How to Suceed at Textbroker

 

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I'm a level 4 at TextBroker. Here's some tips. These tips are meant for people ...
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    Default How to Suceed at Textbroker

    I'm a level 4 at TextBroker. Here's some tips. These tips are meant for people who are new to TB.


    1. Use the search feature.

    It's not the best internal search engine ever built, but you can still find articles that you are interested in once you learn to work around its quirks. When you write articles that fascinate you, you write better, and clients will take notice. Additionally, these articles are much, much faster to write.

    2. Make note of categories that interest you.

    Write them down somewhere, and then only look for work within those categories. This will really help you cut down on time searching for an article. As you'll soon see, most of your time on Textbroker will be spent looking for a writable assignment. The caveat to this is if your preferred categories are dry.

    3. Make sure your Direct Order price is above the fixed price for your level.

    So, if you're a level 3, make sure your DO (Direct Order) price is above 1 cent per word. This will help you cut down on DO requests from Cheap Charleys who want to make you their personal writing boy/girl for peanuts. (They do exist, and they have this attitude that they are doing you a huge favor by offering you work at the OO rate) DO's take a lot longer on average to write than orders from the OO pool because the client feels he has the right to communicate with you more and request bigger revisions. Make sure you are compensated for this.

    4. Keep a consistent DO rate.

    I know from personal experience that if a client really wants you to write for them and they feel your DO rate is too high, Textbroker will step in on their behalf and ask if you are willing to lower your rate for the client. Be polite, but turn them down. Your rate is your rate. Don't play favorites, and don't sell yourself short. Everyone on Textbroker is looking for a deal, but if they really like your style, they'll pay your rate.

    5. Frame your article

    Before writing a single word, frame your article in Google Docs like so:

    -Intro paragraph

    -Main point of paragraph 1
    --followed by 2 backup points

    -Main point of paragraph 2
    --followed by 2 backup points

    etc

    -closing paragraph

    Doing it this way will ensure that your article is well structured. Even if well written, TB will rate you low if your article is a mess and/or incoherent

    A 500 word article should have around 4 "meat" paragraphs, with an intro and outro. I strongly recommend writing the intro last. It's much easier this way.

    6. Read your article aloud.

    This is maybe the most important step of all. TB does demand a rather high level of quality from its writers, and one sure-fire way to catch awkward phrasing and misused words is to read your article aloud. Trust me, once you've written 8 articles in a single five hour period, you will be in danger of making some silly mistakes on number 9 and 10. Read the article aloud before you do any editing to catch the glaring mistakes.

    7. Edit, edit, edit.

    Once you've read your article aloud and gotten rid of the big stuff, run it through a scanner like PaperRater (Free) or Grammarly (Not Free) to catch grammar and usage errors. Don't depend on these tools; they don't catch everything. To maintain a high level of quality and high TB ranking, you really do have to have a great handle on grammar. That said, these tools can make your life easier.

    You shouldn't be spending too much time on editing, and the best practice is to learn to edit as you write, and then edit again once you're done. It takes practice to self-edit quickly and to do it well.

    8. Don't spend more than a minute on a given assignment description

    If you read it once and it doesn't make sense, move on. Obviously, TB clients are not writers themselves, and many assignment descriptions are horribly written. This is just the way it is. Now, if you are a level 3, you may not be able to be so picky, but at level 4 you can and must be. Otherwise, you'll find that you spent half the day trying to decipher descriptions.
    On a similar note, don't waste time writing to the client and asking them to elaborate. Give them feedback if you want, but other than that, just move on.

    9. Don't shit where you sleep.

    This should go without saying, but don't go trolling in the TB forums. Don't flame, or hate or incite anything. TB is a small company, and if you make a stink, you will be remembered.

    10. Don't count on becoming a 5 star.

    There really aren't that many 5 star TB writers. Just write to your best ability, and be content with what you can make at the 4 star level. (You shouldn't be depending on this one gig anyway) If you make it to 5 star, great. If you don't, fine. Don't sweat it.

    11. Learn the AP Style Guide.

    There's really no way of getting around this. If you don't know AP Style, you won't last long at TB. Even worse, TB disagrees with some AP Style points, and you have to learn where. A great place to look for this info is on the TB Author forum. The people there are generally helpful.

    12. Always use a comma after an introductory clause.

    Just do it, whether you think the sentence requires a comma or not. It's a TB pet peeve.

    13. Don't take the proofreading test until you are 110% ready.

    It's a prerequisite to becoming a 5 star, it's incredibly difficult, and you only get one shot. It's only 10 questions, and you are allowed 1 wrong answer, but it's very difficult.

    14. Do a quick check on the client's stats.

    If you click on the client's number listed in one of their assignments, you can see their reject and revision rate.

    Reject rate should be no higher than 2%, and revision rate no higher than 7%.

    If those figures are high, just move on. Some clients expect the world for $5-$10, and obviously you don't want to be working for them. The most you owe them for that amount of money is typo/error free copy that is coherent, and has a definite beginning, middle and end. The smart clients know this, and won't make a hassle. Their stats will reflect this.

    15. Block the bad apples.

    If you notice a particular client consistently stinking up the OO pool with badly written assignment descriptions, or if they send you rude revision requests, you can block them. To do this, click on their client ID number and then click, "set client on blacklist." You will no longer see their orders.

    16. Keep notes on clients.

    From the same page mentioned above, you can write personal notes about clients you have worked for in the past. I keep a Google Docs database of clients that make consistent orders that have clear, well-written assignment descriptions. To find their orders in the OO pool, I paste a snippet of article descriptions that they use frequently into search, or else I simply send them a message asking them to direct me to their OOs.

    17. Join Teams

    Once you have some client and TB feedback on your account, apply to join teams that interest you. The pay is often much higher than OO orders, and the work can be fairly consistent. An additional benefit is that the orders are likely to be on subjects that interest you. Getting on that first team is the hardest part. After that, it becomes easy to get accepted.





    If I think of anything else, I'll update.
    Last edited by codexehow; 06-12-2012 at 09:46 AM.

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    Awesome tips man.

    thanks+rep added.

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    You're Welcome.


    18. Use active voice

    If you don't know the difference between active voice and passive voice, you won't get to level 4, much less 5. Active voice throws a lot of people, but it's not as scary as it seems.

    Active voice:


    You should always write in active voice whenever possible. When you do so, your articles are more gripping, direct and immediate. In this way, you can engage your readers, and hold their attention all the way to the end.

    Passive Voice:

    It is best when articles are written in active voice. Doing so results in articles that are more gripping, direct and immediate. In this way, readers are engaged, and their attention is held all the way to the end.

    The key here is to look for any forms of "to be" or similar in your writing. Now, you won't always be able to nix every instance of PV from your writing, nor should you strive to. Aim for a 80/20 ratio. Imagine that you are steering the subject of the sentence, making them take the action, and you'll stay in the active voice.

    Active voice is also an integral part of writing with authority, which leads me to...

    20. Write authoritatively

    Unless the client specifies otherwise, you should always write as if you are an expert on the topic. Keep qualifiers like "most of the time," "most experts agree," etc to a minimum. Remember that you are essentially ghostwriting here. Give your client a bit of an ego stroke by setting them up as an expert. More importantly, writing authoritatively is just good writing.

    That said, make sure you have your facts straight.

    21. Avoid redundancies

    This is a sign of an amateur writer. Don't say, "If all of us cooperate together, we will succeed." Just say, "If we cooperate, we will succeed."

    The second avoids the redundancy, and has fewer words as well, which is important. When you are being paid by word, you don't want to be accused of word-stuffing.
    Last edited by codexehow; 06-14-2012 at 06:03 AM.

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    Excellent tips... I'm not ghostwriting but this helps me improve writing my own content. I never knew passive and active voice until I started my subscription with grammarly.

    Your tips in content writing help me understand better, specially that I a not a native English speaker.

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    Thats a great effort to compile all these tips here.
    Keep it up.
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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    Thanks for sharing dude. Its kind of awesome. I think I am going to start this thing.

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    Hi! I am not US based and was looking for a partnership with someone with a level 4 TB account. I suggest 25% of my total weekly earnings will be yours. At level 4, I can easily make 100 bucks a day. Kindly let me know if this is possible. Thanks in advance!

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    Thank you for the guide! Definitely helped me get started with TextBroker!

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    No problem, guys. Glad to help.

    I haven't written for TB for a while because an editor graded five of my articles a "3" and dropped me to L3 status. This was after over 50 L4 articles in a row -.-. I can make a lot more at Constant-Content (when Constant-Content is getting traffic, anyway) than I can at TB, so I just rage quit.

    The mistake, however, was mine. When I looked at the feedback from this editor, I realized that he had been pointing out to me an error in the way that I was doing commas. TB claims to follow AP style, but they don't. Not really. They have their own style regarding comma use--which they outline in their blog--and they expect you to follow it.

    Even after realizing this I didn't bother writing for them. Recently they sent me a "Textbroker University" invite (some crappy videos that you may or may not need) so I decided to write a few for them. Wow, the L3 pool is crap :P. But it's doable. My goal is to get to L5. I can make $50/day at L4*, but I'd really like to write the longer articles at L5 since I write fast.

    So I guess what I'm suggesting is to go to their blog and learn how they want commas done before you get knocked down to L3 :P. And always check the editor's feedback when they finally get around to grading your stuff.

    Also, I may have mentioned this, but I highly recommend Scrivener for just about any writing project. It's a truly revolutionary writing tool. Disclaimer: I'm not affiliated with the owner, and don't get anything if you buy it.

    *it's technically possible to make $100/day at L4 if you're really motivated and can keep your quality level up.
    Last edited by codexehow; 05-22-2013 at 11:39 PM.

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    Extremely helpful tips, thanks!

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    Quote Originally Posted by codexehow View Post
    A 500 word article should have around 4 "meat" paragraphs, with an intro and outro. I strongly recommend writing the intro last. It's much easier this way.
    OK, so they like for you to have 4 thick paragraph?

    Something you've learned over time, or?

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    14. Do a quick check on the client's stats.

    That's the first thing I do. I learned early on that it doesn't pay to write for "anal-retentive man". If a client is paying a penny a word, they need to be realistic about the quality of work they get. Most of the clients I've seen that have high rejection rates, also have instructions that are like a page long.

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    For 8878 If I remember correctly, they suggest this when you start. Almost anywhere go, clients or bosses are not going to want 200 or 300 word paragraphs. It makes it hard for the reader to digest the information if it's in a wall of text.

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    Quote Originally Posted by codexehow View Post

    I highly recommend Scrivener for just about any writing project. It's a truly revolutionary writing tool.
    If I have MS Word with Grammarly installed, do I necessarily need Scrivener? Also, is the fee a one time shot? You pay it and the software is yours? No recurring fee's?

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    What would you say are the advantages with Scrivener?

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    Default Re: How to Suceed at Textbroker

    Thanks for the tips. I will say that reading your article aloud really does make sense. If you are reading it in your head, it might sound good there but once you actually hear the words aloud, it often sounds different. I know that since I have started doing this my articles have gotten much better.


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