🤓 The 20-20-20 Rule

Happy Thursday! Today is Groundhog Day, marking the midway point between the winter solstice and the vernal equinox, and the moment where famous Pennsylvanian groundhog Punxsutawney Phil presents his powers of prognostication for all to see.

We’ve got our fingers crossed for an early spring.

Discussed in today’s newsletter: Gmail, Gen Z, and OpenAI. Plus the 20-20-20 rule, and episode 3 of Inspector Lander.

Read time: 2 minutes and 16 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Gmail ships new package tracking feature. Android and iOS users can now track their packages at the top of their Gmail inbox. Desktop users are currently SOL.
  • Survey of 15k Gen Z’ers reveals divide on remote work. A new Dell Technologies study found that 29% of respondents said remote work was a top priority, while another 29% said they favored office-based positions.
  • OpenAI releases free tool to detect AI-generated text. Users can paste text into the tool and get a rating of very unlikely, unlikely, unclear, possibly, or likely to have been generated by AI.

Working For Yourself

The 20-20-20 Rule

Fun fact:

Did you know your eyes are an extension of your brain?

Well, it’s true.

And while we’re on the topic of your eyes, it may also shock you to learn that staring into the abyss a screen all day isn’t good for them.

Eye strain, mental fatigue, and dry eyes are just a few of the potential consequences you have to look forward to.

So… how do you protect them?

Blue-light glasses are one approach — and one we certainly endorse.

But another no-cost way to preserve your peepers is the 20-20-20 rule:

Every 20 minutes, look at something 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds.

This gives your eyes a timeout from the pixelated onslaught they’re normally subjected to…

Which has been proven to help reduce eye strain and mental fatigue.

So if you’re looking to take preventative action before your eyes become a problem…

Then give this new rule a try.

Marketing Strategy

After This Audit, We Can’t Help But Wonder…

Marketing audits are all about identifying missed opportunities.

And in this week’s episode of Inspector Lander, our new weekly video series on marketing strategy, we found a bushel of them on the landing page in question.

So if you’re looking to sharpen your strategic skillset…

And see how we’d address some of these gaping holes within the marketing argument…

Click below to check it out now:

[WATCH]: Inspector Lander #003: TheHoth

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

“No matter what, expect the unexpected. And whenever possible, be the unexpected.”

— Lynda Barry

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.)

👀 Browser spying

Happy Tuesday! Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral took place yesterday. It was the U.K.’s first state funeral since Winston Churchill’s funeral on January 30, 1965.

Mentioned in today’s newsletter: Meta, Gmail, Figma, Adobe, and the LinkedIn Mafia. Plus a simple 3-word freelance pitch, the problem with most meetings, and what to do if your client doesn’t have a PhD in funnel strategy.

Read time: 2 minutes and 55 seconds

Making the Rounds

  • Lawsuit filed against Meta over illegal tracking through in-app browser. The complaint alleges Meta is breaking a federal wiretap law by tracking users who click on links to 3rd-party websites from Facebook or Instagram. 
  • Gmail prepares to unleash the campaign email kraken. Get ready for an inbox assault. As the midterm elections heat up, Gmail has launched a new pilot program that will prevent spammy campaign emails from actually hitting the Spam folder. The program is a response to criticism from conservatives that their algorithms unfairly target right-leaning content.
  • The LinkedIn Mafia is taking over. Forget Peter Thiel, Elon Musk, and the rest of the PayPal Mafia — the group of former LinkedIn employees who’ve gone on to found successful companies is getting a bit ridiculous. Especially with Adobe announcing their $20B acquisition of Figma, started by 30-year old former data analytics intern Dylan Field.

Working With Clients

A Simple 3-Word Freelance Pitch

Struggling to land higher-paying clients?

One trick that could turn the tide is refining (and articulating) your step-by-step system.

You see, most top tier clients aren’t willing to risk a 5-figure fee on a freelancer they’ve never worked with before…

… Unless you’re able to build a mountain of trust.

And while testimonials and case studies do have a part to play…

How can a prospective client be sure their project will turn out like the ones featured on your testimonial or reviews page?

This is where your unique system or method comes in.

When you have a consistent and methodical way for producing results for every client…

You’re giving them reason to believe you can produce similar results for them.

Which is key.

Ultimately, you should be able to walk them through exactly how you’re going to deliver the work, step-by-step…

Because that’s a mark of a seasoned vet.

No matter what skill, niche, or sector you’re in.

So make sure to walk them through it during the interview process, on the sales call, and again during the onboarding or kickoff call.

Pro tip: keep it simple and stick to 3-5 steps or pillars.

Working For Yourself

The Problem With Most Meetings

Meetings can be a major timesuck.

Especially if you’re collaborating across different time zones.

So if you want to protect your time and maximize efficiency…

Focus on asynchronous communication instead.

What is asynchronous communication?

It’s any one-way message where the sender and recipient are not synchronized.

  • Emails
  • DMs
  • Voice notes
  • Screencast videos
  • Etc

The benefits of using voice notes or screencast videos over written messages are that it’s much easier to provide context and illustrate your point…

Plus hearing someone’s voice or seeing their face helps build a stronger connection.

When it comes to recording screencast videos, our weapon of choice is SnagIt.

And nowadays, most messaging apps like Slack, WhatsApp, and Telegram have voice notes as a built-in feature.

Just do your best to keep your voice notes short and punchy.

Otherwise, your colleagues may come to dread them 🙃

Tools We Love

In Case Your Client Doesn’t Have a PhD in Funnel Strategy

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.

Gig Alerts

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

Quote of the Day

“If you are working on something that you really care about, you don’t have to be pushed. The vision pulls you.”

Steve Jobs