The long summer months are a perfect time to relax and unwind, and most of us have fond memories of spending time with friends when we used to enjoy the summer holidays from school. For the freelance translator, the summer months can present a challenge: at this time of year, work is often harder to come by as many clients choose to take time off from work or to have a slower-than-usual workload. When this occurs, and there isn't much work to find, consider trying the following things to make good use of the summer months.
1. Sort your finances
Filing your taxes each year is a necessity of being self-employed, and doing so can be quite a time-consuming process. As such, it might be a good idea to dedicate a few days to this activity when you're experiencing a lower workload.
2. Take a translation course
Keeping on top of your professional development is an important part of building your translation career, so using the summer to invest in taking a specialist course of learning to enhance your skills or further distinguish you in your niche will be of great benefit to your business.
3. Brush-up on your language skills
Additionally, the summer months present a good opportunity to get out the dictionaries and language textbooks and brush-up on your language skills. Re-acquainting yourself with some of the finer points of a language's grammatical rules and fine-tuning your vocabulary will help you meet the high standards your clients expect.
4. Plan a new marketing campaign
If you're finding that work is drying up, or that you're getting bored of the contracts you're working on, then it might be time to change your marketing initiative to attract new clients to work with. The slower summer months will hopefully allow you the time to re-invent your services to appeal to a new spectrum of clients.
5. Target a few, specific potential clients
Alternatively, instead of coming up with a whole new marketing campaign, you could choose a handful of specific individuals or companies and spend time hand-crafting a pitch as to why they need your services and how you can help them with their translation needs. When these people return from their vacations towards the end of the summer, you'll be in a position to present them with a new solution.
7. Sign-up with an agency
If you would instead prefer to work on translation jobs over the summer, then consider signing up to a translation agency, who will be able to provide you with work over the summer months. If this idea interests you, then we know of an agency that’s good to work for…
8. Take a vacation!
Finally, don't forget that even the hardest working freelance translators, such as yourself, need a break too! Allowing yourself a little time to relax and re-cooperate from a period of hard work is essential to both your personal well-being and also your long-term productivity - so don't feel guilty and enjoy some time off doing nothing in particular.
What do you like to do over the summer months? Perhaps you have your own routines and tasks to accomplish over this period? Or maybe you simply like to get away from it all? Let us know what you think in the comments below.