The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted what is now known as the “The Great Resignation.” According to recent statistics, 4.3 million Americans resigned in 2021. Employees left their day jobs to look for other opportunities that provide better benefits amid the pandemic. With this drastic shift in our current situation, some of the former corporate employees have now opted to change their career paths because they want to have more flexible schedules, higher salaries, and attain writing success.
The best thing about freelancing is that it opens numerous doors for people who are interested in learning and earning without being restricted by work hours and other responsibilities. These opportunities include writing, website, and graphic design, video editing, and virtual assistance jobs. If you think you are a good writer or simply enjoy writing, you can consider it your path in freelancing. It offers different avenues for you to improve your skills and pay your bills at the same time. Here are some important tips to help you get started with your freelance writing journey:
1. Establish a niche and become an expert in that field
Being good at writing is one thing, but becoming an expert in a specific and unique niche is another. It will separate you from the rest and increase your chances of being hired. Because more people are transitioning to freelancing, you must choose a niche that is not overly saturated with other skilled writers.
In freelance writing, your niche is your specialization, depending on the topic or type of content. It can be an area you are already excellent at or a new field you want to learn and explore. Video scriptwriting, book or ebook writing, and blogging are some of the popular areas you should consider. If you do not yet know about this, try to enroll in some free or paid online courses to get you started.
Nowadays, more entrepreneurs are venturing into online selling. So, it would also be helpful to study copywriting or Amazon listing optimization. In this way, you can find an Amazon FBA seller and be paid for the listings you write for them. But whichever path you plan to pursue, ensure that you will have the passion for it, or else you will feel forced to do it every day.
2. Develop a strong personal brand and online presence
Once you have decided on your specific niche, you can now work on how you want to establish your brand as a freelance writer. This kind of strategy will help you showcase what you have as a freelancer and what sets you apart from the competition. If you are starting and don’t have a client yet, start by crafting your portfolio online that focuses on your chosen niche.
Doing this is a great way for clients to know their strengths. But, no one would ask for it unless they see something outstanding about you. So, it’s best to put yourself out there for everyone to recognize your skills and potential. You can do this best by leveraging the power of the internet and social media. Create your social media accounts or blog and be consistent in posting your content to maintain a strong online presence. In this way, you can acquire followers and possibly, future clients.
3. Build a network of quality contacts and collaborators
Even though you are working as a freelancer, you can still have the opportunity to build strong connections with other freelancers online. In this way, you can develop relationships and build the connections necessary to reach growth and success. If you are just starting, you must also try to join freelancer groups on Facebook to meet people with similar interests. Most of them are friendly and approachable which is easier for you to receive answers when you ask them.
Moreover, they share their motivational stories and achievements to encourage you to strive harder to reach your goals, like them. Lastly, you can take advantage of the connections they share with the group. For example, they may know some clients who need to outsource freelance work, and that is the best time for you to pitch yourself to them. Once you make a deal with a client because of their help, it would be nice to show them appreciation.
4. Stay up to date with trends and changes in the industry
No matter what you do in life, you must never stop learning. At some point, you may become complacent with your current skill set or confident because you already have a client. However, always update yourself with the current trends and changes in the industry you belong to. In this way, you can adopt new technologies or incorporate new ideas into your writing.
Nowadays, many software and app developers create programs that can aid people in their daily tasks and jobs, including writers. Grammarly, Hemingway Editor, Jasper, and Freedom are just some of the software programs you can use while writing. They can check your spelling and grammar, give you ideas and suggestions, and help you focus by blocking other sites. Look for the ones that will fit your budget and help you the most.
In addition, you must also be aware of the issues in our society, like political correctness. Finally, whatever niche you have, you should always use the appropriate terms to avoid offending people, especially your target audience. Consider investing in your career by taking part in virtual summits and live conventions that relate to your niche to better understand the needs of those who are involved in the field you write about.
5. Produce high-quality content that is relevant to your target audience
Writing is your bread and butter, so you must earn your clients’ trust by always submitting high-quality output. If they are constantly impressed by what you submit, they are more likely to keep giving you projects. They can also refer you to other people they know who need writing services. Who knows how impactful one content can be for your entire career, right?
Besides impressing your clients, you must also produce relevant content to engage new and loyal readers. People tend to draw themselves toward information and content related to their day-to-day activities and hobbies. So ensure that your outputs are always up to date and reliable. By doing these things, you show that you value your audience and work hard to always provide them with the content they need.
6. Negotiate fair rates for your services
If you are a beginner, you might be thinking that your fees should be low because you are just starting. But do not belittle your abilities because it can affect your self-confidence, which your clients can notice. In addition, you might not have enough money to pay your bills and even buy your necessities. In contrast, you can lose to other freelancers if you give high rates for your services.
So, you must strive to achieve the balance that will help you thrive in freelancing. You can do this by following two common pricing models freelancers use—hourly and project-based pricing. Gather more information about your market and target clients before deciding which one to choose.
Becoming a freelance writer to replace your daytime job will not be easy at first. You will encounter challenges, and you must always learn to be flexible. However, you can make your freelance writing journey workable by mastering your niche and producing quality and relevant outputs your readers will love. Also, build a strong social media presence and network with other freelancers. Lastly, negotiate a fair rate for your services to keep having clients. By doing all of these things, you can achieve writing success through your freelance journey.
Jayce is the managing director of Seller Interactive, the number one Amazon advertising agency based in Canada that helps brands build their business on Amazon. His content marketing expertise has led him to work with brands such as Toyota and GoDaddy, producing content that has reached over 20M views in a month.