A question I’m often asked is, "What’s the difference between writing and blogging? Aren’t the same thing?" Technically they are. Blogging is a form of writing, but there are differences between freelancing for blogs and freelance writing in the traditional sense.
- Can pertain to print or web. Freelancers can write scripts, novels, advertising copy and more.
- Must work within specific word counts.
- Must fit the style of the magazine, newspaper or website.
- Follows a more tradition writing format.
- Unless you work for certain web content companies, don’t have to have "X amount of articles in X amount of days."
- Many publications pay only after a piece is published and that can mean months, sometimes years. Others pay on acceptance.
- Many print markets pay more than blog networks or markets.
- You don’t have to worry about building traffic or community – in most cases.
- More formal than blogging.
- Many times requires more research and interviewing of expert sources.
- You have to submit the finished product to your editor who will publish your work
- Web based only.
- Most blogs don’t require a word count, though many employers request a certain amount of posts per week.
- Blogging pays less than many traditional forms of writing.
- Bloggers don’t have to wait as long for their paychecks.
- The more you blog the more traffic you receive.
- You’ll be expected to promote your blog, foster a community, and get the traffic ball rolling.
- Most networks offer traffic bonuses.
- A more personal style of writing. You can make it all about you.
- Can be a written post, a video, a cartoon or anything pertaining to your niche.
- You can write as much as you want whenever you want.
- Publication is immediate.
What are some of the differences you see between blogging and traditional freelance writing?
Great post setting forth the differences. One of my pet peeves is when PR people treat my blogs as though they are newspapers. As a freelance writer and a professional blogger, I have noticed that there are some very different aspects of blogging v. writing for print.
Some observations from my experience, which may not be the norm (so don’t blast me if you don’t agree):
Blogging requires more ‘behind the scenes’ work, as it relates to upkeep of the blog…traffic, monetizing, sponsors, links, and other things that some writers will not want to bother with. Of course, if you’re not the blog owner, and only submit blog posts, then there’s not as much to worry about.
If you compare online freelancing (not print) and blogging, IMO it takes much more marketing to make a blog successful and profitable. Ghostwriters don’t necessarily have to do much marketing once they have a small circle of colleagues and clients.
I think both are equally rewarding, however, and I’m happy doing both!!
You don’t have to query a blog post. Major plus.
Yes, freelance writing is more formal than blogging, but I still try to follow AP style a little just to keep things consistent. I might give up though. It’s much easier to % than write out percent.
Blogging is fresh and immediate, the sooner you publish a news, the better.
maryam in marrakesh says
The idea of being a pro-blogger is intriguing. But not sure I would want to change the nature of my blog to do so. And I wonder if it is really worth being a pro-blogger, given the rates that I make as a freelance writer,
Hi Maryam, welcome!
I earn more as a problogger than I did freelancing as a writer. I think the key is to take the jobs that pay well and offer topics we enjoy.
Many blogging gigs are quite lucrative.
Scott Fillmer says
Really nice comparison… when you write for a blog it is usually an instant thing, publication, payment, etc.
I think the earning potential differences are pretty great, not really the amount, but how the revenue is generated. Freelance writing, you write, you get paid. Blogging sometimes has a whole host of various revenue streams, and some are hard to generate on a consistent basis.
Eaton Bennett says
I’m new to blogging and I had no idea either of these opportunities existed. I found this information very enlightening. Thank you.
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