If you’re a college student looking to make some extra money, or you’re a recent graduate who hasn’t found a full-time job yet, you might be interested in freelance writing. As a freelance writer, you can work with the clients you want, boost your income, and set your own hours. Here are a few tips to help you succeed as a freelancer, from creating a compelling portfolio to filing for LLC status.
Photo via Pexels
Choose Your Niche
To start your freelance journey, you’ll need to choose a niche. For example, you might specialize in technical writing, blogging for businesses in the health and wellness sector, writing grants or whitepapers, or doing content marketing for software companies. Think about where your experience and expertise lies, and which topics you enjoy writing about to decide on the right niche.
Create a Portfolio
Prospective clients will want to see your writing samples before signing any contracts. Therefore, you’ll need to create a freelance website to display your portfolio. If you don’t have any relevant writing samples, you may want to write a few blog posts on your own website, or reach out to people you know to see if you can guest blog for them.
Make sure to choose your strongest writing samples for your portfolio! Furthermore, include your contact information and details about which services you offer.
Establish an LLC
Before you land your very first freelance client, it’s a good idea to form an LLC. While many freelancers operate as sole proprietors, LLC status will grant you better financial protections with limited liability. As a freelancer, you’ll need to file your own taxes, and establishing an LLC will give you tax benefits! You can use an online formation service to save money on the filing process instead of hiring a lawyer. Make sure to look up how to get an LLC in your state, as every state has slightly different requirements.
Promote Your Services
To find clients, you can browse freelance job boards, sign up for email newsletters with freelance opportunities, and tell your social circle that you’re picking up freelance writing. Additionally, you’ll need to consistently market yourself and get comfortable with self-promotion.
It’s perfectly normal to feel nervous about self-promotion, but this is a key aspect of achieving success as a freelancer. To market your services, Freelance Writers Online recommends engaging with the wider freelance community across different social media platforms, starting up an email marketing newsletter, investing in a targeted advertising campaign, and learning the basics of search engine optimization to ensure that your website pops up in searches.
Pursue Further Training
As a freelancer, you may find it beneficial to expand your skillset beyond writing. Adding other related services to your packages can make you more attractive to clients who need lots of help with their businesses. Therefore, it’s a good idea to look into online courses and certifications that will give you the chance to master new marketable skills. For example, Skills You Need recommends learning about supplementary skills such as graphic design, digital marketing, social media management, and basic website design. With these offerings, you’ll be able to increase your income!
Freelance writing is an attractive option for college students and recent graduates alike. But with no clear roadmap to becoming a freelance writer, you might be confused about where to begin. With these tips, you’ll be ready to nail down your niche, register your freelance business as an LLC, and promote yourself so that you can secure your first clients.
Want to find your new favorite book? Check out Man of la Book! Browse the blog today for reading recommendations.