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How to be a freelance writer and earn $1000 in your first month

My job as an attorney wasn't adventurous enough for me, so I dived into the world of freelancing writing and earned $1000 within 4 months. Here is what I have to tell all the newbies out there

So, you have decided to launch your own freelance writing business.

Congrats!

The easy part is over! You have decided what you want to be.

Now comes the challenging part: How to be a freelance writer, land high paying clients and earn your first $1000

When I started out, I was a total n00b. Had absolutely no clue about freelancing, online writing or social media.

But, in 1 month of deciding to become a freelance writer, I learned a hell lot. I buried myself into any resource that talked about how to be a freelance writer.

And, guess what? In the first month writing, I totaled at $800.

I was on cloud nine (frankly, I slept the entire day to treat myself!). By no means I am bragging, just telling you it is possible if you implement the right strategies.

In this post, I will share how to be a freelance writer and earn your first $1000 in a month.

I did it, and you can too.

Now,

There is one thing I want to clear right off the bat. Do not underestimate your skills, knowledge or yourself in general. You can do a lot, just believe in yourself!

Ok, I am glad it is out in the open. Was not sure where would that fit in this post so I just inserted in here.

Let’s begin

I had a strong online presence and I networked like a badass “woo”-man

Once I decided to become a freelance writer, I quickly invested in a domain and hosting for a website.

Frankly, I had a budget of a pauper but I was convinced this was important!

So, I launched my website with a simple but FREE theme. I worked on it to make it look professional and adequately sell-able at that moment. (Yes, I learned how to DIY a website!)

Meaning, my website was clear on a few things

  • As soon as a client landed on my website, they knew what I can do for them. For example, one of the oldest versions of my website said I could write awesome content that can help my clients drive more traffic.

  • Another thing I made absolutely clear was my writing niche. I clearly stated that I helped “IT/Technology businesses”

  • In the same window (without having to scroll), my potential clients knew what services I offer. Considering I had just decided to become a freelance writer, I was open to all kinds of work. So, I offered – website copy, blogs, white papers, case studies etc.

Another thing you should focus on (which I did not and I realize how big a mistake that was) is SEO. Pick up a low competition long tail keyword keyword and try to get your writing website ranked for that.

This will automate client acquisition in the long run. (After you, you will drive organic traffic to your services website).

Once you have your own website, get on to any 2 relevant social media channels and network the hell out of it.

Follow your dream clients. Comment on their conversations. Add value. Get on their radar. Get noticed.

And, then pitch your services! You will be surprised at the result, *thank me later!*

Believe me, this is the secret sauce of how to be a freelance writer and earn your first $1000 in the same month

Ditch per word rate or hourly rates

If you fall in the rut of charging by the word or hourly rates, you may NOT end up getting paid what you ideally should.

Let’s understand it further.

  • Hour rates are the only time when efficiency is not rewarded. Meaning, if you could write a post in 1 hour, you will just be paid for that hour. It is only because of your knowledge and expertise it took an hour for a post which would otherwise take 3-4 hours. So I ruled out hourly rates unless I fall into a situation where I cannot estimate the amount of work it can take.

  • If you are charging per word, you will fall into the vicious cycle of wanting to increase words in order to increase revenue. Sometimes clients also start feeling that you are stretching posts only to charge them extra. To avoid this entire situation and keep your brains free from this rubbish, charge per post or project

Besides these reasons, 25 cents per word and $100 an hour, both sounds much more scary than $250 a post!

So, kiss these two styles goodbye and welcome a flat fee

Dictate your terms and draw a favorable contract

Getting paid is crucial, isn’t it?

As a freelance writer, there are often times, when clients abandon you or stall payments for a long time.

Do you know how to be a freelance writer that always gets paid?

By legally binding your clients!

To protect yourself from unpredictable situations, it is important to dictate the payment terms and draw a favorable contract.

As an attorney (oh! Did I mention I was an attorney before this?!) , I was very picky with a few conditions

  • I demanded a 50% non-refundable fee. You don’t want to get stuck in a position where you have worked on a project and midway client puts it on hold or cancels it. Even if they do, you want to be paid for your time and work

  • Payment term of 7 days after the invoice is raised.

  • Permission to use all the work as samples to showcase your next potential client

  • Ensuring method of payment – bank transfer, PayPal etc. You really need to figure out your costs. For example, PayPal takes a considerable cut from each payment which goes through them.

  • The scope of work. Be very clear with deliverables and what is expected of you.

Care about your clients and the readers

Take some time to understand their pain points and what resonates with them. Always (and, always) write to help your clients audience.

There are a few other things that you should absolutely follow

  • Hit every deadline: Even if you are a procrastinator or lazy as a pig, send your deliverable on time. Give your clients a longer turnaround time if possible!

  • Ask the right questions, don’t just start writing.

Inject personality into your writing

There is just so much content out there that it is easy to write on any topic.

What is not easy is to inject personality into content.

If your client is not corporate or buttoned up, throw a GIF, joke, references to sitcoms or anything that shows you are fun (and a real human being!).

Readers come back for the awesome!

So, there you go. This is your key to “how to become a freelance writer and earn $1000”.

These strategies helped me command higher rates.

Don’t keep waiting for the right moment to happen. Don’t keep waiting to be “perfect” with everything.

Launch your writing business, work your way up and start charging what you are worth! You can also sign up for my free course, here

So, do you have questions on how to be a freelance writer? What is it that you are going to do to earn your first $1000 as a beginner freelance writer? Let’s talk about it in the comments

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