If you’re dreaming of ditching the office life for the freelance lifestyle, you’re not alone. According to the FreshBooks Self-Employment Report, 27 million people are poised to leave traditional work for full-time self-employment by the year 2020. The report shows a significant shift in workplace values that emphasizes flexibility over stability.
That’s good news for digital nomads, freelancing freedom fighters, and non-traditional workers who crave more travel in their lives. You have the power to create your own income and career from the road, but it takes a strategy. From finding the right clients to creating multiple income streams, here’s how to diversify your freelance work to travel more.
Focus on Flexibility
Traveling more requires the right flexibility to create the mobile lifestyle of your dreams. Start by focusing on careers you can do online at your own pace from freelance writing to graphic design and look for work without tight deadlines. Sites like Upwork can help connect freelancers to employers with filters and search functionality to find the flexibility and income you’re looking for.
But before you choose a freelance career, remember to consider the face time involved. For example, working as a consultant with time-sensitive, in-person meetings are probably going to be a poor fit without diversifying. If you’re set on being a consultant, consider scheduling online video calls through a platform like Zoom instead of in-person meetings. Or cap your clients requiring face time to a manageable workload.
Build Multiple Revenue Streams
You may find your freelance career kicks up into high gear and you’re working like crazy to meet your deadlines and pile up enough cash to hit the road. But at some point it’s inevitable you’ll slow down whether by choice to travel more, or because your clients don’t need anything else for a few months. That’s when you need multiple revenue streams to push forward.
Think about how to build revenue streams that can generate income while you travel. Selling an online course on a site like Udemy is one place to start. Or becoming an independent consultant for an existing business model like Amway is another. Educate others on the benefits of products you already know and use from healthcare to beauty.
Add on Extra Value
You may not need to reinvent the wheel when it comes to freelancing. Instead of going out and finding five new clients for your roster, pitch to the ones you have and offer additional value. A client who wants help writing sales copy for their website likely needs email marketing help too. Meanwhile, a client who wants a website design overhaul likely needs SEO help. You can either brainstorm what’s in your wheelhouse of skills already, or partner with another freelancer to create a mini-agency.
Create a Backup Plan
In many ways, freelancing is more secure than traditional employment because you have the skills to earn your own money outside of a 9 to 5. But you still need a backup plan to keep your finances healthy while traveling more. Think about how to grow and scale your freelance career without spending additional time on your business. Outsourcing tasks to a virtual assistant, hiring team members to work with you, or always keeping one more client than you really need can all help fuel your backup plan for freelancing success.
Freelancers often overlook the power of local markets when chasing a nomadic lifestyle. In reality, you can find freelance work wherever you are. From editing English language menus and flyers to teaching a workshop on freelancing in another country, you can work locally and earn money while you travel. Start by making connections with worldwide MeetUp groups or Travel Massive chapters to connect with like-minded freelancers and travel enthusiasts who can help you find the right connections.
Freelancing is a powerful way to grow your career and skill set while traveling more. But it’s easy to end up creating a job for yourself that needs too much attention to hit the road. Go into your freelance goals with flexibility and mobility in mind and put travel on your priority list and let the rest fall into place.