Category Archives: Uncategorized

8 Ways To Diversify Your Freelance Income

Want more stability in your financial life? Here's how freelancers can create a more reliable income through diversification.

growing an income

Perhaps whoever coined the phrase "don't put all your eggs in one basket" was a freelancer, because, well, that's one of the biggest financial mistakes freelancers make. If you make all your freelance income from one client, what's going to happen when that client loses their funding? Certainly nothing good. But, if you make your freelance income from ten clients, when one client loses funding, you'll only be out looking to replace ten percent of your income.

There's more than one way to put your income into separate "baskets"–here are eight ways that freelancers can diversify their income for a more reliable paycheck.

Work with multiple clients. If you happen to land a client large enough to pay your entire salary, it may not be the best idea to work only with that client. Keep a few other clients on the side so that if something does happen, you're not wondering how to pay for groceries. The more clients you have, the more reliable your income will be—just make sure you can manage them all. Along the same lines, freelancers should continually be marketing their services so there's a potential client to contact when a current one falls through.

Write a blog. Whatever it is that you do, you can earn a little extra side money by sharing your first-hand knowledge. One way to do that is through blogging. While creating a successful blog takes time and effort, it's a good way to add an extra income source. And if worse comes to worse and you don't make any money from your blog, you at least have a great website to show potential clients that you know your stuff.

Write an eBook. Many bloggers expand their income through eBooks. While a blog earns money through advertising, eBooks are ad-free and earn income through the sale of the book itself. Many readers prefer getting their information through eBooks because the form is much easier to use and typically offers more information than a typical blog.

Teach a class. Another way to earn extra income by sharing the knowledge you have of your field is through teaching a class. While you can go the old fashioned way and actually teach a local class, you could also teach online for an even farther reach. Using a platform like Udemy or Open Learning, creating an online class is easier than you may think. There is a big time investment involved—though if you already have material like a blog or eBook on the same topic to work with, it's much easier to get set up with an online class.

Sell a digital product. There are many more possibilities of diversifying your income without selling an eBook. If your expertise lies in graphic design, for example, you could create and sell graphics such as clipart or templates for businesses to use for marketing materials. There are a lot of possibilities here, including stock photos and templates for different software programs.

Sell physical goods. While it takes a bit more of a financial risk, you could also sell physical products, ideally related to your area of expertise. Graphic designers and photographers, for example, could sell their designs on t-shirts and other items through a company such as Cafepress. If you created an eBook, you could could sell a physical copy too.

Use affiliate links. Many online stores pay for the links that send them traffic, it's called affiliate linking. If you have a blog or social media network with a large following, you could earn a little extra by using affiliate links. Popular sites with affiliate links are Rakuten Affiliate (formerly LinkShare) and Amazon Associates, though there are many more.

Expand your services. Having a niche area is a great way to show that you are an expert, instead of the jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none kind of freelancer. But there is such a thing as being too narrow. One way to diversify your income is to start offering more than one service, ideally, something that's similar to your primary focus. For example, if you are a copywriter specializing in blog posts, it's an easy step to also start offering landing page content or e-mail marketing. The best way to expand is to offer another service that caters to the same business as the first. If your target audience for your first service is businesses, but for the second is families, it will be tough to market properly. Instead, try adding a service that your current and past clients might consider adding.

Freelancing, and the unpredictable income that comes with it, can be pretty scary. A great way to lessen the fear and create more stability is by adding other revenue sources. The first and biggest way is to work with a wider number of clients. But, by offering things like a blog, an ebook, online courses, digital or physical products, affiliate links or additional services, you can create a more reliable income that comes from a variety of sources.

What do you think? Have you ever worked for free? How did it turn out?

If you believe that my message is worth spreading, please use the share buttons if they are visible on this page.

Stephen Hodgkiss
Chief Engineer at MarketHive
markethive.com


Alan Zibluk Market Hive Founding Member

What can we learn from Lewis Burns about being an entrepreneur?

Lewis Burns is an artist, musician, teacher, philanthropist, and many more hats I am sure, but I do not know him personally.  We just connected recently on LinkedIn.

eigen foto

eigen foto (Photo credit: Wikipedia)[/caption]

From his LinkedIn profile, it states,

"Lewis Burns is a Talbragar-Wiradjuri man born in Dubbo, NSW. He has been learning about his Aboriginal culture for as long as he can remember. He continues to practice and respect these life skills each day and still learns and grows from this ancient knowledge.

Lewis' love of his heritage is evident when you speak with him, and depicted even more in his Aboriginal crafts, traditional dancing, didgeridoo performances, mural paintings and teaching. He is very dedicated to sharing what he knows with others to help keep these customs alive. Lewis paints in traditional Aboriginal and contemporary styles.

He has exhibited and performed both within Australia and overseas with his handcrafted didgeridoos. Each piece of Lewis' artwork tells a story…..a story that will live on forever through the generations, as the artwork is handed down from one family to another"

So what can we learn about being an entrepreneur from him? 

  1. Be honest – Be proud of who you are, where you have come from, and be true to yourself.  Lewis Burns exudes his heritage in everything he does.    
  2. Be original  – Lewis Burns certainly has this covered.  He has an abundance of originality. His art shows a careful study and beautiful reflection of his obvious love of animals, and the natural environment. In this age of copy-cat Internet marketing and hype, Lewis truly stands out.
  3. Be ubiqitous.  Lewis is everywhere.  He is on LinkedIn.  He has a Facebook page for his business, Red Earth Gallery.  He is on Twitter, and Instagram. I invited him to MarketHive, (a new social network for entrepreneurs, membership by invitation only), and he joined right away.
  4. Be conscientious – Be a philanthropist as much as you can.  Give of your time and talents to less fortunate and disadvantaged groups.  Lewis shows boys at a local juvenile detention center how to make and play didgeridoos.
  5. Be a teacher – whatever your special talent and skill, learn to teach it to others to pass on your knowledge. In Lewis case, I think wherever he is, and whatever he does, he is teaching his love of his culture, his heritage, and his love of all things.

So, my suggestion for all new or experienced entrepreneurs is to purchase a didgeridoo from Lewis Burns, (they are extraordinarily beautiful), and one of his online courses on how to play it.  Then try to emulate him in everything you do, from your daily marketing, to your respect for your fellow man, and nature, and the divine in all things.

You will be a better person, and a better entrepreneur for it, and this world will also be a better place in which to live.

Note: See more on Lewis Burns on the social networks, and his website at:

http://lewisburns.com/

English: Various types of Didgeridoo. Top: A t...

English: Various types of Didgeridoo. Top: A traditionally crafted and decorated didgeridoo. Middle: A bamboo souvenir didgeridoo. Bottom: An undecorated traditionally crafted didgeridoo. Photo taken by myself in July 2009. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

English: A demonstration of Australian musical...

English: A demonstration of Australian musical instrument 'didgeridoo' during 'December Night' celebration at Balboa Park in San Diego, California in 2009. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Alan Zibluk Market Hive Founding Member

Fairly Easy Chickpea, Lentil, Brown Rice & Broccoli Crockpot Casserole

Fairly Easy Chickpea, Lentil, Brown Rice & Broccoli Crockpot Casserole

When I received my crockpot one of the first things I did was search “easy crockpot recipes”.  I immediately found “SUPER EASY CHICKPEA, BROWN RICE & BROCCOLI CROCKPOT CASSEROLE” by Alexis. 

According to her website she is a “Registered Dietitian and whole foods enthusiast”.  I love her site and I will try this weekend her “Super Easy Mexican Crockpot Casserole” and later “Slow Cooker Curried Butternut Chili”. Easy instructions as I do not like complicated.

Below is her recipe for Super Easy Chickpea, Brown Rice & Broccoli Crockpot Casserole.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup long-grain brown rice
  • 2½ cups vegetable broth
  • 1-15 oz. can chickpeas, drained
  • 1-12 oz. package of frozen broccoli
  • ½ medium onion, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ¾ tsp salt
  • 1-5.3 oz. container plain Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup shredded cheddar cheese (or more, to taste)

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Place rice, vegetable broth, chickpeas, broccoli, onion, garlic and salt in a 5 qt. slow cooker. Cook on high (covered) for 2 to 2½ hours, or until rice is cooked through and most of the liquid is absorbed.
  2. Turn off crock-pot. Stir in Greek yogurt and cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

I have never met Alexis but would like to thank her for the above recipe.  Seriously I would not have been able to figure out alone how well the ingredients worked with each other.  It has given me ideas and I give credit where credit is due.

This was the second time I made this recipe.  In both cases the cooking time was precisely three hours.  This time I used one 15 oz. package of Fig Food Co. Chickpeas instead of a can as it has less sodium.  I also used pink Himalayan salt instead of regular salt.

I have a tendency to mix brown rice and lentils together.  I decided to use the left over vegetable broth to make lentils.  I use Daily Pantry Medley of Lentils.  The instructions calls for two cups of water to cook the lentils in, I had exactly two cups of leftover vegetable broth.  It took longer for the liquid to absorb but it worked.

After three hours when the Super Easy Chickpea, Brown Rice & Broccoli Crockpot Casserole was completed I added the lentils above into the crockpot for another 30 minutes.  I then turned off the crockpot and stirred in the yogurt and cheese.  Below is a picture of “Fairly Easy Chickpea, Lentil, Brown Rice & Broccoli Crockpot Casserole.”

The original recipe makes for four servings, I wanted more for the work week.  The lentils made it happen and I was glad to use up the leftover vegetable broth.

All the best,

Alan
Alan Zibluk
http://alanzibluk.com
e-mail: alan@internetguy.ws

PS:  I was here before Dr. Oz.

 

 

Alan Zibluk Market Hive Founding Member

Our SEO Social Marketing Network

Our SEO Social Marketing NetworkOur SEO Social Marketing Network

We will show and teach you how use Search Engine Optimization tools to publish various types of websites that are information resources for people who want to work at home.

We will help you establish your own Information Platforms such as websites, blogs, web conference rooms and videos. We produce lead capture pages that put you in the position of power with pre-qualified, highly-interested prospects who request information from YOU.

We use a concentrated team effort to help all of our Members become a familiar and recognized expert in our network marketing field of business.

Educational Marketing

Have you considered the purpose of SEO Social Networking Systems?

Is Your Internet Marketing System Working For You?

Determining whether or not your SEO Social Internet Marketing campaign is working for you is a very important part of the advertising process. This is so important because while there is a great deal of Internet marketing which can be done without a great deal of expense, other types of Internet marketing do have financial costs associated with them. Let's examine the facts here.


Budget constraints, time and energy can burden your marketing efforts and this is precisely why SEO Social Internet Marketing needs full consideration.

We believe that a team approach is necessary for an SEO Social Internet Marketing system to work. We have proved it works and is effective in two ways:

SEO is a profession and as a profession 90% of the professionals out there competing for SEO gigs and often operate as individuals with small companies and/or small entrepreneurs for their customers. Often this can be lucrative but it does not build residual income and customers come and go and often these professionals are always over booked and under paid going about business this way.

Or you joined an MLM deal and you, by yourself, are trying to do all the SEO work, contacting leads, marketing, sales, telemarketing and Web Site development all on your own. Am I pretty close to fact so far? Does this sound like you?

Business owners need to continuously evaluate their marketing techniques and strategies to determine what is working and what is not. This will help the business owner to focus their efforts on marketing strategies which are providing positive results as opposed to those which are either not providing results or are only providing lackluster results.

Let's examine a few different marketing strategies as well as how business owners can evaluate the effectiveness of these strategies.

SEO Social Internet Marketing is certainly one of the most cost effective Internet marketing strategies available. This marketing strategy involves having other team members sharing the load according to their expertise.

Leads are collected;

The team posts advertisements all over the Internet with common goals, to direct Internet traffic to websites. This marketing strategy is cost effective and efficient because in the vast majority of cases will produce desired result such as enticing an Internet user to click through the advertisement.

The recipients are intrigued because the product or service enables more training for them or a purchase. It is still worthwhile to evaluate the effectiveness of these ads to determine whether or not they are working well.

SEO Social Internet Marketing Teams

Fortunately, SEO Social Internet Marketing has a natural feedback mechanism which makes it easy to evaluate how well our campaigns are working. We look at the statistics. This feedback is provided in the form of code imbedded in articles containing the ads and returns the statistics generated the website visitors. If the general consensus is in support of your posts, you may infer you are generating some interest in your business or website through this tactic.

Finally, our SEO Social Internet Marketing strategy can be evaluated by studying website traffic results as well as sales receipts. Anytime you implement a new Internet marketing strategy or technique it is worthwhile to study your website traffic reports and sales receipts carefully to determine whether or not there is a spike in either traffic or sales immediately after the marketing effort.

For example:

If you send out an e-newsletter to those who have requested additional information about your products or services, you may notice there is an increase in traffic or sales soon afterwards. This is a good indication the e-newsletter was well received and effective. However, if there is not a marked increase in traffic or sales subsequent to the e-newsletter it may indicate the marketing effort could have been more effective.

Can the program become automated?

In short, after a certain period of development and growth, which includes marketing and building a down line, the program should offer a level of, or complete automation.

We are providing conference style training. After learning how to do this, it can give you a chance for duplication and provides you with a lot of free time to do other things besides work. Why Traditional Marketing Strategies of Network Marketing Companies Do NOT Work.

All are some form of Cold Calling, even when they call it sharing – even though it seems as if there are a lot of telemarketers, there is really a tiny percent of the working population that are sales people.

Over Promise Under Deliver on Irresistible Offers such as – if I can show you how to make $100,000 per year, would you give me 30 minutes of your time?

Many are Time Consuming – Just make a list of your 100 to 200 friends and family, call each one on the phone, set an appointment, give a business opportunity presentation and then make them an irresistible offer. Of course, because of this fast start, you will become a Director in 30 days.

 Just forget your LIFE.   Ineffective – Very, very few to most likely none, of your friends will accept your offer. Enough said. TRY it.   Inefficient – After blowing through your one time shot on your first 200 names with no positive results, you are left with no prospects, no residual marketing material, and probably no friends.

Plus, you have no idea what to do next until you’re up line tells you to make another list. Wow! I am sure you think THAT is a great idea.

Requires an Uncomfortable Activity for non-sales type people, which is most of us. The fear of rejection and then the actual rejection that is inherent in any form of cold calling creates a vicious cycle that produces a level of discomfort is unacceptable for most people.

Small Business Marketing Ideas

Brian Walters MarketHive Marketing System 

Article by:
Brian Walters SEO

Skype: tuneup_bj

Brian Walters MarketHive
http://brian-walters-online.com/

http://briansmarketing.net/

Alan Zibluk Market Hive Founding Member

Writing Articles as an Affordable Internet Marketing Method

Writing ArticlesWriting Articles as an Affordable Internet Marketing Method

From Google, a keyword suggestion tool, you will see the millions of searches done to a certain keyword. When these keywords are typed on search boxes of search engines, indexed websites containing articles with those keywords will be displayed. And this is what leads traffic to websites with keyword-rich articles. Yes, the magic word is articles.

Content is king. You can say that again. That is why writing articles is one of the most utilized Internet marketing media today. Internet surfers just can't get enough of information on various fields. Providing information through these articles is a surefire way to drive hot traffic to your web site.

Why is this so? Here are the benefits that writing articles can give your Internet business.

1. It's absolutely free.

Too good to be true? Not. Okay, you have to pay for your Internet Service Provider. That's it. All you need is your thoughts, your computer, and your hands. If you have those, nothing will stop you from typing words that will make you complete that article for your website. On which aspect of that process did you really shell out any cent? Maybe later when your electric bills come.


2. Your website will be noticed in a short period of time.

Submit that article of yours to article directories that get the most web traffic and in no time your web site will be crawled. That is if you don't forget including your resource box or byline.

3. Obtain back links automatically.

When you submit your articles to directories, surely, other websites will make use of your article too. With the copyright terms of your articles, the URL of your website will still be intact and will subsequently direct more traffic to your website.

4. Improve your link reputation.

As an Internet marketer, if you plainly display your products on your website, you will not gain much conversion rate. Conversion is when your traffic converts to sales. You have to show that you are knowledgeable on your field. And what better way to show that than by writing articles that will allow you some bragging rights, right?

Just make your creative juices flow and jot down or key in those ideas quickly to jumpstart your article writing momentum. With those benefits listed above, a writer's block is the last problem you will ever be able to surmount.

5. Improve your link popularity

Because of the emphasis placed on link popularity, increasing the number of quality links to your site can improve your search engine ranking. You gain link popularity with the search engines for having quality inbound and outbound links. Quality links are defined by their content relevancy to your site as well as their own.

An additional idea to consider for increasing link popularity for your web site is in the creation of a "link magnet" described below. Avoid "link farms", aggressively purchasing links or having too many links. Search engine optimization (SEO) tips and information on the areas to avoid with regard to links is also described in further detail below.

https://moz.com/learn/seo/external-link

Article by:
Brian Walters SEO

Skype: tuneup_bj

Brian Walters MarketHive
http://brian-walters-online.com/

http://briansmarketing.net/

Alan Zibluk Market Hive Founding Member

Should Freelancers Ever Work for Free?

You've just been asked to work for free, perhaps with a promise of "great exposure." What should you do?

working for free

Whether it comes from a family member or even a potential new client, most freelancers have been asked to work for no pay. Perhaps the request was from a family member that doesn't realize the amount of time put in to the request, or from a client who would like a trial run before hiring a new freelancer. But should freelancers ever work for free?

The question has stirred up debates among freelancers, some insisting it's necessary to work for free in order to get started, others saying that it devalues the work and brings the price for that work down. There's merit to both sides of the argument – here's what freelancers should consider when they're asked to work for free.

Value matters.

Say you are ordering at a restaurant you've never been to before, and you want a really great pizza. There are two options on the menu– a $5.99 value pizza and a $15.99 deluxe pizza. Which pizza do you think is better? Most consumers will say that $15.99 pizza is better, because there's a value associated with price.

The more an item is priced, the more value people will associate with it. Most will automatically equate that $5.99 pizza with a greasy one-topping pie, and that $15.99 with a topping-filled tasty dinner. The same thing applies to things that are free. When you give your work away for free, it can send a message that you are a low skilled freelancer, because there's little value associated with something that's free.

Since free things have little value, freelancers should never work for free, right? Well, not necessarily. Whether or not a freelancer should do some work for free depends largely on the situation. Here are some examples:

When you should work for free

  • When you are a new freelancer, and you have no portfolio, you may need to work for free so that you have samples to show paid clients. This is just temporary – a few free projects to show what you can do. Don't place free bids for clients actively seeking freelancers; instead try seeking out a nonprofit and volunteering, creating a product for yourself (like a blog or logo) or opportunities such as guest posts that double as a marketing tool.
  • When you work in exchange for marketing. Sometimes, you may not get paid in monetary form, but through exposure. A prime example is the Huffington Post. While they have some paid writers on staff, they publish a lot of guest posts for free. Many writers have grown their business exponentially after guest posting for a large site like Huffington Post, because it offers a big boost in their credentials. That's not to say every freelance writer should write guest posts for free, but for some it is a great marketing tool.
  • When you trade services. Say you are a freelancer writer that needs a new logo, and say you meet a graphic designer that needs to update their website copy. There's certainly nothing wrong with trading services.
  • When the person that's asking is your mom (or someone equally important to you). There's undoubtedly some people in your life that you owe. Just be sure to set a limit and decide how far to extend family freebies (or if you want to do them at all).

When you shouldn't work for free

  • When you have a solid portfolio. I've come across this many times – a potential client asks for sample work done specifically for them, despite having very similar work in my portfolio. Charge for that work. If you are creating something that the client will be able to use, they should be paying for that service. When asked to do a test trial for free, politely tell them your rates for that work. Point them to your existing samples, and mention that it does not have to be long term if the first project doesn't work out. Again, when you offer work for free, you lower the perceived value of your service.
  • When the client reaches out to you for something like a free guest post, that should be a warning flag. That's sort of like asking for a gift, it's not exactly polite or good business practice. If they like your work enough to contact you, they should like it enough to pay you.
  • When your work isn't going to be connected to your name. Make sure before sending out any guest posts or similar "free" marketing efforts that you know how it is going to be used. If you create a guest post or cartoon that isn't linked back to your website, you've wasted your time. Take the time to write down exactly how your work is to be used and make sure both parties agree.
  • When the work isn't "evergreen." Sometimes, you may not get paid right away, but will reap rewards over time. A classic example is starting your own blog. You won't get paid one lump sum like blogging for a client, but those blog posts will continue to earn advertising revenue long after you've completed them. If you do need to create a portfolio, a great way to do so without working for free is to create a blog that has potential to earn you money down the road, long after you've completed it and are getting paid clients.

Most freelancers, at some point, are asked to work for free. For the most post, free work should act as a red flag. When freelancers offer work for free, it devalues their services. Time is valuable, so freelancers shouldn't work for free, at least not often. But, in a few cases, working for free can be a good marketing tool, and may be necessary for freelancers who have no portfolio.

What do you think? Have you ever worked for free? How did it turn out?

If you believe that my message is worth spreading, please use the share buttons if they are visible on this page.

Stephen Hodgkiss
Chief Engineer at MarketHive
markethive.com


Alan Zibluk Market Hive Founding Member

Why Internet Marketing Does Not Work Without Some SEO

internet marketingWhy Internet Marketing Does Not Work Without SEO

Search engine optimization (SEO) should be considered a critical element of any Internet marketing strategy. This is important because there is so much which can be gained from SEO in terms of Internet marketing and advertising.

Failure to optimize your website for search engines can result in a considerable loss in terms of free advertising which is essentially gained from ranking well with search engines.

This article will provide insight into what SEO is and will explain why Internet marketing requires at least some degree of SEO.

SEO optimization is a strategy in which a website is designed to obtain favorable search engine rankings from popular search engines. This may be achieved in a variety of different ways and optimal SEO strategies combine a variety of different strategies to complete one well orchestrated SEO campaign.

http://brian-walters-online.com/flyers/WP-setup-and-blogging.pdf

There are several elements to consider when attempting to optimize your website for search engines. This may include keyword density, prominence, META tags, titles and inbound links. Keyword density is one of the most common SEO strategies and essentially involves using relevant keywords often in the content of a website to demonstrate the relevance of these keywords to the website.

This is important because search engines are likely to reward websites with optimal keyword densities with favorable search engine rankings in an effort to provide Internet users with the most relevant websites for particular search terms.

The prominence of keywords should also be considered. This includes how close the keywords are placed to the beginning of the website. The common mistake with this strategy is to believe the first opportunity to incorporate keywords is in the first line of visible text on the webpage.

This is not true because search engines crawl the code of a website as opposed to the visible content on the website. This means there are multiple opportunities to incorporate relevant keywords long before the actual visible content on the website. This might include the code for the title as well as the META tags. Business owners who realize the potential for incorporating keyword into the code gain an advantage over competitors who only incorporate keywords into the content on their website.

Another area of concern which is very important for those who are interested in SEO is inbound links. Inbound links are essentially links which reside on other websites and direct traffic to your website. These links are considered important because many search engines place a value on inbound links because they are essentially an example of one website recommending another website. However, when obtaining inbound links it is important to do so from other websites which rank well with search engines because many search engines consider the rank of the original website when determining the value of the inbound link.

Now that we have briefly explained some of the main concept of SEO, we will illustrate why it is important to optimize your website in the first place. SEO is so important because most Internet users highly value the results of search engines and are likely to only visit to ranking websites when they search for a particular keyword. Internet users trust search engines to serve the most relevant content first and are therefore not likely to visit websites which do not fall on the first or second page of search results.

This means websites which rank well essentially are receiving a great deal of free advertising from search engines that place their website in a key position. Website owners who do not invest time into optimizing their websites miss out on a great deal of potential web traffic.

Article by:
Brian Walters SEO

Skype: tuneup_bj

Brian Walters MarketHive
http://brian-walters-online.com/

http://briansmarketing.net/

Alan Zibluk Market Hive Founding Member