At the end of each year that I've been on Fiverr, I think to myself that there's no way I'll be able to match my total the next year, and then I wind up going over. How long can I keep that up? No idea, but again as we start 2022 I have that same feeling. Will I be able to go higher than the 140,300 in sales, $112,000 after Fiverr commissions, that I billed in 2021? It always seems like Mission Impossible, but will tell! Meanwhile, let me zero in on the number one thing that I think has allowed me to grow, year on year.
A Little History
Let me set this up a little, historically. In 1979, my wife and I moved to our present little hometown, because she got a teaching job here...which compared to my DJ work, paid better. As it happened, there was an opening at the town's little local radio station, so I applied and got the post. But it was a very small operation compared to where I had worked previously, with, frankly, pretty low standards as to what it expected from its staff. But the job was conveniently nearby, and for the two of us, we felt like we were living pretty comfortably with two incomes for the first time, instead of just mine, so I stayed at the station, for four years.
It would have been so, so easy during those four years to become complacent and let my own standards slide while I was working there, because there was no external motivation to improve. Some of the staff there were obviously just clocking in, doing their work the same waay every day, and over the four years I was there, I didn't really notice they had moved their skills forward at all. For myself, I was so scared of stagnating that I almost overcompensated. Each day, I tried to imagine myself working at a radio network or some place with extra high standards I had to try and reach, so whenever I opened the mic, to announce, to read news, or to voice a commercial, I tried to keep that in the back of my mind.
It was also during that period that I got an idea for a contemporary Christian DJ show I called Nightlight, which I started producing on the side, copying it onto tapes, and sending it to radio stations in the U.S. and the Caribbean. The station down in the Caribbean was a clear channel AM station that reached most of North and Central America, so it was especially exciting to be on that one. And again there, with Nightlight, the focus was on sounding as professional as I could, with an ear toward that syndicated announcer style that was popular at the time.
So while I was still working at that little local yocal radio station, I was totally focused on growing and developing my skills. Meanwhile, already then, in my 20s, I had an absolute fascination with voicing commercials, promos and the like, and that was the seed that ultimately grew into my work doing freelance voiceovers.
Why am I mentioning all this? Because the mindset...the MINDSET...is a big part of what will help make you successful.
Let's fast forward...way forward...to 2017. I'd been doing voiceovers professionally as a freelancer for quite a few years, though they had been upstaged significantly for nearly 20 years while I developed and marketed a radio automation system. As that wound down, I wanted to start marketing my voice again more, and learned that Fiverr was a place to do it. Took a course, learned the basics, and dove in.
Starting on Fiverr was humbling though. I remembered some of the jobs I'd done in voiceover years back for major companies like Sears and Prangeway, which paid very well...and the idea of starting out again at rock bottom rates seemed pretty humiliating. But, as I had, back in 1979, I entered into the Fiverr arena with the idea that, regardless of what I was being paid initially, I was going to do network-quality work, and keep finding ways to improve. To not only meet peoples' needs, but to overcompensate for what was expected of me.
I still remember when I got my very first five dollar order. I was out in our yard in the gazebo, and when the ping notification came for the order, I galloped into the house, sat down and recorded and the voiceover, and sent it immediately. Got my first five star review and positive comments, and then waited...and a few days later, I saw my second order, and things grew from there, to the point where, now, I'm doing voiceovers every day of my life, and sales are continuing to grow year on year. My average sale is high enough now that, if I fulfill a few short scripts in an hour's time, we could calculate my hourly rate at somewhere around $190. So despite the humble start on Fiverr, at this point, I'm making more on Fiverr than I ever did at the height of my voiceover career back in the late 1990s.
The thing we want to do on Fiverr, even from the most humble beginnings there, is to look at every job as though it's something high profile.
Sing to the Back Row
It's like the Sunday school kid who stands up in front of the little rural church congregation to sing a solo in the Christmas program, and pretends she's singing at the Metropolitan Opera. We need to sing to the back row on every job. And, we need to keep developing our skills, discovering new ways to make things even better and more appealing. Diversifying what we're able to do, so that we can offer other great services...but always with a focus on great. We don't want to just spawn a bunch of gigs and start offering things we're not very good at. Stick to your knitting...do what you do best, and keep doing it better. There are lots of ways we can market outselves better, get found better, get noticed better, and make more sales, but the best way is by building a reputation for doing...great...great...work.
The "Other Key"
Now, the flip side of that. A singer for the Metropolitan Opera is probably someone who would sing to the trees in the forest for no money at all, just for the sheer joy of singing. But it'd be nice if more people could appreciate their talents than that. Same thing with you and your talents. You can develop them to the hilt, and can slowly build up your business on Fiverr when people happen to stumble upon, place an order, are surprised by how good you are, leave a solid review, and call on you again in the future. But if you aren't accompanying your amazing art by amazing marketing, it's going to be a long, slow slog. Growth may come, but it won't come fast. So that's the other side of this whole thing.
We need to have a terrific Fiverr gig. Everything needs to be set up great. Everything needs to shine. Optimized to be found, to be noticed, to convince, and to sell.
That's what we can accomplish together in a Gig Doctor appointment. Let's get together!
There's so much you and I can do together to improve your gig's performance. Schedule your Gig Doctor appointment by hitting the Gig Checkup link at the top of this page for an inexpensive personalized checkup and consultation!
For those of you who do voiceovers, or who are interested in entering that fun profession, I can help there too. Check out my voiceover coaching services.