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You’re at the beach, staring at the glistering ocean, the sea breeze tousling your hair, listening to the slow, but steady pattern of the tides.
The environment is serene. Perfect for thinking.
And so you’re organizing your thoughts with one hand while using the other to sip Sangria.
You are a freelance blog writer. You are paid to write for blogs, and it’s work you can do from any part of the world.
This week you are at the beach. Next week you will be visiting the mountains, and you’ll probably be watching the El Classico at the Santiago Bernabeu the week after.
If travel is not your thing, stay at home and work while you have more time for family.
No-no-no, this can’t be true. I must be dreaming.
Look, this can be a dream come true. It’s possible, and you’ll agree with me once I’m done explaining to you how.
In this post, I’m going to walk you through, step-by-step how to become a freelance blog writer, and start writing for blogs.
If you like, you can choose to do this part-time, on the side, or make it your full-time gig.
It’s never going to be a dream anymore. It’s going to be a reality today. Let’s dive in.
How Do I Become A Freelance Blog Writer/ Blogger?
You have probably heard about freelance bloggers, and you are wondering what the heck differentiates them from bloggers?
The difference is that freelance bloggers write for blogs and businesses as a career, while bloggers are merely doing it as a hobby.
Freelance WordPress bloggers get paid to write for blogs and other businesses and so what they deliver must be top-notch and professional.
To become a freelance blog writer, you need a stable internet connection, a functioning computer, and some other skills we are going to discuss in a few.
How Do I Start As A Freelance Writer?
Becoming a freelance writer is driven by passion or some forces such as strict full-time job demands, living a paycheck life, and so you want to look for a way to earn more income.
You have to choose if you genuinely wish to become a freelance writer, earn more money, travel around the world, and have more time for yourself and your family.
In other words, there must be a force to drive you to start a freelance blog writer business; maybe you want to earn more money, or you just want a flexible lifestyle, in which you can spend more time with your family.
And like I mentioned above, you need a computer and a stable internet connection to get started.
Do I Need A Great Blog As A Freelance Writer?
You want to become a freelance blog writer and earn some passive income, huh? You can smell the moolah. But then you hear a ton of people suggesting you must have a good blog to land freelance blog writing clients – like it’s a requirement.
You see, some of these bloggers advising you aren’t even freelance bloggers, and probably, they are advising you to start a blog because they have some affiliate marketing goals from their successful blog program. So they want to persuade you by all means to start a blog.
Let me be dead honest with you – you don’t need a blog as a freelance writer. I started my blog to help other aspiring freelance writers, but not with the primary objective of landing lucrative freelance gigs. So the answer is NO. You don’t need a blog as a freelance writer.
You can showcase your work by sending sample articles you wrote to your potential clients because you need to prove to your potential client that you are the right candidate for the job.
Where Do Freelance Writers Find Work?
Once I have walked you through what it takes to become a freelance blog writer, who can produce high-quality blog content, you will need to hit the road and start hunting for freelance blog writing jobs and start writing blog posts.
There are a ton of ways you can secure freelance gigs, and I’m going to walk you through, step-by-step, where to look for these jobs.
For now, let’s look at something important – why you need to become a freelance blog writer:
How Do Freelance Writers Get Paid?
Once you have known what it takes to write professionally, the next thing that you’d want to know is how you will get paid.
Most Freelance Writers get paid by the Word, only a few by hours worked.
Freelance blog writers or generally freelancers commonly use PayPal as a payment method because it’s widely accepted in most countries.
On Upwork, you can receive your payment via PayPal, directly to your local bank, instant for U.S citizens, or U.S dollar wire transfer.
On Fiverr, you can withdraw funds available to you PayPal, your local bank account, or credit your Fiverr Revenue Card. If you’re a U.S citizen, you can do a direct deposit.
Finally, Freelancer.com, payment method varies from country to country. They don’t charge withdrawal fees except for wire transfers.
What Do I Need To Become A Freelance Blog Writer ?
I know this will sound ridiculous to you but it’s a reality.
There’s a big opportunity of $412.88 billion for writers.
If you have been keen, you will realize that a ton of businesses are coming up with blogs, and what they publish on those blogs sucks, seriously – not even a single great blog post on their websites. A ton of typos that is unacceptable.
And that’s why these businesses are hiring freelance blog writers to help shape their content writing needs; to turn the boring full-packed jargon into simple, readable text.
Businesses spent $195.58 billion of freelance blog writing/ content writing in 2016, and the amount is likely to shoot more than double ($412.88 billion) by 2021, according to Technavio.
And listen to the crazy thing about this:
A ton of bloggers are still stuck trying to get published in magazines, which these days don’t even pay. Of course, you’ll get some traffic love back to your site, but believe me, and it’s not worth your time to write for free.
The Good News?
There is a shortage of professional freelance bloggers who can put their thoughts in writing and earn some decent income. You can make tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars you can write blog posts that trigger social shares, well-formatted into bullet points, and that ranks high on the search engine results.
Below is how you can get started.
How To Get Started As A Freelance Blog Writer
1. Research About Freelance Writing/ Purchase A Course
You have two options – to learn on your own through a google search about becoming a freelance blog writer and to purchase a course on one of the best online course platforms such as Udemy or Skillshare.
I’m assuming you are starting from scratch with no money, so let’s focus on the first option, which is to do extensive research about blog writing, what it takes to be one, and learn the ropes until you become perfect at it.
The best place to start is reading from successful freelance blog writers like Elna Cain, Bamidele Onibalusi, Carol Tice, among others. These freelance blog writers have built a stable income and are now living their dream life by writing for some of the best blogs and businesses. They will offer you free guide to hone your skills.
Read from these blogs and many others talking about how to write for blogs, sign up to their email list, and receive freelance blog writing tips. You can also read eBooks and watch a ton of YouTube videos talking about the same.
2. Develop Your Blog Writing/ Content Skills To Create Quality Content
Your blog writing skills will determine what you charge and what you will earn in the long run.
Reputable companies know the importance of content marketing, and they are always ready to pay higher rates for the best freelance blog writers, who can write, read through and proofread using tools like hemingway/ grammarly and create infographic for posts they write.
Not to beat around the bush, below are the content writing skills you need to develop as a freelance blog writer if you want to stay on top of the competition:
Mastering Content Frameworks: I believe you have come across posts with titles such as 5 ways to earn as a freelance blog writer – they are known as list posts. And that’s not the only content framework – there are a couple of them such as ‘how-to posts,’ case studies, ultimate guides, among others.
Writing Irresistible Headlines and Subheadings: how you write your headlines will determine whether you will get your readers’ attention, click and read your post or not. Therefore, make it a habit to practice writing irresistible headlines/ or blog post ideas to have at least a blog topic for your own blog (not a must, though) every day until you become perfect at it.
Having a Personality: You will be surprised at how many freelance blog writers regurgitate other professional freelance bloggers’ work. That’s wrong, and I mean it. Think for yourself and develop a personality such that when someone reads your writing, he or she will know you wrote it.
Support Your Points With Examples: don’t be that writer who puts down a point and leaves it hanging. Always try and support your points with examples, just as I have done with this post. Of course, there are exceptions, but you need to make it your hobby.
Keep The Reader Glued: what differentiates freelance blog writers is how best they can keep their readers glued to their content. If you can, the better for you. If you can’t, I’m sorry writing isn’t your cup of tea. Use transitional words, examples, and short stories to keep your reader glued to your writing.
3. Master The Art of SEO
Let’s face it: every company is hiring a freelance blog writer for a reason – they want to rank high on search engines like Google.
And the good news is that companies don’t give a damn paying extra for freelance blog writers who understand the art of SEO.
If you can do keyword research and come up with powerful keywords, fill out a content brief, do a fantastic competitor analysis, and write a full optimized long-form content, no company will resist hiring you.
There are a ton of bloggers talking about search engine optimization. Still, I prefer you to follow Brian Dean of Backlinko and Neil Patel of Neil Patel Digital to learn more about search engine optimization through their great content they publish on their blogs.
4. Create Your Portfolio Samples
Once you have developed your content writing skills and learned the art of SEO, the next thing you want to do is to create your portfolio samples.
I know a ton of new bloggers take it as it is – portfolio sample, but they don’t know that there are different levels of portfolio samples, which I’m going to discuss below:
Level 1: this is a portfolio sample proving that you can write a remarkable post. You won’t believe this, but more than eighty-percent individuals branding themselves as freelance blog writers don’t know how to write a remarkable post. This is an advantage to you if you can write a decent post. And this should be your first writing sample.
Level 2: this is a portfolio that shows you know your ‘thing.’ How do you apply to jobs? How do you convince your prospective client that you know what you’re saying? A good example is a well-crafted Upwork cover letter, or stats confirming that you can generate traffic through your posts.
Level 3: this is a portfolio sample giving proof that you have done it before. They are documented results you have helped your clients achieve. They could be sales resulting from the traffic you generated, or they could be actions taken, such as purchasing a product as a result of your blog writing persuasion skills.
5. Land Your First Paying Client
I’m not going to talk much about getting clients in this section because I wish to discuss it as I conclude. For now, let me introduce you to some of the things you must know.
I’ve always said it. Things have changed, and it’s becoming harder to land freelance blog writing jobs, and the reason is simple – content writing frameworks have changed.
Initially, discussing a list of 10 ways to do bla-bla-bla could earn you a ton of traffic, make more sales, and attract high-paying freelance blog writing gigs.
Not anymore. Things have changed, and no company would pay for such posts today. Million-dollar companies are looking for case studies and ultimate guides.
If you can write these posts perfectly, you are among the few freelance blog writers who are going to remain competitive in the market.
That said, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty of where to find freelance blog writing gigs, shall we?
Where To Find Freelance Blog Writer Gigs
1. Keep An Eye On Agencies’ Job Postings
One of the sure-fire ways to land freelance blog writing gigs is to keep checking job postings from freelance agencies.
Agencies have an on-going demand for writers, and if you can write a decent job application, then you are good to go.
2. Job Board Ads
These job boards have consistent job ads that you could respond to and get hired. In most cases, these job ads will ask you to submit your freelance resume as well as a freelance cover letter.
And because you are just starting, you don’t want to miss out on big opportunities just because you haven’t learned the skill of persuasion.
There are a ton of companies that help freelance blog writers with the creation of a decent resume and a cover letter such as Zety. You can check it out.
And a word of caution: even as you pay some cents to have your resume and cover letter created, you should keep an eye on how it’s done and learn so that you can create some on your own.
3. Gig Sites Such As Upwork/Freelancer.com/fiverr.com
I know there are a ton of people who hate Upwork & Co, and their reason is that there are no high-paying clients on Upwork.
For chrissake, Upwork is the largest and most popular freelancing platform, and there are a ton of clients who are ready to pay higher rates for qualified freelancers.
The key is to know your art perfectly, then register for an Upwork account. Of course, it’s not easy to get accepted as a ton of freelancers apply to join the platform every day.
To help you get your profile approved, make sure you have done the following:
- Be the professional Upwork can never resist
- List everything you can do – I mean EVERYTHING!
- Don’t make a mistake of choosing only one category – select multiple categories
- Never undersell your level of experience
- Make sure you have included a perfect title reflecting your skills
- Write a decent profile overview clearly stating what you do
- Include your employment history – make them related to your skills
- Include your education history. Again, don’t just mention your degrees. Be sure to mention the online courses you have taken
Finally, be sure to check these courses that teach aspiring freelancers, step-by-step how to get started on Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer.com.
- How to dominate freelancing on Upwork
- Freelance on Fiverr and become a top-rated seller
- How to use freelancer.com
4. Twitter By Following Some Job Ads
Maybe you may not have known, but social media can be a goldmine for freelance blog writer opportunities. You can lurk around Twitter and follow some job ad profiles and boom; you score your first freelance blog writer job.
The first thing to do is to create a professional Twitter profile that portrays who you are – a freelance blog writer. Note everything important about yourself to improve your chances of connecting with other freelance blog writers.
Next, you’d want to follow some of these job ad Twitter profiles and turn their notifications on so that whenever they tweet, you get notified. This is to help you reply to any job ad posted as fast as you can. You can follow @Write_Jobs, @WhoPaysWriters, @JJobs_tweets.
5. Facebook Groups
Finally, if you are a lover of Facebook groups, then scoring freelance blog writing gigs should be the least of your worries.
Of course, it will take time because you have to build relationships before you form a collaboration. Don’t be that person who starts pitching soon after someone accepts your friend request. It’s not just spam, but also unprofessional.
Once in a while, join the discussion and contribute. Answer people’s queries, and you will be recognized as a ‘conversation starter.’ Additionally, feel free to ask questions that will trigger answers related to freelance blog writing.
Bottom Line: Writing For Blogs Is A Dream Come True
Sadly, most people don’t trust that you can make a living writing for blogs. It is something that irritates me because I know it’s possible if you position yourself well.
With this step-by-step guide on how to write for blogs, you should be able to start your freelance blog business and start writing for blogs.
Other people like Jon Morrow have done it. And the catch? He has done it in a wheelchair. Why not you?
You have everything you need to get started – you’ve got the answers to the frequently asked questions about how to write for blogs to where you can find freelance blog writer gigs. Nothing should hold you back. Come on; you can do this.