Diana Kelly Levey

6 Ways to Stay Focused on Freelance Writing During the Coronavirus Pandemic

A woman typing on a laptop

February 14, 2022

This is a guest post from freelance writer Stephanie Weaver. Read more freelance writer guest posts here.

Stephanie Weaver is a Philadelphia-based freelance writer. Her work has appeared in Inc.com and Philadelphia Magazine. When she’s not hooked to her laptop, she can be found riding a motorcycle or a horse.

COVID-19 caused a prolific period of upheaval. From shutting down restaurants and retailers to causing thousands of 9-to-5 employees to have to work remotely from home, our world has significantly changed since March 2020.

If you’re a new freelance writer working through the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be wondering how it will affect your business. From clients putting assignments on hold to the stock market crashing, you may be worrying that your business is at risk.

But as Erma Bombeck once stated, “Worry is like rocking in a rocking chair. It gives you something to do, but never gets you anywhere.”

Instead of fretting, here are six proactive steps you can take to prevent the COVID-19 pandemic from disrupting your freelance writing. (These article pitch examples will help you land you new gigs.)

Stephanie Weaver
Freelance writer Stephanie Weaver

6 Tips for Freelancers Navigating the COVID-19 Pandemic

Stay Healthy

Take the proper precautions to avoid getting sick yourself. It’s almost impossible to meet a deadline if you have a fever, or worse.

Some preventative measures that you can take include:

  • Avoiding social gatherings
  • Staying hydrated
  • Postponing travel plans
  • Wearing a face mask when you venture out to the pharmacy or grocery store
  • Getting plenty of physical activity
  • Cleaning your smartphone and laptop (probably overdue anyway, right)

Your first job is to take care of yourself in the midst of this chaos. (This freelancer FAQ will answer your questions about work-life balance.)

Take Audit of Your Current Marketing Strategy

If the pandemic has made your freelance assignments come to a screeching halt, now is the time to beef up your marketing strategy to attract new clients.

Go through your website, and portfolio, with a fine-tooth comb. Does it accurately portray your accomplishments and writing expertise? Also, ask yourself questions such as:

  • Should I revamp my marketing strategy to attract high-paying clients?
  • Is my LinkedIn profile optimized for clients to find me?
  • Are my pitches converting? Are my cold emails obtaining new clients?

Really take this time to figure out what’s not working, and what is. (These other freelance writing tips will help you find success.)

Pivot to Help Your Clients and Your Freelance Business

Now is a great time to learn ways to pivot in a way that serves you and your freelance clients. I helped one freelance client continue to sell their products during the pandemic by writing content that supported their business model. They’re a restoration company that also provides deep cleaning and sanitization services. I wrote a blog for them about the importance of professional sanitization to kill bacteria and to stay healthy. (Related: How to Write a Pitch for an Article)

Keep an Eye Out for Potential Winning Clients

In every world crisis, there are winners and losers. Ask yourself who the winners are in this instance. Some sectors for me that come to mind include:

  • Medical testing and research companies
  • Video sharing businesses, such as Skype or Zoom (See if these companies have a blog or need content help!)

Thanks to this strategy and others, my business is currently steady. The last four months of 2021 were crazy though because I was “client greedy.” I took on way more than I could chew. While I still am learning to say “no,” I think I’ve found somewhat of a balance. I have a few fun projects in the pipeline and am working with a handful of amazing clients.

Learn a New Skill

OK, so your pool of freelance work has dried up. Now is a good time to learn new skills that can enhance your resume and land you new clients. For example, you can take an online graphic design class. Or you can deepen your knowledge of social media content marketing.

Focus on Other Business-Boosting Activities

I am still working on being more self-disciplined. I think this will be a lifelong battle for me. My goals for 2022 are to write two to four blogs per month, take at least three copywriting classes, and connect with more freelancers. I also would like to spend more time unplugged from my business.

TL;DR: Don’t let the coronavirus put a damper on your freelance business. Use this time to really evaluate what’s working for you, what’s not, and how you can help out your clients during this troubling time.

More importantly, stay healthy and calm. As everything does, this too shall pass.

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