ll only be able to run traffic in states where cannabis is legal, and they’ll only be able to promote a direct offer if it’s for topical, hemp-derived CBD products with less than 0.3% THC.

Newsletter Shout Out

Looking For New Podcasts?
Check Out Find That Pod

Finding great podcasts is hard. Subscribe to Find That Pod, a weekly podcast recommendation newsletter with 5 great new shows to discover each week. 

Working With Clients

What All The Top-Tier Clients On Upwork Are Thinking

Upwork has 5M+ client accounts and 100,000+ open jobs on a daily basis.

Here are 5 tips to help you land more clients:

-Check every day

-Ask for reviews

-Submit relevant samples

-Apply for older jobs with no hires

-Create custom samples if need be

Share this on Twitter 🐦

From The Copywriting Gig

The Secret to an Idea That Sticks

Repetition is a powerful tool to drive your point home.

The more often someone sees your message, the more likely they’ll remember it.

So don’t say 1,000 different things once…

Learn to say the same thing 1,000 different ways.

Share this on Twitter 🐦

Gig Alerts

Looking for clients? These freelance jobs were posted on Upwork in the last 24 hours:

NOTE: We only share job postings from Upwork. We’ve found it to be the most trustworthy platform with the highest-quality clients. 

Furthermore, job postings must be for high-income skills like copywriting, media buying, funnel building, graphic design, remote closing, etc in order to qualify.

Quote of the Day

“Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it.” 

— Henry David Thoreau


Share this on Twitter 🐦

Tools of the Trade

Looking to upgrade your toolkit? Here are some of our favorite tools we use to powerful our freelance business:

  • ConvertKit — Email marketing for creators. Simple, easy to use, and very cost-effective.
  • Kinsta — Super fast website hosting trusted by 25,000+ small businesses.
  • Fireflies — AI note-taker that can record client calls + create searchable transcripts.
  • Krisp — Eliminates echoes and background noise on calls and meetings using AI.
  • Wise — Unbeatable rates on currency conversions. Saves you a ton of money if you’re an international freelancer.

* Some of these are affiliate links. This means we may receive a small commission if you sign up for a paid subscription (at no extra cost to you.)

🤏 Tiny copy tweak

Happy Friday! If you do any work with webinar funnels, make sure to check out yesterday’s episode of Inspector Lander. Inside, we audited a killer registration page example that definitely belongs in your swipe file.

Discussed in today’s newsletter: Mobile sales, Twitter Gold, and video ads. Plus how to say goodbye to impostor syndrome, and a tiny tweak to make your copy more believable.

Read time: 2 minutes and 6 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Mobile sales accounted for 38.4% of all digital commerce in Q4 of 2022. A new report from Comscore found mobile was responsible for $127.5 billion in sales in the final quarter of last year, up from $101 billion in Q4 of 2021. 
  • Twitter rumored to be planning a $1,000/mo price tag for gold check. The company has reportedly been reaching out to businesses to inform them of the price increase. 
  • Video ads now generate over 50% of revenue for all social media platforms. According to eMarketer, social video growth has exploded over the past several years, and is set to grow another 21.2% in 2023. File this one under #TikTokMadeMeDoIt. 

Working With Clients

Say Goodbye to Impostor Syndrome

Look professional on meetings and client calls.

In a world where sweats and a t-shirt are standard issue…

Not only does showing up dressed to impress tell clients you mean business…

It also keeps impostor syndrome in check.

Share this on Twitter 🐦

From The Copywriting Gig

Tiny Tweak to Make Your Copy More Believable

Round numbers trigger skepticism in copy.

That’s why specificity sells:

– 4.21X ROAS

– 179% increase

– Trusted by 3,364+ clients

Be specific if you want to be believed.

Share this on Twitter 🐦

Gig Alerts

Looking for clients? These freelance jobs were posted on Upwork in the last 24 hours:

NOTE: We only share job postings from Upwork. We’ve found it to be the most trustworthy platform with the highest-quality clients. Furthermore, job postings must be for high-income skills like copywriting, media buying, funnel building, graphic design, remote closing, etc in order to qualify.

In Case You Missed It:

Quote of the Day

“It doesn’t matter how many times you have failed. You only have to be right once.”

— Mark Cuban

Share this on Twitter 🐦

Tools of the Trade

Looking to upgrade your toolkit? Here are some of our favorite tools we use to powerful our freelance business:

  • ConvertKit — Email marketing for creators. Simple, easy to use, and very cost-effective.
  • Kinsta — Super fast website hosting trusted by 25,000+ small businesses.
  • Fireflies — AI note-taker that can record client calls + create searchable transcripts.
  • Krisp — Eliminates echoes and background noise on calls and meetings using AI.
  • Wise — Unbeatable rates on currency conversions. Saves you a ton of money if you’re an international freelancer.

* Some of these are affiliate links. This means we may receive a small commission if you sign up for a paid subscription (at no extra cost to you.)

🧲 Do this to become a client magnet

Happy Monday! RIP to the 450 cold subscribers we axed over the weekend. It wasn’t us — it was you. Keeping your email list clean and engaged is arguably the best thing you can do for deliverability. So, Primary tab here we come 📨

Discussed in today’s newsletter: Google, ChatGPT, Artifact, and Meta. Plus do this to become a client magnet, and the easiest way to make your sales copy sound more conversational.

Read time: 1 minute and 57 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Google is testing a ChatGPT-inspired homepage. The alternate homepage uses a chatbot called “Apprentice Bard” to deliver answers to questions in a conversational style.
  • Instagram co-founders launch new text app Artifact. Their goal is to create “TikTok for news,” with an algorithmically-suggested feed that doesn’t require you to follow anyone.
  • Meta unsure about sharing ad revenue with Reels creators. Now that Instagram’s TikTok clone is starting to pick up steam, the company is hesitant to ramp up ads and open up rev share to creators.

Working With Clients

Do This to Become a Client Magnet

Be mindful of the energy you bring to client interactions.

Enthusiasm is a superpower…

And clients will always gravitate towards people who are fun to work with.

Do your best to keep it good vibes only.

Share this on Twitter 🐦

From The Copywriting Gig

The Easiest Way to Make Your Sales Copy Sound More Conversational

Never write to a crowd.

Always write to ONE person instead.

Use personal pronouns like “you” and “your” to make the reader feel like you’re having a one-on-one conversation with them.

Share this on Twitter 🐦

Gig Alerts

Looking for clients? These freelance jobs were posted on Upwork in the last 24 hours:

NOTE: We only share job postings from Upwork. We’ve found it to be the most trustworthy platform with the highest-quality clients. Furthermore, job postings must be for high-income skills like copywriting, media buying, funnel building, graphic design, remote closing, etc in order to qualify.

Quote of the Day


“The best way to predict the future is to create it.”

— Peter Drucker

Share this on Twitter 🐦

Tools of the Trade

Looking to upgrade your toolkit? Here are some of our favorite tools we use to powerful our freelance business:

  • ConvertKit — Email marketing for creators. Simple, easy to use, and very cost-effective.
  • Kinsta — Super fast website hosting trusted by 25,000+ small businesses.
  • Fireflies — AI note-taker that can record client calls + create searchable transcripts.
  • Krisp — Eliminates echoes and background noise on calls and meetings using AI.
  • Wise — Unbeatable rates on currency conversions. Saves you a ton of money if you’re an international freelancer.

* Some of these are affiliate links. This means we may receive a small commission if you sign up for a paid subscription (at no extra cost to you.)

😄 1 simple trick to tickle their senses with the written word

Happy Wednesday! Dry January was decidedly *not* in effect over here at Gig HQ, but for those with more discipline than us, here’s a tasty way to break your fast.

Now, onto today’s agenda: Twitter, Microsoft, GitHub, OpenAI, and Instagram. Plus how not to take constructive feedback from clients, and one simple trick to tickle their senses with the written word.

Read time: 3 minutes and 11 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Twitter taking steps to become a payment processor. CEO Elon Musk has said in the past that he wants Twitter to become a “superapp” used for everything from messaging to paying your bills, similar to WeChat in China. And the company continues to take steps in that direction, as it’s begun applying for the regulatory licenses it would need to operate.
  • Microsoft, GitHub, and OpenAI ask for AI copyright lawsuit to be thrown out. The class action complaint, claiming GitHub’s Copilot violates copyright laws after being trained on publicly available code, is sure to be one of the first in a flood of suits centered on AI copyright concerns.
  • Instagram Notes now available worldwide. The new feature inside the world’s favorite photo-sharing app lets you add a 60-character text update to your profile.

Working With Clients

How Not to Take Constructive Feedback From Clients

What’s the easiest way to tell the difference between an amateur and a professional?

[A] Six-figure income
[B] Laundry list of testimonials
[C] Big audience on social media

Answer:

None of the above.

The easiest way to tell the difference between pros and amateurs is the ability to take constructive feedback.

It’s easy to get defensive when someone shares something critical with you…

In fact, for most folks, it’s the only way they know how to react.

But if you want to become world class at what you do…

You have to train your ability to receive constructive criticism and separate the signal from the noise.

This means:

  • Creating space to let the feedback in
  • Putting yourself in the other person’s shoes
  • Analyzing the feedback objectively
  • Identifying growth opportunities

And just to be clear…

Not all criticism qualifies as constructive.

(especially if it’s coming from a client who terrorizes your inbox and refuses to respect your boundaries)

But learning to receive feedback well — without getting defensive — and extract the lessons buried within…

Is the mark of a true professional.

From The Copywriting Gig

1 Simple Trick to Tickle Their Senses With the Written Word

Strong copy doesn’t just make you think…

It sends a shiver down your spine and triggers an itch you can’t scratch…

… Until you buy, that is 😉

That’s the power of using sensory language to engage the reader.

You should always be thinking about how you can tickle all five of their senses…

Which are:

  • Touch
  • Taste
  • Sight
  • Smell
  • Sound

Whether that means saying “showering” instead of “stimulating”…

“Thundering” instead of “shouting”…

Or “beefcake” instead of “hamburger”…

The more sensory receptors you can light up along the way…

The faster your reader’s credit card details will Scrooge McDuck themselves into your payment processor.

And if you’re looking for ways to integrate AI into your workflow, this is a great use case.

You can ask ChatGPT (or your favorite AI writing tool) to assemble a list of sensory language for a given topic in advance…

Or simply upload a draft, then ask it to spice up your copy with a bit more sensory goodness.

Gig Alerts

Looking for clients? These freelance jobs were posted on Upwork in the last 24 hours:

NOTE: We only share job postings from Upwork. We’ve found it to be the most trustworthy platform with the highest-quality clients. Furthermore, job postings must be for high-income skills like copywriting, media buying, funnel building, graphic design, remote closing, etc in order to qualify.

Quote of the Day

“Motivation is a fire from within. If someone else tries to light that fire under you, chances are it will burn very briefly.”

— Stephen R. Covey

Tools of the Trade

Looking to upgrade your toolkit? Here are some of our favorite tools we use to powerful our freelance business:

  • ConvertKit — Email marketing for creators. Simple, easy to use, and very cost-effective.
  • Kinsta — Super fast website hosting trusted by 25,000+ small businesses.
  • Fireflies — AI note-taker that can record client calls + create searchable transcripts.
  • Krisp — Eliminates echoes and background noise on calls and meetings using AI.
  • Wise Unbeatable rates on currency conversions. Saves you a ton of money if you’re an international freelancer.

* Some of these are affiliate links. This means we may receive a small commission if you sign up for a paid subscription (at no extra cost to you.)

📈 Defying gravity

Happy Friday! The second episode of our new video series, Inspector Lander, dropped yesterday. Did you watch it? Click here if you missed it. Then hit reply and let us know what you think.

Mentioned in today’s edition: TikTok, Meta, BuzzFeed, and CNET. Plus why upselling clients is doing them a favor, and one simple copy hack to squeeze out more conversions.

Read time: 2 minutes and 30 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Ad spend on TikTok defies gravity. Industry slowdown? Never heard of her. Big advertisers like VaynerMedia continue to ramp up ad spend on TikTok with no taper in sight.
  • Meta pays BuzzFeed for help with content. BuzzFeed, the former king of viral content thanks to its quizzes and listicles, is getting $10M from Meta to help creators make content for Facebook and Instagram.
  • CNET unleashes the AI kraken corrections. After being outed for publishing a slew of AI-generated articles, the company issued corrections on 41 of the 77 stories. Woops. Worth noting: they said the AI tool in question was not ChatGPT. 

Working With Clients

Why Upselling Clients is Doing Them a Favor

Most freelancers would rather get a root canal than take a sales call.

Let alone try to upsell an existing client.

But here’s a quick reframe to help you see things differently…

Once you’ve established a successful working relationship, you’re actually doing the client a favor by upselling them on more work or another project.

Why?

Not only are you helping them achieve their goals faster…

You’re also saving them valuable time and money they could end up risking on another spin at the freelancer roulette table.

You see, good people are hard to find…

And hiring can suck up a boatload of bandwidth for busy entrepreneurs.

So if you’re a trustworthy freelancer who delivers high-quality work…

Don’t feel sleazy or guilty about upselling.

Start seeing it as a service to clients instead.

Who knows…you may even learn to like it 😉

From The Copywriting Gig

1 Simple Copy Hack to Squeeze Out More Conversions

Want to know the easiest way to spot a junior copywriter?

Choppy transitions.

And in print, an avalanche of abruptness is a giant panda-sized problem, because if readers struggle to go from one graph to the next…

They’ll never make it to the bottom of the page and buy.

So if you want to squeeze out as many conversions as possible…

Make friends with these transition words and phrases:

  • But
  • However
  • Because
  • Here’s why
  • For example
  • Case in point
  • With that said
  • Let me explain
  • What this means is
  • Here’s what I mean
  • So I’ve concluded that

Ultimately, you want readers to slide down the page with little to no effort.

So next time you’re writing a piece of copy…

Read it out loud to identify the verbal stumbling blocks before you hit publish.

Or better yet, ask someone else to read it out loud for you.

And if you’re looking for even more transitions to add to your arsenal…

Then check out this list:

[READ]: 117 Transitional Words and Phrases For Sales Letters and Marketing Emails

Gig Alerts

Looking for clients? These freelance jobs were posted on Upwork in the last 24 hours:

NOTE: We only share job postings from Upwork. We’ve found it to be the most trustworthy platform with the highest-quality clients. Furthermore, job postings must be for high-income skills like copywriting, media buying, funnel building, graphic design, remote closing, etc in order to qualify.

Quote of the Day

“Embrace what you don’t know, especially in the beginning, because what you don’t know can become your greatest asset. It ensures that you will absolutely be doing things different from everybody else.”

— Sara Blakely

🦠 Guaranteed to go viral

Happy Tuesday! This is The Gig. We’re like the GPS for your freelance business, here to help you chart a direct course to the freedom and fulfillment you deserve.

Discussed in today’s edition: TikTok, U.S. banks, Microsoft and OpenAI. Plus a powerful reframe for anyone stuck in the wilderness, and if AI tools had their own Slack channels.

Read time: 2 minutes and 52 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • TikTok employees can make any post go viral. All they have to do is hit the “heating” button to guarantee a specific piece of content gets a certain number of views, according to documents seen by Forbes. We’ll bet the U.S. regulators reviewing the platform’s pending security deal were tickled pink when they heard that.
  • U.S. banks band together on new digital wallet. Seven American banks, including JPMorgan and Wells Fargo, are collaborating on a new digital wallet to compete with other wallet operators like PayPal.
  • Microsoft confirms new multi-billion dollar investment in OpenAI. Turns out the rumors were true: the Windows maker confirmed another “multi-year, multi-billion-dollar” investment in the company behind viral chatbot ChatGPT.

Working For Yourself

A Powerful Reframe For Anyone Stuck in the Wilderness

Entrepreneurship is a rollercoaster ride.

It can bring the highest of highs, but also the lowest of lows.

Lots of famous founders and inventors, like Reid Hoffman, Peter Thiel, James Dyson, and many more, failed repeatedly before finally hitting it big.

But tales of trials and tribulations don’t offer much comfort if you’ve hit rock bottom.

Or worse, if rock bottom has come up and smacked you in the face.

One of the reasons why is because we often struggle to find meaning in failure…

Ani It’s not until we’re well beyond them that their meaning reveals itself to us.

Like Steve Jobs once said, “you can only connect the dots looking backward.”

That’s why we enjoyed this recent interview with authors Tim Ferriss and Steven Pressfield.

Specifically, Pressfield talks about the importance of “time in the wilderness”…

And how this fundamental rite of passage shapes everyone in ways they often don’t realize.

So if you’re still stuck in a 9 to 5 you don’t like…

Or struggling to shift your freelance biz into high gear…

Give this episode a listen.

It provides some much-needed perspective from someone who didn’t score their first big win until age 52…

Yet still became (arguably) one of the most influential authors of all time.

Click here to check it out:

[LISTEN]: Steven Pressfield on Going from Truck Driver to Bestselling Novelist, Overcoming Self-Sabotage, Building Momentum, Dancing with the Muse, Turning Pro, and Letting Your Underground River Flow (#642)

P.S:

One of our favorite things about The Tim Ferriss Show is that transcripts are released with every episode.

So whether you want to go back and take notes after you’re done listening…

Or if you’d simply rather read the interview rather than listen to it…

You can find the transcript here.

Tools We Love

If AI Tools Had Their Own Slack Channels

Everyone’s high on AI these days.

And for good reason…

We’ve been blown away by ChatGPT’s potential for ideation and content creation.

But it’s not the only AI tool that’s caught our eye.

Another tool we’re loving is Bearly.ai.

It’s built on GPT-3 (also from OpenAI) and acts as a jack-of-all-trades.

Some of our favorite features include:

  • Asking it to summarize any piece of content (studies, long-form articles, 200-word blog posts, etc 😂)
  • Asking it to write the next line or graph of an email (to defeat writer’s block)
  • Asking to write copy from scratch using proven frameworks (PAS, AIDA, BAB, PPPP, etc)
  • Asking it to answer questions about a piece of text

This is just the tip of the iceberg.

Because Bearly.ai can do a whole lot more.

So if you’re looking to streamline your workflows and supercharge your productivity with AI…

Click below to check it out:

Try Bearly.ai for free today.

Gig Alerts

Looking for clients? These freelance jobs were posted on Upwork in the last 24 hours:

NOTE: We only share job postings from Upwork. We’ve found it to be the most trustworthy platform with the highest-quality clients. Furthermore, job postings must be for high-income skills like copywriting, media buying, funnel building, graphic design, remote closing, etc in order to qualify.

Quote of the Day


“Teamwork is connected independence”

— David Cottrell

💻 4-day work week

Happy Monday! Welcome back to The Gig, your daily morning memo on how to build a lucrative freelance business.

Discussed in today’s edition: 4-day work weeks, Instagram, and Twitter. Plus how new freelancers can easily overcome this common objection, and one simple trick to sell anything to anyone.

Read time: 2 minutes and 59 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Survey finds 91% of senior managers support 4-day work week. Recruiting firm Robert Half found a majority of senior managers in Canada support a Monday-Thursday work week. ¾ of workers surveyed also said they’d agree to work four 10-hour days just to get Fridays off.
  • Instagram launches new Quiet Mode feature. Do random IG notifications sometimes lead to you spending 30 minutes watching giant panda Reels when you’re supposed to be working? If so, you’ll appreciate Instagram’s new Quiet Mode: when it’s activated, all notifications are paused and anyone who DMs you will get an automated reply to let them know you’re busy. 
  • Twitter planning to reduce ad frequency. CEO Elon Musk said over the weekend that “ads are too frequent on Twitter and too big,” with fixes for both supposedly coming soon.

Working With Clients

How New Freelancers Can Easily Overcome This Common Objection

“If your guarantee doesn’t scare you, it’s not strong enough.”

This is a quote typically applied to clients (i.e those selling products).

But there’s no reason it can’t be applied to selling freelance services.

Especially if you’re just starting out or struggling to get traction.

Here’s why:

Without a laundry list of wins or an established track record…

One of the biggest objections clients will have is trust.

How do they know you’re legit? And that you’ll actually deliver what they asked for, on time?

They don’t.

They’re rolling the dice.

This is why a guarantee can help seal the deal when you’re brand new.

There are two main ways to frame a guarantee:

1) Money-back

2) Satisfaction

A money-back guarantee means you’re willing to give their money back, depending on certain criteria.

Meanwhile, a satisfaction guarantee implies you’ll continue working on the project till they’re satisfied.

Our recommendation:

Open with a satisfaction guarantee (which usually means unlimited revisions), and only pull out the money-back guarantee for a client you REALLY want to land.

If it seems like a good fit, and you’re confident in your ability to deliver…

The chances you’ll have to do 25 rounds of revisions or give their money back should be super low.

Then, once you’ve racked up a few wins…

You can retire this tactic and let your track record do the talking.

From The Copywriting Gig

One Simple Trick to Sell Anything to Anyone

Readability is essential to copy that converts.

It needs to read fast…

Use simple words any 4th-grader could understand…

And flow smoothly — to both the eyes and the ears.

But ultimately, readability is only one aspect of crafting a written sales message that resonates.

Another is…

Using metaphors and analogies to simplify abstract concepts.

Think of metaphors and analogies like the language of influence.

For example…

When you compare starting a new business to planting a seed or building a house…

You’re talking in terms everyone can understand.

The reader doesn’t need to grasp every little detail of how your unique business-building method works…

Because they have a visceral (and visual) understanding of the analogy.

And by simplifying the concept…

You’re simplifying what they have to “buy in” on before making a purchase.

Something many copywriters underestimate.

So next time you’re writing a piece of sales copy…

Don’t forget to punch it up with a solid metaphor or analogy that your target audience can relate to.

And if you’re struggling to come up with powerful imagery, here’s a pro tip: 

Use ChatGPT or GPT-3 to put together a list of potential metaphors and analogies for you.

Gig Alerts

Looking for clients? These freelance jobs were posted on Upwork in the last 24 hours:

NOTE: We only share job postings from Upwork. We’ve found it to be the most trustworthy platform with the highest-quality clients. Furthermore, job postings must be for high-income skills like copywriting, media buying, funnel building, graphic design, remote closing, etc in order to qualify.

Quote of the Day


“Fearlessness is like a muscle. I know from my own life that the more I exercise it the more natural it becomes to not let my fears run me.”

— Arianna Huffington

🏆 Rewarding repeat visitors

Happy Black Friday! To borrow from yesterday’s Axios PM: without readers, a newsletter is just a diary. So thank you for sticking with us 🙏  And if you’re on the hunt for some killer deals today, make sure to check out Wirecutter’s Black Friday 2022 guide.

Mentioned in today’s edition: Google, TikTok, and Twitter. Plus whether you should discount services to land a new client, anti-goal setting, and diagnosing your way to paid traffic profits.

Read time: 3 minutes and 13 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Google testing new way to monetize repeat website visitors. The new feature, called “Rewarded Ad Gate”, lets publishers serve a 30-second video ad on someone’s 5th site visit within a specific timeframe. The user will have the option to watch the video or not, but if they choose not to, they won’t be able to access the site until their pageviews reset the following month.
  • Some advertisers choose to run TikTok ads without installing the pixel. It’s a painful trade-off, because it means they can’t track conversions or benefit from any algorithm optimization, but it also means they won’t risk being implicated in any foreign surveillance or other illegal data collection TikTok may or may not be involved in.

  • Elon fires dozens more Twitter employees just before Thanksgiving. Despite Elon saying the company was done laying people off earlier this week, Insider reports that dozens more were fired overnight on Wednesday due to performance reasons.

Working With Clients

Thinking About Discounting Your Services to Land a New Client?

Making an irresistible offer is key to winning big clients.

But going overboard just to close a deal you really want to land can backfire in a big way.

Specifically, there’s one common mistake freelancers make when pitching that…

– Destroys their positioning

– Slashes future earnings

– And shortens the customer lifespan

What is it?

Discounting your services instead of doing something for free.

You see, once you discount your price…

That’s what the client will value your service or offering at until the end of time. 

You’ve created a price anchor.

And no matter how well you deliver for them…

That discounted price will always drag your perceived value down like a weight around your ankles.

So if you’re struggling to overcome a price objection, offering to do something for free is a much better option.

Because you get to bank the goodwill and relationship equity without devaluing your services in the process.

Working For Yourself

Anti-Goal Setting

“Burn the ships,” they said…

“It’s what all great entrepreneurs do,” they said…

But what happens when your big dream doesn’t pan out the way you expected?

What happens if you fail?

Spoiler alert:

If you’re chasing big dreams, failure is inevitable.

This doesn’t mean you can’t or won’t succeed…

It means you should be prepared for all outcomes in advance…

In fact, preparing for the worst possible scenario can be surprisingly liberating.

In the TED Talk below, entrepreneur and investor Tim Ferriss reveals how to conduct an exercise he calls “fear-setting.”

Essentially, it’s the opposite of traditional goal setting…

But it can be incredibly powerful to help define your risk and understand potential downsides… 

Especially if you’re faced with a big decision or considering a new opportunity.

Check out the 13-minute video here:

[WATCH]: Fear-Setting: The Most Valuable Exercise I Do Every Month

From The Paid Ads Gig

Diagnosing Your Way to Paid Traffic Profits

Launched a new campaign that isn’t converting yet?

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:

  • CTR/CPC
  • Page speed
  • Landing page conversion rate
  • Order bump and upsell take rates
  • Etc

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.

Bottom line:

Junior media buyers assume every campaign should crush it right out of the gate…

But seasoned vets know you often have to optimize your way to profitability.

And being able to diagnose constraints in your funnel with surgical precision is what will set you apart from the competition.

So focus on getting good at it.

Gig Alerts

Looking for clients? These freelance jobs were posted on Upwork in the last 24 hours:

Other Reads You’ll Enjoy

On the hunt for more high-value content in your inbox? Check out some of our top picks below:

  • The Playbook by Unemployable: The Playbook helps creators, freelancers, coaches, and consultants attract profitable audiences and develop multiple revenue streams.
  • Trends: 1,000+ pre-vetted business ideas you can start in a weekend + new signals every week.
  • The Curiosity Chronicle: High signal content related to frameworks, personal development, productivity, and growth.

Quote of the Day


“Creativity is a wild mind and a disciplined eye.”

— Dorothy Parker

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