How to Get Started Finding Freelance Writing Jobs
6 places to find companies that will pay you for your content writing services.
Finding your first freelance writing client can be tricky. Job platforms, like Indeed and Monster, make it easy to find employment opportunities. Finding freelance clients isn’t always as straightforward.
Knowing where to find freelance writing jobs can save you time and resources. With enough grit and patience, you may find amazing clients, writing about topics that pull your interest and passion.
Where to Find Freelance Writing Jobs
Here are six places to kickstart your search for freelance writing clients.
1. Optimize your LinkedIn profile.
If you want to connect with business owners and decision-makers, you’ll likely find them on LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a gold mine for freelance writing opportunities — if you do it properly.
The trick to getting found on LinkedIn is to optimize your profile. Your LinkedIn should serve one purpose: to sell your services. Pay attention to your profile headline.“Conversion copywriter for 6-figure SaaS companies” is more likely to attract the right leads than “all-purpose wordsmith.”
Your About section is useful for expanding on who you are and what you do (be careful not to drone on — it’s not your autobiography). Describe the types of clients you serve and how your services resolve their problems. List companies you’ve worked with and plug in any testimonials you collected.
2. Spy on other writer profiles within your niche.
Look for blog articles from the types of companies you want to work for. Check out the author byline to find out their website, so you can get to the good stuff — their portfolios.
If that writer has settled into a niche, their portfolios will yield valuable leads that can streamline your research. Most importantly, you know that these companies likely work with freelance writers and pay them. Add these companies to your list, so you can pitch them your services later.
3. Scope out job boards.
Freelance writing job boards are similar to platforms, like Indeed. Job boards compile various writing gigs, sometimes updated daily. The convenience of having several writing opportunities compiled in one place makes job boards a great start, especially for beginner freelance writers.
The type of clients, payment structures and pricing (for paid memberships) will vary by the job board. Some job boards worth scoping out include:
- All Freelance Writing
4. Use relevant keywords
If you have some experience with keyword research, you can use it to find valuable leads. For instance, I write often for the FinTech industry. Googling a FinTech-related keyword, like “equipment financing,” would yield potential clients I may want to pitch my services to.
Companies ranking on Google (in my experience) tend to be well-paying clients. It’s often an indicator that these companies have the infrastructure and budget to invest in their content marketing strategy (and team).
5. Set up shop on freelancer websites.
There’s controversy about freelancing on platforms, like Upwork and Fiverr. Many say these marketplaces are rife with low-quality clients. Others claim it’s a race to the bottom — writers undercut each other, rewarding those with the lowest prices (regardless of the value they offer).
However, I can’t deny that some have experienced immense success (I personally never worked on these Fiverr or Upwork). Also, business owners and decision-makers tend to congregate on these platforms. Just keep in mind the platform fees and disadvantages of these freelancer marketplaces.
6. Join Facebook groups.
Entering a Facebook writing group can be a great way to connect with fellow writers and to learn about writing gigs. I found one of my first clients when another member posted that her company was seeking a freelance writer (I continue to work with this client today).
Some Facebook writing groups worth putting on your radar include:
- The Copywriter Club
- Word Workers
- The Freelance Content Marketing Writer
Also, consider joining niche-specific groups, such as groups for female entrepreneurs or medical technology. Decision-makers within those niches may also be in these types of Facebook groups. Engaging others and being helpful can help those leads discover you and your services.
Tips for landing your first client as a freelancer with no experience
Landing your first freelance writing client can be daunting, especially if you have zero experience. The following tips can offer some guidance in securing that first gig.
Focus on building your portfolio. Your portfolio is the foundation of your marketing and pitching efforts. More than likely, freelance writing clients will care about your writing samples than any college degree or credential you carry. If you’re building your writing portfolio from scratch, consider guest blogging or publishing to Medium publications.
Tailor your writing samples to the client. Treat your writing samples as marketing tools — they are targeted and display your expertise within a subject. A pet product company wants to see articles about pet care, not productivity.
Be consistent. You’ll get rejected or ghosted a lot. Still, it’s important to stay consistent. If you’re building your portfolio, write every day until you have at least three targeted writing samples. If you’re seeking freelance writing gigs, dedicate at least 30 minutes daily to cold emailing or scoping job boards.
Freelance Writing FAQs
Where can I find freelance writing opportunities?
Writing job boards, such as Problogger or BloggingPro, is the most straightforward way to find freelance writing opportunities. While more labor- and research-intensive, cold emailing can also help beginner freelance writers secure their first paid gig. Leads can be found through multiple channels, including social media and referrals from fellow freelance writers.
How do I get into freelance writing?
Generally, a beginner freelancer writer’s first steps are to choose a niche, build a portfolio and learn how to market their services. A clear niche — content marketing for B2C e-commerce companies, for instance — and a portfolio with relevant writing samples are useful marketing tools for attracting clients.
How much do beginner freelance writers make?
Beginner writers often charge between $0.01 to $0.10 per word, according to ClearVoice. The pay range can vary by the word count, amount of research and other variables, such as expert interview requirements and industry.
Keep in mind that price per word is only one payment structure — some freelance writers charge day rates or flat fees.
Dan is a freelance writer specializing in small business and personal finance. He works with FinTech and B2B companies and has written extensively about small business, from startup guides to payment processor reviews. Hire him to write for YOU at danmarticio.com.