Featured Freelancer: Lisa Jo Robinson, Graphic Designer & Illustrator

Featured Freelancer: Lisa Jo Robinson, Graphic Designer & Illustrator

There are so many positives from being a freelancer, such as doing what you want, when you want and how you want. However, it can be lonely and it’s no coincedence that the emergence of coworking spaces in recent years – and the Freelance Heroes Facebook group, of course –  has risen along with the rise in the number of freelancers. I mention this as it’s one of the primary challenges that this week’s Featured Freelancer faces frequently. However, the positives far outweigh the negatives as Lisa Jo’s story explains… What is your name, where are you based, and what do you do? My name is Lisa Jo Robinson, I am based in South East London (Lewisham to be precise) I am a freelance Graphic Designer and Illustrator. How long have you been freelancing and why did you decide to become a freelancer? I am a Graphic Designer of over 10 years and have always done freelance work on the side. I have dipped in and out of being fully freelance and a full time employee over the years. For the past 3 years I had been a full time Graphic Designer and illustrator for Comic Relief (with my recent claim to fame being the designer of the red noses for 2017) however I have now taken the leap back into freelance life once again. This time I have decided to take the plunge and go Ltd. and stick to my plan of being my own boss. What support did you have from family and friends? Did anyone advise you against becoming freelance? Family that aren’t in the creative...
Featured Freelancer: Nisha Kotecha, Social Media Consultant

Featured Freelancer: Nisha Kotecha, Social Media Consultant

In a digital world full of negativity and pessimism, I was easily drawn to the twitter account of Good News Shared and The Moments Journal, which regulary Celebrating the impact & achievements of charities, NGOs, and social enterprises. The accounts are run by this week’s Featured Freelancer Nisha Kotecha who, amongst her answers, talks about how much she enjoys the flexibility of being a freelancer. As well as how that means she now dislikes Bank Holidays. Find out why and more, in the story of Nisha’s freelancing journey… What is your name and what do you do? Hi, I’m Nisha Kotecha, I’m from London but am currently working remotely from different locations- most recently Lisbon, Prague and Budapest. My work is split into three areas: I run Good News Shared, a website which features uplifting charitable stories from around the world. I sell The Moments Journal, which I created to help people feel more positive and optimistic by focusing on the good things from their day. I support charities, social enterprises and small businesses with their social media marketing. How long have you been freelancing and why did you decide to become a freelancer? I have been freelancing for three years now, having left my job at a small national charity to try and help more charities raise awareness of the impact they have. I knew so many charities doing amazing work but getting limited (or no) attention in the press and I wanted to help in some way. So I set up Good News Shared and started working on freelance projects. What support did you have from family...
Featured Freelancer: Lenka Koppová, Social Media Consultant

Featured Freelancer: Lenka Koppová, Social Media Consultant

I first met Lenka at a networking event I hosted about 2 years ago. As it turns out, I’ve met Lenka at every networking event since then too. I don’t think I met someone who networks quite like Lenka, but that would explain why so many people know who she is, even if they haven’t met her. You’d think, therefore, that this would be her number one tip for anyone thinking of going freelance. But it’s not. En route to the answer of that question, here is Lenka’s very honest freelancing story… What is your name, where are you based, and what do you do? Hello, I’m Lenka Koppova and I’m a Cambridge-based Social Media Consultant. I help other freelancers to understand social media and use it to grow their businesses, without spending too much time and money on it. I like to say that I help people to use social media ‘the clever way’. How long have you been freelancing and why did you decide to become a freelancer? I’ve been freelancing for the past 18 months. I officially set up as a freelancer in May 2016 after I was let go from my previous agency. Ultimately, I always knew that I wanted to run my own business, but always thought I didn’t have enough experience to do it yet. I wanted to get some proper experience with an agency first. The past few months of my last job were really stressful and I was often depressed. I wanted to leave, but knew I needed a backup plan. In the end, they decided for me. At first I...
Featured Freelancer: Ellen Manning, Freelance Journalist

Featured Freelancer: Ellen Manning, Freelance Journalist

Self doubt is extremely common amongst freelancers, from a lack of confidence in areas we’ve had little exposure to previously, to the imposter syndrome. However much of a struggle it is, it’s vital to seek support for that self doubt, whether it’s from a mentor or other freelancers, such as in the Freelance Hereos Facebook group.  As this week’s Featured Freelancer – Ellen Manning – writes “You need to get past this to run a successful business and learn to see that people aren’t doing you a favour by giving you work.” However, that’s often easier said than done, as Ellen continues to learn. Here is what else Ellen has learnt on her freelancing journey. Enjoy… What is your name, where are you based, and what do you do? Ellen Manning, I’m based in Rugby, Warwickshire, and I’m a freelance journalist but also do a bit of copywriting and help a few organisations with their PR. How long have you been freelancing and why did you decide to become a freelancer? I went freelance in May 2016 after being employed full-time for nearly 13 years. I had reached a point in my life where I wanted to make my career work around my life, rather than vice versa. I wanted to pursue a few new areas and becoming freelance was the best way to do that. What support did you have from family and friends? Did anyone advise you against becoming freelance? My family and friends were incredibly supportive. All the people close to me knew that I needed to make some changes as I hadn’t been particularly happy...
The Essential Apps For Freelancers, Suggested By Freelancers

The Essential Apps For Freelancers, Suggested By Freelancers

To compliment all the skills we have as business owners and freelancers, there really does seem as if there’s an app for everything, but finding the right one can be tricky. For example, Google the term “CRM for freelancers” and you’re left to wade through a mere 519,000+ results. Good luck with that! As part of the Freelance Heroes FB group, there is a weekly interview that goes behind the scenes, called the “Featured Freelancer”. The following are some of the key tools used by the freelancers that have been interviewed, which should save you some Google search time. Organisation / CRM  Dropbox “Without Dropbox I wouldn’t be able to receive and share documents with my clients” – Tracey Smith, Virtual Administrator “As someone who uses twitter every day to drive engagement, it is so important to me to have all of my quotes, documents or tools I have developed available to me – at any time” – Chris Orrick, Man Coaching WeTransfer “Perfect for transferring large photo files when I’m delivering work.” – Tara Sura, Product & Lifestyle Photography Google Docs “I travel a lot and it’s so easy to add things that pop up in my head, or update documents, etc.” – Marianne Miles, Digital Marketing Google Drive “Google Drive is a lifesaver as I can access documents whilst on the go, I don’t have to worry about version control and I can work at it whether I’m on my PC in my office, or tablet whilst I’m on the go.” – Elizabeth Harmon, Social Media Consultant Evernote “It has some amazing features such as the business...