Earning the First Dollar is Always Hard
Your first attempt at a new venture is eternally a mammoth challenge. As a commercial writer looking for the first freelancing job, the wait could be excruciatingly long. Because most popular freelancing platforms are heavily crowded and the competition is growing fierce.
Just a few years back, a $100 writing project would get 10-13 bids. At present, the number has surprisingly advanced up to 30-35 bids per gig. Too many folks around the globe seem to have suddenly discovered their enthusiasm for commercial writing. Evidently, we have too many writing talents in joining the community. Hence, the ‘Projects Vs. Writers’ ratio has been severely disrupted.
You Aren’t Extraordinarily Smart or Intelligent?
As a starter with no credible freelancing profile or job history, grabbing your first project is a shot in the dark. Especially when the horizon is brimming with newbies, each willing to work at amazingly competitive rates. To worsen things, you aren’t extraordinarily smart, intelligent or innovative either.
Believe me, none of us exceptionally talented. The real smart folks are either launching Mars probe missions or designing weapons of mass destruction. We are just a bunch of moderately intelligent folks using the Internet to write stuff.
Since you have Already Ventured into This….
Since you have already decided to venture into commercial writing, you need to flex that marginal tinges of intelligence and devise a starting strategy.
- Find projects that involve relatively complex subjects – Ethereum cryptocurrency reviews, Federal policies for medical marijuana farming, etc. Yes, your researching abilities would be challenged and the efforts involved would be substantially higher. But the “mass” competition is relatively lesser at these projects.
- Avoid panic attacks – From “winning” your first girlfriend to “winning” the first project – Life has its share of disappointments and pitfalls. So don’t slip into panic seizures, if clients ignore/reject your proposal outright. A majority of clients are startup entrepreneurs or business owners. Hence, they are apprehensive about escrowing that 100 dollars to a person with no credible profile or job history. Mostly because you are serving them an empty platter. So rejections are common.
- Keep your rates low – This is your time to build up the profile and not stuff your coffers like Uncle Scrooge. So keep your hourly rates (or fixed rates) very low. Smaller clients with budget constraints might hire you. Asian clients with bulk jobs involving dog crate reviews, travel destinations reviews or carpet cleaning SEO pages’ often hire newbies with low bulk rates.
- Clients are literally bombarded with proposals – Every proposal gets a mere 10-15 seconds to make an impact. So keep it crisp and strong. Sending out great proposals is a sheer art in itself.
- Your relationship with clients takes time to evolve – You might be asked for multiple revisions and changes. Some clients might even ask you to post the content into their CMS (Content Management System) such as Word Press or Drupal. It isn’t a good idea to lose patience. You never know !! This client might have loads of work in the store. And your subtle involvements might help in winning client confidence.
N.B: The world isn’t a kind place anymore. Some clients are too demanding. Their temperament reflects through ever-changing requirements and nagging demand for infinite revisions. If you still manage to deliver the work, they might eventually stain your profile with poor feedback.