From Failure to Success – How Three Freelancers Learned from their Failures and Succeeded


“Experiencing failure is to be living, and steering away from failure is simply to be alive. “

The quote above perfectly sums up the experience of a freelancer, and what makes many back away in terror. Face it people, we live in a world where only the successful ends of journeys are celebrated. In an industry where we are bombarded with success story after success story, it makes you wonder if those people were simply born winners? To answer this, THEY WEREN’T!

In this article three freelancers share their “failure to success” stories:

  • Spencer Forman of LabSecrets and LabZip relates how Ning unplugged him and his partner and how he started all over.
  • Dainis Graveris, founder of 1WD, tells us how 2.5 million monthly unique visitors dropped to 1.8 million, and a change of focus for our readers.
  • Jamal Jackson’s story of how the dawn of Facebook affected my early freelancing career and how it changed me for the better.

Every success story you can think of has a turbulent journey filled with many failures prior to that celebrated point of success. As a freelancer, you’re going to become best friends with failing and it’s important to have an idea of how to deal with this dear friend.

That’s why here, we’re going to be taking a look at a couple of the common failures that every freelancer experiences, or will experience, and give some advice on how to handle them. In addition, at the end some of the 1WD team members will get a little personal and share their favorite failure stories.

The Inexperienced Freelancer With No Clientele

Inexperienced Beginner - Failure, Freelancer's Friend

Starting a career as a freelancer in the web industry only takes a name and a URL, and you’re good to go. However, actually getting work is nowhere near as easy without some experience behind you. It honestly will make anyone feel like a failure from the start.

How to handle this

Well, there is only one way to get yourself into a better situation. Getting to work! When you have no reputable past experiences, or stellar work, the only thing you can do is work for the purpose of building your brand. Here are some good ways to do this:

  • Pro bono work for non-profit organizations (what is pro bono, why and when spec work is a good idea)
  • Creating themes, plugins, and other assets that can be sold (creates a great passive income)
  • Get in touch with established freelancers in your area to create friendships
  • If you have the knowledge, share it by blogging or writing tutorials
  • Tweak popular open licensed themes and sell them
  • Create your own projects

All these solutions are great places to start if you’re very inexperienced and just itching to get a great leap into the industry.

What is the worth of good advice if you aren’t given any advice on what not to do as well? You now have a good idea on what you should be doing, and how to get going. To add to that here is a little warning message.


This approach is only a race to the bottom because there is always someone cheaper, and selling yourself short may affect your confidence depending on the type of person you are.

When all the Rain Stops and Your Business Hits a Drought

Freelance Drought - Failure, Freelancer's Friend

If you can find one freelancer who says they never had a drought of client work being presented to them, then I’ll show you a freelancer who is going to have one in the near future. The freelancer’s lifestyle is a roller coaster, with mighty nice highs and awfully dreadful lows. It isn’t possible to create a sustainable income from client work alone because eventually it will just dry up. When this happens, not many know how to deal with it accordingly, even if they’ve been through it before.


Always make sure that all clients and partners have provided proper written legal documentation showing their approval. If they don’t, then the possibility of them being able to sue once things start moving in a great way becomes highly likely.

Our Stories

Now it’s time for you to read a couple of stories from the people here at 1WD, and see how we turned these failures into great learning experiences. The main takeaway though – Never Ever Stop Learning!

Spencer Forman’s Story

Failure Freelancer's Friend - Spencer

“Hello… it’s Spence, the Evil Genius, from LabSecrets”, a software development and consulting company that produces turnkey social networking and monetization solutions for entrepreneurs.

Here Spencer takes some time to discuss with us his favorite failure, and the great outcome this lesson allowed for him to attain.

I went from over 6,000 happy customers to being unplugged and called an idiot by my industry peers.

Earlier in my career I had success with WidgetLaboratory on Ning. One day we had over six thousand happy customers, making tens of thousands a month, and then one morning woke up and Ning (and their Venture Capitalists no doubt) unplugged us and all our customers. Had 3 TechCrunch articles, some funny ValleyWag posts, etc, all outlining it. While most of our customers thought we were in the “right” and supported us, we were called “idiots” by Michael Arrington and others…

My partner took it very hard. I enjoyed it, because I love a good dog fight. Admittedly, it looked grim.

But entrepreneurs and freelancers have to believe in the impossible.

Within a week or so, from the ashes, I was on Skype with London and we were scheduled to fly there to meet with a startup called SocialGO, who ultimately hired us to build a product to compete with Ning. Within days we had a six figure contract and fee sharing deal.

That was certainly a memorable time with a massive “FAIL”… followed by what I like to think was a huge recovery/learning experience. It led me here today with all the “Lab” stuff.

My partner ultimately moved on. He was less of an entrepreneur/freelancer and more of a “hired gun” developer who could just sit and code for cash. That was a good choice for him though, as it liberated us both to be the best we can be.”

Jamal Jackson’s Story

Failure Freelancer's Friend - Jamal

“Hi! I’m Jamal Jackson and I freelance under my Five Alarm Interactive(FAI) brand as a designer and developer. I started freelancing in 2008 when I was 16 after spending  a couple of years prior to that creating MySpace layouts.

What mattered most to me, and still does,  was the feeling of being respected by my peers.

So sometime at the beginning of 2008, I think, I really don’t remember, MySpace was overtaken by Facebook as the popular social networking site. Well, for a person who was making a fine living for themselves, maybe a few thousand dollars a week when I wanted to work, that was a devastating blow.

My entire niche market was slowly vanishing before my eyes, and there was nothing I could do about it.

My only two options were to either give up and call it a day for my career on the outskirts of the web industry or change my skill set.

So I changed my skill set and targeted a different market. There was only one problem I didn’t expect… You really don’t get a warm welcome from others when you claim MySpace as your first taste of the industry. Looking back, maybe some of it was warranted since none of the people I knew back then are still around today.

Anyway, because of my less than impressive background and tender age, I had trouble getting work or being taken seriously. That really hit a nerve and shaped my whole career because nothing became more important to me than respect. Having that as my main goal quickly led me down a road of very little income.

I turned down a lot of opportunities to create a stable income and clientele simply because I felt the work I would be doing didn’t satisfy me creatively. Mix that together with the clients that I really wanted that did not probably bother to read my cold emails or proposals, and you got yourself one hell of a mess.

I realized when I was about 17 that I wasn’t going to get the respect I deserved, or grow creatively for that matter, if I continued down this path. I started to get more active in web communities, more specifically, ConceptFeedback, and man, the first time I posted my work it got destroyed. However that is what I needed, the harsh criticism from creatives who I now view as friends helped me grow amazingly fast. I gained more confidence from this, and started to present myself better on the web and in my approach to clients.

A year from that I started blogging seriously, and started working with Dainis and the 1WD team. Blogging helped me build a name in this market, and define who I was as a creative.

The moral of my story is that I needed to transition from wanting respect as a creative, to wanting it as a business. Doing this changed my whole perspective and allowed me to finally start growing my company seriously.

This brought me opportunities to work for high profile clients from March of Dimes to AT&T, and allowed me to turn down job offers from some of the biggest names in the Atlanta area.”

Five Alarm Interactive

Failure Freelancer's Friend - FAI

Dainis Graveris

Failure Freelancer's Friend - Dainis

“Hey there, my name is Dainis and I am the founder of this very blog 1stwebdesigner.”

Today I will share my failures and what changes I have made, that up to now are still in the process of settling down.

I was very frustrated that I lost my passion and started to drink much more frequently and lost my joy for work.

I could tell that for the past two years when I thought 1WD was a big success, it was instead slowly going to ruins. And the reason? The very reason why 1WD was liked by so many – because we approved a lot of guest author articles. The problem was that guest authors just wanted quick cash and visibility, but they didn’t care much about community. I didn’t push community hard enough because I was blinded by the growing traffic numbers.

If traffic is growing – then to grow business – we need more articles which will help improve traffic, right?


While I was blinded with Google’s huge traffic and growth (over 2011 we improved monthly traffic by one million unique visitors), in March, everything changed. I am glad now that it worked out so, but it was very frustrating for all of 2012.

We had 2.5 million unique visitors and suddenly that number dropped to 1.8 million. Google Panda and Google Penguin stopped favoring 1WD as they did in the past for reasons which are still not clear to me.

For the past year I tried everything – worked on 1WD’s loading speed, worked on better SEO, worked on going through 40,000 blog comments to remove spammy ones, started editing and cleaned up existing blog posts. Nothing worked.

I was very frustrated that I lost my passion and started to drink much more frequently and lost my joy for work.

..and then I learned my lesson. How 1WD was founded. For the first two years most articles were written by me, I was super engaged with related web design blogs, with community – replying to comments, engaging with everybody. As 1WD grew, I worked more in the background, managing the business itself. Outsourcing tasks to writers, hiring more people. It was all good and valuable experience, but all this time I was pushing only TRAFFIC.

More, more, more..I was always thirsty for more visitors, because that’s how I measured how successful 1WD was. And after painful blow, it took time for me to understand.

I understood that traffic is nothing if there is no loyal following, if there are no like-minded people, no readers who love and stand by what 1WD represents.

As Steve Jobs said after he was fired from Apple:

In the last several months, we stopped working with a lot of guest authors and we are now focusing on a smaller team who really love 1WD’s vision and will stand by it.

We stopped publishing regular daily list articles – while we thought we could maintain high standards and deliver quality articles every day, in all honesty we couldn’t – we became like a factory just trying to produce more and lost creativity along the way.

We got engaged with our community again, we asked for feedback and listened to what the readers want to learn here. Each comment written here by readers is being responded to! If you take the time to add your experiences, tell your story – we repay the same way.

We started creating videos, because it is the closest way that we can connect with you – our reader! I knew we needed videos, but 1WD grew and we stopped trying new things, became defensive. Common problem by every company that becomes big and stops experimenting, because now they have something to lose.

While I am telling this story, and it’s not yet finished, we haven’t yet recovered from the Google hit, but now I don’t want us to. Community is all that counts, if you appreciate our work, then we have accomplished our goal.

With 1.8 million unique monthly visitors, we don’t need more traffic. We need people who can place their trust in us, and then we can work on our own products that we know you want. How? Because we ask you questions, listen to your feedback and take time to engage with you via the comments.

I hope you enjoyed this story and keep coming back here to see how the story continues.

And again on failures – if you fail often, then you will be the most successful person. That’s how it works.

It’s not how we fall, it’s how we get up again.


Failure Freelancer's Friend - 1WD

Now it’s Your Turn

Take a second in the comments section and leave a story about a failure you’ve experienced in your career. We’d love to hear it!



  1. Santosh

    Very True and Inspiring.
    I feel the frustration and struggle that you’ll have elaborated on in this article..
    Really pisses me off, especially when you reach a state of mind that justifies you to just break this laptop…but then again…its a waste of money..

    1WD, 5AlarmInteractive, LabSecrets and Labzip, and all the other designs are very inspiring…
    gave me a lot of insight on how I would like to design my career or should I say Web-Design my career…
    Thanks a lot guys…feels good to know that struggle in all the right places always pays off…
    Then maybe we can drink as much and not worry about being broke..
    haha…Am I right, Dainis ?
    Concentrating on Quality Always…Resolve!!


  2. Kashif Siddiqui

    Today is first day for me after leaving my AutOCAD job, because since last five years, I have been engaged with Graphics/Web Designing and just start digging development side. The reason behind leaving job is an “idea” that is, now I want to jump in creative sea and become a full time freelancer, It is very worthy if someone successful share success history, (I say, the “source code” behind success). In coming days I am planning to write articles..oops!, “Quality Articles” (that’s fine!). and showcase my portfolio, for this I need help!…WHAT?….Help of myself, and Yup! guidance like you “gurus”. Dainis I have subscribed you, and willing to write for you? What would you do for me?

  3. Pritish

    One of the maginificant article i have read so far.. Worth reading it and learning from your failures. Good Job guys……. Cheers..:)

  4. Nice Article….
    Its really cool reading about people Success Stories but no1 features the ones they failed in…..
    I myself take things as a challenge and compete till i succeed….and success is not that easier to achieve if we dont give our best for it…

  5. Borut

    I am 16 years old web coder, web designer. When I was about 14 years old I wanted to make my own blog. But didn’t know how and failed several times. In these years I learned allot from HTML + CSS , WordPress and Photoshop. Now I am still making my own blog and it’s 70 % finished. I found that, if you don’t give allot of work on your blog, website it would be just totall mess. You need to concentrate on ONE PRODUCT and make it till you finish. I was like doing 3-4 projects same time, that was everytime unsuccessful. Too much worry, no free time, then I hardly made school :) etc etc… After I made blog, I want to have my own website. Firstly I want to suceed only in my own country, then outside. I learned :
    – Take your time and finish “product”, website. What ever you are doing.
    – Don’t overdose. That’s my main problem.
    – Fail and try again. Life is good ;)

    Thanks 1stwebdesigner for all your tips, tricks… I usually read your blog and I just like it. Simple and clean ;)

    My best quote : | “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” | – ALBERT EINSTEIN

  6. As always, a great article from the 1WD team. I am only starting out my career as a web designer (although I am not as young as many – it is a career change for me and I am wary of trying to make up for this and maybe go too fast!) but I am so glad I found the 1WD website.

    I am, finding your articles to be quality, useful and inspirational. Was really good to read the stories on here. I know I will make mistakes but now I am less afraid to make them.

    Keep up the good work!

  7. Vivek

    As always very nice article. I am a big fan of this website and read each and every article. Keep posting such inspiring articles. I have started my career as a freelancer and these articles are really big help.

  8. I shared a same situation as Dainis Graveris. I was in charge of running a small start up web design/development company. At first it started going well but the clients always wanted more for nothing and on top of that, the owner/management would not back me up with decisions to make a change. They would not even invest in new equipment. I soon also started to drink everyday and my passion for the web design/development world became just a job. Soon after I departed with the company and was left alone wandering what to do.

    Sitting at home I quickly realized how out of date I was with design/development and could not get any work. I became desperate trying to get anything. I was not sure of what to do so I started looking up blogs, tutorials and 1WD was one of my sources. I then started getting my passion back and do to being positive with good attitude and new found training, I landed a dream job and doing what I love.

  9. Kyle

    Hey Daivis! (hope I spelled that right)

    I popped in not that long ago on another article expressing some thoughts.
    I didn’t really have much to say but that this was an incredibly inspiring article, especially your little bit at the end there Daivis.

    I’m truly glad you’ve found what you find to be the most rewarding in the business; reaching those in the community.

    You most certainly reached me! Hey also, I’m always trying to promote my producing (I’m a producer for rappers), so you can check my site out; I’ve included it.

    My Web Design site will be up shortly,
    I’ll forward it your way so you can add it to your favorites later!

    Thanks again,
    Kyle Trantum

  10. Definitely a great article. Some people think that being a freelancer is easy, they got freedom to work anytime and everywhere they want. But, it is definitely hard to get your very first GOOD project.

    I’m still a student and doing some freelance work building website. Might have to consider whether I should continue doing office job after graduating or work with my own.

    • Hi Rudd,

      Yeah, nobody every seems to tell the real side of it where you’re going through long stretches spaning months of no work sometimes. It’s easier, and more profitable, to sell a dream than it is to give you what the reality is.

      I suggest that if you don’t have yourself fully together, then go to a office job until you’re ready. Just don’t wait too long or you’ll never leave!

  11. Great Article! I like the honesty. I have been following 1WD for a few months now and I really like the articles. I like the fact that they don’t come every single day and overwhelm me.

    I’m just starting out freelancing and right now I have two big failures and those are Marketing and Selling Myself. I know I can do just about anything web related but sounding confident and selling myself has always been hard for me.

    • Thats hard for us all. It takes time and acceptance to get that salesman side going in this industry. Just be patient, and don’t be hard on yourself for what you lack.

  12. Claudia

    I’m the Freelancer who doesn’t know where they fit so has no clue who to market to. Its good to hear about the challenges people faced and how it affected them, especially Dainis’ story. I went Freelance because most work environments with the mass of people you have to face, the noise, excessive management styles bordering on being bullied, not likeing chaos and being interrrupted causing me distress; it was my only option. This was why I started following 1wd as you seem to have a handle on how hard it is and do not shirk from this truth, care about the little guy despite being mega successful ( I count being a success as being able to earn a decent living from what you do and not have to rely on benefits and another badly paid exploitative mcjob) and have a humour and warmth so do carry this on.

    I studied Fashion Design and my as my Illustration style suited Graphic Design, I like copy writing and making things presentable both clothing and images using Photoshop like I use felt tip pens (I can manipulate images the hard way, I learned on Photoshop 2!). Obviously I struggle with how to present myself in the Graphic / Web Design community as I’m really an Illustrator but yet in the artistic community because I’ve got Photoshop skills, know how to automate tweets, build a website, link all my social media together I’m too tech; yet because I can describe colours personal shop successfully (yes professionally), have a creative eye and care about how I look, ( I’m a trained make up artist and Beauty and Fragrance Specialist ) can only code basically, (html makes no sense at all to me past a basic level!) I don’t fit in with the techs either!

    Any ideas? I do blog for other sites (yes unpaid) so should I do this for myself and what do I pitch myself as?

    • Claudia,

      First thank you for enjoying 1WD, the articles we post, and the stories shared in this piece. In regards as advice, I’d say STOP AND FOCUS! You have to pick something and focus your time on that. You can’t be a successful jack, but you can be a rockin specialist. Once you find something to focus on, everything should clear up for you.

  13. C Sears

    I’m someone who just discovered 1WD and am thrilled that you have found your way to a new vision that emphasizes community. Community is exactly what I feel I am participating in when I read 1WD. It is why I come back. It is why I subscribed. I think you are on the right track. I also want to thank all three authors for their honesty. I’m a beginner who is at a point in a web design job where I am disappointed with every idea I have come up with. This article is helping me think about my failures as just part of the process.

    • Hi C,

      I’ll tell you a secret. I have never liked or been happy with anything I’ve ever done in this industry for more than one second. Its a pain, but it makes me keep wanting to seek out a greater level of creativity. So don’t get frustrated with that, just view it as yourself telling you to get better and keep on getting better!

  14. Well written and very sincere! This is really an uplifting post for people such as myself who are struggling in their work.

    • Keep at it Jason, your struggles are only telling you to work harder to reach your goal. When you make it though, you most certainly will look back and laugh.

  15. Love this. Great idea for a blog post. More and more often these days you hear about people going through rough patches – but these suckers will keep ya going. Big fan of positive posting!

    • Thanks Brett.

      There is always a positive side to a failure, even if it is hard to see. Trust me, I know it is hard to see the positive when rent is due and you got a ton of debt on your head. But hey, that is what life is about. We live to fail, and try again until we succeed enough to where our failures are only great learning experiences.

  16. Wendy

    Wow! Where do I begin? This article was very deep. Thank you gentlemen for sharing your stories. I have not had a failure in my journey of web design yet. This is only due to the fact that I have not really started yet. I feel that I wish I had access to some of this advice long before school had ended. I feel I would have been more advance at this point in time.

    However, that being said, I have followed you guys regularly for a few months now. It’s somewhat like a daily devotional for me. I love learning about ALL of the many aspects there are to being a freelance web designer. Reading your articles is like being able to soak up wisdom from very wise leaders. I can not say thank you enough for doing what you guys/gals are doing. Your time and dedication to helping others be successful is a huge deal. I have already learned so much from what you all have shared. Reflecting on failures is sign of being humble in my eyes. To get up and keep pushing forward is a sign of strength and greatness. Thank you, truly, thank you.

    Thank you.


    • Thanks Wendy, I don’t think I’ve been called wise too many times before.(Ego starts to grow and heads explodes)

      To me I love my failures more than my success. I mean its true that to have success, you first must have seen success in your past, but failures taught me more about life. Even in my most successful times, I’ve always experienced coinciding failures. These failures keep me grounded and lets me ask myself the question of do I really want this. Now that I’m thinking about it, I remember all my failures and don’t really recall the majority of the successful events. Weird o.O!!

      Any who, glad your a loyal reader and hope you stay that way.

  17. It is a very inspiring post for all the freelancers are out there. Making living from freelancing is not an easy task and very low percent of freelancers are able to do that…Thanx for sharing this post keep it up…

    • You’re very much welcome Gagandeep, if that is your real name. Glad you gained something from my piece.

  18. It is a very inspiring post for all the freelancers are out there. Making living from freelancing is not an easy task and very low percent of freelancers are able to do that. Panda and penguin affected millions of quality sites for unknown but I really liked how you overcome it

    • Hi Joy,

      Its all about facing adversity head on, and don’t back down. You may not come out unscratched when you do this, but you definitely never become a winner by not taking it head on.

  19. Ffion

    Great article, very inspiring. I’m currently starting up as a freelance graphics and webdesigner, and it’s posts like this that encourage me not to give up, even when things look difficult. “When times get tough, the tough get going” :) Thank you for sharing your stories. It’s always nice to see other people’s stories behind their success, seeing the human side of it all. Some people make it seem so effortless on the outside, but I think a lot of blood and sweat goes into a load of these adventures, and it’s nice to see people share the difficult bits to encourage others :) Thanks!

    Your site is one of the few sites that keeps me interested enough to keep reading. I nearly always find your articles very interesting and inspiring, and full of helpful information. A lot of other newsletters or sites I’ve read for a while eventually lose my attention because content is lacking or simply very unoriginal.
    So far I almost always klick on your updates because I trust that you will have something interesting to say that is of actual value for me and worth the time I spend reading it :)

    I’m impressed with your attitude and think that working on building the community is really a great idea :)

    Keep up the great work!

    • Thanks for liking us showing our humanity in this piece. Yeah it is kinda annoying to see nothing but freelance articles that show you steps to get successful, but forget to include the other factors that need to be included for those steps to work. In my articles in general I try not to give readers some 1…2….3 step guide to how to achieve something. I’d rather open your mind to the many routes that could get you to your goal, because that is what is going to keep you alive in this industry.

      Thanks again for your loyal readership Ffion!

  20. Hi there: great article and thanks for your honesty. I started my webdesign company 12 years ago. It’s been a lonely battle from time to time. I’ve made money and still do but you won’t hear me say i can relax. My business has been changing roughly every 2 years: higher expectations, new types of customers, modified legal documents which led to different project approaches and different way of dealing with customers.

    It’s been the biggest kick of my life but the last couple of years i’ve been focussed on trying to get more continuity: a more stable income. I’ve produced a software suite for Dutch web professionals: time & project management, billing, etc. After more than 8 years of development and trying to sell previous versions i’ve now got a software version of my product that finally catches on: potential customers are rapidly becoming actual customers. With each new customer a get less and less depentant of beying payed by the hour by traditional customers. It gives me more freedom in chosing which customers i want to work with, or not.

    So, again: many thanks for your article. Love 1WD and will continue to visit the site daily.

    • HI Bas,

      That’s the spirit. I’m honestly impressed of the time and commitment you’ve made with your business. I couldn’t imagine what my company would look in the next two years, let alone once it hits 12. I’m glad to hear that your hard work on your product is finally starting to pay off. Remember that the pain we feel is nothing but a precursor to ending satisfaction of success.

  21. That was an amazing article and failure/success profiles. That is exactly where I am. I have been freelancing for about 2 years using WordPress exclusively to design sites. For a while things were going great with new potential and new real clients coming regularly, but that tap has almost dried up. I have been very frustrated and discouraged. Just now I am trying to get back to the place of being back engaged with really making this thing work.

    Thanks for the transparency.

    • Hi Dion,

      I’m glad you were able to take something away from this article. We’ve all been where you are, and its a tough place. Its a tough reality of how this industry is, and is a constant reminder of why it is important to create a safety net when you can. It could be a real life saver one day.

      Good luck with your business!

  22. Sherry-Ann

    Hi Dainis,

    Great article, it is good to know that some people actually struggle or meet some advertsity along the way and, not all are and continue to be overnite successes.
    I am an Administrative Professional by trade, but my love and passion for web designing, lead me to pursue a BSc in Computing and serveral web designing courses. I’ve looked at many tutorials and recreated several mock website designs to increase my skills. But there lies the problem, mock websites. I have not done 1 website that has been published, and thats all because I am not confident in my product. I keep thinking people will see me as a novice, and won’t want to trust me with their websites.
    However, your tips on pro bono work and creating themes has switched on the light buld that I needed to get started. Quality and not quantity is what matters, so I’ll start slowly with a pro bono project and move from there.
    Continue providing your community with superior articles that inspire, motivate and teach us. I am a loyal follower who stands by what 1WD represents.

    • Hey Sherry,

      Your loyalty is very much appreciated by all of us here at 1WD! I’m also glad my tips helped you as well. I’ll tell you this right now, every talented and successful person in this industry started where you are at now. Okay, maybe not the switching careers part, but you get what I’m saying.

      You have to have faith in your skills, and trust that what you do is of great quality. Or at least the great quality you’re about to bring!

  23. Awesome article!

    It’s great to hear such cool stories (specially Dainis’ and Spencer’s). And Dainis, that is so true! I’ve read a lot about marketing-related stuff and the truth is that it’s much better to build long-term relationships than trying to acquire new customers all the time. Actually my term paper was on this (relationship marketing on social media streams, like twitter, g+, youtube).


    • Hey Roch,

      Glad you liked the article so much, and I hope you found my story good to read as well. That is true, every company that made it made sure that there niche audience was taken care of first. Then after that, they started to grow because of the high satisfaction their niche gave. Apple is probably the best example for this.

      • Indeed Jamal, I liked it :)

        Your story is actually really similar to mine (started in a different niche, very young and people didn’t want to pay a lot for a 15-year-old boy).


  24. I started following you guys, just in this transition period you were talking about, and I honestly enjoy and find very useful all the stuff you write. It’s way better to work on quality than in quantity. Keep on the good work guys.
    I guess one of the things I’ve learned from my mistakes, is to say YES when I need to do it, but also learn to say NO when it has be said. People might not value the work we do at the beginning, but it’s great when you finish the project and you hava a satisfied client!!


    • Hey Esgardilion,

      Glad you like it, and love your takeaways from this article. You really got the message I was trying to send. I hope that your freelance or business venture brings you the happiness you seek, and that you’ll keep coming back to 1WD. Even if it is just to read my articles :), JK

    • Thanks a lot jamal. Excellent article inspired me a lot. A big yes that Concentrate on quality rather than quantity. Any ways nice post dude kepp up.

  25. This is a really good article for anyone going into the Freelance or Self employed direction. I have been struggling for a very long time (5years) trying to make a name and a product . This article has given me an Idea on what I need to Fix and how I should my presence on the Net. Many Thanks Guys, and wish you bet of Luck! You have helped me alot!

    • Your very much so welcome Pedro. I know the struggle you’re going through very well, probably not to the same extent since I was a teenager during mine. I’m glad that this article has given you that extra self confidence you need to keep going in this industry. And once you do start to hit your stride, I hope you remember that there still will be times of failure.

      Speaking for myself, I know that even though things are going better for me now that around the corner that something probably will go wrong. It could be big or small, but its going to happen. That is why it is always important to create some sort of safety net if possible.

  26. Christian Vasile

    I seriously think that building a community behind such a website is a solid way of long-term success. We will not recover from the Google hit in a month or two. Maybe not even in a year. Maybe it will happen in three. But what we can be assured of here at 1WD is the fact that we will continuously grow and we will become even more attached to you, our loyal readers.