As part of our ongoing ‘Freelancer Spotlight’ series we speak to Matt Essam – a Creative Business Coach who helps freelancers win high value clients. If you are self-employed and would like to take part in ‘Freelancer Spotlight’, email us at

Matt Essam - Creative Business Coach

Q1: Can you tell us a bit about you and your background?

I’ve worked in the creative industries for over 12 years and had a real variety of roles. From working on award-winning advertising campaigns within some of the UK’s biggest agencies to running my own freelance business.

Q2: Why did you choose to help and coach freelancers?

In 2015 a sudden death in my family made me reflect on what I was doing with my life. I realised I wasn’t having the impact I wanted and had fallen out of love with my business.

I saw so many talented creatives churning out work they weren’t passionate about for clients they didn’t like, just to pay the bills. So I decided I was going to do something about it.

I was lucky to have been mentored by some incredibly successful entrepreneurs who gave me the skills and resources I needed to build a successful business and I had already trained to be a coach. The combination of the two made it a logical transition to work with people I really cared about and create a measurable impact in their life and business.

Q3: What services do you provide for freelancers?

I offer courses and workshops that are focused on helping freelancers and agency owners win high-value clients and do work they love.

I have short term programs that are focused on quick wins such as increasing average project value and winning new clients. My longer term programs are designed for freelancers and agency owners who want to scale their business so they can have more time, money, and creative freedom.

Q4: Where can people go to find out more about you and your services?

Visit my website:

Q5: What do you feel is your biggest achievement so far?

Probably being interviewed on The Futur podcast with Chris Do and then being invited to become a coach on their platform.

(Listen here:

Q6: What has been your biggest challenge?

The biggest challenge is getting freelancers and agency owners to see themselves as a real business. This means investing revenue to help them grow and achieve their goals.

It’s really a mindset challenge and often the way people think is the thing that keeps them stuck. It’s rarely a logistical or resources challenge.

Q7: What would you say is the biggest challenge facing freelancers right now?

After having hundreds of conversations with freelancers I can confidently say that the biggest challenge is finding the right clients and communicating the value of their services.

Q8: Would you say now is a good time to become a freelancer?

I would say now is the perfect time to become a freelancer. Job security is at an all time low and COVID has pushed many businesses to rely on digital technology and creative innovation to survive. There is a huge opportunity to help people right now and solve real world problems.

Q9: What’s one piece of simple advice you could give to any freelancer to help them succeed?

You will never have the creative freedom, financial security, and fulfilment you deserve until you treat yourself like a business.

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