Slow January? Five income boosters for creatives

Ideas and tips for when your diary is empty and the panic is high

What can you do to boost your income in a slow month? What to do when you have no jobs lined up as a freelancer? In this post I share some ideas for income boosters for creatives.

Aim for the ‘low-hanging fruit’, and create juicy offers for quick cash-infusions.

For some of you, the start of the new year is your prime time when it comes to revenue. Health coaches, fitness instructors, yoga teachers, people offering creative retreats or training… these are the kinds or offers that do well in January. Everyone is ready for something new, they want to work on themselves, and they are excited to start a course.

For other creatives, however, January is utter rubbish. Photographers, artists, illustrators, graphic designers, filmmakers, and others who usually have more clients before Christmas than after. Empty diaries, sad-looking bank accounts. Panicky feelings. Aaaargh!

Instead of freaking out about the lack of clients right now, you’d better focus on what you can do to make some money. Here are some ideas for income boosters for creatives and freelancers.

photo of woman getting orange from tree
Photo by Lucas Bordignon on

Pick the low-hanging fruit: cash-flow ideas

Idea 1: Create a small, juicy offer

Create a juicy, small new offer and announce it on your social media and email list. Perhaps a mini photo shoot, a head shot, a logo refresh, or anything else your ideal clients might love to buy right now at the start of the New Year. Also crawl into the heads of your target audience, and figure out what they might be planning or working on right now. How can you help them reach their goals?

Idea 2: Reach out to past clients

People who have worked with you before are the easiest leads to get, and can be great income boosters for creatives. They know you already, know what quality you deliver, and they would likely buy from you again. Reach out to them by email, and ask them how you could support them again this year. Do they have any projects planned? New events on the horizon? Changes that you could help them with? Reach out, and ask. You could get a ‘no’, but there may well be a few ‘yesses’ in there too. Consider including your small, juicy offer from idea 1.

Idea 3: Ask for referrals

Another one to try, using your existing and past clients: ask them by email, if they don’t need your services right now, whether they know of anyone else that could do with your help. You never know who they have just been talking to, who was mentioning how they needed exactly what you offer. Plus you’ll stay top of mind with your existing clients.

Idea 4: Become an affiliate

Are you using an app of piece of software you love? Find out of you could become an affiliate, and start promoting the link on your website, blogs or socials (obviously within reason – you don’t want to bombard followers). This could, over time, become a nice little side hustle and bit of passive income. Consider this as one of your income boosters for creatives.

5. Cancel subscriptions

Got some spare time? Review your expenses! Where are the money leaks? Do you have any outstanding invoices to chase up? Do you still pay for subscriptions or memberships you no longer need? Cancel them. Clean up your direct debit payments, and immediately save some money this month. Start tracking your monthly budget a little better, and make sure you keep a tab on your cash-flow. Read this blog post to get more tips on money

Work with me

My name is Nina Eggens, and I support small businesses, freelancers and self-employed creatives with marketing, business and mindset coaching. I also offer Done-for-you services such as copywriting and lead magnet creation. Check my offers here.

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