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Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Seven Reasons to be Cheerful in 2009

Economic conditions are undoubtedly tough right now, but such times bring opportunities as well as threats.

So in this post I thought I'd set out a few reasons for optimism where freelance writers are concerned. And there are actually more of these than you might think...

1. With companies laying off permanent staff to save money, I fully expect more work to be outsourced to freelances in the months ahead.

2. In tough times, businesses have to do more to promote themselves and keep sales ticking over. This will create more opportunities for business writers (and copywriters in particular).

3. And likewise, in these harshly competitive times, I expect more businesses to come to appreciate the value of good-quality writing, both on- and off-line. This should create more, better paid opportunities for writers who can deliver the goods.

4. I also expect that the flexibility and low overheads offered by freelances will be increasingly appreciated by cash-strapped companies.

5. The accelerating trend away from buying on the high street and toward buying online can only benefit freelances and other small businesses as long as they are 'web wise'.

6. The latest software and Internet services make it easier than ever for freelances to operate successfully via the net, set up professional-looking websites, use social networking to find new clients and collaborators, bid for commissions, and so on.

7. And freelances are typically far quicker to adapt to changing circumstances than large companies, who become set in their ways and vulnerable to changes in the market that make their products and services suddenly less desirable.

I could go on, but I'm sure you get the idea.

Don't get me wrong - I have a lot of sympathy for people who are in conventional employment and don't know from one day to the next whether they will still have a job to go to tomorrow. But for a growing number of people, I'm convinced that the answer lies in self-employment. And unlike traditional jobs, I expect that opportunities for freelances will actually increase in the months - and years - ahead.

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Blogger Nick said...

Some readers may notice that this is an edited version of the editorial in my latest E-Writer newsletter, but I thought it was worth sharing here as well.

12:37 PM  
Anonymous Russell Smitheram said...

Thanks for sharing this, Nick. I'm self-employed and the majority of my work is drying up slowly so I'm glad to see a bit of optimism. I'm starting to lose sleep over money! Never mind we will overcome, I'm sure.

Looks like I'll be back bidding on Elance very soon!

Looking forward to your next post, nice work. :-)


2:48 PM  
Blogger Nick said...

Thanks, Russ. Hope things improve for you soon. Keep smiling!

3:13 PM  
Blogger Lars Kenseth said...

Hi Nick,

Great blog, and good of you to advise freelancers on how to look out for themselves in this harsh economic climate.

I've developed a writer's resource site with a friend of mine called "". We're sharing half of our ad revenue with people who submit (through Google AdSense). Which is not much now, but we're really trying to grow the site and fill the job boards. So if there are any prospective employers out there, visit Hopefully I'm not speaking out of turn with this promotion. Just thought it might be relevant/helpful.

Take care,


12:55 AM  
Blogger Nick said...

Thanks, Lars. Great idea to have revenue sharing on your new site. I wish you every success with it.

If I may just offer one small criticism, I had to scroll horizontally to view the whole page (I have a 17 inch monitor). It would be better if you could adjust the design so that horizontal scrolling is not required.

8:54 AM  

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