Are you reading dozens of blog posts about becoming a freelance writer? But still confused about how you can start your freelance journey. And get the first dollars for writing.
Don’t worry it’s not only you, many people struggle with the same
But not anymore
In this post, I’m going to share a super detailed guide on how to become a freelance writer without experience. And get your first paycheck.
You don’t need a degree to become a high-paying freelance writer.
I promise this is the last guide you need to start your freelancing writing business.
Let’s jump right in…
What is content writing?
Content writing is the process of writing, editing, and publishing content on the web.
There are different kinds of content writing that include: blog posts, product descriptions, web copies, social media content, emails, landing pages, ad copies, video scripts, etc.
What does a Freelance Content Writer do?
A Freelance content writer writes content for businesses. The content can be a blog post, email, ad copy, social media content, landing page, etc.
Freelance writers work on a contractual basis, unlike full-time employees.
How to get started with Freelance Writing without experience
Now you know what content writing is and what a content writer does.
It’s time to get started with freelance writing.
#1 Choose your Niche
Choosing your niche is a vital step in content writing. You should choose a niche that you know well. And you must enjoy writing about it. Otherwise, you will burn out.
I love writing about Digital Marketing. I write about marketing.
Here are some niches that you can choose from.
- Digital Marketing
- Self Development
- Finance / Personal Finance
- Cryptocurrency / Blockchain
- Technology Writing
- SaaS (Software-as-a-Service)
- Real Estate
You can choose from these niches and start writing about them.
Although some freelance writers choose the general niche. And they write about multiple topics and earn a handsome amount of money.
#2 Sharp your Writing Skills
Once you’ve chosen a niche, you need to develop and work on your writing skills.
Crafting a blog post: You need to know how to craft a good blog post. For example, if you want to write how-to guides, list posts, news, definition, or case studies.
You should also know how to write headlines and introductions.
You must have a clear idea about what you’re writing and for whom you’re writing.
If you keep this in your mind while writing the post, your post will be super useful for sure.
#3 Read blogs in your industry
There are thousands of blogs in almost all niches. Make a list of 5-10 blogs in your niche that are doing well and read those blogs.
So you will have a clear idea of what is working and what is not. If you read blogs in your industry you will stay up to date with the latest data and trends.
I read some marketing blogs
You should read blogs in your industry.
It will help you a lot to become a good freelance writer.
#4 Write, Write, and Write
As you can’t learn to swim without entering the pool. Similarly, you can’t become a writer without writing.
I’ll suggest you write every single day. You will see the difference within 30 days.
And your writing will get better each day for sure.
Sometimes you might not feel like writing but still, you have to write.
I’m not saying to write a 2,000 words long post. You can start with as low as 300 words per day. Then eventually you can increase the word count.
Head over to Google Docs and start writing. Many writers use MS Office to write content.
You can use whatever you like. I like using Google Docs.
You can use tools like Grammarly to avoid grammar mistakes.
#5 Write some samples
Now you should have a clear idea about how to write a blog post.
You need to come up with 3-5 topics in your niche.
You can use any keyword research tool to find a topic.
Here are some tools that you can use.
- Google Keyword Planner
Head over to any keyword research tool and enter a related to your niche. You will get some keyword ideas that you can write.
Once you have some keywords, write a detailed blog post around those topics.
These posts will be your sample to show your potential clients. So make the posts as good as you can.
Take your time to research, write, and edit your blog posts.
Write the posts on Google Docs. It will help you to share it with your potential clients easily.
You can also publish the posts on Medium or LinkedIn.
#6 Create a solid portfolio
Freelancers are familiar with the word “Portfolio”. When you try to pitch someone the first they ask is a portfolio, right?
In the initial stage of your career, you might not have a portfolio. That’s pretty obvious.
When clients ask for a portfolio and you can’t show one, it hurts. I know that.
This is why I suggested you write some samples to show them.
You need to build a solid portfolio to establish a freelance writing business.
It would help if you had some real clients and their testimonials to show your potential clients.
You might be thinking about how you can create a portfolio.
Here are some tips.
Start your website – You can create your website with your name. Or you can choose any other business name as well.
This is an awesome article by Shrey Kajaria on how to start a blog.
Creating a website is damn easy. You can build a simple website with WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, etc.
I’ll suggest going with WordPress.
You need to create some pages like About, Testimonial, Services, Contact, and so on.
Here are some freelance writers’ websites.
- Tyler Koenig
- Chidinma Nnamani
- Kayla Hollatz
Google Docs Portfolio – It’s free and super easy to create a portfolio on Google Docs. Open a new blank document and write some headings like About, Services I Offer, Testimonial, Writing Samples, Contact Details, and so on.
And write about yourself, how you can help them, what others are saying about your writing, provide the links of your samples, and how they can contact you.
Here you can see in the image.
#7 Land on your first client & get your first paycheck
The best feeling is getting your first payment as a freelancer. It’s an awesome experience. When I got my first payment, I was feeling crazy.
Now it’s your turn to get your first client and payment.
It’s time to get real-world experience as a freelance writer.
The most challenging task is getting the first client. Once you get the first client then you gain confidence. But before that, there’s a lot of hustle.
And It’s difficult to get the first client. Because you’re a newbie and nobody knows you.
So now the question is how to get the first freelance writing client.
I’m going to share some actionable tips to get your first client.
Cold Email: Cold email is an effective way to get the first client as a newbie. Make a list of your prospects and collect their email address.
Now start reaching out to them. In the beginning, you should reach out to at least 30-50 prospects per day.
LinkedIn: If you’re a freelancer and not using LinkedIn you are missing something really big. LinkedIn is the goldmine of potential clients.
Because here you can find CEOs, Founders, Directors, and other decision-makers of a company.
You can find hundreds of opportunities. And you can directly connect with them.
Freelance Platform – Many new freelancers choose freelance platforms like Fiverr, Upwork, Freelancers.com, PeoplePerHour, Guru, etc. to find clients.
Nowadays It’s quite difficult to get clients on these platforms. There is huge competition on these platforms. Even if you find clients, those will not pay you much.
I’m not saying that you shouldn’t be on these platforms. Of course, you can get clients on freelancing platforms. But you should rely only on these platforms.
I’ll suggest along with freelance platforms you should also try Cold Email and LinkedIn to get clients.
Facebook Groups: Facebook is the most popular social media. Maybe you’re also using Facebook daily. Did you know you get freelance writing clients from Facebook?
Yes, there are some freelance groups where you can find real clients. Many freelancers got their first clients from Facebook groups.
Some Facebook groups to get freelance writing jobs.
- The Cult of Copy
- Freelancer & Content Writers
- The Freelance Content Marketing Writer
There are many other groups as well. You can search on Facebook.
#8 Treat Freelancing like a business
Many freelancers fail even after getting clients and earning money. Because they don’t treat freelancing like a business.
In reality, freelancing is a one-man business. Think like you’re a business owner. You have to handle everything in your business. When you can’t handle the work, you can hire people to work for you.
You need to build a system in your freelance writing business.
I’ve seen many people who started their journey as freelancers. And now they are doing online business and earning huge amounts of money.
#9 Network with other freelancers
Networking with other like-minded people can get you more clients for your business.
In this era of social media, it’s not that hard to find people to build connections with them.
You can use LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook to connect with other freelancers. You can join relevant groups to find them.
Another way of networking is to attend conferences. At conferences, you can see business owners and like-minded people.
# Bonus: Learn SEO
In case you don’t know SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. SEO is a practice to improve your search visibility on search engines.
Let’s say you’ve written a super detailed post on How To Make French Toast. But when people are searching for it, you’re not coming up in the search engine.
Because you haven’t optimized a blog post for search engines. In this case, you can lose potential traffic.
So you should do basic On-Page-SEO to improve your ranking in search engines like Google.
If you know how to optimize a blog post for search engines. It’s another skill as a freelancer.
And you can charge more money $ for your writing service.
This is a complete guide on how to become a freelance writer without experience.
You can’t become a freelance writer unless you work with real clients. So first try to focus on getting your first client.
Follow the steps and see getting $$ coming into your bank account.
I hope this guide will help you start your freelance writing journey.
Let me know if you already started your freelance journey or not.
Subhrajyoti Mahato is a content marketing strategist and marketing writer. He specializes in helping businesses generate more revenue through content marketing. He loves reading and writing about marketing.