If you are setting out on a career as a freelance writer, HireWriters is a great place to start out.
The platform is unique in that, instead of having to make endless pitches for work that you never get, you can actually choose the work that you want to accept. And once you’ve chosen it – it’s yours – you aren’t in competition with anyone else.
Of course Beginner level work is not well paid. In fact, the pay is pretty low. But not to worry, it’s also easy and generally undemanding. The objective is to fly through the lower levels – Beginner, General, Skilled – until you reach Expert. Expert level work is the best paid, and generally the most interesting. But how do you get there?
A good strategy is to start out by taking on short jobs, say 150 words. Look to make sure that the client has a high acceptance rate. Some clients are ridiculously fussy, so, you need to be selecting work from a client with at least a 90% acceptance rate. You really don’t want to work hard on a piece of writing, only to have it turned down.
Next, look at the wording of the job. Is the client expecting you to write up to the maximum amount allowed in the word bracket? Sometimes they are even very cheeky, and ask for more words than they are prepared to pay for. (Against HireWriters’ rules, but hard to stop, as some writers are prepared to take on these jobs.) Just don’t do it. Avoid those clients like the plague.
Another issue is the amount of research a client expects. Sometimes you are asked to write say, 30 words on each of ten different products. That’s actually a lot of work.
When you’ve chosen a piece of work, read the instructions carefully. You’ll usually see some key words – these should be included within the copy that you write.
Sometimes the keywords don’t make sense, or flow very easily. They will be something like, “Plumbing services San Anton”. Here’s a good tip. Use punctuation to make the copy flow nicely and make sense. So, you can say something like, “When it comes to plumbing services, San Anton is home to one of the best plumbing companies in the State.” The comma won’t interfere with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) which is what these kinds of clumsy phrases are aimed at, but will make your copy sound sensible. Otherwise you end up with rubbish like, “Plumbing services San Anton are really good.” Not a professional look at all, for you, or for the client.
So you have read the instructions – make sure that you are following them closely. If the client wants American English, remember to use American spelling and terminology. If he’s looking for a professional tone, don’t write that fun, lighthearted copy that’s your trademark.
It’s a good idea to contact the client when you accept a job. Just drop them a line saying something like, “I’m working on your job right now, and will get it to you soon.” This opens up the channel of communication just in case you encounter an issue. It means that when your job is accepted, hopefully with a nice comment and a good rating, you can drop a line to the client thanking him and asking him to put you on his list of Favorite Writers.
Getting on to Favorite Writer lists is the key to building up your client portfolio and accessing well paid work which is not seen by any other writer – it’s posted just for you. You’ll be advised by e-mail when a client requests that you do a job for them, and you can then decide if you want to accept it. Be warned though, sometimes work is offered to a group of writers, so when you see a job you like, grab it!
Once you have submitted your work, the client has 72 hours to look at it and decide if he or she wants to accept it. Until it’s accepted, clients can only look at work – they can’t download it or copy it. Once it’s accepted, the money goes straight to your account – hoorah! Sometimes clients are kind enough to leave a tip, and you can check this out by looking at your account which you can find on your dashboard.
Sometimes of course work is turned down. You’re a professional writer, and you just have to go with the flow on this. Hopefully, you have saved your work, and might be able to use it again for another client. Thankfully for writers, it doesn’t happen that often. A rejection rate of 1% is just about normal for a good writer.
The most common reason that content writing is rejected is that the spelling and grammar are poor. There is really no excuse for this. We all have spell checkers, and we can all subscribe to a free grammar checking service like Grammarly. HireWriters itself has on-board spelling and grammar checks when you submit your work. (It’s best to write offline and cut and paste the final version to HireWriters.)
The next most common reason that work is turned down is that the writer hasn’t fulfilled the brief. You were supposed to write about squirrels, but somehow you wrote about chipmunks. Do yourself a favor and be meticulous about giving the client what he asked for!
Clients will sometimes ask for small changes, and they are perfectly within their rights to do this. However major, radical changes are occasionally requested, and this is not fair – report these kinds of requests to the Customer Service team.
One thing that it’s important to notice is that you should turn in your work on time. Don’t wait until the last minute, because that is the very time when your internet will go down, and if you miss your deadline, you get fined. Missing too many deadlines will result in your being penalized, and even going down a grade or two, which will affect your earning capability.
These are just some of the pro tips that will help you build a well-paying career on HireWriters. Watch this space for more!
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