1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Breaking Out Of The $xx, An Intro To Making Money Writing Online

Discussion in 'Associated Content & Writing Articles' started by JamesBlake, Nov 18, 2016.

  1. JamesBlake

    JamesBlake Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    67
    It’s almost 2017

    There are dozens upon hundreds of threads on making money online in wildly creative ways. No longer are people limited to the size of their bank account, location, education, or even their language ability to scratch together an income. There are options. For those of us in the United States and beyond, 2016, marked the year that anything is possible. From a television celebrity becoming the president to “overnight millionaires” popping up more and more, now is the time to act if you haven’t already. The wild west of the Internet is only becoming more expansive and there’s more money in the air than ever before.

    How do you get your baseline income so you can begin investing/building more?

    Your ability to be successful online hinges on a few key skillets that must be developed. For those that don’t have many resources, a large amount of time, or even the willpower to work, don’t stop now. That said, you will have a much harder time than anyone else. Your resources aren’t dependent on just your money or time or skill set. It’s dependent on you using whatever advantage you have available and making the most out of it. Willpower and creativity are more valuable than any niche idea, any amount of money, and those two can make anyone money 9 times out of 10.

    This brief guide will hit on a few important aspects of one of the simplest and excruciatingly straightforward methods of making money online. It won’t be your normal hand holding thread, I will be spouting information, ideas, and strategies. The biggest difference will be between who takes action and who doesn’t. It’s not as hard as it seems and doesn’t require as much as you’d expect.

    Writing for money is a great starting or continuing point for a few reasons.

    Ease Of Making Money: It takes very little to start, and more often than not, you can make a lot happen with nothing. That’s not to say if you have money you shouldn’t use it. There are great groups, forums, and products that will make establishing yourself and creating a consistent income easier.

    One, is writer’s den. It’s a community that is relatively cheap to join and has regular orders of writing work available put in. There are opportunities for webinars, samples of other writers, chances to get your work torn to pieces and rebuilt galore.

    Crafting Content: For any digital marketer or web business owner, content is king. It is how you build the bridge between your brand or product and your target audience. That’s why when I see niche sites or authority sites with shoddy content, I realize it's a reflection of the business owner not taking their source of income seriously.

    If Google updates have shown us anything, it’s that if your content isn’t great, your business won’t be sustainable. The better the content, the more recurring your traffic and even more importantly, the more your brand can be trusted. The skill set developed from both building and recognizing good content will lead to you being able to put together a site that is not only functional and gets traffic, but keeps traffic and makes more money.

    Great For Networking: Due to the nature of the service, you will be directly in contact with content managers, content marketers, web business owners and more. You will be able to more intimately learn how businesses are run and content is used to make money beyond you getting directly paid for it. There’s a general rule of thumb.

    Whatever they are paying you, they’re making much more from it. The business owners you connect with can turn into a network that can lead to more opportunities over time as long as you are a functional conversationalist. You’re helping build their business/income. If you do good work, they will help you build yours.

    Building A Brand: Writer’s brands are everything. It’s how they get more contracts. It’s how they get more orders. It’s how they interact with the digital world and depending on if you want to write long term, it’s a way for you to gradually make more and more off doing the same or similar work.

    It’s An Ever Increasingly Needed Service: As I mentioned before, content services are abundant for a reason. It has a high turnover rate. It requires sometimes long hours, constant creativity, constant strategy, and progressive development.

    Without it, you won’t make much. As great as Google is, it shouldn’t be your only source of traffic. That only leads to taking a beating in the long run when for some reason your site doesn’t rank like it used. As it becomes harder and harder to rank and harder to maintain traffic, great content is the reason why sites last. It’s not just a purchase, it’s an investment.

    Great Fast Money BUT Golden Handcuffs: After a bit, it becomes good money. It comes fast and constantly and it is the best for instant gratification and only gets better the more work and hours and content you write. The problem becomes when writers book up all their time and spend no time or money on development.

    They find themselves stagnating at a certain level and not being able to move beyond that. For some, it’s okay because of the amount of money that is coming in is a consistent income that handles their needs. Many get what’s called the golden handcuffs. It means that you trade time for money on the constant.

    You make more than is needed to cover the essentials, but then keep hustling for things you don’t need whereas your time could be spent better. This isn’t a smart way to operate, that ceiling ends up costing you money because of what you could have been making.

    So while it’s not all great, it isn’t all bad either. Competition initially can be fierce when trying to break in. Finding your niche or honing your ability takes time and your limits are only on how much you keep track of what are you are succeeding and failing at.

    You want to find an editor or someone that tears your writing apart and makes you better. You want to constantly keep improving your speed, your researching ability, your client base so that you can really go from a few thousand a month into the tens of thousands.

    The Next Section is going to be on:
    1. Breaking Into Writing Online
    2. Rules Of Thumb For Writing & Handling Clients
    3. Building Your Portfolio
    4. Two Important Tools
    5. Conducting Research & Outlining
    6. Building a Gameplan

    Feel free to ask me questions in the meantime.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 11
  2. JamesBlake

    JamesBlake Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    67
    Section 2 coming today. Feel free to post questions.
     
  3. articlewritingwork

    articlewritingwork Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2016
    Messages:
    539
    Likes Received:
    58
    Thank you for sharing. Very useful information!
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  4. Trina Mathews

    Trina Mathews Newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2016
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    2
    Thanks for the free tips, created a google doc copy of your post so I read and reread it offline :)
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  5. Ryukil

    Ryukil Newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2016
    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    12
    Good stuff, is section 2 still coming? :)
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  6. JamesBlake

    JamesBlake Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    67
    I finally got a moment to write it tonight. There will be a few more additions after that. Anyone should feel free to ask questions.
     
  7. believe09

    believe09 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2016
    Messages:
    63
    Likes Received:
    1
    Gender:
    Male
    Home Page:
    please don't stop I am following
     
  8. JamesBlake

    JamesBlake Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    67
    Hello Everyone!

    I had an extremely busy past couple of weeks, so getting around to writing this next post wasn’t easy. I saw a few comments and likes so I figured there were a few people that want to continue reading. So, let’s press on.

    In the last post I painted a picture for what to expect realistically when writing for pay. It isn’t as glamorous as it might seem, but it beats other jobs by far.

    Now, let’s get into the beef of the post.

    Breaking Into Writing Online

    The act of breaking into writing online can be as simple or complicated as you make it. Ultimately, it starts with an honest assessment of your writing skills.

    If you don’t know where to start with assessing your writing skills, find content users or other writers and ask them to review your content and judge it’s quality. If you don’t know anyone or have anyone, feel free to ask me.

    It’s As Easy Or Hard As You Make It

    Your focus as a writer should be on three things.
    1. Making sure the content you provide is to the best of your ability, every single time.
    2. Ensure everything you say is truthful and has research to back it.
    3. Communication with your clients needs to be fast and in-depth. Don’t ever be afraid to ask questions. If you don’t, it WILL cost you both time, money, and the potential for long-term work.

    You should try and stay in contact with writers. Sometimes writers have extra work they can’t handle. Sometimes they need someone to bounce ideas off.

    The advantage is that you will be able to see how a more experienced writer operates, what they do that makes them successful, and what limits them. You can learn from their mistakes. Some writers are emotional, stingy, or paranoid of their clients.

    The reality is, the only writers who are fighting over .01 cent a word clients are other poor writers. They can’t provide content that is both engaging and shareable. They need those clients that don’t understand the value of content. The ones that think just having something on the site that works for SEO will make them money.

    I’ll say it once, as it’s a principle people are realizing more and more.

    Your site’s content is one of, if not THE, most essential factors for making money from your visitors. It’s the reason for many sites they find out about your site and the reason they will return.

    Writing is like design, you get what you pay for. If you are skimping on quality due to budget, you will be skimping on the traffic and conversions your site will be able to get.

    Moving on, it’s important to know your value as a writer. If you don’t, clients won’t. If you are capable of writing content that converts, don’t overcharge, but don’t undercharge.

    Finding Clients (A Brief Explanation)


    There are a few places you can find clients. It breaks down into online and offline. For those wishing to get a quick start, the only two to consider are.
    1. Job Posting Sites
    Problogger, craigslist, kijjiji and other ad posting sites offer the ability to find out what exactly clients expect. Problogger’s job board has an abundance of posts for content writers. Your limitations for what you can apply to come down to your skillset, your portfolio, your published content, etc. etc.

    The pay will be anywhere between .02 cents a word to $1 per word depending on how good you content is and the budget of the site. Don’t just go for sites that offer pay upfront.

    Many sites that pay out for how your work performs can be a great way to measure how good you are at researching topics that are relevant and how well you can build content out around that.
    1. Freelancer & Freelancing Sites
    Freelancer, Upwork, and sites like that have thousands of posts of business owners or content managers looking for writers. Finding and keeping quality writers for a good price is a difficult task.

    Many writers bounce around like servers do restaurants. If one person is paying so much for a service, there have to be more that do. Taking the time to build up profiles on these sites by doing cheap work and then targeting higher paying work is a great way to ensure your longevity. Clients will consider whomever has the strongest pitch, samples, and work history.

    Rules Of Thumb For Writing & Handling Clients

    A few guidelines to consider when negotiating with clients, working with them, and writing.

    1. Most clients have a certain expectation for how they want their content done. Ask for samples of the type of content they enjoy. Some want short concise sentences. Though it can make the flow choppy or constricted, it’s meant to dumb down the article so it has a wider market of people able to understand it. Some want well-written sentences that flow and convey an idea in a conversational tone. It all depends. Make sure you know what your client is expecting.
    2. Keep in communication. Clients expect to be updated on the status of their project. Things happen, but it’s best they are constantly updated what is happening. It makes sure they don’t think you disappeared.
    3. Know what you are getting yourself into. Thoroughly discuss with your clients their project, the purpose and what they expect their content needs to be long term. It’s easier for the organization of your business.
    4. Research and write first, edit later.


    Building Your Portfolio

    Before you do anything, organize a portfolio. Put together a package of your ten best diverse writing samples.

    If you have no portfolio, make one. Pick a few niches, health, entertainment, tech, business, real estate, and write on them. Try and keep them between 500-1000 words. Feel free to add in images, links, etc. etc. just to show both your ability to create a bare article as well as a full one.

    Your portfolio should show your skill set and diverse ability. The only exception, is if you are interested in writing for particular niches. Some niches pay more than others. If you have an expertise in a profitable niche such as insurance, finance, etc. etc. stick to that and milk it for what it’s worth.

    Two Important Tools

    There are two essential tools in my arsenal that are better than anything else.
    1. Grammarly
    2. HemmingwayApp
    Grammarly is straight forward. It’s an add-on for chrome, firefox, or other browsers that allows you to check your word usage, and the grammar of sentences you have written. It shows corrections. Without going into too much detail, it’ll help correct issues you make while writing and makes the editing process easier.

    Hemingway App is similar is more focused on making sentence structure and word choice simpler. It’s modeled after the way Hemingway (the writer) wrote using short simple sentences.

    [​IMG]
    These two apps are potent for making fluff free, easy to read content. While the content won’t always be incredible, it will assure a measure of quality that won’t be compromised MOST of the time.

    The only disclaimer I can give is that while it forces writers to be more concise, it also removes some of the word choice that can make writing flourish. I would never use it for copywriting.

    That’s it for right now folks. My next post will be on conducting research & outlining. Building a gameplay for writing and beyond. Leave comments or questions.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 4
  9. JamesBlake

    JamesBlake Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    67
    Anyone that needs someone to review their writing quality/help them improve, feel free to contact me.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  10. Random_Traveler

    Random_Traveler Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    9
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Writer
    Location:
    The World at Large
    Home Page:
    Thanks for this. Trying to break into the writing scene and this advice comes at just the right time.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  11. JamesBlake

    JamesBlake Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    67
    I'll be uploading part 3 tomorrow.
     
  12. JamesBlake

    JamesBlake Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    67
    I didn't forget. It will be posted tonight around 8pm.
     
  13. Random_Traveler

    Random_Traveler Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    9
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Writer
    Location:
    The World at Large
    Home Page:
    Take all the time you need! Pretty valuable stuff so I don't mind waiting :D
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  14. cp615

    cp615 Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2016
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    3
    Gender:
    Female
    this is great, thank you!
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  15. JamesBlake

    JamesBlake Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    67
    PART 3

    As a departure from the information, I was posting before. I wanted to go into the following on this post:
    1. Writing Prices
    2. Differences In Quality
    3. Building a Game Plan
    4. Writing For Yourself vs. A Firm vs. a Company
    So without further ado, let’s get started.


    Writing Prices & Differences In Quality

    Writing prices are going to vary depending on where you market, who you work with, what their needs are.

    $1 per 100 words = Newbie, not usually native english speakers, or just someone that has a decent editor that can make it readable. The content is 99% of the time not worthy of anything considerable besides being a placeholder for SEO. This is not always the case, but the content tends to be lacking in my years of experience.

    $2 per 100 words = Usually pretty good, maybe written by a non trained writer whom makes a few grammatical or word choice errors, but as long as their team has a native editor the content works. Chances are it converts a bit, if formatted well.

    $3+ per 100 words = Usually well researched, and at the least well written with solid word choice, flow, and flawless grammar. Writers who charge the higher rates understand structuring posts, white papers, etc. etc. and can usually do more than just write. This is the content money sites should be built on. It converts, the writer should be fast, and be able to take instruction or fill in the blanks with a few samples of expected quality.

    Generally, you are going to be in competition with other writers to a degree. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It allows you to differentiate between your quality of service, what you can offer, and what they can offer.

    Competition is healthy. It is a natural aspect of providing any service or product. It forces quality to continually rise, and makes way for an industry to be successful. Content will always be important. It is the means by which information is shared.


    Your worth as a writer comes down to:

    A. How well you can Convey information
    B. The quality of your information
    C. How well you can compile research and backup your claims



    Now, some clients prefer to work one on one with a writer. The reasons can include easier communication, reliability, and assured quality. Others, just need content and have no problem working with firms and content mills.

    If you aren’t a great writer, hire an editor. They can go over your content and fix little errors or big problems and should be able to fill in or structure content to be better than it is. In the future, content managers are going to be employed more and more to control the aspects of how content is accrued and sites are managed.

    The only way you’ll be able to break into that game is to be a great writer and an editor. Writing ability development comes from writing a lot, reading a lot, and constantly trying to improve. The money is there, the patience is the key.

    How do you know what to charge?

    You have to be honest about your writing ability. See what your fellow writers are charging at their ability. See how you stack up against them. If you aren’t anything exceptional, you can at least get a bearing on where you are weak/need to improve.

    If you overcharge and under deliver, it will bite you in the ass. I am speaking from experience. Don’t try and grasp the big money from the jump or you won’t have it for long and you’ll get burned. Take your time, develop your skill set.


    Build a Gameplan:

    Very few people love writing truly. It is fast money and can sink you. Do not let yourself become absorbed in the fast money. It is inevitable, no matter who you are, that you will burn out sometimes from writing. Know when to take a break, because if you don’t, your quality will suffer, and your income will suffer accordingly.

    Have a long-term game plan for what you are trying to do:
    1. Are you trying to write long term?
    2. If so, what kind of niches make money that you enjoy writing about? Tech? Health? Real Estate?
    3. Are you building up a portfolio and a network of clients that will speak on your behalf?
    4. Do you know where you want to be in six months? A year?
    If you are writing just for the money, then you definitely don’t want to keep writing. For many digital marketers, they start as writers so that they can communicate and sell effectively. It’s one of the necessary skills to be able to run your own business.

    Being honest, writing is a good way to build a network and get the initial bills and capital to be able to function and build a diverse stream of incomes. You have to be realistic about your timeline. Actually sit down and write out where you want to go after writing. Do you want to take a coding bootcamp and become a project manager? Do you want to build your own niche sites? Do you want build web based businesses? Do you want to just do joint ventures and use your skill set on more long term projects that will make money?

    Figure it out.

    This one was a brief post. My next two posts will be:
    1. Writing for yourself vs. a firm vs. a content mill
    2. How To Write a Fucking Good Article

    Til next time
     
  16. noobetic

    noobetic Newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2016
    Messages:
    28
    Likes Received:
    6
    Gender:
    Male
    thanks for the good infos, even though i'm not a writer, but still it's very helpfull
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  17. Random_Traveler

    Random_Traveler Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    9
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Writer
    Location:
    The World at Large
    Home Page:
    Hey,

    Thanks for the update. Some really great info.

    I have a question that I hope you have an answer for...

    I want to break into writing and initially thought that Fiverr was a good place to start (before I jump to Upwork etc.). After about a week I have not had a single order placed.

    I noticed that day 2 and day 3 after a gig post I get some impressions, but after day 3 I get nothing. I get about 30 impressions, maybe 10 clicks but no conversions which lead me to believe that my description or price might be at issue. So far I recreate my gig every 4 days (I noticed that after day 3 I get no more impressions) to test out different images, headlines and copy until I get something that converts.

    Is that a good strategy or should I rather just stick to the gig and hope I get more impressions? What else can I try to get some orders?

    Some things I thought I would try:
    1. Video
    2. Buying traffic to my gig (does this affect ranking on Fiverr?)
    3. Giving away Freebies on BHW
    4. Bidding on Freelance jobs and offering the first article/blog post for free
    Thanks in advance.

    P.S. The current gig I listed offers 2 articles for the price of one. My thinking is that once someone orders a gig and sees the quality I provide they would use me again in future.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2016
  18. JamesBlake

    JamesBlake Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    67
    Freebies are always a great way to network and get clients BUT it undervalues you writing. It depends on what type of clients you are trying to attract. Fiverr is generally not worth it due to the low buying mentality that most buyers on their come with that invariably ends up meaning they are a pain in the ass. The goal should be to close clients that understand the value of content and are a match for what you can provide service/quality wise.

    Freelance jobs are going to be your bread and butter. What goes a long way with clients that are going to have the money for repeat orders and such is having a few articles/samples of your content published online. Not only that, but having as high quality samples as possible ready in at least a few verticals/niches to demonstrate either your skill or flexibility to suit their needs. Specialization means more money and more reliable high level clients, but when you are first starting out, your focus should be on just getting the income going and getting your skillset tight whilst getting the hang of understanding and satifying customer expectations.

    If you're looking for clients and your content quality is legit, and your portfolio is together start with Freelancer/Problogger. Try and get your foot in the door with a quality writing firm as they tend to pay enough to live on whilst fostering training, it may be slow initially, but perserverance is the name of the game.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  19. Random_Traveler

    Random_Traveler Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2016
    Messages:
    35
    Likes Received:
    9
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Writer
    Location:
    The World at Large
    Home Page:
    Thanks!
     
  20. JamesBlake

    JamesBlake Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2014
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    67
    Anytime