First Greenback to Six Figures

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You’ve in all probability already heard which you could make six figures as a contract author, however this will sound like a fantasy for those who’re simply beginning your profession. 

Whether or not you’ve been rejected from just a few low-paying jobs on Upwork otherwise you’re struggling to make quite a lot of hundred {dollars} per thirty days, the prospect of creating six figures as a contract author can sound like a fantasy.

Whereas these setbacks are discouraging, the important thing to turning into a six-figure freelancer is implementing a confirmed course of, bettering your writing expertise, and persevering by any challenges.

Fortuitously, loads of full-time freelance writers have achieved this success.

Constructing a profitable freelance writing enterprise that pays six figures isn’t easy, however for those who comply with a confirmed technique and are prepared to place within the work to stage up your writing expertise, it’s actually potential.

So under, we’ll define a confirmed step-by-step information that actual six determine copywriters have used to construct profitable freelance writing careers.

Step 1: Choose a Area of interest

Many new freelance writers promote that they’ll write for any area of interest as a result of they worry choosing a selected writing area of interest will restrict their record of potential purchasers.

Nevertheless, employers need to rent specialists, and promoting your self as a generalist will really repel potential purchasers. 

For instance, if an actual property firm is seeking to rent a weblog publish author, they’ll search for somebody specializing in writing for actual property. So between the 2 writers under, the one promoting himself as an actual property specialist will certainly stand out to the hiring supervisor:

A specialized writer
An unspecialized writer's profile

Whereas good writers can normally create high-quality content material for a number of niches, it’s nonetheless finest to place your self as an knowledgeable in a selected area of interest. An added advantage of specializing in a selected area of interest is that you simply’ll develop a community of purchasers sooner.   

So what’s a distinct segment, and the way do you choose one?

There are three essential classes of niches: 

  • Content material Kind: Some examples of various kinds of content material embody emails, weblog posts, ebooks, ghostwriting (for books), social media content material, touchdown/gross sales pages, and video scripts.
  • Enterprise Kind: Some examples of enterprise varieties embody SaaS firms, ecommerce firms, on-line programs, bloggers, and native companies.
  • Business: Some examples of industries embody pets, cryptocurrency, finance, actual property, digital advertising and marketing, journey, and healthcare.

So choose one specialty from every of the three classes above. Listed here are just a few examples:

  • E mail copywriter for on-line course creators within the finance business
  • Weblog publish copywriter for SaaS firms within the healthcare business
  • Social media content material author for bloggers within the journey business 

Whereas niching down shrinks your goal market (record of potential purchasers), it additionally shrinks the sector of competitors and permits you to cost extra as you’ll be able to place your self as a specialised knowledgeable. 

In case you have a look at the examples above, the actual property specialist costs double what the generalist costs.

Digital Commerce Partners

Step 2: Create a Few High quality Writing Samples

Most hiring managers don’t have time to take a look at greater than two to 3 items of content material, so that you solely want just a few items of top quality content material related to your area of interest to win your first freelance writing gig. 

In case you at the moment don’t have any writing samples that match the area of interest you chose, listed below are two wonderful strategies to create writing samples:

  • Write a free pattern for somebody in your ultimate goal market
  • Create your individual weblog/publication/social media web page

We’ll focus on how you can execute each of those under.

Write a free pattern for an influencer in your ultimate goal market.

Writing free samples for an influencer in your area of interest is a superb technique as a result of it helps you create constructive relationships with potential purchasers whereas concurrently constructing your portfolio. 

The important thing to correctly executing this technique is to jot down the content material at no cost after which ship the accomplished model to the potential shopper. 

Most newbie freelancers make the error of reaching out and asking if they’ll work at no cost with out offering a accomplished pattern. 

These emails are literally annoying for busy influencers which might be well-established within the business. 

Nevertheless, for those who ship the potential shopper a accomplished piece of content material, they’ll in all probability reply. Right here’s an ideal e mail template you should utilize:

Outreach to provide free samples

Even when they don’t publish the content material, you’ll be able to nonetheless add that pattern to your portfolio.

It’s additionally price noting that for those who’re going to do work at no cost, purpose excessive and attain out to well-established manufacturers/influencers in that business. If the model does publish your content material, it should considerably enhance your credibility!  

In reality, even when you have already got loads of pattern writing items, doing free work for high-profile purchasers is a good way to construct business credibility and create relationships with well-connected people that may flip into wonderful referral sources.

Creating your individual content material

One other choice to construct your portfolio is to create your individual content material. 

For instance, if you wish to be a finance weblog author for SaaS firms, you can begin your individual finance weblog. When you may not be promoting SaaS merchandise, you’ll be able to nonetheless goal the identical key phrases {that a} SaaS firm may goal.

This technique is great for constructing your portfolio since you’ll discover ways to write nice weblog posts and how you can develop a finance weblog. As SaaS firms need to rent a author that may produce outcomes – not simply phrases – this can make you stand out towards different candidates. 

In reality, you may discover that writing your individual finance weblog is extra worthwhile than being a contract author for different finance firms.

Sadly, this technique isn’t at all times possible. For instance, this technique may not be lifelike if you wish to be a social media content material creator for native companies however don’t personal an area enterprise. Nevertheless, you possibly can as an alternative use the primary technique and supply to create free content material for an area enterprise.

Notice: I purposefully don’t focus on how you can construct a writing portfolio web site, as a result of within the subsequent step, you’ll see that the technique you’ll use to shut your first paying shopper doesn’t contain making use of to any job boards or submitting a portfolio. In reality, spending time designing a portfolio is usually a distraction from doing the arduous work of getting your first paying shopper. So as an alternative, we’ll focus solely on how you can create nice writing samples, and you then’ll ship these samples as hyperlinks or Google Doc attachments in your e mail pitch.

Step 3: Shut Your First Paying Consumer

In case you’re simply getting began and have minimal writing expertise, you may really feel uncomfortable pitching purchasers, however one of the simplest ways to develop into a greater freelance author is to simply do the job. 

As well as, many purchasers are blissful to pay beneficiant costs for freelancers who produce first rate work, comply with directions, and cling to deadlines. 

So after getting three to 5 first rate pattern items, search out your first paying shopper. You’ll additionally really feel extra motivated to persevere after getting your first paying shopper. We’ll focus on two strategies to get your first paying shopper:

  • Ask for referrals
  • Ship customized chilly pitches (with a twist)

Asking For Referrals

To seek out your first paying shopper, begin by asking for referrals from the purchasers you labored with at no cost whereas constructing your writing samples. 

Assuming you probably did job, these purchasers will possible be more than pleased to refer you to pals.

In case you really feel awkward asking, right here’s an actual script you should utilize:

Script to ask your clients for referrals

You may as well ask if that individual would take into account mentioning you in Slack teams and different communities they’re a member of to unfold the phrase.

Once more, that is why working at no cost for well-established business influencers with giant networks is rather more helpful than working at no cost for any random firm.

Ship a Customized Chilly Pitch (With a Twist)

Chilly pitches can work, however most freelancers don’t know how you can make a compelling supply.

Potential purchasers typically obtain a whole bunch of generic pitches from writers every month, so most emails are instantly deleted.

Listed here are two killer methods to make your chilly pitch stand out:

  1. Ship them a free piece of content material they’ll publish, and inform them you’ll be able to create extra content material prefer it persistently if they’re prepared to rent you.
  1. Pitch the potential shopper that you simply’ll work with a selected content material advertising and marketing knowledgeable on a platform like Readability or Intro and execute every little thing the knowledgeable recommends. It is a win-win technique since you develop into a greater author and may justify charging a excessive worth whereas the shopper will get a world-class knowledgeable to look over the execution of their advertising and marketing course of.      

It’s additionally vital to ship your pitch to the proper individual on the appropriate e mail deal with. In case you’re reaching out to a big SaaS or ecommerce firm, search for the content material advertising and marketing supervisor or (if there isn’t a content material supervisor) head/director of selling.

You possibly can simply search “advertising and marketing” or “content material” on the corporate’s LinkedIn profile to search out the proper individual, and Hunter.io and Verifalia are wonderful assets to search out e mail addresses.

In case you can’t discover the individual’s e mail deal with, you may also contact them straight on a social media platform like LinkedIn or Twitter. 

Whereas it could appear easy, these two methods are typically the best for getting your first paid freelance writing job.

Many more recent (and even some extra established) freelance writers struggling to shut purchasers make the error of mass making use of to author positions on job boards. 

Mass making use of isn’t a good suggestion as a result of swamped hiring managers normally instantly delete any functions that lack personalization. For instance, you’ll be able to see that the job publish under has over 200 candidates.

As well as, making use of to jobs locations you in direct competitors with different functions, and lots of hiring managers received’t even see your software.

So as an alternative, refer again to your area of interest and attain out to firms that aren’t promoting that they’re actively hiring for a contract writing place. Whereas this recommendation could seem counterintuitive, it’s extremely efficient since you aren’t competing with different candidates.  

In reality, many firms are actively hiring new writers, however don’t actively promote the place exactly as a result of most job boards generate too many candidates.  

One other frequent difficulty that causes many writers to surrender earlier than getting their first shopper is spending an excessive amount of time creating a elaborate web site or enterprise playing cards. 

Most purchasers don’t care about this stuff – they simply need somebody that’s dependable and may do the job. So your time is best spent sending compelling emails with hyperlinks to wonderful writing samples.  

Step 4: Search Suggestions and Actively Make investments In Enhancing Your Talent Set

As you’re employed with extra purchasers, you’ll discover that every one has barely completely different requests, so a key side of an ideal author is looking for preliminary suggestions and adjusting to your shopper’s needs (inside purpose).  

It’s necessary to be decisive and personal your work (you don’t need to always hassle purchasers and ask them in case your work is appropriate), however purchasers admire communicative freelance writers who take motion on suggestions. 

Along with gathering shopper suggestions, essentially the most profitable writers additionally search mentorship to stage up their freelance writing expertise. For instance, many freelance writers be a part of content material writing programs, rent coaches, and take part in peer teams to enhance their expertise. 

In case you’re all in favour of becoming a member of a membership group that offers you direct entry to content material advertising and marketing coaches, stay interviews with business specialists, content material advertising and marketing programs, and a neighborhood of high-earning freelance writers, take into account becoming a member of the Copyblogger Academy.  

You may as well use a platform like Readability or Intro to schedule one-on-one teaching calls with world-class specialists.  

Lastly, take into account making a aspect hustle the place you create your individual content material. For instance, for those who specialise in writing emails for ecommerce websites, you possibly can begin your individual dropshipping web site and write emails to promote these merchandise. 

We advisable this in step two as a technique to construct your portfolio, however it’s price mentioning once more right here, as constructing your individual content material platform is a good way to grasp the ache factors your purchasers face so as to discover ways to ship higher outcomes

As purchasers are paying you to assist them develop their enterprise, having your individual challenge is advantageous, as you should utilize it to run experiments and discover ways to enhance your expertise to drive extra gross sales. It will in the end make you a greater marketer and show you how to perceive how your companies match into the bigger progress technique.

Step 5: Scale Your Profession

Getting your first few purchasers is one problem, however {most professional} writers will let you know that retaining your purchasers and producing regular revenue over a number of months is the largest problem.

If you wish to remodel your freelance writing enterprise from a aspect hustle to a full-time job, listed below are just a few methods to enhance revenue stability. 

Be Dependable And Constant To Earn Referrals

First, at all times produce high-quality work, reply to purchasers inside 24 hours, and submit your initiatives on time. Abiding by these three guidelines is vital to each retaining purchasers and making a community of referrals.

In reality, essentially the most profitable freelance writers have a look at every new shopper as a brand new potential referral accomplice reasonably than a one-time income. 

After getting a number of purchasers and a few case research demonstrating your work, create a easy web site with shopper testimonials, case research, and your writing service packages.

You’ll quickly attain a ceiling the place you’ll be able to not tackle extra writing purchasers, however there are just a few other ways you’ll be able to proceed to scale your revenue with out overextending your self.

Enhance Pricing

Growing pricing is the simplest progress lever, and most purchasers received’t even bat an eye fixed for those who enhance your costs. 

You may as well type referral partnerships with lower-level companies/freelance writers and ship them purchasers that may’t afford to proceed working with you.

It is a win-win scenario as you’ll be able to earn a referral accomplice payment and hold a high-quality shopper base.

If most of your purchasers can’t afford to pay the next worth, you may need to take into account transferring upmarket and focusing on bigger companies that may afford to pay extra. 

Require Lengthy-Time period Contracts

The subsequent choice to scale your revenue is to require long-term partnership contracts. 

As churn is among the vital challenges that many freelancers face, retaining your current purchasers is a good way to extend your annual revenue.

Provide Productized Companies With Distinctive, Confirmed Processes

Lastly, essentially the most profitable freelancers spend loads of time studying extra about their shopper’s ache factors after which create distinctive methods and processes to persistently resolve these ache factors. 

In case you can present your purchasers that you’ve got a selected, documented technique to resolve the precise ache level they’ve extra effectively than the common freelancer, you’ll be capable of cost extra and generate extra constant demand.

For instance, if you recognize that almost all of your purchasers wrestle with “content material mill” or “me-too” model content material, incorporate knowledgeable interviews into your writing course of and use that to show the way you’ll create distinctive content material. This alone is usually greater than sufficient to make you stand out from the group and command larger costs. 

In case you’re undecided what your shopper’s ache factors are, spend a while speaking to them or ask in Slack channels devoted to your audience.

Take Motion Immediately

One of many greatest errors aspiring freelancers make is spending an excessive amount of time studying about how you can construct a contract enterprise reasonably than simply getting began. 

This publish has all the knowledge it’s essential get began, so take motion immediately, as expertise is the most effective instructor.

After you get began, search suggestions and stage up your expertise. You possibly can be a part of the Copyblogger publication for extra freelance writing suggestions or be a part of the Copyblogger Academy to study from different like-minded freelance writers.

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