A very important and even vital factor you need to understand if you want to be a freelance writer is that a freelancer is an entrepreneur. The more you will come to the understanding of this concept from the get go, the more successful freelance writer you will become FAST.
Why am I saying this?
Let’s see what I am talking about here and what it has to do with your success in freelance writing.
In his free email-course, my networking friend Onibula Bamidele says that probably the main reason why so many freelance writers fail is because they rely solely on freelancing public platforms to get the job that they are looking for.
What is meant by “public platform” are sites such as Elance, for example, where you have to go through a whole proposal process which you have to write just to apply for the job you want. It’s interesting to know that the proposal alone may take you as long as the job itself.
Really, there is something wrong with this.
The other problem with platform settings such as Elance and others of the kind is that it’s more like you are applying for a job than you offering your own services as a freelancer.
You will have to post your skills, your references and other proofs of what you have done in the past as well as write a proposal for each job you may be interested in. Then, you’ll have to wait on the potential client to pick and contact you.
When and if they do contact you, they will give you all their requirements about how and when they want the job done. You are not the one who will be able to decide here; they are.
When you accept and get a job using freelancer platforms you also need to know that you will have to edit your work until the client is satisfied with it. Sometimes, what the client is requiring up front and what they end up really wanting can be quite different and the editing can be a long never ending nightmare. Believe me I know, because I’ve been there.
As an example, if you were a contractor hired for a roof replacement, you would be the one who tells your client when you will be done with the job, not them, right? Well, as a freelance writer, you want this to be the case as well.
If you want to have more control as the entrepreneur that you are, avoid jobs where you are told when you need to complete your assignment.
As a freelance writer you are the boss, it’s your business, not your clients’ and you need to find avenues that give you such power. Freelance public platforms such as Elance won’t give you that type of choice.
Are they better ways to promote yourself as a freelance writer? Yes, there are, indeed. Let’s see what they are.
Create Your Own Platform
Freelance writers who get the best writing deals and make the most money are writers who create they own platforms, not writers who hope to get the job on public platforms. Such freelance writers usually don’t ever need to create profiles on sites like Elance.
The easiest and best way to create your own platform is to create a blog where you can write you best content as well as create several other pages where you can talk about your skills, your specializations, and your fees if so you desire.
Once your blog is ready, your next step should be to post articles on other blogs – as a guest blogger- especially blogs which have to do with writing or the writer category that you may want to specialize in.
As you expend your wings, posting on medium to large blogs you are bound to be noticed more and more as time goes on and, before you know it you will get offers from clients without you looking for them at all.
How do I know this? It happens to me all the time and I know that it happens to many other freelance writers as well.
The reason why there is more than enough work for all of us is that the demand is tremendous.
Hundred of blogs and campaigns are started online each and every day by people who are not intending in writing their own content and which need your services.
You would be surprised how whatever you write online will attract potential clients.
To give you few of my own examples, I wrote a few Squidoo lenses on cats and natural products for pets and I have people contacting me to find out if I could write pet related articles for them. I wrote an article about bullying based on my own experience of years ago and I was invited to participate in a newsletter and a blog which owners who loved my article needed content about bullying. I have written about cooking and recipes which brought me some demands to write about cooking all the way in the UK as well.
What I am trying to say here is that whatever you put out there can bring your some potential clients. Such clients will be very different from the ones you would get on Elance or other freelancing public platforms.
This type of clientele will be asking YOU what YOUR rules are and as long as you deliver the kind of product that they are looking for you will be able to set your own fees and deliver the job done on your own time table.
Takeaways For Freelance Writers
As a freelancer and an entrepreneur you need to take control of you work and fees in order to be really successful. Spend less time and energy writing proposals on public platforms and more time on building your own platforms and posting on blogs owned by other people.