2011 Creative Freelancer Conference Is Fast Approaching

Later this month I’ll be in Chicago for the Creative Freelancer Conference, a two-day event designed to help freelancers work smarter, up their game, and as a result boost their incomes. This will be my fourth year attending and I can’t wait. It’s easily one of the top events I attend each year.

The Creative Freelancer Conference will be held June 23-24 at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Chicago. If you make a living as a creative freelancer (photographer, designer, illustrator, etc.), or are thinking about taking the plunge into freelancing, you absolutely must go to this conference. You’re guaranteed to walk away loaded with practical info and inspirational ideas on how to make freelancing work better for you. The better you are at freelancing the happier your clients will be and the greater your chances of overall success. Its a win-win for everyone.

Time is short but its not too late to register. This year the conference is also piggybacking off of the HOW Design Live conference so if you plan to attend both you get a discount.

To get a taste of what’s in store you can purchase audio and powerpoints from the 2009 Creative Freelancer Conference here. Attendees of the 2011 conference can also order audio of this year’s event but if past conferences are any indication that audio may not be made available to the general public. If you still aren’t sold, you can read my recap of the 2009 conference. I’d also recommend visiting the website of Marketing-Mentor, the terrific people who partner with HOW to make the conference such a success.

Hope to see you there!

More From The Creative Freelancer Conference

My head is still swimming with all the information I tried to soak in last week at the 2008 Creative Freelancer Conference in Chicago. Fortunately it has been officially announced that MP3 audio recordings of all of the seminars will be available for purchase soon, likely sometime in the next few weeks. I’ll post a link as soon as they are available.

One of the books I picked up at the conference is The Designer’s Guide to Marketing And Pricing: How to Win Clients and What to Charge Them (Amazon.com link) co-authored by two of the key presenters, Ilise Benun and Peleg Top from Marketing Mentor. I’ve only read portions of the book, but so far I can say this is one of the best books on self-promotion and pricing that I’ve seen in a while. It’s a detailed primer covering the nuts-and-bolts of finding the right clients, networking, pricing your work, and lots of advice on what to say (and what not to say) when negotiating a project so that you appear as professional as possible. The chapter on how to talk to clients about money is well worth the price of the book. While primarily targeted at graphic designers, there is a wealth of helpful information most of which could easily apply to illustrators, photographers, web designers, etc.

Another book I picked up at the conference is Identity Crisis! (Amazon.com link) by Jeff Fisher. Fisher is a graphic designer specializing in logos, and his new book details the process he went through on 50 different client projects transforming old logos and identities into new and successful brands. Each chapter shows the client’s old logo, the new logo (and other collateral material), and discusses the process Fisher went through with each client. Fun stuff for anyone interested in logos and identity work.

Finally, designer Ian Arsenault has posted a bunch of photos from the conference on his Facebook page. Give them a looksee to see how much fun everyone had. Ya should’a been there!

Creative Freelancer Conference Early Deadline Approaching

Don’t forget, the early bird deadline for the Creaative Freelancer Conference is Tuesday July 15 extended to July 31. Register by then and save $60.

The Creative Freelancer Conference (Augut 27-29 in Chicago) is a brand new venture presented by HOW Magazine and Marketing Mentor. Topics will be tailored for creative freelancers (i.e. illustrators, designers, photographers, copyrighters, etc.) and include:

  • How do I balance finding work with doing work?
  • What niche should I target, and how do I position myself within it?
  • How do I create a continuous stream of good prospects?
  • How do I find out a client’s budget?
  • Am I charging too much or too little?
  • What should my contract include?

There are also still openings to sign up for a one-on-one review of your portfolio and/or marketing materials. A creative marketing professional will give you advice about your business strategy and suggest ways to improve how you present your work to potential clients.

If you are a freelancer and you only go to one conference this year, this would probably be the one. More info can be found at the conference website: CreativeFreelancerConference.com. I’m planning to attend. Hope to see you there!

Creative Freelancer Conference

I just received a brochure in the mail about a new conference tailored for creative freelancers (i.e. illustrators, designers, photographers, copyrighters, etc.) The 2008 Creative Freelancer Conference will be held Augut 27-29 in Chicago.

The conference is presented by HOW Magazine and Marketing Mentor. Topics to be discussed will include:

  • How do I balance finding work with doing work?
  • What niche should I target, and how do I position myself within it?
  • How do I create a continuous stream of good prospects?
  • How do I find out a client’s budget?
  • Am I charging too much or too little?
  • What should my contract include?

Two of the speakers are Ilise Benun and Peleg Top. They’ve previously given some very helpful webinars through HOW magazine, and have a real knack for making the business side of being a freelancer feel less intimidating, even fun. Benun’s website, Marketing-Mentor.com, also has some very helpful resources for freelancers.

If you are a freelancer and you only go to one conference this year, this would probably be the one. More info can be found at the conference website: CreativeFreelancerConference.com

Marketing Mentor

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Marketing Mentor is an excellent website and blog for freelancers run by Ilise Benun, a consultant who specializes in helping creative professionals do a better job of marketing themselves. Her blog posts are short, direct, and very helpful. For a sample, check out her recent posts “What does it take to be your own boss?” and “Hourly rates and salaries”.

Last year Benun teamed up with Peleg Top to present four excellent webinars through HOW Magazine (which you can still view online, for a fee). Benun also offers some very helpful resources for sale on her website. Her mp3 entitled Interpersonal Skills for Introverts really helped me do a better job at networking at some recent events, and I’m currently getting a lot out of her book The Art of Self Promotion.

If you are strapped for cash her website also offers plenty of free resources worth checking out and an email newsletter, Quick Tips, that always delivers helpful insights about self-promotion.

I don’t meant to sound like a commercial for Marketing Mentor (no, I’m not getting paid to write this.) I’m just genuinely impressed and I want to help spread the news.