Special Episode Part 1: Build & Sustain your Freelance Business (from AHP)


Abigail Boatwright moderated a session for freelancers at the 2018 American Horse Publications Equine Media Conference in Hunt Valley, Maryland. Abigail and veteran freelancers Tracy Gantz and Jennifer Bryant talked about ways to get your freelance career starting off on the right foot, and ways to develop yourself into a hirable freelancer long-term. We also spent a lot of time discussing questions amongst the group. I learned from this group session, and think you will too! Here's a recap, but if you'd rather listen, we've got the episode up on iTunes (and below). This is Part 1 of 2 episodes!

The AHP is an amazing place for freelancers to begin your freelance journey. You’re already two steps ahead by 1. Being a member and 2. Attending at the conference. If you did the speed networking, that’s another key step.

Tip for after AHP - follow up with pitches to the editors this week, and reach out to the other contacts you met while you are here.

Other ways to build your business:

1. Simple but well-designed website

            - Bio

            - Contact Me – super important

            - Portfolio of your work

                        - 3-5 samples of each type (i.e. writing, photos, video).

2. Submit a press release once a month about your services, awards you’ve earned, samples of work for publication, events/shows you will be attending.

            - Proper format

            - Concise

            - Interesting 

            - Excellent grammar

  3. Use social media platforms targeted to the audience you want to reach 

            - Don’t use every platform

            - Consistency

            - Matches your brand 

4. Enter the annual awards contest.

            - Feedback on your work

            - Recognition within the industry

            - Added credibility 

5. Find a mentor

            - Someone slightly ahead of you, that excels in the areas in which you want to work

            - Informal or formal, payment or bartering, accountability and/or educational

6. Build relationships with editors

            - Occasionally reach out in a friendly way, perhaps on other platforms other than just pitching in emails

            - Be considerate—what might they need to make their job easier? How can you help?

            - MEET DEADLINES, communicate, be timely, deliver what you promise

Look for Part 2 of this session soon!

Abigail Boatwright