The web is entirely powered by words. And the freelance writing industry is still fertile. Although, it seems competition is growing gradually, but there is still so much money to be made if you log in now.
I started my freelance writing business in 2010. And when I look back, it gives me great joy because I’ve invested my youthful life in a worthy career.
You too can make it happen in your life. If you’ve been looking for a legitimate way to earn extra income ($500 – $10,000/month), freelance writing could be your best strategy.
It’s a great business to be in and the 7 steps below are practical, without fluffs and insightful. Take them:
1. Don’t Be Afraid To Start
Starting a business comes with fear and uncertainty. But you mustn’t give in to that. Before you can secure writing projects, fear must be absent. Fear would keep you from promoting your blog or website, which is the #1 reason why people procrastinate rather than stepping out.
Fear is the only hindrance that can obstruct you from negotiating a deal as a professional.
When I started writing professionally, fear held me like a crab – I lost several credible prospects in the process. It’s very difficult to ignore this step.If you can master it, your journey to blissful writing career is 95% enhanced.
Don’t be afraid of the unknown. Sure, there will be other freelance writers who would pitch the same client you’ve plans for – makes no difference!
Potential clients hate to hire writers who are timid. I’m giving you a wake-up call today – you can earn a living writing if you’re confident, bold and loyal. Yes you can!
2. Set up a Professional Blog
Ideally, you need to set up a blog for your freelance writing business. Blogging is no longer what it used to be (personal diary). These days, small and mid-sized companies are blogging to reach the target audience.
Even multinational corporations have in-house writers who manage their blogs. A lot of people ask me if it’s possible to get writing jobs without a blog. And I usually answer in similar a manner. “Yes, clients can still hire someone without a blog.” But come to think of it, how easy is that?
Without a blog, there is no way to show proofs of your expertise. It’s not enough to hone your creative skills, you’ve to show it. That’s why you need a blog. And your blog must be related to the niche you’ll be writing on. If you’re an SEO copywriter like me, build a blog that talk about SEO in detail.
3. Prepare & Package Your Portfolio
As I said above, having a blog of your own is important. It can boost your chances of landing a paying gig. But there is more to setting up a blog – to showcase quality works.
For instance, website designers can create a page to share completed, current and work-in-progress gigs.
And for writers, your blog would help you advertise your published works. All the guest posts you’ve written so far can be used as your portfolio.
Potential clients want proofs. Searching for writing jobs without a portfolio can be a difficult task most times. “It’s better to use your success to achieve more successes.”
4. Enrich Your “Hire Me” Page
We’re not done with your blog yet. The third most visited page on your blog is the hire me page. The homepage is the most visited, followed by about me page. Clients will not hire you from the homepage no matter how pretty the theme looks. It’s the hire me page that can convince them.
Oftentimes, freelance writers don’t spend quality time enriching the page. You’ve to truly understand the client you intend to work with to create a perfect page. Research the market to determine the exact client you want to serve.
Are you interested in clients who want organic traffic? Or would you be more comfortable with people who already have a blog? Start the page by making an offer they can’t refuse. Add a strong call-to-action and include your published works especially the ones at authority blogs.
5. Dazzle Potential Clients
The best clients you would ever work with are those who discovered your valuable contents. There is no better way to persuade people to hire you, than to write quality, helpful and evergreen contents on your blog.
Evergreen means the content has to be relevant as it grows older. Now, you’re a blogger and your primary duty is to write blog posts that won’t die. In order words, when Google throws out their weird updates, your blog contents would continue to be relevant, usable and commendable by people.
As the CEO of your writing business, you’ve to monitor what others are saying about you. When a reader leaves a comment, carefully analyze the words and phrases. You would be better prepared to craft better contents next time.
Potential clients are hungry for quality content – if you can spoon-feed your target audience consistently, clients would start to bang at your door regularly. It’s happening to me right now, really!
6. Market Your Writing Skills
Marketing simply means serving the right content to a group of people who needs it. Some folks see marketing as a difficult task, but I think it’s the best activity for freelance writers.
There are several ways to market your skills. You’ve to select the one that works best for you. There is no rule of thumb for choosing the right marketing system – testing the market can reveal hidden treasures.
But it’s worthy to note that the best marketing strategy for freelancers is guest posting. If you can write usable articles and get it featured on A-list blogs, it can attract fresh clients. Make sure you guest post regularly.
Twitter marketing is also powerful. Few weeks ago, I got a high paying client from a single tweet I made. The formula is simple: get more followers – tweet value – add a call-to-action link to your “hire me” page.
7. Secure Writing Gigs Quickly
Secure writing gigs quickly – how realistic is that?
Believe me – it can be easy for some people and extremely difficult for some folks. A lot of people had to quit when they couldn’t land their first writing gig. In my case, I guess I was lucky enough to land two great clients within 2 months of starting my blog.
There are reliable job boards you should check out too. The only issue with job boards is the fierce competition.
I recommend you spend more time writing and publishing quality and exclusive contents on your blog. This way, clients can come to you, instead of you running after them. There is more to blogging than what we already know – it’s a great platform to advertise your expertise, convince and convert prospects into clients.
Freelance Writing Hack!
Google algorithm tweaks have created new writing opportunities for freelance writers. In fact, over 10 new entrepreneurs have emailed me to write for them since the last Penguin update. The right content no longer depends on keyword placement, keyword density or article length – it’s now 85% quality and 15% entertaining contents.
Freelance writers should entertain, educate and inspire others. That’s how you can earn a living as a freelance writer. Leave a comment below if you enjoyed reading the post – See you at the top!