When freelance writers look for work, they often look in the same few places. They pitch their favorite blogs, they email the one client who hired them a year ago and they try to figure out which Craigslist posts are scams.
Meanwhile, there’s writing all around you that you’re not seeing. Book jacket blurbs, product descriptions and more — and all those words need writers.
Last year, we released 71 Ways to Make Money as a Freelance Writer, packed with writing gigs you might not yet have considered.
I helped put this ebook together, and I wanted to highlight six of these options. Consider these six new clients to add to your portfolio.
1. Corporate blogs
If you’re not already blogging for corporate websites, it’s time to get involved in this lucrative market.
Companies are often very interested in having talented writers compose informative articles for the blog section of their website — I’ve written articles about A/B testing and landing page copywriting for Unbounce, for example — and they generally pay $200-$300 per piece.
Ask your editors if they know anyone looking for a business blogger, and get ready to feature your best corporate clips on your writer’s website to attract more clients.
Corporate writing can be a great way to build relationships that lead to even more corporate jobs; for example, you could get paid to write About Page copywriting or white papers.
2. Authors who need book-jacket blurbs
This writing gig is right under our noses — literally — but most writers never consider book jacket writing as a potential client opportunity. Once you get book-jacket clients on your roster, you can earn $300-$600 or more for every blurb you write. Plus, think of all the great books you’ll get to read before everybody else does!
How do you get book jacket clients? Here’s what we suggest in 71 Ways:
Add this service to your website, spread the word to your network, and offer it as an add-on option for clients whose books you’re editing or formatting for Kindle.
If that feels like a lot of work, don’t forget — all that practice blurbing your own skills will make you a great book jacket writer!
3. Authors who need editing
See that “clients whose books you’re editing or formatting for Kindle,” above? If you don’t have any freelance editing clients currently in your portfolio, it’s time to add them. If you drop into our Facebook group, for example, you’ll notice writers asking where they can find good editors for their work. Why not market yourself as the answer to their question?
Write up a list of the services you provide — proofreading, formatting, constructive critiques — and figure out a fair rate for your services. We suggest $30 to $100 an hour depending on the project size and scope.
4. Businesses that need product descriptions
Every product description you see, either online or in a catalog, was written by someone.
Product descriptions are usually relatively easy to put together — you’ll get a list of product attributes to include, and it’s your job to craft those features into descriptive text — and you can make anywhere from $25 to $150 per hour.
How do you get these clients? Start looking for job listings on sites like Indeed, or use your network and ask your current clients (or your writing-forum friends) if they know of anyone looking for catalog copy work.
If you’ve already got a copywriting job or two in your portfolio, you’ll be in an even better position to get some great leads.
5. Fan-fiction readers
Yes, it’s time to get paid for writing fan fiction. Amazon Kindle Worlds will pay writers 35 percent on sales for 10,000+ word stories on The Vampire Diaries, G.I. Joe, Gossip Girl and more.
Why not try your hand at some fan fiction and see if you can gain a few fans in the process?
As a writer, you need to be your first and best client. This means figuring out how to earn as much money from your own work as possible: monetizing your blog with sidebar ads, using affiliate programs to earn money by promoting your favorite writing tools, creating and marketing your own digital products and Kindle books, and even holding your own classes and webinars.
So take a look at your current writer’s website and portfolio and see how you can improve it.
Imagine if you were working for someone else, and that person asked you how they could make money off their website. Then, incorporate those suggestions. Or, take a look at your favorite writers’ websites, figure out how they’re monetizing their sites, and borrow those ideas.
Try spending the next month working towards landing one of these six freelance writing clients. Then take a look around you and see what other writing opportunities you might have missed — or read 71 Ways to Make Money as a Freelance Writer for more ideas.
What’s the most unusual writing gig you’ve landed? Share your stories in the comments!