Many freelancers operate under the assumption that since they’re not technically running a business, they don’t need a business plan. Well, is that true, or is it an oversight? Do you really need a business plan for your freelance work?

The short answer is “Yes!”

Despite the fact that you may not have a registered business, you should still write a business plan for your freelance work. A business plan is an indispensable tool, and you need to develop a business plan for several reasons:

  1. A business plan will serve as the roadmap for your freelance work. The business plan will outline what you expect to get out of your freelance work, and how you plan to go about it. When you lose focus, reviewing your business plan can get you back on track.
  2. Your business plan will be updated from financial records each year, and you’ll be able to use the business plan to make financial projections for coming years. You can use it to see exactly when your freelance work should become profitable for you, and you can alter your practices if you’re not meeting those goals.
  3. A business plan will contain your marketing, advertising and promotion plans – all vital to your freelance work. You’ll spend much of your time selling your work to potential clients, and your business plan will lay out your marketing strategies, and timeline, for you.
  4. Your business plan will give you insight into your competitors’ strengths and weaknesses, and you can capitalize on that information to make yourself more competitive.

Long story short, you really do need a business plan for your freelance work. Put the time and honest effort into making realistic projections and goals, and you’ll be creating the most useful tool, and measuring stick, you’ll need in your work.

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