Working from home: What actually is my job and how did I get it?

For my first ever job, I worked as a waitress in an Italian restaurant. I spent Monday to Friday studying for my A-Levels and stressing about getting homework done and my Friday nights and weekends serving people pizza and breaking more wine glasses than I care to think about. Aside from the generous tips and new friendships that made my £3.70 at least slightly worth it, I grew to hate that place. Even the perk of free carbs got old very quickly. I hated the unsociable hours. I hated the fact that I had to smile politely at people that decided 10:59pm (1 minute before we were officially allowed to close up) was the opportune time for spag bowl. And, most of all, I hated the lack of freedom that I had.

Whilst I worked those hideously long shifts, I used to dream about one day being able to turn my passion – writing and running my blog – into a full time career. Being able to work from home with nobody to annoy me but myself was the dream that wiping garlic butter off the floor on a Saturday night instilled in me.

Now, don’t get me wrong, blogging certainly is not my full time job. However, I did get my wish. I now work almost completely from home and couldn’t be much happier (or smug) about it.

And apparently you guys are interested to know more. When I recently posted about being a freelancer and a work from home-er on my Instagram stories, I received more messages than I think I ever have before. For the most part, people were asking how the hell I did it and how they
too can jump on board the work-in-a-onesie train.  So it seemed only
right to sit down and create a few posts about what I do, how I do it and whether it’s something you might be able to do as well.

And, just like that, a new series is born.

Today, we’ll start with the basics: What do I actually do, aside from post pictures of cups of coffee next to my passion planner on a Monday morning? And how did I go about getting paid to work from my sofa if I want to?

Well pals, the answer isn’t all that simple. In order to support myself sufficiently I decided a long time ago that I would need multiple income streams. That essential means having a few different roles, so that if one goes down the toilet, I can still afford to pay rent. So far, I have 4 main ones.

Social Media and Digital Marketing 

Firstly, my biggest source of income is working as a Social Media and Digital Marketer for the company Snap Out. This is the only one of my roles that is a form of traditional employment (not self-employment) and where I have set work hours: Office hours Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. However, it is a work from home role, which means I “telecommute” and communicate with my colleagues via Skype and Slack (like Whatsapp for work). Essentially I run all things social for the company, write all of their digital copy and work out how we can stand out online against our competition.

I got the job through a pretty ordinary application process, after finding it under the “remote” section of a recruitment website. I sent off my CV and cover letter and spent the next couple of weeks praying to the universe that I’d get through to the next stage which, of course, I did. I then had to create a digital marketing strategy, which was followed by a short phone interview and, finally, an hour long interview over Skype. There were over 200 applicants, so I feel truly blessed to have got the job.

Freelance copywriting

My second job is working as a freelance copywriter and online content creator. Brands and businesses hire me to write their blog posts and digital copy (any writing on their websites, social channels etc.) for them. I often meet with them face to face every few months to discuss creative ideas and the direction they want their online image to be going in but, apart from that, my office is wherever I so desire. As well as writing, I ensure that everything is search engine optimised, matched to their branding standards and I usually take an image for them too if it’s a blog post. As you may have seen on my Instagram, one of my current clients is the absolutely incredible brand, Keshinomi.

Now for this job, there was no application process. It was pretty much just a case of putting myself out there. Having been active in the online space since I was 14, I had a fair bit of writing under my belt to show to potential clients. The first of those willing to pay me for my services were actually companies who initially sponsored blog posts here on Curly and Wordy and therefore trusted me to be able to do justice to their products. These days, now that I have a bigger portfolio and (if I do say so myself) a killer CV, I usual approach brands that I think would be a good fit and see if they’re in need of any writing services. Getting to the point where this is a relatively stable income has taken at least 3 years of doing bits and bobs for companies who would let me. I balanced it alongside my uni work and am grateful to say that it eventually took off.

Doing this

My third job, and probably the one that needs the least explaining is this. Blogging! We all know by now how people make money from blogging – adverts, sponsored content, affiliate links – and we also all know that getting the gig is just a case of getting started. If you have a blog, you’re a blogger. If you’re a blogger, you have the potential to make money from it. The sponsored posts that I get are a mix of opportunities that I’ve been contacted about and ones that I’ve created for myself through building a relationship with the brand and offering my services. Essentially, I’m always ready to pitch myself.

I do think it’s important to point out that the income I get from blogging really isn’t anything substantial, though! I mainly do this because I love it, not because it’s going to get me a Bentley any time soon.

Tutoring

In the interest of honesty, I thought I’d admit that I do technically have a job that isn’t a work from home role. Two nights a week for an hour I tutor English Literature in my local area. In June I graduated with a first class degree in English Literature so I love getting to work with kiddies to help them to love books as much as I do.

I used the website Tutorful to find one of my students and the other is a family friend.

To be honest, most of the time I feel like a giant imposter who just got lucky with literally every single job I do. No matter how many clients I get, I think I might always believe it’s a fluke! Even though I feel like a complete and utter fraud, I hope this post did answer some of your questions. Stay tuned for more in this series soon.

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2 Comments

  1. Charlotte
    November 13, 2018 / 8:22 pm

    I love that you're making a series out of this – I currently study Events Management but after working 4 years in a restaurant, it too got me dreaming of one day working from home haha! Hopefully that day will come. Your jobs all sound so fun, too! But how do you find the time?! Also, could I ask where your planner is from in the picture? Looks like it's super handy!! 🙂 x

    • BethanyAustin
      November 17, 2018 / 1:32 pm

      Thanks, Charlotte! So glad you're looking forward to the series. I'm sure you'll get there eventually – good luck! To be honest finding the time isn't too difficult (or maybe that's just because I'm used to balancing it all with uni work on top haha). I work as a digital marketer Monday – Wednesday, I do my freelance work on a Thursday and then I focus on my blog on Friday. Any work I don't get done throughout the week I finish on a Saturday! The planner is called a Passion Planner and I have the classic undated version. It's fab xx

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