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(24 Posts)
sportinguista Mon 09-Jan-17 03:27:23

I've lost my major client!

I lost a fairly big client before Christmas and now I've lost the client I do most work for. I suspect the work has gone internal. It has put me in tailspin financially. Don't think we can claim tax credits until April at least as that's when they renew/take it from.

Has this happened to anyone else? What do I do?, I can possibly get new clients, but it will take time. Can't look at conventional work as home ed for the moment.

anotheryearcomesandgoes Mon 09-Jan-17 07:11:35

Can't look at conventional work as home ed for the moment.

Do you think that is why you have lost the clients? Some ed is a full time commitment. Had the business suffered?

SVJAA Mon 09-Jan-17 07:13:08

You can claim tax credits any time if that helps? The renewals begin between April and July 1st, but for a new claim/change in circumstances they can do it any time. Hope you get things sorted soon, and I'm sorry you're having to cope with this.

sportinguista Mon 09-Jan-17 07:43:16

No we haven't actually started the home ed so the business has had me full time. I suspect they have started to use an inhouse designer which I guess is their choice. They say they may still use me for some work but realistically it's not going to be much and it feels like they are saying it to let me down gently.

I do have quite a bit of work still to bill so this month will be ok. And we have some savings. DH works fulltime.

I suppose I just feel a bit kicked at the moment!

Will look into tax credits.

LunaLoveg00d Mon 09-Jan-17 07:49:23

Have been there and it's crap. All you can do is all the things which won you the clients in the first place and keep your fingers crossed for more work soon. Good luck.

icanteven Mon 09-Jan-17 08:21:07

So you are a designer? Graphic, web, fashion?

It's a bit soul destroying but People per Hour has always plugged the gap for me.

sportinguista Mon 09-Jan-17 09:06:14

I'm on PPH and Bark and I'm going to revisit all my presences.

I've spoken to the client and it's not all bad, they are going to use me for other work but the regular magazine that I was doing I won't be.

In my heart I know I can get new clients but it's still a knock.

I'm not going to do too much today as I've not had much sleep and I think I just need to have a bit of time to myself to fester/plan.

I'm a graphic designer and illustrator and I do web/print.

CocktailQueen Mon 09-Jan-17 09:07:50

Sorry to hear this - this is the problem with relying on a few big clients rather than having lots of smaller ones.

Hope you can do some marketing and find some new clients soon.

sportinguista Mon 09-Jan-17 09:12:25

I do have quite a few smaller ones as well but they tend to be what I used as fillers and they don't tend to pay as well!

Hopefully I can find some new ones soon.

BitOutOfPractice Mon 09-Jan-17 11:43:38

Oh god it's horrible. Not just the financial hit but it feels so personal too.

All you can do is dust yourself off and get proactive. Ring contacts, go through past clients, join networking organisations etc etc and get some new work in.

Good luck!

sportinguista Mon 09-Jan-17 12:06:14

A bit of good news, a client who has been out of touch for a year has asked for some work, it's only small but I suppose it's good news at least.

It did feel a bit personal, but I am trying to see it with a bit more perspective.

Off to have a bit of a rest now so hopefully will feel more with it tomorrow.

rememberthetime Mon 09-Jan-17 12:11:42

I had a similar blow before christmas. Now I am sitting with an overdraft and minimal work....but I am on PPH and even (shock horror) Copify and are scraping up enough work to get by. But losing a big client is such a bummer.
Plus losing a client before christmas is especially hard. You really can't search out more work until the new year meanwhile you spend all your savings.

Badbadbunny Mon 09-Jan-17 14:47:07

You have to learn not to take these things personally. It's business and you have to expect a fair amount of client "churn" - that's the very nature of being a business rather than an employee.

sportinguista Mon 09-Jan-17 16:52:52

I suppose at least I do have some ideas. I realised I had the application forms for our council's freelance register which I'd been to busy to take on so there is that as a possibility. It's not all bleak but it will take some hard work.

Had a bit of a sleep which helped and going to have some tea.

DH says that Aldi are opening a huge new warehouse near us so it might be that there are better opportunities for him there and we could increase our income that way.

Sorry to hear you're going through the same thing remember. It really feels awful. Especially as you can't do much about it except move on and try for more clients. January is not a great time for it either!

I know it's not personal and the client has not said it's about my competence, so I suspect it could be about price! I felt a bit knocked earlier but in the words of Chumbawumba "I get knocked down but I get up again".

BitOutOfPractice Mon 09-Jan-17 17:12:22

Get yourself all over LinkedIn and twitter

sportinguista Mon 09-Jan-17 18:03:52

I am going to do myself a new linkedin post and twitter/facebook banners. I'll have a look at any other stuff I could be doing like networking events etc. I do have faith that I can find other clients, I've do have some and I found them before so I can do it again!

WhatsGoingOnEh Wed 11-Jan-17 11:53:22

Me too, OP! I lost my major, major client in December, out of the blue, after 10 years. 💔😭

Deep down in my heart of hearts I know it's for the best, as it wasn't what I wanted to be remembered for on my tombstone, but I hadn't made as much effort as I should have done to keep other work rolling in.

It also knocked my confidence, but my AMAZING cheerleader of a mum is doing a lot to build that back up. smile

My biggest problem is structuring my time so I don't just panic over how to get new work, achieving nothing, while everything else (house, food, kids, budgeting) suffers. I currently feel guilty if I'm not spending every minute looking for new work, even if the rest of my life falls apart.

sportinguista Wed 11-Jan-17 14:11:19

Sorry to hear that Whats. Yes I am feeling a bit that way too. I have some new leads so it isn't all bad but the client is now not answering emails etc. Worse I have work outstanding with them that needs paying!

DH is more optimistic than me. I must say I feel stressed and a bit ill at the moment. It's not easy this time of the year either.

WhatsGoingOnEh Thu 12-Jan-17 19:12:30

The outstanding money will get paid -- even if you have to threaten them with the Small Claims Court.

Do you feel depressed? I do. YYYYY that the time of year doesn't help at ALL. January's usually depressing enough without suddenly having no money at all to look forward to!

Ugh. Do keep in touch if you'd like to -- maybe we can cheer each other on. Massive hug. Xxxx

museumum Thu 12-Jan-17 19:18:47

I had run out of work completely in December.
In the last ten days I've been shortlisted or approached for so many things that if I got them all I'd have to clone myself!

You can do it. It's a good time of year to get new work. Get out there and sell yourself.

donajimena Thu 12-Jan-17 19:23:36

I lost a major client the year before last. It did feel personal but within a month I had picked up a better one. Then a company that had stopped using my company last year rang me yesterday and I did some work for them today.
It did spur me on to put myself out there but its still a worry. I hope it works out for you soon

Somerville Thu 12-Jan-17 19:31:31

I find it helpful, after I lose a client, to sit down and analyse why. I have a spreadsheet I use. So, so often it is not at all to do with me/my work and that does make it easier. There are other times I've had to put it down to me missing a deadline or not being at my best and I have learned from that (and kicked myself) and upped my game.

It got worse in my field immediately after Brexit, so second half of last year was slooooow for me. I'm feeling the pinch now financially from that, but really busy again with work coming in from firms who have lost staff and don't want to fill those roles until they've decided if they're staying in London or moving to mainland Europe.
I don't know if your sector will be as affected by Brexit but it's worth considering the bigger picture and whether you need to broaden your skill set. I spent time improving my very rusty MFL while I was less busy last year, for example.

sportinguista Fri 13-Jan-17 09:38:25

It could be a bit Brexit but the client overall has apparently done well over Christmas (retail). No deadlines missed unless it was due to the client themselves and if anything I was at my best!

They are having a major reorganise due to 2/3 key people leaving and I suspect are trying to do the work internally with one of their web team to see if it works .

In terms of skill set I spent quite a bit of last year doing just that and offering new services, but there are services I had planned to work on and expand this year as well. So, it's not all bad and I am doing things that will help but it doesn't solve financial impact unfortunately!

GrumpyOldBag Fri 13-Jan-17 20:45:44

I'm in a similar situation OP. Due to a change in government policy.

And actually, a year ago I was in the same situation - then just when I thought I needed to get out and start to do some active marketing the new work came in on word-of-mouth. So I'm hoping for the same again ...

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