Blogging creates IMPACT for businesses—when done correctly, at least. Blog posts can provide consumers and clients much needed information while still managing to be entertaining and inspiring. This helps to create a more loyal customer base. The problem, however, is that small business owners are often too busy running their businesses and don’t have the time to create content. (Luckily, BeFunky’s got a great section on the blog designed just for small businesses! Don’t you feel so loved?).
That’s a problem for them, but an opportunity for you!
Did you know?
B2C companies that blog generate 88% more leads per month than those who do not. iMPACT
You can create a whole, at home, business writing blog posts for other businesses. You get to offer value and make some extra income for your family, while in your PJs. How great is that! It’s not all fun and games, though. It takes real work and commitment to create quality, improve your writing and SEO skills. You will wear many hats and perform many tasks from writing and editing to graphic creation and photography.
Tools like the BeFunky Photo Editor can make the graphic design portion of the job a ton easier, but how else can you improve your skills and get started?
Decide On A Niche
What do you already know? Do you have a degree or experience in something? A hobby that you are passionate about? Finance, gardening, pets…there are blogs on such a wide range of topics. You need a bit of dedication and passion when choosing a niche because passion will come through in your writing. Because my degree is in Early Childhood Development, I do a lot of writing for baby care and early education sites. However, since I also have experience with WordPress and social media I’ll write in those niches, too, as well as lifestyle posts. As you can see, I’m not super niched down and it still works because my background is full of variety. However, you will likely be more successful starting out if you choose a narrow topic. You can gain more experience quickly in one area.
Just keep in mind that some niches are more profitable than others. You would likely make more money writing on finance than pet care. But, choose a niche that works for you.
Create An Online Presence
It is best to have your own quality blog or website to start building a portfolio. A self-hosted WordPress site is a great way to go. If this just feels too overwhelming to you, you can begin with a simple platform page like About.Me. Alternatively, you could also try an online portfolio site like Contently.net.
To get samples for your portfolio, you may need to do some guest blogging (BeFunky is also a great place to start!) or write for sites like Elite Daily until you build up your experience. Having a business card is pretty important, too! You will need something to hand out with your business information and new website or About.Me page. This will show others that you are a serious and a professional blogger.
You can click here to learn how to make your own business card, or if you want to create a logo for your business card click here. Get some headshots, jump on social media, and build a professional, online presence. It takes time, so be patient.
Don’t underestimate the power of a Facebook page, either. Learn more about branding your Facebook page here.
Spread the Word
Start with friends and family.Send out some emails and let the ones in your life know that you’re starting this business. You can offer discounted rates in the beginning as you start earning people’s trust. You can also contact small businesses in your area and offer your services for their blogs. Use the 88% statistic above to let them know how important blogging is. You can find businesses via the phone book or a google search. If you are the outgoing type, you could even stop by businesses in person.
Finding work and new clients is a big part of being a freelancer. You’ll just have to get used to putting yourself out there.
Go ahead and be proud of your bad self. SPREAD THE WORD!
Try A Marketplace or Job Board
There are several online marketplaces for freelancers. While they’ll take a percentage of your earnings, these can be an easier way to jump in and get your feet wet in the freelance blogging world. You can set up a profile and begin to sell your services. UpWork (used to be ODesk), Freelancer, and Elance are just a few to try. You can earn clients from these platforms. They may contact you once you have your profile set up, or you can choose to apply to jobs already listed on the boards instead. You might have to do some searching to find the better postings.
Which brings us to another way to find clients… the online job board. There are also several of these, but I recommend starting with the ProBlogger one.
Gather Online Tools
You’re going to want to get organized. If you want freelance blogging to be your business, you must treat it so. Online tools can help you do everything from create graphics to organizing your ideas and client info (with tools like Evernote). And with tools like BeFunky’s Photo Editor and Designer Toolset you can create just about everything from snazzy blog headers to social media images and beyond.
Need a few more ideas? Check out 6 Online Tools All Small Businesses Should Be Using for a little more guidance.
Take A Course
The marketplace is always changing. Being a freelancer means continual growth and expansion. We’re truly blessed with some wonderful online learning platforms these days and you can even get access to many courses for free. Udemy is one of my favorites. The paid courses can appear expensive, but they run great deals where you can often get them for just $10. Alison and Coursera are some others to check out.
I know this post has a lot to take in, so be sure to bookmark and come back when you need a refresher. If you found this post super helpful, then be sure to share it!
Now, get ready to design those business cards and social media graphics. Get your branding on…