Starting a freelance writing business is one of the best decisions you can make, especially if you’re looking for a flexible job! You can choose how, where, and when you work, which lets you build a lifestyle you truly love.
As a freelance writer, you’re able to work anywhere in the world with just your laptop and WiFi. There are so many niches you can specialize in, too!
Is starting a freelance writing business right for you?
Here are some of the biggest advantages and disadvantages of starting a freelance writing business.
Advantages of starting a freelance writing business
A freelance writer is able to work remotely with clients around the world.
As long as you have your computer and a stable internet connection, you’re good to go! That means low (or free) costs to get started, which is always a win.
One of the biggest benefits of starting a freelance writing business is that you’ll have a flexible schedule. You’ll be able to create your own schedule, work when you want, and spend time doing what matters most to you in life.
Life will never be boring as a freelance writer. You can work on lots of different types of writing projects, like websites, blog posts, emails, and social media content. Similarly, you can work in hundreds of different niches—whatever you’re passionate about, there’s probably a need for freelance writers!
Disadvantages of becoming a freelance writer
Now, there are some challenges to keep in mind when you’re considering starting your own freelance writing business.
It will take you some time to find a consistent stream of quality clients. Additionally, some types of freelance writing don’t pay as well as others, which means your income might vary month-to-month.
Some niches and types of freelance writing gigs are super competitive, which means you’ll need to learn how to sell yourself and stand out. There’s more to freelance writing than just writing itself….you’ll need other skills, too — like organization, motivation, adaptability, and creativity.
Finally, a freelance writing business is a solo venture. That means it can get lonely working day-to-day.
What type of freelance writing business should you start?
There are so many types of freelance writing you can choose from when you’re starting your business. You can specialize in one type of writing, or you can cover lots of different services and niches.
Here are some ideas:
- Blog Content Writing
- Print and Magazine Article Writing
- Technical Writing
- Medical Writing
- Resume Writing
- Business Plan Writing
- Marketing and Advertising Copywriting
Each of these areas offers different opportunities, pay rates, and industries. Figure out what you’re most interested in, and go from there! You’ll definitely want to pursue a freelance writing business that aligns with your passions and interests.
What types of skills and experience do you need?
Anyone can become a freelance writer, even if you’ve never taken writing classes! You don’t need a college degree, either.
But having some essential skills will help you be successful! You need to have good grammar in order to serve your clients well and display professionalism. Of course, plugins like Grammarly can help, but you definitely need sharp grammar skills.
On that note, being able to edit and proofread your own work is essential. There might not be another set of eyes on your content before it is published, so catching mistakes really matters.
Depending on the type of writing you choose and your niche, you will likely need strong research skills. You’ll need to be super organized, disciplined, and able to meet deadlines!
To market your new freelance writing business, marketing skills will come in handy.
If you’re going to be working to write online content, SEO, online publishing platform knowledge, and social media are all helpful.
How much can you make?
A freelance writing business offers you unlimited capacity for growth. Depending on the type of writing you choose, your skills and experience, and your niche, you’ll be able to make lots of money.
Especially since there are really low start-up costs, freelance writing is a great industry to work in.
You will be able to set your own rates for your clients. Most people set up hourly rates, packages with specific deliverables each month, or project rates. To make the most money, you’ll want to set up your own website and market yourself through social media instead of using freelancing websites with lower-paying jobs.
Typically, you can expect to make the most if you become a copywriter.
When you just get started with your freelance writing business, you might need to set lower rates to get your feet wet. From there, you can increase your rates as you take on more clients and gain experience!
How to find clients for your freelance writing business
Speaking of setting your rates, how do you actually find clients for your new business? Don’t get discouraged by the thought of having to generate leads and land clients. There are lots of ways to do it!
Make sure you know exactly what you’re going to offer and who you’re looking to serve.
Are you honing in on multiple niches or strictly sticking to one? Set your prices ahead of time, too, so that you’re not blindsided on discovery calls with potential clients.
Try to put together samples (or testimonials from past clients, if you’ve done writing work before) to demonstrate your skill. This really helps when you’re trying to market yourself to a potential client!
LinkedIn is a great place to start finding clients. Optimize your LinkedIn profile with keywords, start networking, and join groups where potential clients might be hanging out.
On that note, you definitely should set up your own website!
This helps you look way more professional and gives you an opportunity to sell yourself right from the beginning.
Other ways to find clients include Facebook groups in your niche, social media marketing, client referrals, and general freelancing websites. Just keep in mind that freelancing websites typically yield lower payments because you don’t get to set your rates!
Tips for success in any freelance writing business
If you’re sold on the idea of starting a freelance writing business, here are some tips to help you be successful.
You’ll need to be super organized right from the start. You’re going to be working with a number of different clients on a variety of projects (all with different deadlines!). That means you have to keep track of everything.
A project management tool like Asana or Trello is super helpful for managing tasks for each of your clients.
Here are some other tips to help you successfully start and grow your freelance writing business:
- Systemize the way you ask for referrals—ask all of your clients for a referral after a set period of time
- Systemize the way you ask for and track testimonials
- Create a portfolio with examples of client work and continually build it out
- Never miss deadlines
- Clearly communicate with your clients at all stages of the process
- Set up your invoicing and accounting tools right away and automate whatever you can
- Don’t forget to work on your business as well as in your business
These tips will help you build a business that you love—that supports the lifestyle you want to live!
Starting a freelance writing business could be an amazing opportunity for you! If you want to work remotely, have a flexible schedule, and decide how you run your business, it’s probably right for you. This guide will help you start your freelance writing business and set yourself up for success!
Sign up for our newsletter for more tips on developing a creative lifestyle with more belonging, ease, and a renewed sense of self-worth.