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If you have NO idea who I am, you are probably wondering why I am creating this business. What have I done that qualifies me to offer these services?
Who Am I?
Currently, I am a second-year English and Professional Communications student at the University of Victoria. However, because of my ambition and dedication, I have already succeeded in the writing, editing, and digital communications fields.
For over 5 years, I have written in various genres and received numerous awards and publications. My short stories have won first place and received several honourable mentions and publications from ZG Communications, Polar Expressions Publishing, and L. Ron Hubbard’s Writers of the Future. Since 2016, I have posted (almost) weekly to this blog and have created over 700 posts and grew an audience of 800 followers. I have several articles published by Flanelle Magazine, who I frequently freelance for, and The Martlet.
Since January 2020, I have been a substantive editor and proofreader for The Albatross, an academic journal at the University of Victoria. Shortly after, in February, I began my volunteer position as a newsletter writer and editor for the MS Society. In April 2020, I completed substantive edits, copy edits, and proofreading for the biography, Fransesca: A Remarkable Life by Katrina Pavlovsky.
Digital Communications Experience
In June 2020, I began my internship as a Marketing and Social Media Coordinator for Gypsy Journals where I help manage and create content for Pinterest and the blog. I create SEO friendly captions and blog posts filled with keywords and hashtags that draw in the right audience. Starting in August, I will be a full-time Communications Development Lead at Focal, a marketplace for people to find the perfect photographer.
For samples of my writing and editing, check out my portfolio HERE
Make sure you spread the word and check out my freelance website on its launch day. I have dedicated an incredible amount of hours to creating this dream of mine, and it would mean so much to me if you would join me.
How do you save money when starting a business? Isn’t it expensive? What if I don’t have much money to spare and put towards my business?
If any of these questions crossed your mind, don’t worry! You don’t need buckets of money to start any business. Sure, having some is needed and how much really depends on what type of business you are starting. However, I have created this guide to help you save money where you can.
This guide is for anyone who is thinking about starting a business, is in the midst of planning their business, and those who already have a business.
Here are 3 tips on how to save money when starting a business.
1. Write Out an Expenses List
You must write out a list of all possible expenses when starting a business. If you don’t know what you have to spend money on, how can you save any? Include everything from domain hosting costs to shipping. These are things that you will most likely not be able to get out of paying, or find a free alternative. But knowing how much money you will need will give you a good idea of how much to save before launching your business or continuing on with it.
Have a number in your head of how much your first month and first year might cost you. This way, you will know how much you need to make back for this to all be worth it.
2. Connect with other Business People
Connecting with other likeminded business people will not only help you create relationships that can benefit your business and theirs, but it can save you money. These are people who are going through what you are, or have. Maybe they have already launched a business or two and have valuable tips and pieces of advice that could save you time and money. It is really worth scrolling through Instagram, finding people who are in a similar field as you, and then reaching out to them with a friendly message. Compliment them on their progress and explain your story.
If you are having trouble making meaningful connections, YouTube is a great resource…and it’s free! So many YouTubers who have started business are on there, posting videos of the Do’s and Don’t’s when starting a business and how to avoid this and that. Here are my recommendations:
Do as much of the start-up, planning, and creation yourself (if you can). If you have to create a website, take the time to watch YouTube videos or reach out to friends who can help. Don’t spend money on ads until you are financially able to, instead, focus on being active on social media because it will be way more effective!
Don’t buy anything you don’t NEED right at the moment either. If you don’t need a business plan on your website right away, or don’t need a premium MailChimp plan till later on, hold off until as long as possible. By the time you really need them, hopefully, you have saved up more money and it is easier to fork out!
Basically, be cheap!
12 FREE resources that will save you SO much money.
Canva – This is a great beginner design tool that offers you so much for free. I highly recommend Canva because you can create images specifically for blog headers, Pinterest pins, Instagram stories, and more
PicMonkey – I used to use PicMonkey and I still think it is a great resource! I know it is good for making YouTube thumbnails, so a good tool for any YouTubers out there too
Coursera – I paid a lot of money for a membership but that is because there were a lot of specializations I wanted to experience that I can’t at my university. However, there are so many amazing free classes and you can audit any class for FREE
Pivot, Passion, Profit Workshop – I am an intern for Gypsy Journals who created this lovely workbook and playback for any creative entrepreneurs looking to thrive in their passions. I highly encourage you to take a look and explore her other courses with Ouiwegirl.com too!
Social Media Organization
HootSuite – This is a social media post scheduler and with their free plan, you can connect 3 social media accounts and post 30 posts a month. That is good enough for me, and it is super easy to set up and use
Later – Another social media planner that I used to use, but switched to Hootsuite just because it was more of what I needed. However, the layout of Later is great and is super helpful overall
MailChimp – MailChimp is SO easy to use and the free plan is so far, all I need. When starting out, building a email following is essential for any business and including a newsletter will help to grow that. Which is why I use this handy tool
Nibbler – gives you a popularity and effectiveness report on whatever website you enter
Grammarly – if you are writing lots, you have to have Grammarly. Especially if you are doing all the writing yourself! Grammarly ensures your writing is grammatically correct and consistent
Invoicely – A free invoicing tool for small businesses and not to mention, it is simple to use! With invoicing, I look for simplicity which is why I like Invoicely
PayPal – I love PayPal and sometimes use it depending on the client, however, its free plan isn’t the best for businesses. It is still good to have free account with them though
When starting a business, it is important to be thorough, conscious, and critical. Not all businesses make their money back right away and you need to keep that in mind. That is why when starting a business, it is good to keep your expenses to a minimum until you are seeing progress.
When you finally start making money back, that is when you can spend it on premium plans and tools that will make your life easier. However, until then, the free options are here for you and honestly, they are pretty great!
I hope you found this post helpful and that it will save you money in the future. If you have any other free tools and resources, drop them in the comments below please!
And don’t forget to check out my last blog post as well as my social media accounts which are all linked down below. Thanks for reading 🙂
A creative entrepreneur is someone who uses their creative skills to make money such as vlogging, freelancing, writing, etc.
Since I freelance write and edit, and am always doing side projects for some cash, I am what you consider a creative entrepreneur. Are you? Or is a creative entrepreneur the type of job you aspire towards? Whatever the answer is, I will be sharing crucial tips and advice for new creative entrepreneurs, experienced entrepreneurs, and those of you who want to become a creative entrepreneur and make money doing what you LOVE.
DETERMINE YOUR REGIONS OF CREATIVITY
It is important to determine the creative regions that you want to focus on and grow into a successful business. The wonderful thing about being a creative entrepreneur is that you do not have to stick to one creative pursuit…you can be known for many! For example, Kristen Martin is a vlogger, business coach, writer, and I am sure there are a couple other titles thrown in there too. When you are a creative entrepreneur, you have the freedom to be creative and aspire to the careers you want.
If you are just starting out, write down 1-3 creative careers you want to work on. For me, that would be freelance writing and editing. Those are still my two main ones that I am constantly growing and spending time on. It helps to keep my “eyes on the prize” so to say.
5 TIPS FOR CREATIVE ENTREPRENEURS
1. WRITE DOWN SHORT-TERM & LONG-TERM GOALS
One of the first things you must determine about your business is what are your short-term and long-term goals. What do you want achieve? Whether it is something small like reach 10 clients by the end of my first month or something big, like collaborate with Nike by the end of my second year (I don’t know, something crazy like that!), you must carve some sort of path you want to take your business down.
When creating these goals, include DEADLINES and STEPS THAT OUTLINE HOW YOU WILL REACH THEM. Otherwise, your goals might not go anywhere.
2. CREATE A FUND & BUDGET
Drop everything right NOW and set up some sort of system (bank account, jar, etc) that allows you to put money towards your business every week, month, or whatever works best for you. It is also crucial to curate some sort of budget. It doesn’t have to be 100% accurate, but make a list of possible fees and expenses you might come across in your business journey. This is especially helpful in the beginning of your business.
If you find that you are able to launch your business for only a small cost, use whatever is in your fund for a cushion or emergency funds for your business.
Do not think that you have to pour bucketloads of money into your business fund every month. Look at everything you have to pay for like bills, food, utilities, transportation, etc and figure out what you have left to spare. For me, I only work 2 times a week so I only contribute $40-50 a month. However much I end up putting into this account, it is nice to have money that is specifically for my freelance business to use if I want to run ads or update my WordPress plan.
3. BE ACTIVE ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Social media will be the best place for you to share and grow your creative business. Depending on your business, different social medias will be the best choice for you but try to focus on no more than 2. If you attempt to be active on more than 2, you will stretch yourself thin and quickly burnout. You want to create new and fun content for your followers and the less accounts you must do this for, the easier it will be.
What Social Media is Best for YOU?
Writer – Instagram, Twitter
Artist – Instagram, Pinterest
Crafter, DIYer – Pinterest, Instagram
Vlogger – Instagram, YouTube
Blogger – Instagram, Twitter, WordPress/Wix/etc,
Business Coach – Instagram, WordPress/Wix/etc, Twitter
However, you choose where you think your platform will flourish! These are just suggestions.
4. LEARN TIME MANAGEMENT NOW
Whether you are a part-time creative entrepreneur who still has a job, or a full-time creative entrepreneur, your time management skills will make or break your business.
When you are working another job, it is important to not let your creative side hustle take over the job that makes you money! Starting out, your profit as a creative entrepreneur will be small and slow. That is why having a main source of income is necessary. Ensure you don’t get too caught up in the excitement of starting a new business and forget to focus on the job that pays the bills.
Excellent time management is also important for full-time creative entrepreneurs because you need to define the line between work and life. I know for me, when I am working on projects I love such as freelance writing and editing, I get so caught up in it that I forget to take breaks and live my life. At the beginning of your business, this isn’t the worst thing, but as your business settles into a steady rhythm, you have to know what hours of the day are spent on your business and what hours are spent enjoying life.
5. TOOLS FOR THE SUCCESSFUL CREATIVE ENTREPRENEUR
There is a LOT of behind-the-scenes work that goes into being a creative entrepreneur. From posting on social media, keeping track of your goals to creating content, there are so many tools at your fingertips that will make your life so much easier. Here is a list of my favourites!
Hootsuite – This is a tool for scheduling social media posts. The free plan allows you to connect up to 3 social media accounts to the site and create posts through there.
Trello– Keeping all your content ideas, goals, and notes in one place saves SO much time when you are doing everything for your business which is why I love Trello. You can create boards for different projects and add to-do lists, notes, pictures, etc all in one easy-to-access place.
Colorpick Eyedropper – If you are creating content on Canva, Photoshop, or some other application, this tool is super helpful. If you want to know what colour something is when browsing online or admiring the profile of another creative entrepreneur, Colorpick Eyedropper allows you to find out what the colour is. It’s super easy. You just click it (it is a chrome extension so you have to download it) and hover the cursor over what colour you want to receive the code for.
Wordtracker – This is for SEO and finding out what words/phrases are being searched up. If you write blog posts, captions, bios, etc, this will help drive traffic to whatever you create. There is a free version, however it is pretty limited. This is something that would be a great business investment!
Canva – If you want to create your own ads, social media posts, Instagram stories, etc, Canva is a MUST. It offers you a user-friendly place to create eye-catching graphics…and it’s FREE!
Those are all my tips and pieces of advice for starting and developing your creative business. I hope they were helpful and inspiring! If you have any others, share them in the comments and spread the knowledge.
Don’t forget to check out my last blog post as well as my social media accounts which are all linked down below. Thanks for reading 🙂
Podcasts are a great way to learn about new things or get motivated, which is why now is the perfect time to share four of my favourite podcasts that can spark your creativity during these somber times.
Personally, I love to listen to podcasts while cleaning or going on a walk, but occasionally, I will sit down and soak in all their wisdom. They help me unwind and pass the time, which are two things I look for daily. Hopefully, the podcasts listed below can do the same for you!
These podcasts that I am sharing are for the creative mind (entrepreneurs, writers, artists, etc), but I think they would be beneficial to anyone who listened to them. When I need a pick me up, these are the podcasters I turn to.
1. Gals on the Go
I only recently started listening to this podcast hosted by Danielle Carolan and Brooke Miccio, two lifestyle YouTubers who I enjoy watching. They talk about their lives, social media, relationships, college, and life on the internet. They are honest and open about their struggles, especially during quarantine, which is inspiring to hear. It sparks creativity because these are two young but very successful people who are, as they say, “gals on the go.” Hearing their start-up stories and also about the type of social media work they do inspires me to be productive in my own work.
Their podcasts are more laid back so I find they are better background noise for when I am cleaning or doing housekeeping tasks on my laptop like answering emails. It just feels like two friends chatting and catching up with the occasional tip on how to stay positive and motivated when life has you down.
Our Quarantine Morning Routines
Chat with Maggie MacDonald: Social Media, College, Confidence + Being Yourself
2. That Smart Hustle
This is another podcast that is hosted by a YouTuber, and her name is Kristen Martin. She is a creative entrepreneur who posts vlogs related to writing, business, and lifestyle which she has expanded onto her podcast as well. She also posts about astrology and energy, which I am not into but if you are, then you should definitely check her out! She touches a lot on failing and accepting failure, as well as believing in yourself and your plan in order to succeed. I really like it when podcasts, especially podcasts for entrepreneurs, include this message because we all need that reminder every once and a while.
I like to take walks and listen to this podcast because there are always a lot of gold nuggets of information that I don’t want to miss. These podcast episodes are short, ranging from 10-30 minutes usually, which is a nice break from the 40-60 minute ones! But keep in mind, you might want to download a few of these before taking a walk.
The One Thing I Wish I’d Known Before Starting a Business
The Danger of Consuming More Than You’re Creating
When the Motivation Just Isn’t There
3. 88 Cups of Tea with Yin Chang
In the past, I have talked about this writing podcast and how much I loved it, and I still do! I highly recommend this one not only to writers but to creatives overall. Yin brings on artists of all sorts onto this podcast, and all the content is just so inspiring. I never finish an episode not ready to hop on my laptop and get writing. That is why if you are feeling in a rut, listen to this ASAP.
This podcast is one of those ones that you want to sit down and enjoy every minute of it. I recommend siting down somewhere comfy with a snack and a drink before pressing play because you won’t want to miss any info spilling out. It wouldn’t hurt to have a notebook too to jot down some notes. However, it is also great to listen to while on a walk. When I was younger, I would listen to it every day on my walk to and from school.
It also helps that Yin brings on so many of my favourite authors, making me jump on each episode as soon as it releases.
MAGGIE STIEFVATER: Staying Motivated During Challenging Times
VICTORIA ‘V.E.’ SCHWAB: Cultivating Stubborn Hope & Earning Your Way Into the Tribe
SARAH J MAAS: Championing Heroines & Writing with Relentless Determination
4. The Goal Digger
This is a new podcast for me, but all the episodes I’ve listened to, I’ve loved. This an entrepreneur podcast all about getting your dream job and cultivating the life you want to live. It is about hustling and growing your online platforms in order to achieve the dreams you set out to reach. Every episode is a nice 20-45 minute length, which makes it a great walking podcast. Like 88 Cups of Tea though, I prefer to snuggle up for this one or at least sit at my desk with my notebook out. This is a gold mine if you are interested in success on social media and building a brand/business on platforms such as Instagram, Pinterest, etc.
The Goal Digger has a lot of amazing interviews with professional entrepreneurs who share their own tips and tricks to success, along with the host’s own experiences and advice. It also includes a lot of episodes on topics you wouldn’t necessarily think about asking yourself when creating a business which is so incredibly helpful. Some examples are “An Action Plan to Manage Financial Fear and Anxiety Right Now” and “The Checklist I Use to Choose My Mentors.”
These 5 Things Will Make or Break Your Biz
Those are four podcasts that will spark your creativity and I hope you will give them a try if you haven’t already. Let me know down below some of your favourite podcasts because I am always on the hunt for more.
Don’t forget to check out my last blog post as well as my social media accounts which are linked down below.