Freelance writing gives dedicated individuals one of the most lucrative outlets for their expression possible.
The life a freelance writer is one of self-dedication and perseverance.
However, once you establish a rhythm in your work, the joy of earning money has never been more rewarding.
Here we’ll be taking you through a comprehensive look at how to make money writing.
You’ll be shown what you need to do to get started, which styles and genres of writing are available to you, and we’ve included a few top tips to keep your writing productive.
Craft a Captivating Portfolio
Building your portfolio is the more important part of freelance writing. You need to have a publicly accessible profile where potential clients can see your work firsthand. Most freelancing sites will post all past contracts you have completed as viewable by the public, making them a part of your profile.
When you apply to new jobs through either third-party freelancing portals or by means of direct contact, you always need a portfolio which highlights your work at its best. While opinions regarding versatility and diversity vary, specialized profiles showcasing writing matched to a particular style is a surefire way to show potential customers that you’re the best writer for the job.
We’ve compiled a list of all the prospective types of writing you’ll commonly encounter when looking for work as a freelancer. Custom craft a range of example articles to be included with your work, gradually expanding your portfolio to match the work which you wish to obtain.
Creating examples of your chosen writing fields is the first step to making money writing. The only thing that’ll be left is securing the highest rate for your hard work. Writing Jobs Online gives you a premier selection of listings to guarantee that you’re always a top-earner.
Each classification of writing comes with its own ups and downs. Each is a viable option to make a full time living if matched to the correct writer. Each of us will find particular subjects and styles easier to cover than others. Before you even begin applying for work, familiarize yourself with the content that you’ll be creating.
It is also a good idea to compare your ideas of the perfect article to leading content from prominent publications and online authorities; it’ll help you adjust your style to match the needs of a mainstream audience. Let’s look closer at what writing styles you have available so that you know what examples you need to begin creating.
Search engine optimization is core to all online writing. Regardless of whether you’re writing product descriptions or landing pages, you’ll always be targeting a specific keyword, phrase, slogan or brand/product name. While stringent SEO principles such as keyword density and placement are forever changing, online writing will almost always feature search optimization in some form.
Given the current direction of search engine indexing, semantic search is proving to be more valuable than basic repetition and patterning of keywords and phrases. Even when an article such as a blog post doesn’t directly require SEO or the advertiser has chosen not to make it a requirement, there will still be the fluent, seamless integration of the company or product itself.
The category copywriting includes a broad range of writing, referring to text purposed for advertising and other forms of marketing. We’ve broken down copywriting into the various forms of copy, or written content aimed to increase brand awareness and coax a prospect or person into taking a particular action.
A landing page is a standalone website which serves as a platform for a marketing or advertising campaign. Landing page writing involves strong call-to-action statements and subtle but definite copy which leads the reader towards a specific goal.
A landing page can be purposed towards gaining subscribers to an email newsletter or taking a user to a very specific product or part of your site. Simple, clear and concise, every sentence on your landing page must support your call to action.
Press release writing carries a broad range of pricing which is largely relative to the value of the company, product, service or brand being promoted. Minor announcements using short copy will pay less, although the adverse may be true if you’re writing for a large corporation or institution. Answering the who, what, why and where, press releases must share meaningful, informative statements which will be of interest to journalists.
Writing web copy involves articles and page descriptions for everything from basic categories to service pages and company information. The ‘About Us’ and ‘Contact Us’ page are two examples of web copywriting.
Terms and conditions and advertising disclaimers is a form of technical web copy which is standardized to the point where a trained legal writer is not needed to develop appropriate content.
While most companies employ in-house design teams, branding and merchandising copy are infrequently available to freelance writers. Enticing copy for the packaging of a product and its accompanying documentation is generally very short but can pay quite lucratively if you manage to secure a project from a notable brand.
Product descriptions are typically needed for content management systems, e-commerce, online stores, catalogs, databases, and retail platforms. Most product descriptions carry a very short word limit and need to present a favorable image of the product while clearly conveying a complete description.
Product listings vary in length depending on the part of the sales process for which they are used. A product listing can be as long as a ‘snake-page’ although this is generally seen as landing page writing rather than a listing.
Conventional product listings vary between a few hundred words in length at the most for a product summary page to a few thousand words for a detailed, technical listing.
Reviews are critical to brand building. They are also relied on by almost all customers. After all, over 80% of all buyers will research a product or service online before ever interacting with a sales rep. Review writing spans everything from less-than-credulous ‘customer’ reviews to honest evaluations to assist prospective customers in picking the best purchases. Here’s a closer look at the individual types of reviews you’ll commonly encounter as a freelancer.
You’ll find a demand for product reviews spanning all forms of products. Digital products are a favorite of affiliate marketers whereby you’ll have to supply a promotional review which appears unbiased.
Amazon product reviews are in high demand among the physical goods reviewed online. Both individual product reviews and buying guides are equally in demand. Most employers will provide you with a fixed template covering the structure of what is needed.
Service reviews span both physical and digital services. Online communities often need service reviews of interest to a particular demographic. There is the greatest demand for honest reviews of online services with customers trusting online opinions before most other promotional means.
You’ll find fewer service reviews available online than product reviews as most service providers rely on testimonials. At times, questionable service providers will request fabricated reviews and testimonials but whether you wish to add this to your professional profile depends on your own ethics.
The vast majority of Amazon reviews supply you with fixed top-rated products to review whereas some employers will request that you source your own products to review from Amazon. The exact criteria depend on the employer and niche. Product reviews are a generally quite a stable source of income with a mid-range earning potential when looking at it on a global writing-scale.
As with most product reviews, a fixed review structure is typically provided, and reviews are kept unbiased. Only high-quality Amazon products are curated by most sites so you won’t need to worry about presenting anything other than a favorable image for all items reviewed. Any possible pitfalls will need to be included as Amazon reviews for promotional purposes and affiliate sales need to be as informative and honest as possible.
Commendations and short reviews are at times commissioned to raise awareness and build backlinks for online search engine optimization. While not the most stable form of income, eager freelancers can earn a decent rate for making short statements on prominent forums. It helps to build a range of forum profiles to supply your commendations, comments and reviews through. Most companies prefer the writer to already have an established profile.
Some forums will only allow promotional posts when a member is established. Freelancers with a diverse selection of profiles can accrue writing at a much higher rate than writers approaching forum reviews from a blank slate. However, new writers will love the lucrative opportunities delivered by Writing Jobs Online.
There are tons of prime-rate projects suited to all styles of writing not just forum reviews. Without an established forum identity, employers will only be hiring for link building purposes and the rate will be very low.
Technical reviews of intricate, complex hardware and services can pay a much higher rate. If you have field experience or academic credentials needed to be able to discuss a subject, product, niche or any general area of discourse then you should be getting paid more for your specialized review.
Industry insights and technical knowledge are valuable aspects of your writing and need to be properly managed otherwise you’re literally giving away your services. It may seem enticing to take on a review of something technical at a standard rate but if it will become a part of your public profile then you may want to think twice.
You don’t want to build an online presence which delivers high-end services for very little compensation. Value yourself and your work will fetch its proper price.
Academic writing will always follow a fixed standard. Academics concerning any field or subject will always be according to a particular style and structure. The most commonly used academic styles are MLA (Modern Language Association), APA (American Psychological Association) style, and American Medical Association (AMA) style.
The rate of academic writing varies. Subject and grade, as well as the type of paper needed will dictate the price. Here are the various types of academic writing which you’ll typically encounter:
- Thesis writing
Business writing requires knowledge of industry practices and high-end management to clearly communicate topics of relevance to business-to-business services and product providers. Business-to-business writing and other business writing services pay higher than conventional writing. This is due to the industry insight which it needs to address a broad technical audience.
In addition to business-to-business writing, you also find proposals, grants and personal profiles for job applications and online profile management. Here’s a run-down of the various types of business writing you’ll encounter:
- Business plans
- Business proposals
- Resumes, profiles and CVs
- Grant writing
The field of news writing can be more profitable than most other styles; however, this is not always the case. News agencies can range from independent online news portals run by just one or two employees to coverage for live television across major media outlets.
Overall, news writing is a stable source of income as long as you can source a news provider who is fairly established. Due to the nature of news, new content is needed throughout the day across every time-zone, leading to a regular stream of work for those in who put in the time and specialization. The most common types of news writing you’ll find are:
- News articles for print
- News articles for online use
- News scripts for online agencies
- Video scripts for marketing
The broad classification of technical writing may group together a large number of fields and specializations; however, rates across the board all exhibit the same averages. Prime examples of technical writing genres include medical, health, fitness, legal, science, history, education topics (languages, mathematics), parenting, social studies, religion and spirituality, and any other topic which requires formal education in order to present a valid opinion or discussion.
Licensed professionals are paid far more for their writing than unqualified writers who exhibit proficiency in a subject.
Creative writing is always in high demand if you know how to pitch your services. Understanding the publishing industry is the first step towards developing a steady income at a determinable rate from your creativity. From flash fiction to novellas, creative writing is in demand and work commissioned will typically be found across the following styles:
- Short fiction
- Screen and play writing
Travel writing carries a rate very similar to standard feature articles integrating good SEO elements. Those wishing to specialize are generally people who travel and aim to earn a steady income from documenting their journeys publicly. Unless you are a travel blogger who travels, your rate will remain fairly average with little room for growth.
Exceptions to the rule are possible and every successful traveling travel writer will first develop a portfolio of outstanding travel itineraries, city guides, and local reviews of points of interest before ever leaving home to get a firsthand experience.
Reaching Out to Customers
There are many ways to find your first customer. One of the quickest ways for a writer to get started online is freelancing sites which aggregate potential customers. Employers post their project needs online and freelancers are encouraged to supply a proposal presenting themselves as the most viable candidate.
The second way that can secure new leads is by reaching out to businesses directly via email, social media, or telephone and presenting your services. This is best done with a suggestion and informative wrap-up of the value that you plan to provide.
Regardless of how you decide to start, always type out each proposal individually. There is nothing worse than receiving fifty or more applications for a project and almost all of them are clearly found to be using a standardized proposal letter.
Prospective freelance writers should never allow the multitude of factors present in marketing and language to ever impede their search for work. You need to embody the best person you can be and put that person forward in every aspect of your writing and online presence. Formality is far from required, but sincerity and written communication need to be clear. Stay honest.
Write openly but always motivate your strengths. Writer’s block is very real but the only blockage is you own reluctance to push-on which is rooted in fear. You don’t need to know why you’re blocked; you need to put your goals in sight and just write. However, one can only begin to experience writer's block once you actually start writing.
Don’t let any unfounded fears stop your profile development and portfolio expansion progress. It may take many job proposals before you land your first contract but once you do it’s worth it. From your first feedback, it becomes considerably easier to land each job as your public presence grows.
If you’re looking for a little extra assistance in securing great paying jobs, Writing Jobs Online is a must. There is no better way to ensure that you’re in contact with the ideal clientele for personal growth and success.