This Post takes off from a previous one titled Freelance Business Mini-Report Part 1
We discussed what Freelance writing is all about and as to how it would benefit those who are looking to distance themselves from they bases — as termed them The Itinerant Entrepreneurs. let’s look at the more important aspects of this business. Also remember that we will not be talking about any other genre of freelance writing except web content – writing for the web; SEO; Article Writing; term papers and assignments etc.
Clients in Abundance – But where are you looking?
Here’s what one of my mentors ( also a client) said about finding work online for freelancing opportunities — ” The best freelancing jobs ( even the highly paid ones) are rarely advertised on the net “.
I would risk a million furious comments now by stating that you wouldn’t get much by responding to ads that you would find at various job boards and bidding market places and these are the reasons why :
- The moment a job is posted — the replies come in abundance. There are lots and lots of freelance writers all over the world who are looking to get a gig or two and they would all compete with you. Chances are that your application’ proposal letter or resume would simply drown in the sea of rampant competition. So do you think this works? I don’t think so.
- Most of the job posters aren’t even serious about the ads. They are undecided on what they ought to pay a deserving freelance writer. If that is the case, clients like that don’t need a solicitation from you. It was even rumored that a fake job poster would put up an ad ad request for sample write-ups. Since the emails number in a hundreds, the job poster now gets a flurry of emails with samples which they can pass off as their own.
- The conversion ratio for sending out proposal letters like these is not impressive. I didn’t check to arrive at solid numbers, but about 85% of my proposals are never answered. Some of the mails are responded to and I am told that my name is being put up in a database for future use – which never comes.
So what works?
- Direct soliciting or email cold calling : This might sound crazy but this one really works. Put up a nice proposal and send it out to some website owners as to what you would like to do for them. Say, you must have noticed real bad copy on a website , you could directly mail the webmaster about the fact that the site needs a professionally done web-copy and that you would like to do it. You could send out a sample mail like the one below :
Sample Proposal email :
Hi or Dear [Name – try to find this out, if you can]:
I am [ Your Name] from [ wherever you are]. I am a freelance writer and I happened to stumble on to your website the other day. I am sure you would have overlooked the fact that having a mere website presence by slapping a website with trite content isn’t enough now-a-days and the fact that your products and services sales are really driven by the quality of content on your site. You are well aware that your customers are notorious for their short attention-spans and you’d do well to engage them gainfully while they are there.
I would like to propose the following :
— I would love to have the opportunity to re-write your website content/web copy in an engaging, conversational but yet professional manner.
— I can try and incorporate a few keywords associated with your industry in the content so as to boost your rankings in the search engines ( which is where 85 % of people online search for information)
— We could start a blog to further improve the chances of being a search engine favorite.
— How about sending out regular newsletters to your mailing list, if you have one?
I would love to hear from you again to hear if there is something we could do together to make your business better.
[Your Name and Contact Info]
- Approach Local Clients : Ever wondered how much work would lie just aroudn your neighborhood. Just because we work online for most times, it doesn’t mean that our customers cannot be found using off line methods. Cold calling again is a certainly great way to get some new clients. Just walk into their offices and introduce yourself. Ask them for a little time and do an ” Elevator Pitch”. Voila. If you do it consistently enough, yo uwill have results sooner than you can imagine.
- Well, do the usual stuff too: There are some sites where jobs are frequently posted. I know I said that they are a waste of time and don’t really land you pum projects but on the other hand, some of my best clients came from there. See list at the end of this post to go where there is a huge number of jobs listed.
- Write on Dailyarticle.com : I discovered this site about a month ago and I have been doing great with it. How Dailyarticle Made Me Richer is a post I wrote on Rebelpreneur that depicts my journey at daily article.
What else can you do to earn money as a freelancer?
- You could publish info products. If you don’t know what to write on– do research and write. People need ready made info. Give it to them.
- Start a web empire — have a series of websites or blogs on different topics that interest you ( We speak about Interest because you should be posting regularly)
We will discuss the final part of the mini report on the next posting which will focus on on to ensure you keep the clients; earn more money for the time you’d be spending writing; how to leverage and build it into a business and much more.