Regardless of the freelance area you choose to focus on, going freelance is an exciting thing, but also terrifying – and finances play a major role in that. As with all things, it helps when you get into it when you are prepared because you are not expecting a regular salary.
If you are a freelance animator, it can seem even more challenging, because you have the financial side to worry about, and you must also focus on the demands that animation presents in terms of its job description. Here are some tips to help you in terms of growing your money, even as a freelance professional in the animation scene.
Setting realistic expectations
Since a freelance professional is the same as an entrepreneur, it is essential to think of your freelance animation gigs as you would a startup business – your savings are the pathway to help you transition in terms of your financial status.
In light of this, therefore, aim to prepare yourself before going freelance, by building your savings and living expenses for some time, preferably half a year to a whole year. Prepare yourself for any eventualities, and take a step back if things fail to work out so that you do not cut deep into your financial reserves.
Organize the overheads, fast
When you decide to become a freelance animator at dormzi, the organization is essential to your financial stability and growth. This is because you will experience uneven incomes, and you may find yourself chasing payments at times. Educate yourself on writing contracts as well, as this will help you guarantee income getting in when you set yourself to take on new animation projects.
Many freelancers unfortunately do not understand incomes and expenses very well, especially if they have worked under the shelter of a salaried environment, and it is easy to misuse the money you have when you are not careful. It is good to track everything you spend on and do regular audits, even if it is not exciting – it will also give you a better idea of what to charge your clients.
Do some marketing
As a freelancer, it is very easy to become stressed due to the inconsistency in your client base and projects coming in – especially during the first few months or years. However, the trick here is keeping the jobs coming in, and you can achieve this when you market your business and network with others.
Even deciding to work in a shared office can prove to be helpful, because you can get the word out to others. However, using a direct strategy proves more useful, and producing very high-quality results when you get opportunities to work with clients, in order to show yourself as an authority. Keep updating your portfolio as well, participate in awards, and submit your work as entries, and keep talking to former colleagues and people you studied with.
But do not forget to take time off, sometimes
Even though the workflow is intense and you are working on several projects in a short time frame, you cannot be constantly working all the time. You will need to slot in off days, even if it is not easy to leave your job. It is important to rest anyway; because animation is a very demanding job to work in, it is easy to get serious burnout when you fail to take breaks.
When you decide to take some time off, warn your clients and employees you may work with, and remind them frequently. You can also disable your work notifications, and automate your emails to state that you are unavailable but will get in touch with the clients as soon as possible.
Diversification is important, especially as a freelancer – because it allows you some extra revenue streams. For instance, writing a book, taking on some teaching jobs where you can impart your skills to other animators, selling your previous animation works, and so on.
This is an avenue that never grows old, yet increases your overall revenue by a major shot.
However, make sure to do these activities gradually, as they can take up so much of your time you forget to take care of yourself.
Regardless of the approach you take, you must always aim to give your clients value for the money they pay you. Remain creative, offer good products, and work at your best – that will help you grow your revenue streams at the end of the day.