The days when becoming a professional writer invariably meant scoring a full-time job at a traditional newspaper, magazine, or other publication are over.
Digital-age freelance editors, writers, and other creative professionals can (and often do) work from anywhere, including their own homes.
And would-be freelance writers can specialize in any kind of content production service they like, including blogging.
But what does it really take to become a freelance blogger, what do they do, and what are the best ways to get started? Let’s take a look at everything you need to know.
What is a Freelance Blogger?
A freelance blogger is a self-employed individual who offers blogging as a professional service. Such a person may do so as a registered business owner, independent contractor, or both.
They, of course, will also pay taxes on any income earned, just as they would if they did any other type of work.
Some freelance writers only do blogging, while others may also produce marketing content, press releases, and other types of written material.
A freelance blogger can work full-time or part-time. Some ghostwrite their content, while others receive bylines for their work.
How Much Do Freelance Bloggers Make?
How much a particular freelance blogger may make depends on where, how, and for whom they provide their services.
Some maintain traditional blogs on their own websites and earn passive income via advertising. Others blog on platforms like Medium or Quora that pay their writers royalties.
However, many professional bloggers searching for reliable income choose to write blog content for private clients on an ongoing basis for a set hourly or per-project fee.
How much you can make depends largely on your skill and experience level, but many bloggers earn anywhere from $20 to several hundred dollars an hour.
The more experienced and skilled you become, the more you can potentially make if you put your mind to it. Some very exclusive bloggers may even reach a place where they can charge $1,000 or more for a single post.
Who Hires Bloggers?
Here in the digital age, most businesses, brands, and established companies maintain blogs on various topics related to their niche or industry.
However, many don’t have the writing chops to maintain their blogs single-handedly, and almost none actually have the time.
Outsourcing blog content to one or more freelancers is an economical, effective way to keep a blog perpetually filled with fantastic content.
That said, there’s a lot of high-quality, potentially recurring work out there for an experienced, skilled freelance blogger.
How Do Freelance Bloggers Get Paid?
How you’ll be paid as a freelance blogger or other writer depends on whether you’re working directly for private clients, contracting with clients through a freelancing platform like Upwork, or generating ad revenue or royalties through a blog of your own.
But if you’re writing for private clients, you’ll be responsible for using a payment interface of your choice for invoicing them and making sure your invoices are fulfilled.
How to Become a Freelance Blogger
Now that you know a bit about what a freelance blogger does and how they’re paid for what they do, it’s time to go over a few tips for getting started as one.
Here are a few pointers to keep in mind.
1. Work on your skills
Chances are, if you’re thinking seriously about becoming a freelance blogger, you already possess basic writing skills, a solid mastery of the English language, and a working understanding of grammar.
But anyone who wants to write professional web content of any kind should also have:
Adhering to a regular writing schedule should also be second nature to a professional writer, so if you don’t already have one, it’s time to change that.
Write every day. Focus on gradually writing more and more each time you sit down to write. Don’t let anything get in the way of your writing.
Professionals who want to make a good living blogging need to be comfortable producing lots of content on a very regular basis. The sooner you can get into that groove, the better.
2. Determine your niche of choice
Although many freelance bloggers enjoy writing about a variety of topics, you’ll still want to choose a niche or two that you specialize in.
This helps give you a competitive edge over other more generalized bloggers who write about anything and everything.
Your niche of choice should definitely address areas of particular expertise or experience. However, it’s also essential to choose topics for which there’s high demand and about which you’re passionate.
Ideally, you want to truly enjoy your work.
3. Set up a dedicated place to work
When you’re first starting out as a freelance blogger, you can work from just about anywhere you’re comfortable, including your sofa or a corner table at your favorite coffee shop.
But sooner or later, you’ll want to set up a dedicated writing workspace at home.
Your home office can be an entire room of your house if you have it to spare, but a cozy corner in your living room or bedroom can work just as well if you’re pressed for space.
The important thing is to section off a spot in your living quarters and turn it into a sacred space for your writing.
4. Set up a website of your own
Every professional needs a dedicated website, and freelance bloggers are no different.
Even if you do a lot of your work through freelancing platforms, you still need a way to connect with additional clients and showcase your skills.
Setting up a website is easier than you think, thanks to user-friendly platforms like WordPress and Wix, so pick your favorite. Then set yourself up for success by:
- Choosing a keyword-rich domain name.
- Filling your site with standalone pages that explain your services and credentials.
- Using best SEO practices to optimize your site for search engines.
- Adding a blog and keeping it updated with on-topic, keyword-rich content.
5. Get to work on your portfolio
Although having a resume ready to show to interested clients is terrific, a freelance blogger also needs a writing portfolio filled with relevant samples.
Ultimately, your future clients need to see that you can write, and a well-rounded portfolio is the best way to show them.
If you already have professional samples or links to relevant writing you’ve already done, that’s great. But if you don’t, you can write a few samples yourself on topics your potential clients are looking for.
The main idea here is to showcase what you can do.
6. Establish an active social media presence
If you’re like most people, you’re likely already on social media for your own reasons.
But when you’re a professional blogger, your social media presence becomes a crucial part of building a professional network and getting the word out about your services.
People who are thinking about doing business with you or collaborating with you will scope you out on your favorite platforms, so make sure your profiles are showing them what you want them to see.
Fill them with interesting, on-topic content, and engage with others as often as possible.
Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are musts for any service provider these days. However, anyone offering professional services should also be on LinkedIn, as it’s an incredible place to meet potential clients and network with peers.
7. Actively pitch to potential clients
Setting up a website, an active blog, and a robust social media presence makes for a great start when it comes to attracting new clients, but you don’t want to simply sit idle and wait for people to come to you.
The most successful professional bloggers also actively approach people they’d like to work with.
Regularly search online marketplaces and freelance boards for job postings that fit your skills.
Keep an eye out for casting calls from clients looking to add to their teams. You can cold-pitch to companies, publications, and businesses you’d especially like to work with, as well.
8. Dive into guest posting
Although you won’t get paid for writing guest posts under most circumstances, it’s still something any aspiring freelance blogger should do for several reasons.
To begin with, you get bylines for guest posts, and those are worth their weight in gold.
Guest posts on topics related to your niche of choice are also a great way to build authority.
Find websites and publications to approach by Googling for options related to your niche and figuring out which ones accept guest posts.
Then send a concise, professional, personalized pitch that matches any posted guidelines to the letter. Show the recipient of your pitch why your expertise is precisely what their publication needs.
9. Set and pursue clear goals
Successful freelancers are self-starters who know how to set goals and go after what they want.
They’re also extremely persistent go-getters who know not to take rejection personally. If one client isn’t interested in hiring them, they keep pitching until they find the ones that will.
So set goals to work toward in every aspect of establishing yourself as a freelance blogger.
Make up your mind that you will complete a certain number of pitches, blogs for your site, social media posts, or brainstorming exercises per week.
Then smash those goals before setting even more to work toward.
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Although becoming a successful freelance blogger will take time, dedication, and persistence, you’re embarking on an excellent career choice that could be more fulfilling than you ever imagined.
And there are so many resources out there that are genuinely a freelancer’s best friend.
Check out our write-up on the best, most helpful freelance apps to know today for some wonderful options to start with.
You’ll discover options designed to help you find work, manage your finances, organize your schedule, and more!