As freelancers, it’s sometimes difficult to figure out how to move forward with our businesses; how to improve them, how to grow them, and how to realize our goals and achieve them.
It’s a one-person show, so everything is down to us – from the accounts, to the customer service aspects, not to mention the whole doing the actual work bit.
But if there’s one thing I’ve figured out that’s really helped me take my freelance business from stagnant to soaring, it’s realizing the purpose of it and remembering this in everything I do.
Not only has it given me focus for my business, but it has also helped me increase my prices and laser-focus my marketing efforts so I can land clients I really love working with.
Why You Can Earn More with a Purpose
Er, yeah sure, so I just figure out my purpose then I’m laughing all the way to bank? I hear you say.
But seriously. It might seem like a magical unicorn of an idea, but I can guarantee that by honing down your focus and pinpointing a purpose for your business, you can double, or even triple, your income. Here’s how:
Having a purpose means you know exactly who your target clients or customers are and where they hang out. You know exactly what their pain points are and how to solve their problems.
This also means you know how to reach them, how to use a language that connects with them, and how to showcase your services as the ultimate answer to all their problems.
Without this purpose you could spend tonnes of time marketing to the wrong people – people who aren’t interested in your service, or who don’t know they need you yet.
You Can Connect With a True Audience/Client Base
And because you know exactly who your ideal client is, you can really reach them on an emotional level.
Making connections as a freelancer is so important because you need people who can support you, vouch for you, and promote your services when you don’t have the time to.
To connect with the people who are going to do this for you, you need to know exactly what they’re looking for, exactly what their goals are, and exactly how YOU can help them get there.
This is the crux of creating valuable connections both in your industry and within groups of like-minded individuals.
You Can Charge More
Yep, here’s the kicker. Here’s the point which really shows how you can earn more money.
Being an expert in a particular topic and having a specialism means you can charge more for your services.
Think about it: The people who really know what they’re talking about, who really hone down their specialism to something specific are the people who are in high demand. They can ask for more money for their work and their input because they are hugely valuable.
If you don’t have a purpose and, therefore, don’t have a specialism, your services are pretty much standard just like most others out there.
It Saves You Time
Having a purpose in your freelance business not only means you don’t waste time targeting the wrong client, but it also means you don’t waste time creating new services and products that don’t fit your target client.
When you know exactly who you’re serving and WHY you’re serving them, you can create really niche products that answer their exact questions and solve their exact problems.
Instead of wasting time creating products and packages that aren’t a good fit, you’ll have way more time to laser-focus the services you already offer and mix in some really relevant products that your ideal client and customer will love.
It Streamlines Your Business
Without a purpose, you’re kind of flailing around in the ether, not really knowing where to go next or what to do next.
As soon as you figure out your purpose, you can start considering your long-term goals and putting steps in place to reach them. You can create strategies and systems that tie in with your purpose for onboarding clients, for project timelines, and other important parts of your business that seemed a bit all over the place before.
Okay, great… but how do I figure out my purpose?
How to Figure Out the Purpose of Your Freelance Business
Who Are You Helping?
Ask yourself who you are able to help. This stems from your experience, your expertise, and the kind of client and customer you really want to serve.
It might be creative brands, or it might be finance companies, or it might be start ups. Whoever it is, you really want to figure out everything you can about them – what makes them tick? What are the biggest problems they have in life and business?
For example, I am helping (and want to help) creative lifestyle and travel brands because a) I have experience working in one of them and years of experience working with them, and b) because this is where my passions lie, so I can bring motivation and inspiration to every single job.
Why Are You Helping Them?
Next you want to ask yourself why you want to help these people. Why do these people pull on your heart strings so much? Is it because you have the experience they don’t have? Is it because you love seeing creative businesses thrive? Is it because you think there needs to be a change in the finance/food/real estate industry?
Figure out your why. For me, I help travel and lifestyle brands because I love encouraging people to get creative and see the world. I love helping readers see that there is so much more out there for them.
What Are You Helping Them Do?
Then it’s all about the what. What exactly do you want to help your ideal client or customer do?
Think about how the experience and expertise you have can really get them to the places they want to go. Bring together a compendium of your skills to create a service that touches on their specific pain points.
So, for me, I’m helping travel and lifestyle brands connect with their target audience through great content and inspiring words. With years of experience in the travel and creative industries and building communities around blogs, I know exactly how to reach their readers.
Now Put Everything Together…
When you’ve answered all of these questions (in serious detail), it’s time to put your discoveries together to create your one purpose. Your one purpose to rule them all!
Let’s take my purpose, for instance:
My “who” is creative lifestyle and travel brands.
My “why” is because I love inspiring people to see the world and get creative.
My “what” is helping them reach their target audience through words.
Let’s put it all together:
My purpose is to help creative lifestyle and travel brands connect with their target audience through words, and inspire them to see the world and improve their lives.
Now I have the specifics for my marketing strategies and I can build services that really solve the problems of these people. I can build a portfolio of work that’s dedicated to my “who” and my “what”, so I have laser-focused projects to present to future clients and, ergo, charge them more for my specialisms.
You see? Having a purpose might not seem like the biggest deal in business, but it can really streamline your services and efforts in so many different ways.
What do you think? Do you have a purpose for your business and how has it helped you grow?