How Much Should You Spend To Promote Yourself?

I’m sure you have heard the old saying, “It takes money to make money.” And that saying is true in any business. Whether you like it or not when you are a freelancer you are a business. The problem is that most creative people just don’t have a business mind which is why so many artists are broke. Most artists really don’t have a clear understanding of how much they are making vs. how much they are spending. All you see is that the money comes in and then the money goes out. Then when it comes time to invest in promoting yourself, you can’t because you are too broke. Then the cycle just keeps repeating itself. You are broke because you don’t have the money to properly promote yourself but you can’t promote yourself because you are broke. When does the cycle end? What if I told you that you could end that never ending cycle of drama by creating a budget with goals and a set plan for self-promotion? Would you do it?

I have been to so many networking functions and trade shows and I always see the same thing. Hair & Makeup Artists will spend hundreds and thousands of dollars on their kits but they never have money left for anything else. Why is that? It’s important to have the best products in your kit but you still need to have a job in order to use them. You need to realize that networking events, websites, promo cards, and lunches with people you want to hire you cost money. And if you don’t get a clear understanding about what is realistic for you to be spending then you will always be in the debt cycle. That means you will get a job, pay your bills, over spend, then find yourself broke again. Aren’t you tired of this?

So how do you get out of this cycle? Start by doing the following:

1. Write down any steady income you have coming in monthly
2. Create realistic financial goals for your freelance income (how much money you realistically can make)
3. Create a list of all your expenses
4. Then take ten percent of your monthly income and use that to promote yourself (this does not mean go into debt)
5. Gradually increase your freelance income goals (ie – if you made $1000 working freelance one month – make next month’s goal $1200)
6. Don’t increase your personal spending just because you are making more money – keep your bills low until you can afford to spend more on yourself)

One of the great things about being a freelancer is that you have the ability to make as much money as you want. If you don’t have any money left over in the beginning to promote yourself, then at least you know what you need to make each month. You increase your goals by making more phone calls and sending out your resume. Then as you build more clients then you can start using that additional allotted ten percent to promote yourself. At least it will be clear to you how much you re making and how much you can spend on your career each month.

To learn more about this check out our Career Coaching Workshop in July. These topics as well as many others will be covered. Visit:







May 14, 2012. Hair & Makeup Jobs, Networking, Working as a Hair or Makeup Artist.

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