How to Find the Best Freelance Writing Jobs
There is a reason why the freelance sector is experiencing a surge of interest right now – the ability to work from home.
This gives the option to choose your own hours. And you can pick and choose what projects excite you.
In 2019, freelance website Upwork reported that 57 million Americans undertook freelance work, representing 35% of the national workforce.
And just last year, freelancers contributed $1.2 trillion to the US Economy.
With such big numbers involved, this sector can safely be predicted to continue flourishing, making it a popular option for writers of all ages – whether they have recently graduated or are looking for a midlife career change.
Working as a freelance writer can be a great career choice, but it also requires self-motivation, determination and energy.
As a freelancer, you are solely responsible for driving new business growth. You need to be capable of managing your time and your expectations.
And as well as being a creative writer, you need to be organized and adept at administrative tasks.
One reason why freelance writing jobs are highly sought after is because there are no specific qualifications required.
It is about ability, not academia.
If you have a flair for words or are a great storyteller, then you may have the skills that you need to find regular work as a freelancer content writer.
There are numerous training courses that you can do to improve your skills.
Others prefer to complete creative writing workshops or journalism courses.
Those studying for a humanities degree may find they are good writers, as they will naturally pick up creative thinking skills, which can be put to good use as a writer.
Suppose that you are looking for online writing jobs and you want to work with local businesses. In that case, you may benefit from additional training in areas such as Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) or digital marketing.
Businesses are increasingly subcontracting their content out to external freelance writers.
If you can show that you understand how content plays an essential role within business strategy, you will be more likely to win new work. And as your portfolio develops and you gain more experience and an excellent reputation, you will naturally increase your earning potential.
To find out more about online courses that will help you secure the best freelance writing jobs, read this article about online training for career development.
To be a successful freelance copywriter, you need to be aware of the wide range of required skills.
First, while this may sound obvious, you must be a great writer.
- Have a good sense of vocabulary, grammar and syntax. It is a waste of time for clients to receive copy that is full of errors.
- Understand how to pitch the tone of voice and write engaging and compelling copy that catches a reader's attention
- Understand how to research an article in full – they know which resources are reliable and can quickly spot disinformation (hence the need for critical and analytical thinking).
Second, freelance writers should be able to adapt their writing styles for different clients.
Each client will have their preferred style, and you need to change the way you write quickly and easily.
You may need to use a lengthy style guide, depending on the type of writing you do, and may need to remember different styles for multiple clients at the same time.
Third, it will help if you manage your time effectively, understand what you are being asked to do and meet your deadlines.
You are singularly responsible for all of your work-related admin tasks, from issuing contracts to invoicing. Therefore, you need to be highly organized and work as efficiently as possible.
You may benefit from writing comprehensive to-do lists.
Finally, you also need to be able to sell yourself.
Clients want to know why they should pick you over and above other freelance content writers. Therefore, to win the best freelance writing jobs, you need to showcase your skills and expertise.
This could be through your website, through the development of an online portfolio or even through the way you network with others and build professional contacts.
More than ever, businesses are investing in content because they understand its role in attracting new customers and improving their reputation.
When you start searching for content writing or copywriting jobs, you may become overwhelmed by the sheer volume of options available.
Each type of writing has its distinct style, and through experience, you'll quickly learn which types suit you.
Here are some options:
Blog writing – Businesses are now regularly paying freelance writers to research and write regular blog posts for their corporate websites.
Content creation – There is still a demand for brochures/flyers and more in-depth e-books, white papers and research projects.
Copywriting – You could be asked to write specific landing pages for a website or asked to write email newsletters on behalf of a brand. You may even be asked to write sales letters that a client can send to a customer.
Email newsletters – Some businesses prefer to hire freelance copywriters for specific tasks that they do not have the internal resourcing for, such as sending out regular emails to customers.
Proposal/bid writer – These are designed to help clients win new businesses. As a result, they can be a highly lucrative area of freelance writing work.
SEO writing – Clients need to have compelling content that is ranked highly in search engines. Search engine optimization (SEO) is about understanding how to write content that makes sense and engages readers while also adhering to Google algorithms.
Social media – If a firm doesn't have the time to manage their social media proactively, they may hire a freelance writer to handle it on their behalf.
Speechwriter – In some circumstances, you can gain lucrative work as a freelance speechwriter, perhaps for businesses that are hosting specific events or maybe for someone trying to run for political office (local, state or federal).
Web content – Many businesses know that they need to have regular written content added to their website. They may hire an external freelance copywriter to manage this on their behalf without investing in a full-time paid employee.
Freelancer writers need to hustle hard to win the best freelance writing jobs.
As you are solely responsible for your income stream, you need to be organized and allocate time per week to new business development.
This can be as simple as updating your social media/website or attending networking events (either in person or virtually), scouring job boards for freelance writing job opportunities or registering with agencies.
As you gain experience and develop a reputation, you may find that clients start to come direct to you (perhaps through word-of-mouth recommendations).
But as you begin your freelance writing career, you need to be aware of the different ways you can find work and maximize any professional contacts you may have.
It takes time and persistence to build up a portfolio of clients, and you may find that initially much of your work is project-led rather than retained monthly contracts that give you a fixed income.
Freelance writing can be a scary profession – unlike paid employment, there is no guarantee of an income. Everything is down to how much effort you put in.
However, the rewards of being in control over your earning potential and career development mean that the effort is worth it.
A quick and easy way to find regular writing jobs that allow you to work independently at home is to register an account with various writing websites.
These sites are widely used by businesses that publish details of writing opportunities to find a perfect match.
Over the last year, freelancers have earned over $1 billion through Fiverr, one of the world's largest freelance websites.
There are plenty of writing opportunities available through this site, which also sources job opportunities for graphic designers, web developers, translators, illustrators, etc.
You can build good connections to amplify your written work.
This is possibly one of the most well-known freelance websites around. It is a worldwide market place which means that there are ample freelance writing job opportunities available.
You must bid for each opportunity you want, with a stand-out proposal so the client chooses you.
However, to get the best use out of Upwork, you need to have most of your work through it, else the fees may not be worth it.
You can develop long-term business relationships, and once you earn above certain thresholds with each client, the fees reduce.
This is a valuable resource to use because it not only matches you with writing jobs but it provides helpful career development resources.
You can get feedback and recommendations on your portfolio, as well as opportunities for training.
Unlike other sites, it requires a paid-for subscription, but the standard of the work available makes it highly beneficial.
There are numerous part-time, full time and freelance writing job opportunities listed on ProBlogger.
The dashboard is intuitive to use and, with over 300k+ writers registered, it is proven to be an effective tool to find remote writing jobs.
The resource section is helpful and can give some great insights into improving your capabilities and knowledge.
Publoft differs from other sites as it vets your writing skills as part of the entrance criteria.
This means that only competent writers can register for an account, which aids the site's reputation and encourages businesses to publish freelance writing job opportunities.
FlexJobs has thousands of freelance writing jobs available with clients around the world.
It is used by brands including Apple, Xerox, Salesforce and Dell.
There is a significant career coaching element to the website, meaning that it is a great resource to help you start your freelance copywriting career.
Once you have set up a profile to source work, you have to 'bid' to the client and explain why they should pick you, similar to Upwork.
This is an excellent exercise in learning how to sell yourself and catch someone's attention.
The more you get used to doing this online, the easier you will find it in the real world.
This is an excellent option for online writing jobs, as there are numerous options available.
If you have exquisite attention to detail, you may also be interested in various proofreading jobs available.
Contently is highly regarded as a content marketing platform used by some of the biggest brands in the world.
The freelancer job opportunities available on the site are reputable and well paid.
This is possibly the best option for those with extensive copywriting experience.
This site pays close attention to both its writers and its business clients to ensure a seamless match between both parties.
This attention to detail is why so many people return again and again.
There are various assessments that you need to pass during the registration process.
These allow the site to gauge your skills and match you to the best freelance writing jobs.
If you are ready to start working as a freelance writer, you need to learn how to sell yourself effectively.
A top tip is to ensure that you have an up-to-date resume that accurately demonstrates your writing experience and skills.
It is likely that a potential client will want to review your resume to confirm any previous experience.
Create an online portfolio of work that you can share with prospective clients (make sure you have permission to share a clients work in your portfolio before doing so).
There are many different ways you can manage your work. You could choose to store copies of your writing within a Google Drive (complete with organizational sub-folders) or you could use online tools such as Wakelet or PortfolioBox.
You may also want to practice your elevator pitch.
If you are frequently attending networking events or building professional contacts, you need to know how to promote yourself quickly and memorably.
Ensure that you have a website ready and business cards to share with contacts, and try to keep your LinkedIn profile as up-to-date as possible.
As you start to build a client base, do not be afraid to ask for constructive feedback or testimonials that you can use to share with your network.
These testimonials will verify who you have worked with and how happy the client was with your work.
Even if you are new to the world of writing, it is still feasible to create a thriving freelancing writing career – it is about making the most of opportunities that present themselves to you.
You could start by volunteering to work with charitable or community organizations in exchange for a testimonial and content to add to your portfolio.
Building a freelance business foundation is about dedicating enough time to the hustle. This means making sure that you are committed to finding opportunities.
Successful freelance content writers succeed because they have taken the time to search for the work, update their social media networks and make professional contacts.
As you start, you need to consider business development as one of your priorities. For at least a year, you should be allocating at least one day per month to business development, ensuring that you are setting the foundations for a lasting career.
There are more opportunities for freelance writing jobs than ever before.
2022 has seen an explosion in freelance opportunities. Businesses are starting to understand that employing freelancers can give them the skills and expertise they need more cost-effectively.
As you start your freelance writing career, it can be tempting to set your rates low to get the work. However, you need to know your value.
You need to ensure that your rates pay for your writing time and enough of an income to cover your non-billable time (such as the time you spend on administrative tasks). You also need to ensure that your rates will cover your expenses and taxes.
A practical tip is to pay close attention to the going rate of employed copywriters or marketing experts. That should help you know your value and your worth amongst those with a similar experience and skill set.
Freelance writing can be a practical and flexible career choice. With so many different types of freelance writing jobs available, you can easily create a niche that suits your skills, allowing you to work to your strengths.
And when you are working to your strengths, you will find that your professional career will flourish and become far more enjoyable.
Here at WikiJob, there are a wide variety of resources available to help you improve your skills, whether you are working employed in a full-time or part-time role or taking the first steps to becoming a freelancer.
These articles are designed to improve your employability and help you understand how you can upskill yourself.