Why I No Longer Accept Freelance Social Media Work

I’ve been building brands and managing social media accounts for several years now. It started as a fun side gig, helping friends with their startup businesses. But it grew into something that many clients wanted to pay me to do full-time. 

I found myself with clients in every industry from food trucks to app developers to funeral homes. Every client was different but they all had one thing in common: they were using social media wrong. 

They didn’t know how to best represent their brand or what they should be posting about on social media, much less how often and when they should post it. 

So, I decided the best thing I could do would be to make them aware of the mistakes most people make when trying to use social media for business purposes and give them some tips on not only correcting those mistakes but avoiding them altogether. 

If you’re still reading this blog post then you must also have an interest in using social media for your business (or personal brand) – so here are my tips!

Becoming a Freelance Social Media Manager in 2023
1. Shift in Priorities: The author discusses their reasons for discontinuing freelance social media work, shedding light on how personal and professional priorities can evolve over time.
2. Quality Over Quantity: The blog likely emphasizes the importance of focusing on high-quality projects that align with the author’s goals, rather than accepting numerous freelance assignments.
3. Boundaries and Work-Life Balance: The content might delve into maintaining healthy boundaries and achieving a better work-life balance by being selective about freelance engagements.
4. Value of Specialization: Readers might learn about the benefits of specializing in certain areas of social media work, allowing for deeper expertise and potentially more fulfilling projects.
5. Career Transition Considerations: The blog may touch upon the thought process behind transitioning away from freelancing and exploring alternative career paths within the realm of social media.

Social Media Is A Great Way To Connect With Your Audience

The benefits of social media are numerous and should be taken advantage of by all businesses, especially small businesses that don’t have the resources to hire a larger marketing team. 

Social media can be used to connect with your audience and get your message across in a variety of different ways. It can also help you build a community around your business, provide customer service, and even give you feedback on how you’re doing as an organization!

Building a successful social media presence requires strategic decision-making. Discover insights on how to hire a social media management firm that cares and make the right choices for your business’s online engagement.

Be Aware Of Platform Changes

The platforms are constantly changing. If you don’t keep up with them, you could be left behind. Your clients might not be able to find you or the content that was once available might have disappeared.

It’s also important to be aware of what is happening in your industry and on social media platforms. Are there any trends? What is happening that affects how people will use social media? 

If something changes on a platform like Facebook or Linkedin, there may be new ways of doing things that affect businesses and marketers even if they don’t directly use those sites themselves (such as advertising).

Don’t Post Too Much Or Too Little

Here’s the thing: posting a lot can be annoying to your followers. Not only that, but it can also annoy the people you’re trying to reach. If you post too much, then it will seem like you are spamming them and they won’t want to hear from you anymore.

But posting too little is just as bad (if not worse). If you post rarely or sporadically, then it might take a while before your follower catches on and starts following again. 

Therefore, some people might miss out on important updates that could have affected them personally or professionally if they didn’t receive it right away!

Use A Social Media Management Platform To Save Time

Did you know that there are social media management platforms? With one of these tools, you can easily post to multiple networks at once, schedule posts for the future and track your performance.

If you’re a freelancer who does social media management work, I encourage you to start using them.

When considering your social media strategy, the option of hiring an in-house social media coordinator presents unique advantages. Learn why this approach might align better with your long-term business goals.

Be Prepared To Respond Quickly

You will be disappointed if you think that responding to comments and questions quickly is a time-consuming task. In my experience, it’s not. I usually respond within 5 minutes of receiving them (assuming I’m online). You should be able to do the same.

Responding quickly shows your audience that you care about them and their concerns. They’ll know that they’re not just talking to a robot or some faceless company account, but rather an actual person from whom they can expect immediate responses.

It also makes you look more human in general–and we all know how important transparency is for social media marketing! 

Your followers will appreciate knowing who is behind the posts on their feeds and may even feel more connected with you as a result of this personal touch (which means more trust from the customer).

Finally, responding quickly shows that you’re knowledgeable about your product or service–and this can help build brand loyalty among existing customers as well as attract new ones!

Respond Politely To Complaints And Questions, Even If It Isn’t Your Fault

A client will always take their issue with a vendor to social media, whether it’s your fault or not. If you aren’t there to answer questions, they’ll likely go after another vendor instead. So be polite and respond as quickly as possible. 

If the client is upset about something that isn’t your fault, try to understand where they’re coming from before you offer a solution. 

You may even want to ask them if there was anything else going on in their life that might have influenced their behavior or expectations of what should happen during this project (i.e., “I’m sorry for the delay was there anything else going on in your life that could have contributed?”).

Jump On Any Opportunity For Free Press

Freelance social media work is not worth your time.

The big reason I say this? It’s a huge waste of time. The only people who can get any benefit from it are those who have already established themselves as experts in a field, and the only way they can do that is by having their product or service sell.

If you don’t have your name out there, if no one knows what you do and how good at it you are, then there’s no point in doing freelance social media work for free (or even paid). 

If no one knows what your business does then it won’t matter how many Facebook likes or Instagram followers or LinkedIn connections or Twitter retweets you get because none of that matters if people don’t know about them! 

You could be posting all day every day on every platform known to man and still not attract clients unless they have heard about what services/products/branding etc is all about beforehand through word-of-mouth referrals.

Or SEO strategies implemented correctly by someone who knows what they’re doing – something which again means needing an actual brand first before jumping into this type of work (not just “business”).

Transitioning from freelance writing to social media management can be a rewarding journey. Gain insights from someone who successfully made the switch and find inspiration for your own career path.

Don’t Just Push Your Product Or Service, Offer Value To The Network

Don’t Just Sell, Sell, Sell.

Social media is meant to be a place where people can engage with each other about topics that interest them. 

It’s not a place for you to push your product or service on people who don’t care about what you do. If you’re offering social media services, don’t just tell people that you can help them with their business or build their brand tell them how! 

Tell potential clients why they should hire you instead of someone else (and make sure it’s an honest reason). 

Keep in mind that this is an opportunity for both parties: the client gets valuable advice from an expert in his industry and the freelancer gets paid for sharing his knowledge and expertise.

Don’t just tell people what kind of work you do; show them how well it works! 

One way I like to market myself is by posting examples of successful campaigns I’ve run on my blog so potential clients can see some success stories up close and personal without having to go through hours of research themselves (and believe me I know how much time researching takes). 

For example: here are some screenshots from recent campaigns showing my results as well as where I got those results from (Google Analytics).

Social Networks Can Be Fun But Don’t Let Trolls Get Under Your Skin

If you’re anything like me, you’ve dealt with trolls. If not, sorry to be the bearer of bad news. It’s part of being human and having an internet presence.

Here are some tips for dealing with them:

Don’t respond to them. You can’t win by fighting back or getting into a heated argument with a troll because they’ll just keep it up until someone gets hurt (and sometimes it’s not even the troll). Just block or mute them and move on with your life!

Remember that they don’t matter in the grand scheme of things (or in this case, in your business). They’re just trying to get under your skin so don’t let them! Don’t let their negativity affect what you do online or offline for that matter!

Becoming a social media manager is an evolving process that requires a mix of skills and strategies. Explore a comprehensive guide on what it takes to excel in this dynamic role and carve a niche in the digital landscape.

Find Out What Makes Your Audience Tick And Speak Their Language

Know Your Audience

The first step in creating content for specific clients is to get a handle on your audience. If you’re writing a blog post, watch what they like and don’t like. If you’re designing an ad campaign, ask yourself why they chose this brand over others. 

If you’re editing a social media post, consider what kind of information would be useful or interesting to them at this moment in time.

Listen to Their Needs

What do people want from your business? How can you meet those needs? You might not always be able to give people exactly what they want after all.

There was once a time when everyone wanted their phone calls answered within 30 seconds but if there are aspects of the job that aren’t worth doing for free (like posting ads), then figure out what’s important about them and how best to serve this client’s needs with those tasks.

Speak Their Language

Once you’ve identified how best to serve your client’s needs based on their own words (and not yours), it’s time for translation: figuring out how these things translate into language that makes sense for social media platforms and other communication formats used by businesses today.

You don’t need an account on every social network. Pick just a few and get good at them rather than spreading yourself thin across all of them.

You don’t need an account on every social network. Pick just a few and get good at them rather than spreading yourself thin across all of them.

When you only have one or two social accounts, it’s easier to engage with your audience, post content that will be interesting to them, and look at what other brands are doing and try it out. You can focus on growing followers on those networks before expanding your presence across more platforms.

Don’t Try To Fake Authenticity. It Shows Up In Everything You Do And When It’s Not Genuine, People Can Smell It A Mile Away

Don’t be too funny or too serious: Just be who you are!

Don’t pretend to be something you’re not: People can tell if your heart isn’t in what you’re doing and it will show up in all of the work that comes from that place of fakeness or pretension (or both).

Don’t try to be someone else: Authentic social media managers are real people with interesting stories about their lives, families, pets, and travels and they want those stories told through their brand channels as well!

Follow other brands that aren’t competitors so you can learn from them how they are successful with their social media presence and use that knowledge to make your efforts better, too.

Social media is an amazing way to connect with your customers, and as a freelancer, you should be using it. 

The best part of social media is that you can always find new ideas for how to improve your content or even try out something new without having to spend any money at all. Just follow some other brands that aren’t competitors and learn from their success.

Social media will continue to change over time so you need to keep up with the trends if you want your business to thrive in this space. 

It’s also important not to post too much or too little because both can be detrimental from a marketing perspective if people don’t see posts often enough then they might assume they’re bored by the brand.

While following too many times per day can make users feel overwhelmed by all of the updates coming through their feed (which may lead them just delete those accounts altogether).

If possible, I recommend using a tool like Sprout Social or Hootsuite which will allow you to save time managing multiple accounts at once while helping manage responses in real time without having access issues like crashing web browsers when logging into different platforms at once!

Put Time Into Creating Content That Is Likeable And Shareable By Your Audience To Increase Engagement With Them And Grow Brand Awareness At The Same Time, Organically

Create shareable content. Posting images on Instagram has become a major part of most people’s social media strategy because they tend to get more engagement than text-based posts. 

Try taking photos of your product in action or showing behind-the-scenes pictures during production. A great way to do this is by offering discounts or free shipping if someone shares your post with their friends on Facebook or Twitter.

Create content that is consistent between platforms so you appear professional across all your channels and don’t look like one person posting different messages for different people (i.e., using “filler words” such as “like”).

Create timely content relevant to current events (i..e., holidays) so that you stay fresh in the minds of potential clients looking for things done quickly without having to wait around until next week when the job would normally be finished before making payment arrangements either through check/cashier’s check mailed out overnight mail service).

The value of investing in social media as part of your business strategy cannot be understated. Discover how social media can drive growth, customer engagement, and brand awareness, all contributing to your company’s success.

Social Media Can Be Fun And Profitable But There Is More Involved Than Just Posting Updates Online Every Day

The problem with accepting freelance social media work is that you are often required to do the following:

  • Spend a lot of time on social media
  • Spend a lot of money on social media promotion platforms, advertising, etc.
  • Learn how to use the platform(s) properly (and keep up with changes)


If you’re looking for more information about any of these tips, contact us at info@brianmccauley.com for our free social media ebook, “8 Steps to Social Media Marketing Success.” Here’s what you’ll find in it:

  • A timeline of major social media events from the beginning until today
  • An overview of the top three social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn) and how they compare to each other
  • Four reasons why your business needs a mobile-friendly website
  • Four ways that being active on social media can help boost sales (and two ways it can hurt them!)
  • The benefits of using Facebook as part of your marketing strategy—including coupons for fans only!

Further Reading

Expand your knowledge with these relevant articles:

Dos and Don’ts for Freelancers on Social Media Short Description: Learn about the best practices and pitfalls to avoid when leveraging social media platforms as a freelancer. Read more on FreelancerMap.

A Year Without Social Media: Lessons Learned Short Description: Delve into the insights gained from a year-long social media hiatus and its impact on personal and professional life. Explore the reflections on Lewis Commercial Writing.

Freelancing in Social Media: Starting from Scratch Short Description: Discover practical tips for freelancers with limited experience and resources looking to establish a presence in social media. Read the guide on Iconosquare Blog.


Here are answers to some common questions related to freelancing and social media:

How can social media benefit freelancers?

Social media can provide freelancers with a platform to showcase their skills, connect with potential clients, and build a personal brand. It’s an avenue to reach a wider audience and attract new opportunities.

Should freelancers completely avoid social media for better focus?

It depends on the individual’s work style. Some freelancers find value in utilizing social media as a networking and marketing tool, while others might choose to limit their usage to maintain focus on their projects.

Can taking a break from social media positively impact freelancers?

Yes, a break from social media can offer freelancers a chance to recharge, refocus, and reevaluate their goals. It can lead to improved mental well-being and increased productivity.

How can freelancers with limited experience succeed in social media marketing?

Freelancers with little experience can start by learning the basics of social media marketing, targeting a specific niche, and gradually expanding their skills. Consistency, authenticity, and continuous learning are key factors for success.

Is it necessary for freelancers to invest money in social media?

Investing money in social media can yield benefits such as reaching a wider audience through paid advertising or promoting posts. However, freelancers can also achieve results organically by creating valuable content and engaging with their audience effectively.