My articles

I enjoy writing ‘how to’ articles and opinion pieces on the topics of freelancing and entrepreneurship. Here’s a list of the pieces I’ve had published over the last few years:

BizCommunity

I’ve been submitting articles to South Africa’s most popular ad/marketing industry news site for a while now and became a regular columnist in January 2009.

  • Biz 2010 Trend Report: Freelancing and outsourced marketing.  |
    Freelancing is not for sissies – particularly not at the moment, where the market is awash with creatives who became involuntary freelancers following last year’s redundancies. In 2010, the fittest WILL survive – and thrive – and clients can take their pick from a seriously talented pool of creatives who will be upping their games to get an edge over the competition. (Column, January 2010)
  • Ten ways to secure a great job in a recession |  When times are tough,competition for the jobs that ARE available increases. I’ve seen from recent experience that people are applying for positions for which they are not qualified – and rushing to get as many applications in as possible means that they don’t read the instructions properly. Simplyby ensuring you’re properly qualified and providing all the information required is very likely to get you an interview. Here are 10 tips to help you stand out from the crowd. (Column – May 2009)
  • Do you really want me to know THAT about you? |  Is all this information that you’re putting out into the big wide web building your reputation, or destroying it? Here are some simple tips for keeping your online reputation a reputable one. (Opinion piece – March 2009)
  • Spec work: tips for clients, agencies and freelancers | Now that we’ve covered why ‘spec’ is a four-letter word in our industry, let’s look at what clients, agencies and freelancers can do to minimise this practice.   (Opinion piece – February 2009)
  • ‘Spec’ is a four-letter word | Spec work: work that you do in the hope that the client will choose your idea and pay for it. Agencies and freelancers alike will inevitably face spec work at some point, so the question is: to ‘free’ or not to ‘free’? (Opinion piece – February 2009)
  • New Year’s resolutions of a marketing entrepreneur |  While industry experts are writing thoughtful articles on their predictions for 2009, my crystal ball is more decorative than functional. Considering the surprises the world threw at us in 2008, I’m substituting predictions with resolutions to help my businesses – and me – thrive this year.   (Opinion piece – January 2009)
  • Ten recession-busting tips for freelancers |  Right now, it’s a great time to be a freelancer. Really. Nobody can make you redundant; you are in control of your own income; and clients are more likely to outsource than employ staff. Here are 10 tips for freelancers to make the most of the current economy. (Freelancentral press release – January 2009)
  • When and how to fire a client |  For freelancers – as well as agencies and businesses in general – resigning a client is sometimes necessary. There are several circumstances under which you may want to show a client the door. If one of these resonates with you, the next question is how to end the relationship in a professional way. (Freelancentral press release – October 2008)
  • Flying solo: but not all by myself |  It’s a brave person who hands in their notice and foregoes a monthly pay check, pension plan and paid sick leave to do their own thing. But this is what thousands of South Africans are doing – and they’re loving it. Sure, it’s not all sunshine and roses, with financial worries and finding clients being their biggest headaches. But the freedom, control and opportunities that flying solo bring usually more than make up for that. (Freelancentral press release – September 2008)
  • Twenty tips for happy client-freelancer relationships | Freelancers and their clients need each other to survive. But mismatched expectations, poor communication and delayed payment may cause this relationship to break down. Here are twenty tips that clients and freelancers feel the other can do to ensure good working relationships.   (Freelancentral press release – July 2008)
  • Ten pitch-winning tips for freelancers |  What is it that makes a client appoint one freelancer instead of another? Sure, an impressive portfolio counts for a lot, but sometimes it’s the simple things that are the deal-makers – or deal-breakers – for clients… and many freelancers just don’t get these right. (Freelancentral press release – February 2008)
  • The new professionals |  How many freelancers are in your company today? And how many creatives secretly crave the flexibility that freelancing offers? As more designers, writers and other creatives take on their own after-hours clients, or take the plunge into full-time freelance work, we’re seeing an interesting phenomenon happening in the industry: Freelancing is becoming less ‘free’.   (Freelancentral press release – July 2007)

ITWeb

Following my selection as a participant in an amazing business programme for women ICT entrepreneurs in 2008, I started reporting to ITWeb on our experiences in the USA and as a result, wrote an ‘Industry Insights’ column for this IT news portal for six months. Starting in January 2010, I’m writing a monthly ‘Marketing 101’ column for ITWeb.

  • The biggest marketing mistake mid-sized companies make |   I see it time and again. A mid-sized company, say 20-30 staff, decides it wants to start doing some marketing, or it would like to refresh its current activities. It gets all excited about it and has a lot of fun doing the cool things, like rebranding, or launching a new Web site. It may even have put a great strategy and implementation plan in place. But after a few of months, it’s all fizzled out. The biggest mistake these companies make is… (Column, July 2010)
  • Marketing 101: Don’t skimp on strategy |   So you’ve worked out why you want to do some marketing and have thought about how it may impact on your business. You’re probably quite excited to get started now and can’t wait to get some groovy new business cards or a great new Web site. Hold on a second. Before starting any marketing projects, you need to make sure your strategy is rock solid.  (Column, March 2010)
  • Marketing 101: Before you begin |   Marketing may not be a four-letter word, but it’s often a scary one, particularly if you’ve got no background in it. Marketing doesn’t have to be daunting though – and it certainly isn’t rocket science. In this new series of Industry Insights, I am on a ‘simplify and demystify’ mission. I’ll show you how businesses can implement simple marketing strategies that are affordable and effective. (Column, January 2010)
  • Don’t do your own marketing |  Marketing. It’s a word that strikes fear into the hearts of many business owners. It conjures up images of posh ad agencies and achingly trendy creatives; and meetings peppered with jargon like ‘integrated campaigns’, ‘sticky strategies’ and ‘monetising your online presence’. Shudder. All this can understandably make you run away very fast – and rather try to handle your marketing yourself. Tempting as this is, just don’t do it. Why? (May 2009)
  • Pat yourself on the back |  Acknowledgement isn’t just about a pat on the back – it’s about recognising and appreciating what someone has done. It’s about gratitude and fulfilment. Perhaps most importantly, it’s not just about acknowledging others or having others acknowledge you, it’s also about acknowledging yourself. (December 2008)
  • Do nice entrepreneurs finish first? | Some businesses might be pioneers at first, but it’s usually not long before copycat companies join the fray, in pursuit of market share. As an entrepreneur, your start-up is most likely competing with some big, established players. How can you convince potential clients and employees to choose you: a small, emerging business with little credibility and track record? (October 2008)
  • The successful entrepreneur’s secret | There are many keys to achieving success as an entrepreneur. Support from family, friends, colleagues and clients is vital. Good financial management – particularly cash flow – can make or break an enterprise. A great idea also helps – as does effective marketing. But, in my experience, there’s one thing that outweighs all of these. (October 2008)
  • Training wheels for entrepreneurs | No (wo)man is an island and as a fledgling entrepreneur, I had to do something about the loneliness that was creeping in. I also needed a crash course in how to run a business, having never studied it before. Plus I needed to start building a network, as I’d heard that word of mouth is the best way to market yourself. (August 2008)
  • Entrepreneurial reality checks (part one) | Having resigned from my job, attended a very inspiring conference for entrepreneurs and set up office space in my spare room, I couldn’t wait to start my company. First came the honeymoon period. Not having to sit in rush hour traffic for 90 minutes every day was a smug luxury. Sleeping in a little late felt like a guilty pleasure. And doing my grocery shopping in a mostly-empty mall was bliss. Then my new reality hit me… (June 2008)
  • Why I quit my day job | Following the articles you might have seen on ITWeb about the incredible opportunity I had to travel with 11 other women IT entrepreneurs to the US on a training programme recently, I thought I’d backtrack a little and explain what motivated me to step into the Entrepreneurial Unknown three years ago. (May 2008)
  • Passing it on | Three weeks of training, mentoring and workshadowing by inspiring, successful women, in the company of 11 dynamic compatriots, has left my head spinning with ideas, plans and loads of enthusiasm! Here are 10 things that I learnt in the US which I believe can be universally applied to entrepreneurs and freelancers – or anyone who is running or setting up their own business, be it full-time or part-time… (May 2008)
  • The fear factor | The 12 South African women IT entrepreneurs who are participating in a three-week business training programme in Maryland, USA, are learning that as different as our two cultures may be, it seems more often than not that we share many common challenges and issues. But one aspect in which female entrepreneurs in the US have the edge is an emotional one.

FreelanceSwitch

I’d love to have more time to contribute to international freelance blogs like FreelanceSwitch, who are doing a great job at providing extremely useful information, tips and education to freelancers.

  • 10 Tips to Stay Motivated, Sane and Productive |  Maintaining enthusiasm, productivity levels, a sense of humor and general sanity can sometimes be a challenge for career freelancers!  Here are ten lessons that every successful freelancer has learned: lessons that will help keep you on the right track in the world of going it alone. (May 2008)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: