Do you dream about leaving your mundane job and stepping into the world of freelance writing?
Is fear stopping you from moving forward?
Maybe it’s freelance writing myths that are holding your back?
Yep! With all the noise in the online world, you’ve probably read a few freelance writing myths that are completely ridiculous. Let me tell you, I’ve browsed a few online forums and Facebook groups and some of the things I’ve read would honestly put me off writing if I were starting out today.
In this post, I want to take you through a few freelance writing myths and give you the real truth.
Freelance writing myth 1: You should start getting clients with Upwork
Nope. Now, I’m not saying Upwork is all bad. In fact, I’ve had some decent paying jobs on there but I’m probably in a minority. The problem with places like Upwork is that you have a ceiling in terms of income. Bidding platforms encourage writers to undercut each other so in many cases the client chooses the cheapest writer rather than the most qualified. While you can use Upwork if you choose to, I wouldn’t recommend it being your first port of call. If you want to apply to warm leads rather than cold pitching (cold pitching involves sending emails to potential clients that haven’t advertised any projects) then I suggest using jobs boards or a few other of my favourite methods which you can find here.
Freelance writing myth 2: Tweeting a few links will land you clients
Social media should definitely play a role in your marketing strategy, however, you can’t just send a few tweets out and expect clients to be queuing up to work with you. Your freelance writing marketing strategy needs to include more than just Twitter.
A few effective marketing systems you can put into place
Creating a LinkedIn account – many CEO’s and business owners hang out on LinkedIn and its a goldmine for finding new clients. Setting up a free LinkedIn account takes a few minutes – make sure you include a photograph of yourself, your writing niche and samples of work in your profile. It’s also a good idea to post a few articles on LinkedIn publisher as these will help to draw attention to your profile.
Guest post – this is highly effective in establishing yourself as an authority figure within your niche and getting your name out there. You can also use the articles you create in your portfolio too. Learn how to guest post here.
Create a writers website – a writers website will help to promote your services and allow clients to find you. I always recommend setting up a website on WordPress as I find its the best in terms of implementing SEO and creating a professional design. A few pages to include on your website are services, an about page, testimonials, portfolio of work and contact page. You could also create a blog page to boost your traffic.
Freelance writing myth 3: ‘I’m not qualified enough to send pitches’
You’d be surprised by how many times I’ve heard a budding freelance writer say this. Honestly, you don’t even need any paid experience to start pitching clients. You can start pitching clients as soon as you have 2/3 published pieces. How can I get published, I hear you say!
The best way is by writing your own blog – this gives you the opportunity to write about whatever you want and you can use your posts in your portfolio. In my first pitches, I used 2 or 3 samples from my own blog and I’ve landed several jobs just by using those as evidence of my work. You can also guest post on other websites in your industry or you can get paid to post. Check out 52 websites that pay you to write in the guide below.
Freelance writing myth 4: You need to be based in the US to be a profitable writer
I’m in the UK and I’ve worked with clients from all over the globe, from Dubai to Singapore to Spain. The great thing about freelance writing is that it doesn’t matter where you’re based – you can work anywhere as long as you have access to the internet and a writing programme like Word. As long as you’re a good writer and can tailor your work to the audience (for example, if you’re working with a British client, its highly likely that you’ll have to write in UK English). If you’re not familiar with the difference between US and UK English, read a couple of websites from each country, immerse yourself in TV shows and films, read books etc until you know the language differences.
Freelance writing myth 5: You cant make a consistent income from writing
You 100% can. I’ve been making a consistent income from freelance writing for over 3 years and I know many other writers who are doing the same. To make a consistent income, you need to be regularly pitching clients (find out how to create a great pitch here) and you need to be pricing your services without undervaluing yourself. Good marketing will also help to keep clients coming in through the door.
These freelance writing myths are just a few statements that don’t hold up. If you’re completely new to freelance writing or are thinking of becoming a freelance writer, my guide on finding your first client provides some effective strategies.