Are you looking for ways to make money from home by working on your own hours?
Have you ever considered becoming a freelance content creator?
If you think you know what it is about, you may be wrong.
When I think of freelancing, I think of writing, designing graphics, or becoming a virtual assistant, but there’s another version of freelancing that I’ve never heard of before, and it’s all behind the scenes.
I had the pleasure of meeting Shannon Livingston in a Facebook group talking about what she does and was very intrigued. She makes so much money that she was able to take her husband away from her and continue to be a stay at home mom!
Of course, I was in on all of this and I wanted to know if this could be duplicated. And she said yes!
She has a course that teaches others how to do the same, but if any of you know about me and my company, we need to check EVERYTHING. Can this really be duplicated and is it legit?
Then I found a student who took her course and found out that she recently finished her course and made $4,000 in her first month after taking Shannon’s course!
We needed to hear more, so we asked if we could interview her to see how she could do it.
See how she went from being frustrated to earning an amazing new income doing something she enjoys with her kids by her side.
This job is perfect for moms, but even if it isn’t, your earning potential could be even higher if you have more time.
This post contains affiliate links, which means that I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link.
How to become a freelance content creator
1. Can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you got started as a freelance content creator?
My name is Sydney Smith and I am a wife and mother living in the Sacramento area. Back in 2020 I decided to buy my first Sony camera and jump into the world of photography. At the time, my husband had just started his first job after college and I wanted to generate some extra income to help save for a house. I tried so many different types of photography in an attempt to create a steady side income: senior portraits, real estate photography, even a full blown wedding videography company! While I did find some success in those endeavors, it was never a steady flow of money and I had to do a lot of marketing to find clients.
Fast forward to fall 2022: I was a new mom desperately wanting to find a photography job that would allow me to work from home. We were also no closer to buying a home than we were in 2020 and were very anxious to find some way to continue saving for a down payment. So after praying about it and searching for answers, I stumbled across an online course that teaches regular moms how to make money taking recipe photos for bloggers (the course is called Content Creator Lab by Shannon Livingston). Over the course of 6 weeks, I learned the ins and outs of creating content for bloggers, from finding the initial recipe to making the final sale to the blogger.
2. What exactly does a freelance content creator do?
As a freelance content creator, I create photo packages for food bloggers. I start by finding a recipe I like and curating it to make it my own. Then I make and photograph that recipe from home! I usually do these photography sessions when my baby falls asleep at night so they won’t disturb me for a couple of hours. Then I edit and post the package of photos the next day during their naps. I use an easy preset in Lightroom and post the photo pack on my Shopify website and also on Facebook blog groups.
3. How much can you earn as a freelance content creator (if you can share some of your early hits that would be great too)?
What I love about this job is the income potential. I started selling in late 2022, and each recipe pack sold for around $285. Now, about 2 months later, I’m selling my photos for $420 per recipe. As you develop and refine your craft, you have the ability to charge more, and bloggers are happy and willing to pay more for good photos. In my first month alone, I made over $4k which got me instantly hooked. Everyone I talk to about this job wants to know how to get started, because why not work for yourself and make a great income? 🙂
4. How do you find work?
This is also a huge perk of the job: You make all your sales in specific Facebook buy and sell groups, which means you don’t have to aimlessly market yourself to everyone and anyone to make a sale. After I finish a pack of photos, I make a post on Facebook groups and can usually sell that pack in a couple of days. Nowadays, I’ve been building an email list, which makes the selling process even easier.
5. What types of skills do you think someone needs to possess to be successful in this position?
I think the #1 trait you need is discipline. I’ve been self-employed for a while now and I’ll be the first to admit that it’s very easy to get distracted when you’re working from home and surrounded by your TV, bed, social media, etc. Discipline is key. to build momentum and finish everything on your to-do list.
As for the actual skills, it helps to have a background in photography. However, it is not absolutely necessary. In the content creation lab course, Shannon teaches the basics of photography and how to get started. And YouTube has SO many amazing resources when it comes to learning about lighting, composition, editing, etc. It all comes down to discipline and how much you are willing to work to develop new skills!
6. What tools or resources are needed to become a successful content creator?
If we talk practically, you will need to buy a basic DSLR or mirrorless camera. I was so nervous when I bought my first camera because they are expensive! However, try not to worry. That team is an investment in every sense of the word. You will get that money back quickly and your camera will continue to help you earn money. This also applies to your investment in lenses. Do it!
I also use Adobe Lightroom which is $10/mo and Shopify which I think is only $1/mo for the first 3 months (although Shopify is not required to get started).
7. What advice would you give someone who wants to become a successful content creator?
Be persistent! Your photo and recipe ideas will improve and refine over time. You’ll also know how to better sell to bloggers once you’ve made your first few sales and see the trend of what’s selling and what’s not. There are other content creators who take mediocre photos and get mediocre sales (not to criticize anyone, it’s just a reality). Which is fine if you just want a little extra income! But there are so many resources out there that can help you level up your photos and earn the income you want and deserve. Keep it up and you will be able to achieve your goals.
8. How do you manage your time between your business and your children (assuming you have children, if you don’t, can you give us an example of a typical work week)
I feel like I’ve gotten into a good rhythm now that my son is napping well. I usually do 3 recipes a week and work while he sleeps so it would be at night right after he goes to bed or during daytime naps. I love this schedule because I know that I can be 100% with him when he is awake, playing, laughing and exploring everywhere. This job really only requires you to work part time, and you could work less or more if you wanted to. So if he was making 3 recipes a week, my work week would be something like this:
Monday: Evening recipe session (3 hours), Tuesday: Editing and posting recipes (2 hours), Wednesday: Evening recipe session (3 hours), Thursday: Editing and posting recipes (2 hours), Thursday evening: recipe shoot in the afternoon (3 hours), Friday: recipe editing and posting (2 hours).
I definitely change it around my schedule for the week, but it’s very flexible. I just try to make sure I do those 3 recipe shots every week. It’s a balancing act, but it’s worth it!
Thank you so much Sydney for a wonderful interview! Wasn’t it helpful?
So what do you think? Is this something you want to try? Shannon did a wonderful FREE Masterclass helping us better understand how this works, how you can charge $100 an hour and shares pictures and examples of what this work looks like.
If you want the flexibility to live a life on your own terms, check out the Masterclass here.
For additional ways to make money from home, download our free ebook.