Pursuing a freelance writing career is a dream for many, which is easy to understand. If you’re the type of person who is passionate about the power of the written word and enjoys the process of writing, then the idea of getting paid to do this may sound like the perfect career path However, it’s one thing to have the goal of becoming a full-time freelance writer, and it’s another thing to make that goal a reality.
Some people will gain some freelance writing work on the side, perhaps doing it alongside a full-time job (with the hopes of writing full-time eventually) or as a way to supplement the income from a part-time job or other freelance work. It can be a struggle, though, getting to the stage where you can earn a decent income from freelance writing alone. In this article, we go through some essential tips that will help you get to this point (and perhaps allow you to earn more than you ever did in a full-time position).
Write Every Day
Writing is a skill, and like all skills, you need to refine it daily in order to become highly proficient and sought after. It doesn’t matter whether you’re writing for a client or writing for yourself – the important thing is that you’re practicing. Also, see if you can notice a unique style you adopt when writing and then try to develop it. A key sign of a successful writer is the ability to bring an original style of writing to your work, as this allows you to stand out from the crowd.
You can also improve your writing skills every day by reading a wide range of content (online and in books and magazines), then using this reading material as inspiration and guidance to strengthen your freelance writing career. Reading high-quality content can show you what it takes to communicate ideas in a clear, easy-to-understand fashion, as well as help you get the creative juices flowing.
Build Skills Essential for Content Creation
As a freelance writer, you are expected to meet certain standards of quality, such as producing error-free and highly readable work. You can make use of tools like Grammarly to ensure that any work you submit is free from spelling and grammar mistakes, while also using the Hemingway app to improve the readability of your content. Another key skill for a freelance writer to develop is search engine optimization (SEO). This involves producing content in line with SEO best practices, which will help the webpages, articles, or blog posts you write rank well on Google search results.
At the start of any freelance writing career, it’s normal to work for low rates. Successful freelance writers, though, can develop their skills and abilities enough so that they can justifiably raise their freelancing rates and earn an ideal income for themselves. One of the most effective ways to negotiate higher rates as a freelance writer is to over-deliver value. This means exceeding your clients’ expectations. This can be achieved in a number of ways.
For example, you may put an extra amount of effort into producing a certain article, making sure that it is well-optimized, highly readable, and written to the very best of your ability. If this piece of content ranks well on Google and attracts a significant amount of web traffic and social media activity, then this would give you leverage to raise your freelancing rates in the future, especially if you can achieve these results consistently.
Moreover, submitting work earlier than your deadlines (especially on a regular basis) will also impress a client, as it shows you’re efficient, productive, hardworking, and reliable. This work ethic will prove to your client that you’re worth investing in on a long-term basis – and this will put you in a great position to raise your freelancing rates when you feel it’s deserved.
Stay Committed Amidst Struggle and Instability
A freelance writing career can involve many struggles. Common obstacles include low pay, late payment from clients, job insecurity, stress, and isolation. But, one of the key attributes of a successful freelance writer is the willingness to stay committed to a career path amidst these struggles. As is often the case, breaking out in the business is is the hardest part. After the first year, however, things start to get easier. You start to establish long-term clients and get to a point where you can raise your rates. During the first few years of freelance writing, you will also build your skills, portfolio, online presence, and reputation, making it easier for you to find high-quality clients.
Freelance writing can also involve a certain amount of instability. After all, clients will come and go, and your income will fluctuate (sometimes drastically) every month. Again, it’s crucial to stay dedicated to your craft amidst this instability. This attitude will enable you to keep moving forward when times are tough, helping you to achieve career success in the long-term.