There’s the writing that freelance writers publish online, and then there’s the writing online that all freelancers should be doing regardless of their respective niches. If you want to take your freelancing career up a notch, writing online about different issues that affect your industry – or even topics that are remotely related to your niche – can help a great deal. Writing gets your name out there in ways that being on a hiring platform, sending out pitches or creating a social media presence can’t. Whatever your area of expertise and regardless of how you rate your writing skills, you need to start publishing content that talks about who you are, what you do, and how well you do it.
Selling always begins with building rapport with your target market. As a freelancer, your business is you, and you need to connect with people and expand your network. Writing online allows you to share who you are through personal stories, genuine thoughts on various matters in your field, and just adding a dash of personality and a sprinkle of character here and there. Writing online to build yourself up as a freelancer is not all about skills. The most successful businesses don’t hire people based solely on their knowledge. They also take into account their attitudes and how well they would fit into the company culture. It can be tempting to hide behind a safer profile, but being transparent is what will land you the gigs that you are most suited for and will be happiest in.
Write a few posts that allow readers to get to know you a little bit better. Or, write some of your less serious posts in a style that allows your personal characteristics to shine through. This is a great way to let clients know who you are when you have not yet had a chance to meet with them. If they like how you think and share those thoughts, they will be more likely to reach out to you when they have several other prospects with the same skill sets and backgrounds.
As a freelancer, you may have more than one skill that you can market. You should, however, be marketing a particular niche as part of your personal branding. Freelancing is like owning a business, and having that clear focus to write about helps you to establish your brand. There is nothing wrong with being a jack of all trades, but this type of focused writing online will help clients find you more easily and remember you more readily.
Start creating content that revolves around your focus area, such as trends, current issues, and even fun stories and personal experiences. Remember, however, to keep your writing professional at all times, even as you are free to express your true opinions. These pieces will connect you to that particular niche so that potential clients will begin to associate it with you as time goes by.
Every brand needs to do a little fancy footwork to get their product in the public eye. As a freelancer, you are branding yourself, so you need to do a bit of a sales shuffle to show the world what you can do. Having an online portfolio is no longer enough to grab the attention of potential clients. Writing online shows that you have current knowledge in your niche and that you are actively working to improve yourself. This makes you a more valuable prospect for talent-seekers.
Once you have focused your brand identity by choosing a specialization, start drafting a few pieces where you can work in your expertise. This is the launch point for you to market yourself as an authority in your area. Maintain your personal branding in each piece, but start talking about the more technical aspects of your line of work to show off your skills. Remember, don’t just stuff anything in there but remain focused to continue developing your brand.
Publishing content is an effective way to get to a place where you can reach more clients in a meaningful way. If you are hesitant to start writing online, just think back to the first time that you tried doing what it is that you now love doing for a living. There is always a healthy dose of apprehension that comes along with a genuine desire to do good work. As with most things that we do, practice makes perfect. Think about how much content you actually already produce on a daily basis – emails, social media updates, videos, emails. The path to building up a generous collection of your very own content starts with that first post. Pick something simple that you know you can talk about without batting an eye. You’ll be surprised what you can get down on paper once you give it a shot.
If you are looking to level-up your freelancing career, then this means that you know where you want to get to. Keep that goal in sight and keep writing online no matter how tedious it may sometimes get. Don’t get distracted by how much you want to be like the towering figures you read about online. You are on your way there. Writing online in a consistent fashion will get your name out there and show clients that you are really headed somewhere.
Julia Valdez is a professional teacher, practicing clinical pastor, and long-time lover of the art of words on paper and the stage. She spends most of her time doing freelance content writing and management, community volunteer work with the Philippine Advocates for Resilient Communities, adventuring with the Greenhouse Christian Fellowship, and sharing lots of laughs over little crazy things.
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