Are you and your freelance writing business ready for the Christmas sales season?
Retailers and their suppliers make the bulk of their yearly profits from October to December. Normally writers do too: we form new relationships and energize current relationships to take advantage of the season.
We’ve no idea what this year’s holiday sales will be like, of course. Fingers crossed…
Freelance writing: it’s the season to get in touch
For freelance writers, the last quarter of the year is the season to get in touch. You’ll never have a better reason to contact businesses and publications. Nor is there a better time to get hired.
New blogger? You can make money from your blogging side hustle in the next few months.
Are you a self-publishing author? Boost your creativity to boost your sales
What about self-publishing authors? I know many freelancers also self-publish.
Three words for you: publish and advertise. Publish some holiday-themed short stories and novellas.
Let’s look at how you can set your freelance writing and/ or self-publishing business humming.
Open your client list and contact clients
Start by opening your freelance client list. You do have one, don’t you? If you don’t, make a list of everyone with whom you’ve worked in past 12 months. They ALL need something you can supply.
Pick up the phone and call your clients. Ask… “Hi… What are you doing for the holiday sales season? If you’re running sales, I’d love to help you to get the news out about them.”
If you’re a self-publishing author, open your readers’ mailing list and prepare some special mailings. This year, it’s more important than ever to make readers feel special. You care, so show them you do.
BTW, an author asked me whether she should create some freebies for the holidays. I recommended against it. Freebies can be part of a marketing strategy, but not the major part. I suggested she get into the habit of charging: yes, even for itty bitty short stories.
Ideas for your freelance clients (or your readers, if you’re a self-publishing author)
1. Get their website ready for holiday sales
If you’re writing for a local business (you should be, local gigs are easy to get) tie their business in with local events. Most areas have special events when they light the community tree, have a holiday fair, and so on.
Prepare the ground for up-coming sales, and get a retainer agreement with your client to update the website regularly with news, and sales events.
2. Prepare a daily newsletter with offerings for the month before the holidays
If you’ve got retail clients, they’ve bought in a lot of stock they need to sell. Offer to create “daily special” tweets, and a daily newsletter for the final 30 days before Christmas.
For individual clients, create family newsletters and more
In addition to writing for business clients and publications during the sales season, consider offering personal writing services for individuals.
Just announce your “holiday writing” services on your website, or on a Pinterest board if you don’t have a site.
What could you offer for individual clients?
1. Family newsletters: spread holiday cheer
During the holidays, we all suffer pangs of remorse of the people we didn’t stay in touch with through the year. Many families send out newsletters to family and friends to update them, and wish them well.
This year, holiday newsletters will be especially vital if you live in an area where lockdowns are still happening.
Stay in touch in any way you can.
2. Holiday cards with special greetings
Many people want to personalize cards which go to their employer, family and friends. However, since they’re not writers, they’re not sure what to say. You can interview these people to create custom greetings.
One of my writing colleagues has built her own greeting card business over the past several years. She began small, by writing greetings for family members’ cards. Finally it occurred to her that she was spending so much time on this that she had to charge, or give it up. People were more than happy to pay.
Two years ago she teamed up with a photographer. Now they sell greeting cards and calendars to local stores and run their own pop-up shops in malls.
Freelance writing: yes, you can start your own freelance business NOW
A writer asked me whether she should start her new freelance business now, or wait until the new year. She thought that potential clients would be too busy to talk to her now.
I suggested she start immediately. Everyone’s busy, no matter the time of year. The holiday season is the best time to start, because the demand’s heavier.
Happy holiday season writing. 🙂
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Copywriter and marketing pro Angela Booth maintains a busy copywriting and ghostwriting practice. Fascinated by online marketing, she wrote one of the first business books for internet marketing, published by Allen & Unwin. She’s been an enthusiastic blogger since the late 1990s.