Ever considered looking on Craiglist or Fiverr for freelance writing gigs?
These sites probably aren’t top of mind for most writers; we tend to think of them as offering low-paying opportunities, or worse, scams.
But check out writer Kristen Lawrence’s story: she used Craigslist and Fiverr to make $2,000 a month on freelance writing gigs, she wrote on The Penny Hoarder.
Shocking, right? On top of those earnings, Lawrence’s experience writing for clients she found on these platforms led to bigger and better jobs. So while writing an article for $5 isn’t sustainable in the long run, the relationship you make with that client could kick-start your freelancing career.
Here’s what Lawrence had to say about finding online writing jobs via these two websites.
How to find freelance writing jobs on Fiverr
Fiverr works best for new writers who are looking to build a professional portfolio. These projects offer little pay, but if all the writing you’ve done is for your own blog, you’ll need to expand your list of clients before you can land bigger fish.
“It might seem like drudgery to work so hard for such little pay, but you don’t have to stay on Fiverr forever,” Lawrence writes. “I had an account for a couple of months until I started getting more lucrative offers, and then I closed it. I have only been freelance writing since October 2014, so I’m thrilled to have better-paying opportunities coming my way so quickly.”
Getting jobs on Fiverr is pretty straight forward. As long as your profile is complete and you sell your skills well, you should start seeing requests within a few days.
What about Craigslist? You’ll find writing jobs there, too
Through Craigslist, Lawrence found an editing job in Berlin that paid $15 per hour and a freelance writing job based in the States that paid $1,200 per month. One of the benefits of this platform, she says, is that you can look outside your own city for writing opportunities.
“Look at the writing jobs in major cities, such as Los Angeles, New York City, Boston, Houston, Philadelphia, Miami, London and Berlin, to name a handful,” she writes. “I check the ‘writing/editing’ section under the ‘jobs’ area of major U.S. cities first, then make my way into Canada, and finally Europe and Australia.”
Another place to find writing gigs: Thumbtack
While the Lawrence didn’t mention Thumbtack, it’s another platform you should know about if you’re trying to break into the freelance writing scene and find clients. Full disclosure: I work for Thumbtack HQ in San Francisco, so yes, I’m biased. But on top of working for their marketing team, I actually use Thumbtack as a professional writer and editor to make money on the side and have gotten a few well-paying jobs there.
If you’re not familiar, Thumbtack introduces customers to local service providers, from massage therapists to house cleaners to photographers. As a professional, you’ll pay a small fee per introduction, compete against up to four other professionals for the job, and should expect to get hired about one out of 10 times you send a quote.
Getting a job is pretty straightforward: Write a well-written message that includes your qualifications, personalized to the customer’s project. Have a completed profile with as many reviews as you can get. Have a good profile photo. Follow up. You know the drill.
Since setting up my profile on Thumbtack, I’ve made $1,000 from clients who have hired me. And here’s the best part: I never would have found these types of jobs otherwise. I tend to do mostly blogging work, but through Thumbtack I was hired to edit a self-published urban suspense novel, write flowery product descriptions for a luxury watch brand and craft professional bios for executives at an electrical subcontracting firm. I wouldn’t even know where else to look for this type of work, yet through Thumbtack, the work found me.
If you sign up for Thumbtack, you’ll find yourself weeding through quite a few folks looking for writers to contribute content for $25 a post, and don’t waste your money quoting on those jobs. But if you can learn to read between the lines — tip: focus on customers who provide a ton of information as opposed to simply filling out the forms — you will land some quality projects.
For more details on how to use Craiglist and Fiverr to land online writing jobs, read the full post on The Penny Hoarder.
Have you landed freelance writing work in unexpected places? How did you did you do it?
Marian Schembari is a writer, blogger and community manager based in San Francisco.