How To Become A Successful Freelance Writer
So you want to be a writer. Your first love may be to write novels or screen plays, but in the meantime, you do need to earn a living. Or, you may really be “into” content marketing and love writing blog posts, articles, and such. Perhaps you want to be a ghostwriter of sorts, providing products for students, business professionals and others.
How You Get Started
Success doesn’t come unless you first start somewhere. And that start may be shaky, certainly inconsistent in terms of clients and gigs. But, over time, if you are good and you develop your style to suit the type of writing you do, your business will grow.
You can begin by placing ads in certain places, like Craigslist. Or you can sign up with writing websites (don’t pay money to any site to sign up!). You can apply to online writing companies, such as those that offer our services, and select the type of writing you want to do. If you use every possible source for writing gigs, you will ultimately get a client/assignment or two, and you have officially begun.
In the beginning, you need to take any gig you get – you need the money, and you just need to get yourself out there. Over time, you can become more selective, but not now.
Growing Your Business
As your reputation grows, you will discover that, even if only through writing sites you are signed up with, certain clients will begin to request you, because they like what you do. The nice thing about this is that they will also refer their friends to you, and your business will grow by word-of-mouth. Ultimately, you may be faced with a choice. Do you keep working for others, or do you strike out on your own?
Becoming a Fully Self-Employed Writer
Depending upon the type of writing you enjoy and that has brought you success, your entry into self-employment will obviously focus on that niche. Some genres will require heavy marketing; others will not.
- If you have determined that blog post writing is your niche, then your job will be to conduct the research to find those blogs that pay well for posts they publish. You will need to study their guidelines carefully. Then, you will simply need to write every day – lots – and keep sending in those submissions until you have success. Again, once you have successful submissions and have developed a solid reputation with specific blogs, they will look for your submissions and accept them easily. You may even ultimately start your own blog in a niche area and become an expert and influencer in that niche.
- You might consider setting up a writing service of your own. This option will require an engaging website, a presence all over social media, and lots of content marketing. It will take time to establish yourself, but you can continue to ghostwrite for others while your own business grows. This option will require more non-writing time on your part, and some self-education in aspects of entrepreneurship and business operations, but many have done this before you.
Watch Spreading Yourself Too Thin
In the beginning, of course, you took any type of writing because you were “hungry.” Over time, however, you will have to find your niche – that genre of writing that gives you the most satisfaction and which you find most enjoyable. You will not make it if you are not passionate. You have to get up every day looking forward to what is on your work agenda for the day. That’s at least 60% of the path to success.