If you don’t want to use up precious writing (and money earning) time seeking out freelance writing clients and pitching ideas to them, then online jobs boards can be a quick and easy way to find writing jobs that allow you to work from home. Jobs boards are also a great way for new freelance bloggers to find work and start to build up their freelance writing portfolio. When you first look at an online jobs board, the amount and variation of work can be confusing and often daunting. We give you 5 tips on choosing the right freelancing writing job from an online jobs board.
Choose your online jobs board carefully
There are definitely jobs boards and jobs boards. Take some time to look at the type of work on offer, the prices offered for jobs and the level of protection that the board offers their writers. In our experience, the smaller the board the more likely you are to find quality jobs that suit your style of writing, but this comes with a caveat; small jobs boards such as We Like to Work offer great opportunities but these don’t come along as often as you might like.
Think carefully about UK and US English
On the surface, writing in US English when you are used to UK English or the other way round is not that difficult and shouldn’t necessarily put you off taking on a job. Spell checkers can be permanently set to suit whichever mode you require and grammar websites such as Grammarist are really helpful when it comes to sorting out your ‘organisation’ from your ‘organization’. However, having to think about your grammar and spelling in a different way can take more time than you have spare (especially when you are starting out on lower paid jobs) and even the most alert of blog writers can mistakenly slip an English idiom into a US piece of writing. If your natural writing is UK English then consider charging a bit more for your time if you take jobs for the US.
Look for topics that you understand
We all have more confidence with some topics than others. For example, our writer Fi Darby has her own walking blog and loves to write about the great outdoors, she is also confident with IT because she used to teach it and family life because there isn’t much that bringing up 3 lively children can’t teach you. Freelance blog writing, however, is never that simple and, in order to keep in work, you will have to be prepared to take on at least some topics with which you are not familiar. Choosing the right writing job from a jobs board relies on you striking a balance between what you already know and what you think you can learn. As you do this more, your confidence will grow and you will embrace and enjoy the challenge of learning while you are writing.
Check that there is already information available on that topic
Nobody knows everything about everything and even the best copywriters and blog writers rely, to some extent, on information that is already out there on the internet. The trick with blog writing isn’t being able to rewrite somebody else’s blog post (you will find this boring and your writing will be stunningly unoriginal), but rather to be able to find and check available information in order to intelligently inform your own writing. The internet isn’t the only place to find information, building up a network of social media contacts can be helpful as can seeking out experts (especially ones who like talking about how expert they are!)
Don’t ever underprice yourself
It is very difficult when you start out as a freelance blog writer, to know what price to put on your writing. Too little and you will wear yourself into the ground in order to pay the bills, too much and you won’t find work (at least not until you have built up a decent portfolio). There are several ways to approach this issue, the best one is to look at how much you would earn per hour if you were in a salaried position. Once you know this and you know how long it takes you to write a 1000 word blog post, you are in a great position to make sensible decisions about your pricing. Stick to your guns on pricing, even if you end up losing prospective clients, there will always be other clients out there and the best ones will understand if you feel you have to charge more for certain jobs because they have specific requirements. Only ever consider taking on cheap jobs if they are quick, easy and fill a gap in your more serious client schedule.
At Fi Darby Freelance, blog writing is our speciality but are you sure you understand what a blog actually is? Find out more here.
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