Serve Scale Soar® Podcast

213: 5 Things I Didn’t Do As A Freelancer To Hit $250K Per Year

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5 Things I Didn’t Do As A Freelancer To Hit $250K Per Year

Growing a Freelance Business without Falling for Common Pitfalls

In a world where hustle and the pursuit of “more, more, more” are glorified, it’s important to take an alternative perspective. While I am proud to have gone from earning $30,000 to hitting $250,000 in my first full year as a freelancer, it didn’t come without mistakes along the way. The valuable lessons I learned were not just about what I did, but also about what I intentionally did not do. Here, we’ll cover the five things I didn’t do that contributed to my success, and provide actionable steps for hitting revenue goals as a freelancer.

Not Charging by the Hour

Like so many other freelancers, I followed the common advice of charging by the hour. Starting at a modest $15 an hour and eventually moving to $30 an hour as a social media manager, I found myself burnt out and realized that this approach was not helping me reach my revenue goals. My pivotal decision was to switch to package pricing for my services, moving away from hourly rates to focus on delivering value-based packages to current and prospect clients.

Focusing on Becoming an Expert

Instead of offering a wide range of services, I honed in on one key offering—Facebook ads. By becoming known as an expert in this specific area, I not only positioned myself as a specialist in my industry, but also commanded higher rates for my services. I encourage you to consider your own strengths and passions and to specialize in one or two key services rather than offering an array of options. If you find yourself not enjoying what you chose to specialize in, nothing is set in stone – you can specialize in something else and use those acquired skills elsewhere.

Holding Off on Hiring a Team

While it’s common for entrepreneurs to rush into building a team, I believe in the importance of ensuring that your business is set up to support additional team members. It’s essential to be both at the right pricing point in your business and to have consistent lead flow before considering expanding with a team. Using this cautious approach allowed me to focus on scaling my business without sacrificing profitability.

Not Engaging in the Digital Product Race

In order to go from $30,000 to $250,000 my first year, I did not divert my focus to creating digital products, growing my email list, or aiming for a large Instagram following. While these elements might be important for certain business goals, they were not critical for landing and serving my 1-on-1 clients effectively in my specific freelance niche.

Avoiding the Get-Rich-Quick Mindset

As convenient as it would be, I resisted the allure of get-rich-quick schemes or shortcuts in my journey to building my freelance business. I truly believe in the importance of pursuing sustainable, predictable, and profitable business strategies and cautions against following the allure of “easy button” solutions that may not lead to long-term success.

The 3 Things I Did Focus On: Attracting Consistent Clients, Becoming an Expert, and Building Scalable Systems

Ultimately, I found three core pillars in my approach that helped me grow a successful freelance business. The first might seem obvious, but what’s a business without clients? Attracting consistent clients became a primary goal, as I recognized that a steady flow of clients is essential for sustainable business growth. Additionally, I focused on becoming an expert in my field by specializing in Facebook ads and continuously refining my skills. In order to ensure my business was functioning to the best of its ability, I built scalable systems that allowed me to maintain a balanced lifestyle while still growing my business.


While it wasn’t linear, my journey provides valuable insights for freelancers seeking to scale their businesses. By understanding the critical importance of managing your time and services, focusing on specialization, cautious team expansion, resisting shortcuts, and prioritizing client acquisition, you can build a sustainable and successful business. Through intentional choices and a steadfast approach, you can achieve your revenue goals and ensure long-term business growth and stability.

I hope my story serves as a reminder that success in freelancing is not always about doing more but about doing the right things. By learning from these insights, you can navigate your own path to success, one that is focused, sustainable, and aligned with your long-term goals.

Here’s A Glance Of The Episode: 

00:00 Overwhelm is a sign of growth.

04:35 Mindset shift led to $250,000 freelance income.

06:51 Reject hourly pay in favor of packages.

12:41 Brought on subcontractors but didn’t hire a team.

22:08 Success requires sustained effort and strategic choices.

24:09 Focus on attracting consistent clients for business success.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Key focus areas for success: attracting consistent clients, becoming an expert in your field, and building scalable systems.
  2. Don’t charge by the hour – move away from hourly fees and transition to package pricing for services.
  3. Specialize in one or two services rather than offering a laundry list of services to become known as an expert in your industry.
  4. When considering hiring a team, ensure your business is set up to support them and that you are still profitable.
  5. Focus on sustainable, predictable, and profitable business strategies instead of quick-fix schemes or easy buttons.
  6. Sequence is important in business growth – prioritize the necessary steps for your current stage rather than jumping ahead.
  7. Prioritize consistent clients, expertise in your field, and scalable systems as a freelance business owner to drive success.

and so much more. 

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Additional Resources


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Meet Brandi

Brandi Mowles is the host of the Serve Scale Soar® podcast which is a podcast dedicated to helping service-based entrepreneurs scale their online business to five-figure months so they can soar into six-figure years. Brandi is a wife, mom and in less than one year, created a six-figure business. Now she is spilling all her secrets so you can too.

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