I love learning from other successful freelancers and online business owners.
And from what you’ve told me, you do too! So each week (almost), we’re going to interview someone new for us all to learn from.
Today, we’re chatting with Brittany Berger, content marketer extraordinaire.
Brittany shares how she turned to freelancing after experiencing health issues, and the best writing advice she has received so far.
Let’s get to it!
What do you do and how long have you been in business?
I’m a content marketer, writing and promoting different types of content mostly for B2B tech startups. I’ve been in content marketing since 2011 (but we didn’t even call it that yet!), and just started freelancing in 2015.
What got you into freelancing?
I’ve always been a blogger, and the general idea of writing for multiple publications started feeling really appealing after a few years of creating content for the same company and niche full-time (I still have an in-house full-time job, but it’s nice to add in variety).
I had freelanced here and there, but never consistently or intentionally, until a health emergency last fall had me looking for ways to supplement my day job income.
I knew that using my existing content marketing skills to pay my medical bills would be easier – and more importantly, better for my health – than taking a retail job on my feet somewhere in the neighborhood.
What’s been most challenging part of solopreneuriship so far?
For me, it’s definitely balancing my day job and solo business.
I work for a startup. So I just have to take a break for an hour or two when I get home if I want to write anything good later.
Sometimes I don’t start on freelance work until 10 or 11 at night.
I’m a natural night owl and would be up until 1 or 2 am anyway, but I feel like it would be so much less stressful if I could manage to knock out my freelance work as soon as I get home and be able to unwind a little immediately before bed.
Did you ever want to quit or give up?
I haven’t had the “I quit” feeling yet, thankfully!
I’ve definitely had the “this sucks sometimes” feeling, and even the “I’m doing too much and want to scale back” feeling.
When that happened, I did re-evaluate my workload and temporarily reduced it, deciding to go with my gut. It was hard not to feel like a wuss for that, but I’m glad I did it.
If you could pay someone to take tasks off your plate, what would you outsource?
Cleaning my apartment!
I would always prefer to outsource personal chores than business ones, which I actually don’t mind much. I live in Manhattan, so it is pretty easy to turn to grocery delivery, but cleaning is different. And my apartment is so tiny that it’s really not something that can be put off for long, or you run out of room to sit and walk.
What task in your own business would you like to do more of?
I definitely wish I had more time for working on products.
I started working on a course about productivity for solopreneurs a long time ago, but had to put it on the back burner when those health issues happened. I recently started writing content for it again, but for now it’s second priority to maintaining current projects like client work and publishing new content.
I’ll probably figure out a way to change that soon to get it finished.
What are some big successes you’ve had recently?
For the past month, I’ve had a post getting crazy traffic.
A post about how I stay organized as a solopreneur has been shared around 1,000 times on Pinterest now. But more importantly, I managed to make that traffic convert insanely well.
The post was already pretty optimized for my blog’s goals, but when I first noticed the bump in traffic, I started testing a lot of new tactics that ended up working really well! I’ve managed to grow my email list by 60 percent that month, so obviously I’m already working on a case study blog post about it. 😉
(Gina’s tip: I use Trello to stay organized. I like it so much, that I dedicated a whole lesson to it in my VA course.)
What are some specific strategies, tactics or pieces of advice that helped you grow?
Since my career is based on writing, the best advice I’ve ever received is “ignore word count.”
No good ever comes from obsessing over word count.”
Yes, you should write in-depth content, but length should be guided by your topic, audience and goals. If you’re writing about a very specific topic, 800 words may be all you need for an in-depth, quality post.
Expanding it to 1,500 words because you read that is the best length will likely just result in fluff that diminishes your content’s focus and quality. But a more encompassing topic may need 2,500 words to fully cover.
Basically, know when to put your audience and what they want above best practices circulated on the internet.
What are you most excited about for your business next?
I’m really excited to start working on my course again.
Productivity automation is something I totally geek out about, so I know writing it will be really fun once I get a handle on the overwhelm!
I’m also starting to help current clients with more than just content creation – guiding them with distribution and strategy ideas, which is really my favorite part of content marketing. So that definitely has me considering a little bit of coaching or consulting after the course launch is behind me.
I know, I know, one thing at a time. 🙂