Three ways to ramp up your social media presence in 2014

Posted on: January 12th, 2014

As freelancers, it’s important to keep our skills up to date and, last year, my training investment was in social media. I have been pretty active on some social media platforms for about two or three years but things changes so rapidly that I wanted to invest time and money in 2013 on making sure I was up to speed with what’s going on.

I was very impressed with the three training courses I went on, so I thought I’d share them with you.

1. Pinterest

I took Melanie Duncan’s course, The Power of Pinning. This is a video-based course you take in your own time that shows you how to use Pinterest for your business. Apart from explaining everything you need to know about how Pinterest works, it shows you how to drive traffic from Pinterest to your website – and thus drive sales. Here are my boards on Pinterest. 

Trading skills with a friend – a great way to learn

Posted on: January 28th, 2013

The other day I heard an acquaintance of mine play bass guitar in a band. I hadn’t realised she could play and was told she had learned over the past year.

The guy who had taught her wanted to to learn how to cook so, as this was something she was good at, they traded skills and taught each other for free.

I thought this sounded like a pretty good deal, as each was picking up a new skill they really wanted to learn.

When it comes to business, I don’t usually agree with barter deals like this as they don’t put money in your bank account. Also, it is rare that a business contact willing to barter can offer the exact skill you require. You also need to make sure that any such contra agreement ensures both parties receive equal value.

However, the guitar/cooking lesson deal seemed like a really good one to me. I, too, am able to teach someone to cook as this is something I have learned over several years at night school and something I enjoy doing.

International Freelancers Day 2012 is on September 21

Posted on: September 10th, 2012

I received an email the other day alerting me that the International Freelancers Day Online Conference is coming back for its third year. The Founders, Ed Gandia and Crystal Coleman, are the people behind the biggest online conference especially for solo professionals. And guess what? It’s free.

Here’s the information they sent me which tells you all about the day:

International Freelancers Day 2012 — Learn More

This free, content-rich event will be held on Friday, September 21. It’s fully online, so there’s no travel involved. And it will feature presentations from 13 top pros and thought leaders in the areas of freelancing, solopreneurship, marketing, social media and personal development.

Seven foundations for successful mentoring

Posted on: July 15th, 2011

Welcome to guest writer, Jo Ann Sweeney, who explains the seven areas where a mentor can make all the difference to our freelance business.

We all need a fresh perspective in our work, someone to help us think laterally beyond what we do day in, day out and provide fresh perspectives.

In almost 20 years as a freelance consultant I’ve met hundreds of people like myself – self-starters, good time managers, high energy, assertive, good at multi-tasking, not afraid to take risks, embrace change, can cope with ambiguity, like being our own boss, the list goes on and on.

What I’ve noticed is that some people establish successful businesses quickly; others take many years.  I’d put myself in the second category. It took six or seven years before I was doing well financially; which was fine because I had young children and wanted to work school hours only.


The no-cost way to learn new skills

Posted on: January 6th, 2011

I’ve just written a report for a major technology consulting company detailing the learning and development it delivered to its employees over the past 12 months. The staff there have access to all kinds of learning opportunities to enhance their professional development – from instructor-led activities, virtual classroom sessions and e-learning modules, to DVDs and online books.

As employees, they get all this training for free. But as freelancers, we have to pay out of our own pockets when we want to learn new skills. However, it’s important for us to keep learning new stuff if we want to remain competitive.

Luckily, with so many instructional blogs, YouTube videos, articles and free e-books out there, you can access all kinds of valuable information for free. I usually set up searches on Twitter for the subjects I’m interested in, so I get alerted when new posts/articles etc appear.

International Freelancers Academy is launched

Posted on: November 23rd, 2010

As I mentioned last week, today is National Freelancers’ Day in the UK. Back in September, Ed Gandia, Pete Savage and Steve Slaunwhite launched International Freelancers Day which was the biggest-ever online conference for solo professionals.

The conference actually took place over two days – I signed up to it and got FREE access to 24 video presentations from leading experts on some great topics such as marketing, social media, productivity etc.

Why am I telling you about something that happened two months ago?

Well, the other day Ed Gandia and Pete Savage emailed me to tell me about their brand new International Freelancers Academy.  It provides great-value content to freelancers – just like their online conference did – but now on a weekly basis.