For as long as you can remember, writing’s been your thing. From writing fantasy novels as a kid, to vehemently studying literature in college, to being the person all your friends go to every time they need an editor for a cover letter, it’s not only something you’re good at but something you love. And lately, you’ve been thinking of making money from it. After all, why not start a business doing what you love?
Luckily, there are some great ways you can turn your love of writing into a business because these days there are lots of ways that you can reach potential customers online. Here’s how:
1 Start a blog
It seems like everyone these days has a blog–and it’s true, considering that, by 2020, the number of bloggers is estimated to reach 31.7 million. But just because it’s a popular online endeavor doesn’t mean that you can’t make money from it. The fact is, lots of people are working in blogging because it’s one of the most effective ways to make money. Because platforms like Facebook and Instagram are so popular, content is king.
According to Holy Johnson, a writer and entrepreneur who now has time for traveling the world and being with her family, “While you don’t necessarily need a full-fledged blog to work as a freelancer or writer, it helps to have an “online home” where people can find you. For some people, it’s a blog they update several times per month. For others, it’s more of an online business card that showcases their best work.”
2 Know your ideal clients–and write for them
Oberlo.com, a website that specializes in dropshipping for ecommerce business leaders, is constantly posting content that interests their clients, from the pros and cons of wholesale dropshipping to free online logo makers. They know their audience and post constantly, which in turn gives them success. 43 percent of people admit to skimming blog posts, which is why it’s so important for your content to be creative, informative, and helpful to your ideal clients.
So, for example, if you’re providing writing and editing assistance to college students, then your content will include things like “10 Best Apps to Help You Ace Your Next Exam.” If you’re writing branded content and want to get clients like Juul e-cigarettes, then you can write an article such as “7 Ways to Improve your SEO Strategy.” Not sure what kind of content your clients need? Then check out HubSpot’s free buyer persona template.
3 Use an SEO Strategy
Speaking of SEO strategy, if you want people to come across your writing services website, portfolio, or blog, and get clients through it, then you need to focus on your Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy. Basically, it’s a way to get more hits on Google–and get a high enough score that you’ll appear within the first couple pages of results. One great way of doing is this to post regularly; websites with a blog usually have 434 percent more indexed pages, which means that they’re more likely to appear at the top of search results.
Additionally, there are specific hacks you can use for SEO. It’s not just about using the right keywords anymore, now that Google’s analytics are more and more complex–you’ll also want to optimize your pictures and include external links. For more on how to improve your SEO, check out this article.
4 Take your business seriously
Especially because writing is something you love, and because many people think it’s one of those services they deserve for free (or for an incredibly low rate), you may be willing to accept lower pay or even write for free. But you should be taking yourself as seriously as the writing you love so much. But the fact is, advertising and copywriting work can earn you over $3,000 per piece–so don’t forget your value as a creative.
According to freelancewriting.com, “You must ask for a retainer – a payment up front – from your clients. Since magazines and newspapers fight this, writing for them should only be a minor part of your writing income…Businesses and websites expect to pay some portion of your fee in advance, so they’re your preferred clients. The up-front retainer is 50 percent. On long projects, you can accept payment at specific milestones – a third up front, a third on delivery of half the project, and so on.”
As you can see, turning your love of writing is actually possible–it’s all about putting yourself out there online, with content and beautiful website clients can visit, and knowing your worth as a business leader. It’ll be slow, in the beginning, but just patient: it’s worth the wait.
What inspired you to turn your love of writing into a business?