How a stay-at-home mom went from Starbucks to making $100K freelancing

  • Jamie Johnson is a freelance author who 5 years in the past determined to be part of the workforce after seven years as a stay-at-home mom.
  • Her first job was at Starbucks making $eight an hour, however she rapidly determined she wanted a extra profitable function.
  • She joined Upwork and different freelancing platforms and commenced to market herself as a author, and now she makes over $100,000 a 12 months.
  • By beginning small, making her purchasers’ lives simpler as greatest she will, and setting day by day revenue targets she has been ready to attain this degree of success.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for extra tales.

Five years in the past, I discovered myself at a crossroads in my life. After spending seven years as a stay-at-home mom, I knew it was time for me to return to work. 

My youngest was simply getting into kindergarten, so it felt like the appropriate time to re-enter the workforce. The solely downside was, I would by no means graduated from school and had minimal work expertise. 

My family and friends all steered that I end my diploma and get an entry-level job someplace. So I made a decision to get a job at Starbucks, reasoning that if I labored the early morning shift, I might nonetheless decide my children up from college each day. And since Starbucks presents tuition reimbursement, I might lastly earn my school diploma and put myself on the trail to a profitable profession.

I labored at Starbucks for 9 months making about $eight an hour. The extra cash by no means appeared to go very far, and our household’s funds have been at all times tight. After a whereas, ending my diploma appeared to make much less and fewer sense financially. 

What I wanted was a method to earn extra money instantly, and I did not see school as a assured method to try this. I spotted that the standard route of “going to college so I could find a good job,” although proper for some individuals, is probably not the trail for me.

As likelihood would have it, in September 2016, a buddy advised me about a world freelancing platform referred to as Upwork. Since I’ve at all times loved writing, I made a decision I would strive to make it as a freelance author. 

In the start, my objective was to earn an additional $1,000 per thirty days. But over time, I turned a higher author, began getting higher-paying purchasers, and grew my revenue.  

This previous 12 months, I’ve introduced in over $111,000 as a freelance author. Here are 5 important steps I took to make it occur from scratch:

1. I made it my job to discover a job

When I used to be simply beginning out I did not even have any writing samples, however I made a decision I used to be going to begin searching for work anyway. Applying for jobs on Upwork made sense to me due to the wide range of writing jobs that have been consistently posted on the platform, like weblog posts, copywriting, press releases, and extra. 

My objective was to ship at the least three proposals a day, six days a week. I figured that if I simply stored sending proposals then finally somebody would have to rent me. This technique paid off fairly rapidly, and inside a week I would landed my first writing job. 

When you are beginning one thing new, it is easy to inform your self that you simply want extra data earlier than you possibly can start. But generally, you simply have to begin taking motion and belief that you will determine issues out alongside the best way. 

2. I used to be keen to begin small

My very first job on Upwork was writing 5 750-word product critiques for $40. Not $40 per evaluation — $40 whole. Depending in your perspective, accepting such a low fee might be seen as an embarrassing failure.

But in truth, I couldn’t have been extra enthusiastic about that job. I could not consider somebody really wished to pay me cash to write for them!

I adopted the shopper’s define precisely, and spent a lot of time writing and enhancing these product critiques. That effort paid off when the shopper gave me a nice evaluation. 

With a optimistic testimony beneath my belt, it was simpler to discover extra freelance writing purchasers and slowly elevate my charges over time. Once I had landed three or 4 purchasers, I raised my charges to $zero.10 per phrase. Today, I usually discover purchasers who pay me between $zero.35 and $zero.50 per phrase. 

three. I made my purchasers’ lives simpler

In a method, my lack of schooling and expertise was a blessing in disguise. I knew I might by no means be essentially the most skilled freelancer within the room, however I made a decision I might be essentially the most useful and the best to work with. 

I made a level of speaking with purchasers about due dates and expectations. I by no means miss a deadline, and take a look at to flip in work early each time attainable. 

I do not put limits on the variety of revision requests I will settle for both, and I strive to at all times have a good angle about suggestions on my work. I’ve realized that if I can discover a method to make individuals’s lives simpler, there’ll at all times be loads of work obtainable for me. 

And it is often the small issues purchasers will admire essentially the most. Even simply responding to an e-mail immediately as an alternative of making a shopper wait days in your response will go a great distance towards making them admire you. 

four. I set day by day revenue targets

One of the issues I realized in a short time is that freelance writing is a numbers recreation. If you need to earn a sure revenue each month, you want to break that objective down into a smaller day by day revenue objective.

For occasion, my very first objective was to earn $1,000 per thirty days. I spotted that if I labored 20 days per thirty days, this meant I wanted to make roughly $50 per day. From there, I targeted on sending sufficient proposals so I might at all times have at the least $50 of labor to do each day. 

And that is a technique I proceed to use to this very day. Today, my minimal day by day revenue objective is $500 per day, or $10,000 per thirty days.

5. I found out what works for me

I’ve at all times discovered a lot of freelance work by utilizing Upwork and different job boards. But as soon as I began networking with different freelancers, I realized that the majority do not maintain Upwork in excessive regard.

Other freelance writers advised me Upwork was filled with scammers and that I might be pressured to settle for pennies for my work. This at all times confused me, on condition that I usually discover high-paying purchasers on Upwork. 

Over these previous few years, I’ve realized that different individuals can solely let you know what’s labored for them. For occasion, my household and buddies weren’t fallacious once they steered I end my diploma — I simply had a completely different expertise than they did. And on the finish of the day, it is up to all of us to discover our personal path.  

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