If you’re like a lot of writers, you’ve had the love of writing for as long as you can remember. Whether you wrote short stories as a child or have always dreamed of being a published author, it’s probably always been something you hoped you could do for a living.
But when you realized that the chances of getting a book published were small or the job competition in journalism was fierce, it may have seemed a career as a writer was simply dream.
Well, writing for a living…a very good and comfortable living…doesn’t need to be a dream.
It’s simply time to shift your thinking and upgrade your strategy because in today’s virtual world, there are tremendous opportunities for writers to carve out their own opportunities, all from their writing skills.
It’s not like taking a job in the real world, where you take what you can get. You can be selective when bringing your writing skills online because there really is a market for just about everything.
There are a few ways you can approach making money from writing:
* Work as a freelancer and apply to the many thousands of job listings you can find online.
* Start your own writing business where you serve a clientele of people that you love to work with.
* Create your own books and information products that you sell, building your loyal audience along the way.
* Publish free content (think blogs, social media) and monetize it with offers for products you get paid for.
Which you decide will probably depend on your immediate needs, preferences and long term goals. Let’s go through these options to see what might be best for you.
There is no shortage of writing jobs online. You can find writing opportunities on topics you’re interested in from sites like Upwork, Freelancer and other sites.
You can articles, books, advertisements, blog posts and all kinds of content that clients need. These are the perfect opportunity to start earning some cash right away and to get your feet writing for pay.
The only problem is, not all listings are created equally and you’ll find a lot of low paying jobs from companies who have unreasonable demands, so you have to be careful and do your homework in finding the right jobs. We actually do a lot of this job sorting for our members at WriterHelpWanted.com and provide them with featured listings with the best writing jobs available out there.
Working with clients can also be a challenge because you are subject to their deadlines and demands. You also need to account for the time spent searching and applying for jobs because you aren’t paid for that. But if you can pick up a job or two, you’ll start seeing money coming in and if you do a good job, the client is likely to hire you again.
Your Own Writing Business
While freelancing sites are great for getting your first jobs, if you plan to continue to write for clients, the next logical step is to start your own writing business.
Instead of just applying for random jobs, you decide what type of writing you do and what kind of client you work with. And your clients come to you, instead of you chasing down work constantly.
Running your own business offers the following benefits:
You get to determine your rates and have more control over deadlines and other details of projects.
You are able to attract your ideal client and work solely with people who are a pleasure to work for.
One of the best ways to get more business is through word of mouth and having your own business makes it easy for people to refer clients to you.
Setting up your own business isn’t too complicated. All it takes is a website and you’re ready to start finding clients and developing long term relationships with them.
Books and Information Products
When you work for clients, it’s important to remember that you only get paid for the time you’re working and that makes it difficult to scale that business or experience the freedom that comes with truly being your own boss.
So instead of serving clients, you become your own publisher, you have unlimited earning potential because you’re creating content once and selling it over and over again.
You can publish books on platforms like Amazon. Or you can create information products or ebooks and selling them from your own website site.
The benefit of this is:
* As mentioned, you create the content once and sell it over and over again.
* You grow your own audience of buyers that you can continue to sell products to.
* You create content on your own terms and aren’t tied to client project specifications and deadlines.
If you’ve already got writing skills and interest in a topic, creating a product is quite simple and it doesn’t cost a thing.
Just like publishing books and information products, monetized content allows you to be in complete control of the work you do.
Basically, you pick a niche topic an you create free content on blogs, offer a newsletter, post on social media and more. You attract an audience that is looking for content on the topics you write about and then you monetize that content.
You can monetize the content by:
* Recommending products as an affiliate for other companies. The company provides you with a special referral link and when someone buys from that link, you earn a commission.
* Displaying advertising on your website. You can sell ad spots or work with an ad network like Google Adsense, which pays you whenever someone clicks the links on your page.
* Create your own books and information products that you sell to the audience consuming your content.
A Couple Things to Keep in Mind
Where you start in your goal to earn from your writing is up to you, but keep these things in mind…
Pick One Approach to Focus On
Many writers try to balance trying to get clients and creating their own info products and that is a tough way to go. Often the products never get done or the client work suffers. Instead, put your full effort into one thing and you’ll see success much more quickly. Eventually, you can start adding and adjusting as you see some success, but when you’re brand new and just learning the ropes, doing more than one thing dilutes your success.
Be the Best at What You Do
If you’re working with clients, always do your best work, meet your deadlines and avoid making excuses. Be prepared for constructive criticism and respond to it appropriately. If you have a new client, first impressions are critical, so do everything you can to ensure their experience with you is flawless. A new client is potentially a repeat client that can earn you a lot of money over time, so make the best impression possible.
If you’re venturing out on your own, creating your own products or publishing content yourself, always think of how you can serve your audience best and do what you can to do deliver that. Check out what other people are doing in your niche and work to stand out from the crowd to grow a loyal audience.
What to Do Next: Get This Free Download
If you’re ready to start brainstorming on the writing markets you might explore, we’ve got a free guide called 34 Ways to Profit from Your Writing. Get your copy.