If you work as a freelancer, it is very likely that you are already generating income (or you are about to start generating it) in one of the niches that we have talked about in our article Freelance Niches: How to Find Your Specialty (+List of Freelance Niches), so this is an excellent opportunity to help you know what to invest in to take your job, and income, to the next level.
The first important investment you must make as a freelancer or digital nomad is a good internet data plan. It seems obvious, but it is essential that you have a good internet connection, fast and stable, to carry out each project without annoying setbacks or inconveniences.
This means that if you don’t have a good internet connection where you live, you would need to look for a cafe, a co-working space, a park, or even a square from where you can work with peace of mind, perseverance, and feeling safe to fulfill the objectives and individual deadlines.
On the other hand, if you have the comfort (or privilege) of having an internet connection without any major setbacks, it is an excellent idea to improve your data plan or change it for a better one, whether you have a fixed or mobile network. Anyway, now we will start with the devices that you must have in order to make this lifestyle sustainable.
Starting from the fact that being a freelancer is not the same thing as being a digital nomad, it must be said that a good desktop computer or laptop is the best work tool you can have. Believe me, without this item it would be impossible to become either of these two things.
Likewise, there are many people that are happy while working from their very homes, without leaving their comfort zones; for those people, a desktop computer is enough to fulfill their freelance projects. This means that they won’t find "necessary" to acquire a laptop if the PC they have meets the requirements needed to develop their skills in the specialty (or specialties) in which they work.
However, if you want to become a digital nomad – that is, have the freedom to earn your own money by using an internet connection while traveling – or just want to be able to take a family vacation without having to stop generating active income, then it is worth investing in a laptop.
You also have the possibility of going to an internet café and using a PC for a limited time, maybe paying for it during several hours, but in the long term this will be more expensive than you expect, and it would bring you other inconveniences such as problems with your time availability.
When I talk about a good computer I don’t mean the most expensive or flashy one, but instead one which has the hardware and software you need to successfully perform your activities, whether in the field of writing, web design or image editing. You should know that if your machine doesn’t have what it needs, it will simply make it difficult for you to complete your tasks.
For example, if your specialty is the translation, writing or text editing, you won’t need extra RAM or a processor as powerful as if your projects were focused on graphic design or website development. I can tell you that I have done very well with my laptop, which belongs to the Acer brand; I have had it for three years, and I have no complaints.
Other recognized corporations in the field of computers are Hewlett-Packard (HP), Sony and Apple, although it is always the user who has the last word.
It is worth to note that a smartphone is one of the best gadgets that a freelancer or digital nomad can have. In addition to being useful to communicate with potential customers through phone calls, chats, emails or video calls, a mobile phone of this type will help you to be aware of your social networks.
Making periodic publications, reviewing updates in terms of your contract or offering your services in the different digital platforms are just some of the activities you can carry out with this electronic device.
In this way, you can take photographs, record voice notes or videos, download files and applications that assist you in fulfilling your tasks and even make last minute editions from your cell phone. The most important names in this field are: the different iPhone models, the different Samsung series or the various Huawei phones, which have earned by themselves a spot between the big companies, little by little.
Each of these devices has its virtues and shortcomings, so you should observe well what are the reviews that other users have given them and if they are compatible with what you want and need. Don't forget to get a charger and extra battery if you can!
This wonderful device not only serves to immortalize the magical and incredible experiences that are captured in an instant but also to obtain income through its use.
"Income?" you ask. Yep, that's right, you can earn money in ways as varied as taking pictures in a city and selling them, to being hired to record everything that happens at a public event. In addition, if you have a good camera which records high-quality videos, you can also start by giving tutorials of topics in which you are well-versed and where you can develop your skills very well.
In this sense, you could also have a webcam that is of good quality, to record video conferences or online lessons. You just have to enjoy what you do, instruct yourself in it and put a lot of dedication and perseverance. Creativity will give you extra points!
In addition to a camera, a video camera will allow you to record audiovisual material in a more professional style; although I have seen that many YouTubers use cameras of the brand Canon to record their videos and they are doing very well.
In my case, the first camera I bought was a Canon PowerShot A3300 IS several years ago, with it I have been able to record HD videos and take spectacular photos. But also, in the market are Nikon, Kodak and Samsung, among other brands. An action camera may also make things more interesting in terms of travel videos and monetizable content - GoPro and Sony offer excellent options in this department.
A pair of headphones that are manufactured to the highest standards will be of great help to comply with transcription assignments, as well as audio and video editing because it allows you to cancel the external noise and concentrate on achieving the best result ever.
Even so, do not underestimate the most basic use they have: listening to music; although the better its specifications, the better the appreciation of the details present in the musical composition will be. You will realize how sublime it can be to experience certain sound effects or the sensations caused by different musical pieces, which can transport us through time to very specific moments of our lives.
I assure you that you will notice the difference between cheap headphones, (like those which come with the purchase of mobile phones), and those of the highest level that are worth investing in if you want the best results. Yes, investing - a few more dollars today will be worth it tomorrow. The Panasonic brand is among the best in the world in this area, with wireless models that have a Bluetooth connection and can cancel external noise in a phenomenal way, as well as Bose, AKG, Pioneer and Audio Technica. You only need to see which one best suit your needs and budget.
In addition to good headphones, a great microphone will become your best ally when it comes to monetizing your vocal abilities and your knowledge in advertising, acting or singing, depending on its type and the purpose you are going to give it.
Among the tasks that you can carry out with this fantastic instrument are: recording a guideline for advertising, interpreting a song or jingle and even doing voice-overs. There is a world of possibilities if you have the right tools, the necessary skills and the willingness to work as you should.
One of the most acclaimed brands of microphones is Shure, in addition to Rode, Sennheiser and Neumann, each with different classes and models that adapt to the requirements of users.
As a curious fact, I can tell you that Freddie Mercury used to sing with a Shure UniSphere I Model 565SD, and that it was his favorite for live performances.
Now that we are at the final stages of this article, Things That Freelancers Absolutely Need, encouraging you to continue learning and practicing your skills, we remind you that there is always room to improve. It's not even me that's saying it, it's actually the professionals and most successful people in the world. Get the items you will need, and learn to master them. Not only will you become a better freelancer, but you will also become a much better individual with plenty more ways to monetize your skills!
Now tell us, did you like this article?
Would you like to see more posts like this in bW?
Tell us below and... don’t forget to Subscribe!
Co-Founder. Lead Content Creator (Spanish). Licensed in Chemistry. Scientist by profession. Curious from birth. Traveler by passion. Writer by calling. In love with the very essence of existence and thrilled with the idea of helping others reach their dreams and fulfill their life's desires.