One of the top questions I am asked is how I became a freelance writer and professional blogger. I touched on it a little in the Why Freelance Blogging post, but I thought I would go more in-depth.
It all started with a blog.
If you aspire to be a freelance blogger, then you must have a blog. Your blog is your hub – the place where you will demonstrate your knowledge and skills. It is the platform that you will build your reputation upon.
Of course, starting a blog alone will not turn you into a freelance blogger overnight. It took me a little over two years from when I first started my main blog, Kikolani, until I received my first paid writing opportunity.
In truth, I never considered freelance writing as a career. But then I received that email that started out with “Say, are you interested in doing any freelance writing work?” and concluded with the rates they offered for their posts.
I was definitely interested.
It wasn’t just my blog that led to that first inquiry, however. I was doing something else that helped boost my reputation in my industry.
I was guest blogging.
By the time I had received my first writing gig, I had already been published at Search Engine Journal, Search Engine Watch, and Social Media Examiner. I was fortunate to have gained these opportunities through people I had met online, my employer at the time, and being listed as a top social media blog in 2010.
Amazingly, my first client led me to many more clients. This was thanks to one simple yet powerful change that I made in my author bio on my client’s blog as well as on my social networks.
I called myself a freelance writer.
It’s almost like the fake it until you make it strategy, except a little more legit since I had my first client. While one client doesn’t necessarily make you a freelance writer, calling yourself one leads to more clients.
I implemented the new one-line biography everywhere I could online – on my blog’s about page, guest post author bios, all of my social profiles, forum signatures, and so on.
So whenever someone asks me how they can get started as a freelance writer, I tell them this.
- Start a blog of your own and build it up as best you can.
- Submit guest posts to blogs in your industry to become well-known as a thought leader in your industry.
- Add a portfolio page to your blog that highlights your top posts on your own site and on others.
- Start a website dedicated to your freelance writing services separate from your blog. Because it will be focused on your writing business, it will lead to more conversions.
- Don’t wait for your first client – start identifying yourself a freelance writer and blogger when you’re ready to start attracting clients. Do it everywhere you can online.
As content marketing only continues to grow as a necessity for any business looking to have a strong online presence, freelance writers and bloggers are becoming more and more in demand. If you want to start earning money through freelance writing, start doing the above steps today. It will be worth it!