Are you about to start freelancing to distill your precious marketing advice? So I bet you’ve already asked yourself this question (or it won’t be long): under what status to create my business? Well, it’s a safe bet that you will choose the status of micro-entrepreneur (formerly self-entrepreneur)! Why ? You just have to read the rest of the article to understand it!
Why become a marketing consultant under auto-entrepreneur status?
We are not going to hide it, if you browse this blog, you are necessarily a follower of marketing! And something tells me that if you are reading this article, it is that you plan to start as a freelance to become a marketing consultant! Here are 2 reasons why it is in your best interest to become a self-employed marketing consultant.
# 1: Business advisory activities are booming
Oh yes ! The first reason is that this is a sector that CARTONON !
Indeed, consultancy activities have been constantly growing for 4 years, with a growth at + 10.5% for the year 2017 and a turnover around 6.5 billion euros. (source: Consult’in England)
Professionals have understood the importance of having very targeted strategies to attract and increase their clientele but also to retain them as much as possible.
Is this a good time to get started as a marketing consultant? The numbers don’t lie, the demand is there and it keeps growing! As a picture is worth 1000 words, here is an infographic that supports my words:
# 2: The self-employed status is particularly suited to consulting activities
If you were wondering “what status should I choose?” “, do not search anymore… There is a 95% chance that it is the self-employed status that is the most suitable for your business creation project !
Why ? Because this status has many advantages that fit fairly well with the profession of marketing consultant: simplified creation procedures, streamlined accounting, turnover declarations and simple contribution calculations …
To know all the advantages of this status, click here!
In addition, the turnover thresholds for self-employed status were increased in 2018. Now, you can make up to € 70,000 in turnover per year as a marketing consultant under auto-entrepreneur status!
Another important point: a self-employed person cannot deduct expenses and must always declare the turnover collected. That’s good, since as a consultant, your charges will be relatively low and should simply be limited to travel costs, which you can fully charge your customers!
In short, you will understand, this status appeals to almost all freelancers in marketing consulting. And I’m ready to bet that he’s already starting to seduce you … right ?!
Ok, then I continue to explain to you why you should absolutely opt for this status!
What regulations for the self-employed marketing consultant?
Another point to consider is of course the different applicable regulations.
The regulation of the profession of marketing consultant
As with most business consulting activities, you can become a marketing consultant without any training or experience. Indeed, as this activity is not regulated, you will not need to provide proof of qualification (diploma or professional experience) during the creation of your micro-enterprise.
However, you will still need to present guarantees to your first customers. And that will often go through a specialized diploma in marketing or years of experience as an employee.
The goal is to reassure your prospects about your abilities to fully satisfy them with quality service.
Finally, the advantage of presenting yourself as a marketing consultant is that you mark a specialization in one area, which is very good. Indeed, many freelancers present themselves as a general consultant.
You can (and I would even tend to say you should) also specialize in a specific marketing aspect (for example: Digital advertising consultant, SEO consultant, etc.). Thus, you will really place yourself as an expert in your field and you will be recognized as such. It also means that you will be more legitimate to charge more for your services: yes, an expert always costs more!
Regulations related to self-employed status
The first question to ask: is it possible to launch yourself under the auto-entrepreneur status for this activity? The answer: YES! Certain activities are excluded from the micro-enterprise regime, but not marketing consultancy activities.
The other regulatory point relating to self-employed status is that relating to turnover thresholds. Indeed, to benefit from the simplified micro-enterprise regime, you must not exceed € 70,000 in turnover.
So before you opt for self-employed status, remember to check that you are going to respect this turnover limit. The best option: carry out a market study and a financial forecast to get a rough idea of the turnover you are going to generate!
Become an auto-entrepreneur marketing consultant: the steps
I am almost sure that you are now convinced that self-employed status is right for you and your business. Now is the time for me to give you some tips to get started!
The Business Formalities Center responsible for receiving your creation dossier
The activity of the marketing consultant is a activity qualified as “liberal”. Like all liberal activities, the Business Formalities Center (CFE) responsible for registering the creation of your micro-enterprise will be URSSAF.
I told you above that the creation procedures are simplified.
Indeed, registration as a self-employed entrepreneur is done online and free of charge on the URSSAF website for consultants. You just have to fill out a form, which, I agree, is not very “sexy”. A few minutes are enough, provided of course that you have prepared your project well and know which options to choose according to your personal situation!
To help you take stock of your project and the different options to choose from, I strongly advise you to download this complete guide on self-employed status.
Documents to become a self-employed marketing consultant
Again, the creation procedures are simplified, and the list of documents to append to your self-business creation file will be short!
Indeed, you will only have one document to provide: a copy of your ID, of course valid.
⚠ Small precision: you will need to add the following handwritten note to the copy of your ID: “I certify on my honor that the copy of this ID is as original.” Do not forget this mention as well as the date and your signature on the copy of your identity document, otherwise the URSSAF will reject your file.
Once the form is completed and your identity document is attached to your declaration, you can validate your file to send it to the CFE of URSSAF. That’s it that’s all !
If, however, you are not very comfortable with the administrative procedures or if you need advice to make sure you make the best choices, feel free to be accompanied by an expert in business creation !
Professional support will help you win time ! Moreover, you will avoid common mistakes that many freelancers commit who decide to venture alone in these steps and which can cost them dearly!
How to manage your activity as a self-employed marketing consultant?
That’s it, are you a self-entrepreneur ?! You will now have to manage your activity like a real chef! Here are the main things to remember.
The charges of the self-employed marketing consultant
Sorry to remind you, but yes, you will have many charges to pay with your micro-enterprise… Here is a list of main charges that you are going to have:
- Social security contributions: payable monthly or quarterly, they are calculated based on a percentage of your turnover. For a marketing consultant, the social contribution rate will be 22% of turnover (except at the start of the activity, they will be reduced if you have the right to ACRE);
- Contribution to Vocational Training: 0.1% of turnover;
- The Business Land Tax (CFE) which varies between € 200 and € 3,600 for self-employed people.
For more information on the different charges to pay as a self-employed marketing consultant, it’s here!
Accounting obligations in micro-enterprises
Yep, even if you start a micro-enterprise, you will still have accounting obligations to respect! But rest assured, they remain limited for self-employed people.
Concretely, you will need:
- Open a bank account
- Keep a recipe book
- Produce invoices to standards
- Keep all your invoices for 10 years (even those of your purchases and professional expenses)
And that’s all ? No Balance ?!
NO, I told you, accounting for self-employed is lightened ! No need to call on a chartered accountant. If you are afraid of being a little alone to manage your activity, you can however decide to equip yourself with management software.
In fact, some companies offer more than just software and assign you a dedicated advisor, who will follow you and answer all your questions. This is the case, for example, of the software offered by Mon-AutoEntreprise.fr.
Statements of turnover of self-employed marketing consultants
It will also require declare, each month or each quarter, your turnover on the URSSAF website in order to pay your social security contributions.
Again, simplicity is essential. All you need to do is connect to the URSSAF website and fill in your turnover for the period covered by the declaration (the month or quarter that has just passed).
Note, however, thatthere are some particularities, in particular concerning the date of the 1st declaration of your CA. Indeed, the first declaration is made after a minimum of 90 days of activity, time to allow our administrations to update themselves.
>> To go further: All you need to know about self-entrepreneurs’ turnover declarations
The Taxation of the Marketing Consultant Self-Entrepreneur
Finally, and last but not least, the question of the taxation of the self-employed marketing consultant: how does it work?
First of all, know that your entrepreneurial income will be taxed on income tax (IR) and not on corporate tax (IS). Indeed, the latter, as its name suggests, only concerns companies (SARL, SAS, EURL, etc.).
Then there is 2 possibilities for auto-entrepreneurs:
Anyway, you should always make a declaration of your auto-entrepreneur income, via form 2042-C-PRO. This form is an appendix to your household tax return.
As I explained above, you will not be able to deduct your professional expenses and fees to calculate your profit. To overcome that, tax services will therefore make a flat-rate allowance for professional expenses on your turnover, to determine the taxable share of your turnover.
This reduction is 34% for liberal service activities as is the case with the activities of the marketing consultant. Thus, only 66% of your turnover will be considered taxable income and will be reintegrated with the other income of your tax household to calculate the amount of tax payable for your household.
If you opt for the final payment, you will pay your tax due for the self-employed activity at the same time as your social contributions, monthly or quarterly, when you report your sales. In that case, your tax will be 2.2% of your turnover.
This option simplifies the calculation and payment of your income tax due for your micro-business.
But beware, you must meet certain conditions in order to be able to choose this option. In addition, this option is only interesting if you are taxable because in this case it can allow you to reduce the amount of income tax due for the self-employed activity. If you are not taxable however, do not opt for the payment because it would make you pay tax when you are not normally liable for it, and this tax would not be refunded to you!
The best is to make a simulation to know if the option is interesting in your case ! I recommend this simulator of the Order of Chartered Accountants, simple, clear and efficient.
Now you know why you should opt, except in special cases, for the self-employed status if you want to become a freelance to do marketing consultancy: it is the simplest status, its advantages fit perfectly with this job and you are unlikely to be bothered by its drawbacks!
If you want to take it a step further, read this full article on the profession of self-employed consultant. You can also read this article by Guillaume Guersan on CWT Advertising & Co’m: Freelance in digital marketing: how to get started?
So, ready to get started? Do not hesitate to ask your questions in the comments!