Welcome back to the Changing Careers Series! Each month, I’m going to handle a different freelance career: A profession typically performed by people who have their own business, and work from home – or anywhere else. This week is all about how to become a freelance writer for blogs. Let’s get started!
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What does a freelance writer do?
A freelance writer creates content for blogs and other sites’ owners on a contract basis. The content creation can relate to any subject, depending on the blog topic. This is a fantastic option for you if writing is your passion and feels like a part of yourself – but wouldn’t really like to write something from scratch.
Why should anyone hire a freelance writer?
There are two main reasons for having a freelance writer create content for your blog:
- Personal blogs – Bloggers who would like to grow their business and invest more time creating strategies, partnering with brands, attending networking events or selling their own products still need to publish content on their blogs. But their time is scarce – and they look for freelance writers with a similar writing style to theirs.
- Corporate websites – Blogs are not only a tool to let people know your message but also a non-stop content publishing platform – just what Google likes. What’s Google doing here, you ask? Well, companies of every size need to attract traffic – aka visitors – to their sites if they want to be found online. And for that, you need Google. But Google won’t make things easy for you if you don’t create good-quality content. And that’s where you fit in this story: Your role is to create content which is good enough for your customer’s site to land on the first search engine results page – like Google or Bing.
Some examples of freelance writing:
♥ Blog post creation – You’ll usually get a topic to write about, ideally with some guidelines about the word count or the style you should be using.
♥ Proofreading – This is when someone writes some content, and your task is to review it. You can check if there are any spelling, grammar or style issues to be changed.
♥ Social media posts – You could also write short pieces of content for social media. Make sure though to offer your freelance writing services for social media in a package – you could charge a minimum amount of weekly hours, for instance. Otherwise, the payment won’t probably be worth it due to the very short amounts of words.
♥ Promotional content creation – If your customer is a bigger company, they may give you some facts about a new promotion they’re going to run. Your task will be to create the content for that campaign, which may include a detailed description of the campaign on your customer’s website, the text for all ads and also for social media posts.
Some additional notes about freelance writers’ work
♥ Calculate how much time you need to write 1k words. This will not only help you come up with the right rate for you, but it will also help you figure out how much work you can accept daily or weekly. It might not seem that important to you now, but calculating your availability upfront will avoid you from many problems 😉
♥ Make sure to ask as many questions as possible regarding style and target market – You’re not going to write with the same style if you’re writing a post about a medical condition on a healthcare company’s website as if you’re creating content for an online gaming site, right?
♥ Many companies have their own style guidelines. Stick to them, even if you don’t agree with anything. You can point it out to your customer, but don’t insist on their rules not being correct if they won’t accept it.
♥ Proof your own writing a couple of times. You want to offer the best quality possible, and you don’t want to deliver your content with a misspelling committed out of haste, right?
♥ Delivering your work on time is almost as important as the best content quality. Make sure to propose deadline changes if you don’t think you’re going to be able to deliver on time and with the highest quality standards. Well, only if you want to become new assignments from that customer 😉
How can I work as a freelance writer if I have no experience?
♥ You don’t need work experience to work as a freelance writer, but you’ll have to show how you write. If you don’t have any published work on your own, you should start doing it as soon as possible.
♥ The easiest way to start putting your content out there is with guest posts, that is writing posts for other blogs. In this way, your content is online and, at the same time, you’ll get known by that blog’s audience, who can become your audience as well. If you’d like to check out a guide to guest posting and figure out if this is something you’d like to do, download this guide created by Elite Blog Academy.
♥ Another option is creating a blog yourself! What’s a better way to show off your writing skills than with a blog of your own? Write about anything you would like to write about for your customers, and try to include several styles – this will be your particular portfolio. Writing a blog won’t only serve you as a virtual business card, but it can also help you attract customers to your site, remember?
Tools and resources for freelance writers
♥ You’re going to need a PC or laptop and a good Internet connection.
♥ Most bloggers work on WordPress, so you could add a huge value to your content if you offer to insert the content on WordPress yourself!
♥ Try to get SEO-savvy. If you can offer search engine optimized content, you’re most likely become an invaluable asset for your customers! Some tools which will help you are SEMRush and Yoast for WordPress.
♥ If you’re thinking about creating your own blog and make it your business, check out Elite Blog Academy and Ruth Soukup.
♥ Make yourself visible on online platforms for freelance jobs, such as Upwork or Fiverr.
Let me know your thoughts about freelancing as a blog post writer or online content creator. Do you have any questions you’d like me to address? Go for it 😉
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