Finding clients who will pay well for your writing expertise is one of the biggest challenges freelance writers face. The longer you work with lower-level clients, the harder it seems to break out of that tier, and move up to a higher pay level. This was the challenge I was facing a few years back.
I had a solid list of entry-level clientele that I had served for several years. I knew they would or could never pay the higher rates my increased expertise warranted. That meant I needed to find new clients who would recognize the quality of the skills I had to offer, and would pay me accordingly.
What Is Your Expertise?
Having a writing niche is critical to this approach, a specific area of writing where I was truly an “expert.” Experts don’t do all types of writing for a wide variety of clients. What type of writing do you enjoy, has earned you praise, and has a level of higher paying clients for you to tap into? Another consideration in choosing your niche is the amount of competition you will have. The less competition the better. My personal area of expertise is writing website copy for service-based businesses.
Once you have established your writing niche and what type of client you want to target, it’s time to start developing your marketing plan. What sets you apart from other writers in your niche? Maybe you have experience in a particular industry or have written successful email campaigns or sales pages. Maybe you have a flair for humor or transforming technical jargon into accessible language for the layman. Decide what your top selling points are.
Leveraging Your Facebook Profile
Now you are ready for the Facebook piece. Find your target audience in Facebook groups and join those groups. Do NOT try to sell in the groups. Instead, share your knowledge and interact with the posts of other members. As you develop relationships, start making friend requests of those individuals. I added hundreds of people to my personal profile Friends list during this stage every week.
Make sure your personal profile description clearly describes your expertise. Make your posts public. You are now using your personal profile for business rather than family and fun. It’s now time to start promoting your expertise with posts on your personal profile.
Your Facebook posts should be lengthy, but with plenty of white space. They should be engaging and even challenging at times. They should NEVER be sales orientated or include links. The purpose of each post should be to demonstrate your level of expertise and pique the interest of the target clients you have added to your Friends list.
The goal is simple: You want these target clients to read your posts and say to themselves, “I want this person to write for me.”
Turning Conversations Into Sales
Sales conversations will start either in the comments to your posts or through direct messages with those who have read your posts. Remember, if you are going to quote double your previous rates, you only need to contract with a few clients.
Developing trust in both your skills and your integrity are key to this approach. You want to generate a conversation, not just send them to a website with your services listed.
This is a very hands-on marketing tactic. But I found it worthwhile. I added new clients that paid double my previous rates the first year and then doubled my rates again the next year. If you believe in your value, so will they.
Kathleen Krueger has been a full-time freelance writer since 2011. She has helped dozens of other writers start and advance their writing careers. Her content writing business now operates with little direction from her, allowing her to pursue a leisurely retirement. Her new book, “Hey Freelancer Go Clone Yourself” is available on Booklocker.com in paperback and digital formats.
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