Tips and tricks

SAFREA has an extensive network of experienced freelancers who are always sharing their knowledge and advice with fellow professionals.

The pages below cover tips and tricks that can boost your freelance career, written and submitted by SAFREA's trusted members. Areas of interest include writing, editing, rates, business practices and shared experiences in the visual and written communications and media.  

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Please note: These pages are accessible to members only.

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Out of sight, out of mind


8 tips for getting more out of your next training session or conference, courtesy of Safrean Tiffany Markman.

Want to be a journalist? 7 things you need to know

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If you have a passion for people, a natural curiosity about how things work and why stuff happens, plus you love writing and have a desire to see your name in print, then a career in journalism could be for you. Here is a fast-fact tour of the deadline-driven world of hard news journalism.

Understanding digital photo quality and size


Are you submitting images in the correct resolution? Safrean Gareth Griffiths explains digital photo quality and size in his next installment of 'digital tips for journos 101'; a SAFREA exclusive!

A freelancer's guide to setting up a blog or website

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SAFREA member Simon Hartley offered sage advice to Google Group members on where to begin when thinking about starting a blog or website.

Shoes – yes, shoes – are a freelancer’s most important tool


Safrean Renee Moodie explains why getting dressed properly is an important everyday habit for freelancers. 

Cropping 101


Cropping can make a big difference to your photography. Safrean Gareth Griffiths shares the basics in his new 'digital tips for journos 101' series; a SAFREA exclusive!

7 steps to future-proof your business

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The freelance community is well aware of how fleeting jobs can be. As a freelancer, you need to keep your skills relevant and focus on anticipated changes to ensure that you continue to offer something that people will actually pay for.

Ideas for generating work

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Collaboration and sharing ideas strengthens the freelance community. Marc van Sittert shares what works for him to generate work. It includes useful hints and links for easy reference. 

The 6 clients who pay their freelancers late

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You've probably met all of them and worked for at least one of them. Safrean Tiffany Markman introduces us to the 6 clients who pay their freelancers late. 

Gentle reminders for payment

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Are you having trouble with late, or non-payment? Consider joining the Gentle Reminders Club.

How to write for your own business

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Content creation – writing articles, blog posts and newsletter articles on a regular basis to boost website traffic, public interest or even sales, is an increasingly popular marketing tool. Tiffany Markman shares a straightforward three-step tutorial, ideal for non-writers, on how to write articles for your own business.

10 Tips to cultivate relationships with editors

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Here are a few tips that will help if you are an aspiring writer, or you simply want to augment your professional qualifications by publishing material related to your field of expertise.

Pointers to consider when setting up a website

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SAFREA member Simon Hartley shares his knowledge with those considering starting website. From understanding how to choose between hosting options, to some basic information about search engine optimisation (SEO).

Recession pinch: impact on freelancers

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Are freelance communiation professionals feeling the pinch of an impending recession? According to Tiffany Markman's research, many are. But a close percent of people interviewed say they're doing just fine. Read more on how freelancers are reacting to the changing economic times.

Develop a strong social media strategy

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View Lynne Smit's thought provoking presentation on social media strategy as a service to clients, which was given to SAFREA members in the Western Cape.

Don't be a lonely entrepreneur

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Safrean Dave Henderson shares 9 ideas to stay socially connected without breaking the bank.

Networking: Small talk and job mining

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SAFREA member Jaco Wolmarans used to shun cocktail parties – until he realised how much business freelancers can win at these networking events. He gives good advice on how to get networking right.

Website launch checklist

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Launching a new website? Safrean Meneesha Govender has put together a list of the most important elements you need to consider before doing so. 

Building your freelance business

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SAFREA's Marina Pearson shares valuable thoughts on how freelancers can build their business in order to see more work and success.


Sharpen your negotiating skills

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As a freelancer, you will be constantly negotiating and resolving conflict in your professional and personal life. Studies have shown that negotiation skills are among the most significant determinants of career success. Being an adept negotiator will stand you in good stead.

5 ways a freelancer can stay sane

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There are many great benefits to being a freelancer, but there are the inevitable challenges that come with the job. Tamara Oberholster shares guidance on how to maintain balance as a freelancer. 

How do you get out the slump?

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Safrean Robyn Thekiso shares her ideas on how you can make the most of your downtime.

10 of the funniest things my clients have said

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Here's what you should do if you ever find yourself in any of these client situations, writes Safrean Tiffany Markman.

What I would do differently if I had to start my business again

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They say hindsight is 20-20. Safrean Dave Henderson shares his business experience to help other entrepreneurs on their journey to success.

5 tips for starting your own freelancing business

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Safrean Renee Moodie shares five of her best business tips to help guide new freelancers in the creative/media world. 

14 Freelance tips from Tony Weaver

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Veteran all-rounder Tony Weaver offers his colleagues tips for survival as a freelance journalist.

15 Stress busters for freelancers

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Freelancing as a writer, editor, designer or photographer is a tough gig with a lot of pressure. Roxanne Reid gives some pointers on how to dodge the stress bullet.

Useful tips from veteran freelancers

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SAFREA members Stephanie Nieuwoudt and Ray Joseph joined a special event with the Western Cape branch to share their experiences using Small Claims Court and dealing with media professionalism. The lessons they shared can help all freelancers.


You’re probably using the word 'revert' incorrectly

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There is no such noun as 'a revert'. There is also no such verb phrase, in the context of replying to someone, as 'revert back'. You’re bastardising an innocent verb. Safrean Tiffany Markman explains why. 

Freelance marketing during a recession

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During a recession, nervous businesses tend to cut back on marketing. “After all,” they say, “most clients are becoming more cautious about spending, so let's conserve our resources, wait out the downturn and spend when the economy picks up.” Not true, explains Tiffany Markman.

What the… freelance!

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Out of the fiery newsroom and into the freelance furnace...SAFREA chair Meneesha Govender shares her experience.

Principles for freelance success

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Traditional employment rules no longer apply and more people are exploring the feasibility of a freelance career. As with most things in life, there are pros and cons to be considered and a few key principles to keep in mind, writes Grant Cyster.


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