Table of Contents
- 1 5 Tips to Help You Get More Freelance Jobs
Freelance writing jobs that pay are still plentiful in 2023 and beyond
To get more freelance jobs you need to know know where to look…
You know how to promote yourself…
And you know how to differentiate yourself from your fellow writers.
That’s where we come in.
If you’re a copywriter, blogger, or any type of freelance writer who wants to earn a full-time or part-time income doing what you love, this definitive, A-to-Z guide will help you do just that.
Let’s dive in.
5 Tips to Help You Get More Freelance Jobs
The philosopher Seneca (allegedly) said, “luck is what happens when practice meets opportunity.”
The book of Galatians in the Bible tells us we reap what we sow.
Stephen King put it this way:
“Talent is cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work.”
The common theme? Success tends to find those who are prepared for it.
As a freelance writer, here are six things you should do to prepare for freelancing glory:
1. Create a Writing Portfolio That Kicks Butt
“Do you have writing samples?” “Can I see some of your freelance writing work?” “What are some high-quality articles you’ve written?”
As a freelance writer, you’ll hear questions like these often.
And your answer?
Here’s a link to my writing portfolio.
At least, that should be your answer. But unfortunately, many freelancers skip the whole “prove you actually know how to write” thing.
As Scott Weiland once sang, “let the proof be in the pudding, sugar.”
Don’t simply tell prospective clients that you’re a talented freelance writer. And don’t assume they already know you’re the cat’s meow and the bee’s knees.
Further Reading: How to Create a Writing Portfolio That’ll Wow Potential Clients walks you through everything you need to craft an online portfolio of your work, from portfolio sites like Contently to using your own blog. It also offers tips for building a list of writing samples if your portfolio is a bit sparse.
2. Supercharge Your Writing Skills and Get More Freelance Jobs
Unless you want to spend your freelance writing career slumming through content mill after content, and getting paid peanuts, you need to level up your content creation skills.
Because those high-paying freelance content jobs you lay awake dreaming about? Companies don’t hand them to just anyone.
They give them to the best writers — content creators who:
- Realize the importance of SEO (search engine optimization) and can create SEO content with both readers and Google in mind;
- Understand the importance of proofreading and submitting error-free work;
- Write fast, meet deadlines for their writing projects, and are seemingly immune to writer’s block;
- Craft amazing headlines, write with clarity, and support their points with examples;
- Have top-notch communication skills;
- Can connect with readers on an emotional level.
You want to get more freelance jobs – The good news?
With hard work, anyone can improve their writing skills. And for the few who are willing to roll up their sleeves and do it, the payoff can be huge.
Further Reading: 18 Writing Tips That’ll Actually Make You a Better Writer shares our favorite must-have skills for writers. Read it, bookmark it, and come back to it again and again.
3. Ask for Testimonials
Have you already landed a writing job or two? Awesome.
Did you ask the client to give you a testimonial? A few words declaring their undying love and/or satisfaction with your work (that you can use to help you land more writing clients)?
No? Well, you’re not alone.
Most writers who do freelance work, either due to ignorance or fear, don’t ask for testimonials. Our own Jon Morrow says he’s only had a small handful of writers over the years ask him for a testimonial — even though he would’ve been perfectly happy to give one to them.
So how should you ask for one? Keep it simple.
Here’s how Karen MacKenzie asked for a testimonial after we published her first post on Smart Blogger:
“Would it be possible to get a testimonial for my website? I know you are really busy, but I’d really appreciate it.”
And because Karen did such a good job on her post, I was happy to give her the following testimonial:
Karen offers everything I look for in a freelance writer: Her work is excellent, she finishes on time (if not ahead of schedule), and her attention to detail is wonderful. I enjoyed working with her so much that, as soon as her first article was completed, I asked her if she’d like to write for us again. I happily recommend her.
Want a great testimonial like Karen’s?
Create testimonials and get more freelance jobs-worthy content for your clients and then — this is key — ask them for a freakin’ testimonial.
Note: You can count me among the poor, unfortunate souls who missed out on Jon’s generosity. Before becoming Smart Blogger’s Editor-in-Chief, I was a freelancer. I wrote five posts for Smart Blogger as a freelance writer, which means I passed on five opportunities for Jon to say nice things about me. Don’t repeat my mistakes — ask for testimonials at every opportunity.
4. Learn How to Craft a Killer Author Bio
A wealthy business owner sitting in a Herman Miller chair on top of a rug made out of recycled Herman Miller chairs is reading an article you’ve written.
She’s impressed. She calls to her butler, Jeeves, and asks him to bring one of her suitcases filled with money.
Your article is so good, she wants to hire you.
But then she gets to your byline — the one you threw together at the last minute. The one that lists your hobbies and has no clear call to action.
“Throw the suitcase in the fire, Jeeves,” she says. “I shan’t be hiring a writer today.”
If you don’t want this totally realistic scenario to happen to you, you need to get really good at writing author bios.
Because someone who’s made it to your author bio is primed. They’ve read your work and want to learn about the attractive, intelligent individual who wrote it.
Maybe they want to check out your website content. Maybe they want to find you on social media so they can follow you.
Or maybe they want your contact info so they can hire you.
A byline should shout to the world your expertise. It should say to prospective clients, “if you thought this article was great, you should hire me and see what I can do for you.”
Taking the time to craft a great one is time well spent.
Further Reading: How to Write a Bio Like a Superhero (Easy 3-Part Process) will show you the step-by-step process for crafting bylines that’ll make rich people want to give you suitcases full of money.
5. Write a Pitch and Get More Freelance Jobs
Few people enjoy cold pitching to prospective clients.
But you know what?
The job seekers who are willing to do it have an edge. And the ones who are good at it — and I mean really freakin’ good at it — are never more than an email or two away from snagging a new writing job.
So how do you get really freakin’ good at cold pitches? You won’t get more freelance jobs by being ordinary. Be unique and don’t make these rookie mistakes:
- Don’t write long emails. Editors and clients are busy. Respect their time.
- Don’t send the exact same pitch to different people. Every editor and every client has unique needs, audiences, and styles.
- Don’t ignore their guidelines. Want a sure-fire way to have your email deleted? Pitch to a website that has clearly stated submission guidelines, but ignore said guidelines.
But just as importantly, do these things:
- Research. Do your homework.
- Find the name of the person you’re pitching to. Address the person by name in your email.
- Get to the point. Don’t beat around the bush. Tell them what you want and why.
- Sell them on you. Popular websites receive pitches all the time. Why should they hire you? Explain it to them.
These pointers and more (as well as email templates) can be found in our post, How to Write a Pitch That’ll Wow Editors & Clients and get more freelance jobs.
Read it, bookmark it, and reference it often.
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