In this content-driven world, there’s no job more looked down upon or underappreciated than that of a content writer. Bill Gates’s statement, “content is king”, is aging like a fine wine. Yet, the writers — the kingmakers — are underpaid.
It’s not that there aren’t people out there paying a fair pay to the writers. It’s the closed mindset and the lack of knowledge to find appropriate opportunities that tangle an online writer.
And to untangle the mess, in this article, I will be busting the newbie writers’ mindset and share a few ways to boost the income of any online writer.
Let’s start with the mindset.
The Writer’s mindset:
Here’s what a writer, especially a new one, thinks:
No, Sally, those are just myths bounding you to think big. Successful content writers don’t make their every penny by asking for requirements and writing. There are a few other ways to earn more:
1. Start a blog:
If a writer can let go of the short-term-cash thinking and look at the long-term benefits, starting and writing for their own blog is a fantastic earning opportunity.
Sure, it requires patience, persistence, consistency, and additional skills such as SEO and Marketing, but if one is willing to learn and execute, the long-term income will undoubtedly surpass the convenient 3-4 cents a word.
Here’s how you start and monetize a blog:
– Register a domain.
– Buy a hosting plan.
– Host your domain and install a CMS, preferably WordPress.
– Use an excellent theme and required plugins.
– Start writing.
Once you have written your first blog, optimize it for search engines, and market it properly. This, when done consistently & correctly, will lead to traffic/readers. Here are a few options to monetize that traffic:
– Affiliate marketing
– Sponsored posts
– Sell product/service
In short: Hopefully, if not certainly, starting a blog will give a boost to your online writing income.
2. Make money from guest blogging:
Many sites let people with experience and expertise contribute articles on their blog. This can be an excellent way for authors to build their portfolio, credibility, and authority.
Some sites even pay the author for their contribution. Through such sites, writers can typically earn more than $100 for each successful publication. However, considering the strict editorial guidelines and the time needed to write a quality piece, most authors quickly get discouraged from making any serious money via guest blogging.
On the other hand, there are many professional writers publishing on major websites without getting a dime for their work from the website. So, are they doing it free? Absolutely not!
They write for other businesses in order to get a backlink from such no-pay but authority site.
Backlinks are of huge significance for businesses focusing on search engine rankings.
SEO is a $65 billion industry. For writers, tapping into this niche can be a lucrative opportunity. The fact is, many businesses are willing to pay authors a much higher price for building them a backlink rather than hiring them to write an article or a blog.
For example, Link-able is a link building job platform that allows authors to earn $500+ for writing quality articles via guest blogging.
And in both cases, you still build your authority and portfolio as a freelance writer. It’s a no brainer!
3. Find better clients:
The fastest way to get paid more for doing the same job is to find better, high-paying clients.
Once an online writer has built a good portfolio and has enough clients in hand, he/she should start looking for better clients and not settle(*not sponsored by Oneplus).
Keep an hour to oneself and practice one of the following two strategies(if both, better):
Outbound strategy: Find niche-relevant businesses and cold call, cold email, or cold DM them. Let them know about your experience, expertise, and network to woo them. You can also run targeted-ads for more visibility.
Inbound strategy: For content writers, content marketing is the easiest way to grab clients. Show your expertise, both as a writer and niche expert. Start posting on LinkedIn, Facebook communities, etc. Use strategies like storytelling, hashtags, and more for better reach. In this case, prospects will contact you instead of the other way ’round.
In both cases, always pitch for 1.5-2x the current charges. I.e., If you charge three cents a word currently, pitch for $50 per article or five cents a word.
If you get the project, awesome! If you don’t, you still have your current clients.
4. Build a brand:
The last article I contributed to CustomerThink was about branding. And that’s what the last point and advice for a new writer is: Build a brand.
Don’t think like a freelancer; think like a brand.
– Increases recognisability factor.
– Boosts business value.
– Attracts new clients.
– Creates trust in the market.
– Helps prospects decide.
Therefore, building a brand first and reaching out for projects later is always a good idea. For instance, if Neil Patel pitches someone $10k for SEO consultation, chances are business will pay him instead of some random dude with better offerings.
Long story short, build a brand, and get paid what you ask for!
It’s not the market, but the market you tap into that makes an income difference. While there will always be writers trying to compete for a $30 gig, the smart one — possibly the one, like you, who read this article — will chase the 10x and get it.
So, if I were to leave you with one piece of advice: Be the smart one. Learn and execute upon one(or all) of the above tips and boost your online writing success!