Content mills and bidding sites such as Upwork and Elance might seem like great options to break into the world of freelance writing. After all, they offer paid work that, on paper, seems like it will eventually pay well in addition to looking great on your portfolio. Many writers hope that these mills will offer them the much-needed leg up to freelance full time, but unfortunately it’s not very likely. [Read more…]
Before freelance writers establish a name for themselves and enjoy regular orders for jobs, they spend huge amounts of time looking for new business. It doesn’t help that many of the popular freelance writing sites are full of people looking to pay low rates for content.
Wading through job ads and writing proposals that will get noticed can take up a huge chunk of their time. Granted, it has to be done if they want to eat next week, but it’s a difficult way to grow a quality freelance writing business.
This article contains tips on how to stop wasting time looking for jobs that pay badly, and how to get people to come to you instead. [Read more…]
So – you finally decided to build your very own freelance writing portfolio website. This is the giant leap forward that will separate you from the rest of the pack. It will allow you to get more work, establish your online presence, and create a permanent channel that will connect you and your clientele.
But first, you need to learn how to build a standout portfolio website that will make a big impression on your prospects. The good news is you no longer need to learn web design or programming to do this. Here are five resources that will help set you up. [Read more…]
Editor’s note: This post was written by Daniela McVicker, an author, psychologist and educator. She believes that success depends on knowing the ideas that allow you to manage and master the universe of information. Currently works as a freelance blogger for GhostProfessors and a number of sites that are related to educational and psychological backgrounds. You can get in touch with her on Facebook or Twitter.
Portfolios are becoming less and less optional. Job-seekers, freelancers, and small businesses can establish and enhance their brands, give others a real chance to see their work, talent, and skills, and generally become more visible online. Whether you are a craftsman who remodels homes, a web designer, a freelance writer, a musician, a wedding planner, caterer, or most anything else, you need a portfolio. And with all of the great tools available, you can have that portfolio up and running in no time. Here are 5 useful tips for making your portfolio shine and begin to really work for you. [Read more…]
As the last month of the year fast approaches, it’s a good idea to set aside time to assess your freelance writing business. Take a look back at the past year, what you’ve achieved, and whether you’ve reached the goals you have set.
It is also the perfect time to look forward and plan for the coming year. There are many things involved in planning for a brand new year, and one of them is to revamp your online portfolio. If you do not have one yet, we suggest that you read “Why you need an online portfolio“. It will help you understand the value of having your own venue to showcase your work.
If you already have an online portfolio, this resource is designed to help you take it to the next level in order for you to get the most out of it. [Read more…]
I don’t know if you’ve heard of Medium, but it is getting a lot of attention lately. Content marketers, especially, are taking advantage of Medium to achieve their goals.
What is Medium?
It is a platform where anyone can write and publish articles. More than merely publishing content, however, one can give and receive feedback on the fly. In that sense, Medium is a collaborative venue for writers. [Read more…]
How long has it been since you have taken a close look at your online portfolio? If it has been longer than a couple of months, you should set aside some time to go through it carefully and make some changes as necessary. Since this is the way you share what you can do to potential clients, it makes sense to update your online portfolio regularly.
Editor’s note: This post was written by Jennifer Parris, career writer at FlexJobs, the award-winning site for telecommuting and flexible job listings. FlexJobs lists thousands of pre-screened, legitimate, and professional-level work-from-home jobs and other types of flexibility like part-time positions, freelancing, and flexible schedules. Jennifer provides career and job search advice through the FlexJobs Blog and social media. Learn more at www.FlexJobs.com.
From the time you could hold a crayon in your hand, you knew that you wanted to be a writer. Writing is not only your career, but the way you express yourself to the world. Thing is, freelance writing jobs can be sporadic at best, so you need to be creative when it comes to keeping a steady income. Put pen to paper—and get paid—with these six ways to earn extra income through writing.
Use your network.
Some people might think that they’re the next Hemingway, but as a writer, you know the real deal. So if you have friends and family who are in need of a writer, offer up your services. Let them know the specific type of writing you do (after all, no two writers are created equal) and your rate as well. That way, when they speak of your services to their own nearest and dearest, they have the most accurate information.
Reach out to local businesses.
Just because you’re looking to work from home doesn’t mean that you can’t venture out to local businesses and offer your writing skills. Look for companies close by that might be in need of some writing help; perhaps their website needs some sprucing up. Identify what the company’s needs might be—and how you can help it—and then reach out. Finding a neighborhood business that needs an occasional writer might translate into having a steady freelance client in the future.
Use niche job boards.
If you’ve ever searched through generic job boards, you’ll spend a lot of time weeding through hundreds of job postings to find the few that you want to apply for. (And that’s not counting the numerous job scams you might come across, either.) So it’s best to use niche job boards, such as FlexJobs, where you can find legitimate work-from-home writing jobs. It will save you time, stress, and money in the long run.
Create an online portfolio.
You might be surprised how many hiring managers are crawling the web looking for a writer just like yourself. But if you don’t have anything online that spotlights your work, you’ll definitely get passed over for any potential position. You can easily create an online portfolio that includes links to your published articles, or a basic website that showcases your writing skills.
Establish yourself as an expert.
When you are looking to freelance, it’s important to be as social as possible. Create a Facebook page for your business, as well as a Twitter account and a LinkedIn profile, too. It’s not enough to set up your social media channels unless you’re actively involved in them, though. In addition to posting all of your new published works, you can offer advice, writing tips, and answer online questions that you come across that pertain to writing. By being active on the Internet, you’ll create a name for yourself—and attract the attention of potential clients, too. That can lead to extra income.
Think outside the box.
Sure, you may be primarily a magazine writer, but that doesn’t mean you can’t write for other outlets, either. For example, you can create content for websites, or even write press releases for companies. You can get in touch with your softer side by writing for greeting card companies or even be a social media manager for an organization or individual.
There are many, many opportunities for writers to find side gigs. It may require a little extra effort, but you could soon be writing your way to extra income in no time.
If there is one thing that we’ve said over and over again, it’s that freelance writers need to have their own website. A writer’s website serves many purposes, perhaps the main one being your online portfolio.
If you don’t have your writer’s website yet, don’t fret, as there are many platforms and tools that make it easy for non-developers and non-designers create a website, of which website.1and1.com is one example. Practically anyone can use it without having to worry about technical aspects.
Even if you have your writer’s website already, you might want to take a look at it again to see if it is optimally laid out so that you can get as much out of it as possible.
Here are some tips to create an effective writer’s website.
Craft great landing pages
A landing page is a page on a website that a visitor is directed to with the intent of getting him to respond to a “call to action”. For example, a landing page on your site can ask the visitor to sign up for your newsletter. Another example is to entice the visitor to buy your eBook.
The key to landing pages is that you want people to actually take action. You want conversion. Results.
There is an art to writing landing pages that convert, and here is a good guide that will help you: The 5 Stages of Writing Irresistible Landing Page Copy.
Here is another comprehensive guide to help you with landing pages.
Create sections and make navigation easy
What is the purpose of your website? At its core, a writer’s website is your identity online. It can serve as your business card. It can showcase your writing portfolio. It can have a section that serves as your blog, where you can write about anything you want and update it on a regular basis. It’s your website. You can do what you want with it.
However, do remember that the simpler things are online, the more appealing to the reader. Create several sections, but don’t overdo it. For example, have a Blog, Portfolio, About Page, Contact Page, and Products Page.
The next crucial element: make sure those sections are easy to find and that your entire website is easy to navigate.
Try to make sure that your visitors have to click as little as possible to get to information that they want. One less click is always good.
Also read: Difference Between a Resume and a Portfolio?
Provide specific information about yourself
Since a writer’s website is meant to be your online representative, it needs to introduce yourself properly. You want clients to get in touch with you, right? That means you can’t be an anonymous person online. People need to know who you are, and they need to know some details about you so they can make a decision whether to hire you or not.
Make it easy to get in touch with you.
Again, you want your website to convert – that is, get people to hire you or buy your products if you’re selling any. As such, make it as easy as possible to get in touch with you. In your contact page, highlight your contact information as much as possible. Whatever email or phone number you display, make sure you check them often. If you know your response time is between 24-48 hours (or whatever number), make that clear as well.
Editor’s note: This post was written by Jennifer Parris, career writer at FlexJobs, the award-winning site for telecommuting and flexible job listings. FlexJobs lists thousands of pre-screened, legitimate, and professional-level work-from-home jobs and other types of flexibility like part-time positions, freelancing, and flexible schedules. Brie provides career and job search advice through the FlexJobs Blog and social media. Learn more at www.FlexJobs.com.
Back in the day, writers would dutifully cut out their clips from magazines or newspapers, paste them into a book, and shop their portfolio from one interview with an editor to another. In today’s writing world, where many writers are getting their pieces published online, it’s important to find a way to display your published work so that any editor, anywhere, can read your articles. As a writer, though, you might find that you’re on a limited budget. Here are three cheap options to creating a freelance writing website.
For those who want a fast site without a lot of HTML fuss, Clippings.me is a great option. The site was created specifically for writers, bloggers, and journalists in mind. You can add your own bio, easily add PDFs and online pieces, and completely customize the look of your site. Clippings.me provides stats to show which of your stories is a hit with viewers, and you can even create your own URL so that your site has a customized domain name.
Price: Free for a basic plan.
By far, a WordPress blog is one of the most popular platforms for writers who need a place to display their articles. WordPress is free and fairly simple to use. There are numerous designs and themes to choose from, so you can create a polished-looking website in no time. And with so many online tutorials, navigating through WordPress should be a breeze.
Price: WordPress software is free to use, but you will have to pay for hosting (some plans are as little as $5 monthly).
If you want to keep it straight-forward, writers can always write their way to the next writing job by using About.me. It’s one-stop shopping for users, consisting of a single customizable page, and can be ideal for writers with clips that are far-flung throughout the web. If you have articles on various websites, you can provide a list of links to your work, so that potential employers can read your clips on their original sites. Another bonus: you can not only link to your work, but you can stay social by linking your LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook profiles, too.
Since many writers are making their bread and butter online, it makes sense that their portfolios should be online, too. By having an online presence in the form of a freelance writing website, writers may find it easier to land writing work that will help them write their way to a great future in no time.