The future of freelancing: Will all creatives be freelancers soon?

‘Freelancing’ is no longer an euphemism for being out of work. In the States, where the economic situation is on the up, freelancers are an important force in the success of agencies pitching for new clients or realizing big projects.

So, what is the future of freelancing?

The American industry magazine Advertising Age recently published an article titled ‘Freelancers Stock Rise on Madison Avenue’. It is all about how the freelance workforce (mostly copywriters, art directors and strategists) is helping the advertising world to make money again.

Playing for the other team

Flexibility is one of the main reasons agencies put freelancers on a particular project. With short notice they can increase their workforce to cope with more jobs or to provide skills they don’t have inhouse. A flexible and independent mind also helps creativity. Providing a new way of looking at things could just give the edge you need, especially when pitching for a new client.

This also works from the creative’s perspective: it could enhance your work if you are not always tied to the same agency. Play for the other team every once in a while and get the creative juices flowing.

Cutting out the middle man

But how ‘free’ is freelancing really? Advertising Age editor Parkeh speaks in his article about ‘permalancers’. These are creatives that may not be on the payroll but work for an agency for long periods of time. American-model agencies with offices in Amsterdam, such as Amsterdam Worldwide, Sid Lee, WK and 180, use this model a lot.

And speaking of freedom: do freelancers need advertising agencies? Or could they skip them altogether and work for the advertiser directly? It is happening already. Are we seeing a little trend develop?

And while we’re on the subject of cutting out the middle man: what about agents? What do they do for their freelancers or clients? Any good freelance creative that’s worth the trouble can be found through Google. Why pay the agent’s fee?

Time for a talk

October marks the 10th anniversary of The Collective of International Advertising Creatives.

We think it is high time for us to sit down and have a good chat. About the past, present and future of freelancing. About the work, about the industry and about how things have changed or should change.

In ten year’s time we were very lucky to have met a lot of inspiring people. All experts in their own field and people who have something interesting to say. To celebrate our anniversary, we decided to invite some of these people for a round table discussion around the question.

The Future of Freelancing – a discussion

Join us on October 17th in de Zwijger Amsterdam to discuss ‘The future of freelancing’. Email us if you would like to attend

Please let us know what you think of this topic by leaving a short (or long!) comment below. And sign up now for our regular newsletter at the bottom of the page.

1 reply
  1. freelance copywriter
    freelance copywriter says:

    Freelancing could be plenty of enjoyment. Several freelance and contract jobs include the tremendous perk of doing work in the comfort of their home. Yet, not absolutely everyone desires to live in the freewheeling existence of a freelancer, a lot of individuals want benefits and security.

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