One of the most single-handed best days of my career was the day that I decided to step into freelance writing full time. It was exhilarating, exciting, nerve wrecking and even fearful, but I knew this is what I wanted to do. As a part time freelance writer for several years I had already learned some of the ins and outs of being a freelancer such as how to find work, clients, and resources so when I made the big jump full time I already had a general idea of what needed to be done in order to be successful as a writer. While many of these ins and outs came fairly easy to me I have recognized that those early in their freelance careers have no clue where to begin. Here are just 5 Tools I have found to be valuable in helping me identify work as a beginner freelancer.
Content Mills have been pivotal in the lives of so many freelance writers across the globe. While the pay is no where close to being lavish it is a great way for many freelancers to gain industry experience and also learn the importance of deadlines. The definition of a content mill as defined by a former content mill worker is an Internet subculture where for-hire workers are tasked with writing vast amounts of online copy for a pittance. Think of it as a fast food buffet for those who need content quickly and easily.
There are a plethora of freelance marketplaces all over the internet. A few of these include Upwork, Freelancer and Black Girl Group (if you’re an African American woman freelancer). All these sites have one thing in common. They’re all designed to connect companies directly to top freelancers at a fraction of the cost it would take hiring an agency. When I first began freelancing I must admit that marketplaces were a bit overwhelming. I viewed every profile as competition and didn’t want to risk being rejected by clients. After getting over my initial fear I realized that not only was there plenty of work in these marketplaces but there was plenty of work to go around so that everyone could be happy and successful together.
Many beginner freelancers begin the freelance journey with the notion that because they now work for themselves they should never have to apply for jobs again, wrong. Many freelance writing opportunities can be found on sites such as Indeed. Indeed is a great resource for many companies that choose to hire freelancers in order to streamline their freelance writing pool.
Online Writing Publications
Think of your favorite online publication, the one you read every single day. Now go pitch them. If you’re not familiar with what pitching is, it is when you have an idea for an article and you reach out to an editor to see if they would be interested in publishing your story. Early in my career I wrote for several publications that didn’t pay me and quite frankly I am so glad I did. Having the opportunity to write for free for several online publications not only increased my brand awareness but it also made people reach out to me personally to learn how I could work with them.
Never underestimate the power of twitter. I have literally set up an alert to notify me overtime someone tweets that they are looking for freelance writers. So many people view social media in a negative light; however, when used correctly social media has the power to help you take your career not only to another level, but into demographics you may have never dreamed you would be able to reach.
Are you a freelance writer? What tools have you used in order to get new clients? Leave comments below.