How to Keep Your Freelance Business Organized

How to Keep Your Freelance Business Organized

Have a freelance business and struggling with organizing said business? You are not alone! Sometimes it is difficult to develop the skills needed to get organized.

 

However, you can learn new skills, even organizing in a way that is practical and even sustainable.

 

For your ease, I’ve included a table of contents to get you to the answers you so desperately want to get.

 

But I must warn you there is a lot of good info in this article.

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Table Of Contents

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How Organizing your Freelance Business will Benefit You and Your Life

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Skills to Develop

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How to Sustainably Keep Organized

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Organizing Your Online Freelance Business

online freelance business

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How Organizing your Freelance Business will Benefit You and Your Life

 

Remember when you were in the third grade, and your teacher started to do less and less for you? 

 

That was the moment when you started becoming more independent.

 

However, it was gradual.

 

When you first entered the classroom, you were merely an older second grader and intimated by the “big” classroom.

 

By the end of the third grade, if you were anything like me, you were getting yourself up for school and making your own breakfast.

 

Those first organizing skills helped you throughout your academic life, and you built upon them as you grew older.

 

Those skills and others are what will help you to be more successful/stay successful in your business.

 

The way to do this is to create a plan, and I’m going to give you some tips on how to get you started with organizing your freelance business.

article writer, christina q

Skills to develop

 

Learn what works for you, not what works for other people.

 

As with anything, when you are planning something, from marketing to your projects, you want to identify your goals.

 

I know this seems like a no-brainer.

 

Duh, I want to get my freelance business organized, and I want to know what organizing skills I need in order to make it happen.

By setting up goals, you’ll not only have a direction to follow, but you’ll know when you’ve been successful.

 

You also want to build a to-do list. This doesn’t have to be on paper for my “nonphysical paper liking” friends.

 

You can create a list on Evernote or sticky notes wherever you like. Just know that you should have a list.

 

Physiologically it does something to you when you can physically cross something off, sort of like a sense of accomplishment.

 

Learn how to prioritize. This is difficult for a lot of us; I am certainly someone who could do better with prioritizing.

 

I find it easy when I am working from home to wander on to social media, you know, for “research,” or get into YouTube to watch “productivity” videos when really I am watching Dr. Pimple Popper.

 

How you spend your time is up to you, but seriously check out Dr. Pimple Popper when you get a chance.

The point is you want to implement something to where it becomes second nature, not forced.

 

As I set up my office, which is in my bedroom for reasons that are just plenty, but it is located in a small corner.

 

I have a ton of books, and I love where I used to have them piled high to my left where I could keep an eye on them.

 

Placing them in the cabinet allowed me some space, and on top of that, I realized I could still access them, and I wasn’t a bad book mom.

freelance writing business Christina q

How to Sustainably Keep Organized

 

Ah, the keyword of the century, sustainability. Yes, even in organizing, you can be sustainable.

 

Instead of trying to convince you to buy bamboo products or stop using paper and keep everything on your computer.

 

What I mean by sustainable is making your new organizational lifestyle easy to incorporate into your life.

It never fails; every time I decide to organize my home, I spend a few days getting it just the way I like.

 

I’ll purge, clean like the dickens, and then marvel at the progress I’ve made.

 

However, in a few days-oh, who am I kidding-a few hours, my house begins to look as it did before I started working on it.

 

Why?

As humans, we have routines and things we like to do.

 

When we implement changes, they have to be something we can continue doing on a regular basis without having to do something “extra.”

 

To ensure all your hard work pays off and is beyond successful-its and sustainable.

 

Implement something slowly.

 

Such as putting your precious books into a cabinet or having a designated spot for your papers.

 

Continually doing this will help build your new routine and condition you to keep up the good work.

 

I must warn you, adding too much at once will only lead to the disaster I mentioned above.

You’ll know when it is time to add something else to the organizing list when you find you always look for “items” in the spot you added.

freelance writing business christina q

Organizing Your Online Freelance Business

 

Not every organizational tip will suit your needs, which is why you can’t just hop onto Pinterest and plug in “organize a home office.”

 

You’ll end up down the rabbit hole and buy a number of items you may not need from Target.

 

Going to Pinterest is not a bad idea; in fact, it is great for inspiration.

I sometimes feel as though some of the ideas are overwhelming and are a lot of work.

 

Not only that, but once I’m done, I don’t want to touch anything because I know I can’t keep my office “that way.”

 

So here are some real ideas to help you get started and keep you organized.

 

-manage your office space

When it comes to your office space, think of this as your sanctuary. You will want to fill it with essential items that you will either use on a daily basis or semi-regular basis.

But you also want it to be comfortable.

A great place to find design ideas for your office space is by Dyna Winter, Home office Design Ideas for Productive and Energizing Layouts.

Filling it with silk flowers or plants is a great idea to soften the room.

Remember it is your working space, and you want to go to work otherwise, you wouldn’t be establishing your freelance business.

I feel Laura from Organized Junkie has great ideas on how to organize small home office space. Some of her ideas you can easily copy even if you are on a budget.

For instance, IKEA has great office furniture that you can alter to fit and suit your style and needs.

 

christina q writes

-plan and schedule your day accordingly

 

As with any aspect of your life, you will want to set up a schedule that you can stick to.

 

When planning your schedule, it is a great idea to plan for breaks.

 

Many of us, myself included, often forget to take breaks or realize it is time to quit.

 

As a rule of thumb, you want to maximize the hours you have available to you and your life.

A good way to do this is to use Time Block Scheduling, which you can read on this blog and on Tonia Kendrick’s website.

Her blog post not only explains how to use Time Blocking but also provides you with a FREE template.

 

-keep track of invoices and payments

This is good business sense and extremely helpful when you are expecting payments.

 

While you’re just starting out it is easy to say to yourself, “I can do this on my own!” But it becomes overwhelming after a while.

 

I personally use Freshbooks, but you can use whichever program that fits your needs.

 

-prepare for quarterly taxes

 

In the United States, a business is required to file taxes quarterly. (every three months or so).

 

Accounting software such as Freshbooks or Quickbooks is helpful in preparing for your taxes.

 

-plan campaigns ahead of time

 

As with creating a schedule, you want to create a step-by-step plan for launching campaigns.

 

These include either marketing campaigns, newsletters, or creating courses.

 

By breaking it up, you won’t be boggled down in work, and you’ll still have precious time to run your business efficiently.

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-manage email

If your email is overflowing with emails, raise your hand.

 

You can’t see me, but my hand is waving in the air like I just don’t care.

 

For some reason, I have an issue with deleting emails that I. DON’T. NEED.

 

The best advice out there is to compile the emails you need to save into folders. Your goal is to keep your inbox clear.

 

Some folders can include (but really, it’s up to you and your business):

-receipts

-clients

-pitches

 

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-create a filing system

Regardless of how you like to manage your paperwork, either physically or digitally is up to you.

 

However, you should have a system in place.

 

One good reason is so you can quickly access things you need or refer to. Such as a creative brief.

-write procedures for every activity

You may think this is silly since your business may only consist of you, but one day you may need to hire outside help. 

Or you may want to stay consistent and organized. 

Creating a procedure for the activities and tasks you do every day or with a client will help you establish the same standards for everything you produce. 

And again, when you hire someone, they will know exactly how things should be done. 

 

 

Final Thoughts

 

When it comes to being organized in your freelance business, sometimes, it can cause a headache.

 

But it doesn’t have to be. 

 

 

Start slowly, and remember to be kind to yourself. 

 

You are the one creating the business, setting the rules, and doing things your way, so it is ok to mess up. 

In-Demand Freelance Skills

In-Demand Freelance Skills

In my previous post, How to Start Freelancing in 9 Easy Steps, I talked explained the essential step to creating your freelance business, which will ensure you succeed at freelancing. In this post, I’m going to talk about the skills that will help you create content that will help you to stand out.

 

Being able to write isn’t the only skill you need as any freelancer.

 

 For instance, if you’re a photographer, taking lovely pictures isn’t the only skill you need, nor is being able to add numbers if you’re an accountant.

 

I think you get the point, you need a well of skills.

 

In a study performed by PayPal, those who have skills in web design are in demand 36%, making this the most in-demand freelancing skill. 31% for programmers, graphic design and illustrating 30%, marketing and sales 24%.

 

Since the pandemic, freelancing has been on the rise. In the United States alone, 36% are now freelancing full-time, increasing by 8% since 2019.

 

This means that the more in-demand freelance skills you have, the better value you offer.

 

Side note: Aside from having amazing skills in developing or photography or whatever, you should have strong communication skills.

 

As an introvert, I know how difficult that seems. Especially when you don’t like meeting new people.

 

I’ve met a lot of developers that are more comfortable with code than with people. But trust me, you want to work on communication! 

in demand freelance skills

Which skills are in demand for freelancing?

It does not matter what kind of freelancer you want to be the in-demand freelance skills are pretty much the same.

Those skills include:

  • -communication skills,
  • -working with and relating to others
  • -problem-solving
  • -some IT skills
  • -data analysis
  • -Basic knowledge of Math

 

However, the main most requested demand freelance skills one should possess in order to succeed at freelancing include:

-Motivation and discipline

-Flexibility

-strong grasp of your freelance knowledge

-SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)

To name a few, more are listed in the picture below. 

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How to Improve your Skills

 

Consider where you want to be as a freelancer.

 

If you want to make 80,000 a year, then determine what it is you need to do to achieve this goal.

 

For example, I learned how to implement SEO techniques and became certified. In the beginning, I learned about SEO to get myself noticed online.

 

But as I continued to learn more, I realized knowing how to implement SEO techniques is an amazing skill to have and, therefore, should be a part of my services.

 

Audit yourself and understand where you lack skills.

Find what you could do to either strengthen the skills you already have or which ones you can build upon.

 

For instance, if you’re a developer, you may know all you need to know about the back end, but perhaps React isn’t something you are familiar with, but there are a lot of companies that need help using it.

freelance courses

Keep learning and enroll in courses.

Just as I did with SEO, you can learn a new skill.

 

There are plenty of masterclasses, workshops, and courses that can help you build those skills.

 

The best part of online classes/courses is they are online.

 

Dedicate time to learning or perfecting your skills, and just like SEO, over time, you’ll see the benefits.

 

Tip:

When you have reassessed your skills be sure to alter your prices. Check out my post on Charging what you’re worth to help figure out what your new rates should be.

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Freelance Courses

Depending on your budget and the skills you want to improve, the resources for you to develop your freelance skills are infinite. 

Here are a few places to help you get started. 

 

Udemy Courses

This is one of the best places where you can learn new skills and improve the ones you already have.

 

You can choose from many courses at any level in every niche you can think of. Just be sure to choose the courses that have a high ranking and a solid number of students. 

 

As with any product or program, read the reviews to get an idea if the class you choose is worth the money. 

 

Coursera

This is a unique type of “online” school. Coursera collects courses organized by universities around the world. This means the content is of high quality.

 

Many of the courses will provide you with a valid certificate that you can list on your resume or website. 

 

Coursera is a bit of an investment, so think about the budget before charging that card.

 

Luckily you can sign up to get a seven-day trial period after that, you will have to sign up for a subscription.

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Final Thoughts

 

Regardless of what kind of freelancing you decide to venture towards, one thing is certain you need skills.

 

Remember most of the skills you need you might already have, but maybe you need to fine-tune them or build upon them.

 

If you’re wanting to learn something new, like photoshop for your freelance photography business, do it.

 

Or maybe you’re a freelancer who has no clue about SEO, but you know you need it, AKA me, and so you learn what you can and become certified.

Thus adding a new service!

 

I know it may seem daunting, but trust me learning new skills is incredibly beneficial for you and your business.

 

Not only will you stay ahead of the competition, but you’ll increase your value as well. 

 

Happy Writing!

How to Start Freelancing in 9 Easy Steps

How to Start Freelancing in 9 Easy Steps

Is your job not what you thought it would be? Are you thinking about freelancing, but you have no idea where to start?

A year ago, that was me. I had just moved to Paris, the thirty-fifth most expensive city in the world.   

Paris made me miserable, as did anything associated with living there.

I was working full-time at a job during the pandemic, and with holidays around the corner, I moved myself to a small town outside of Paris.

I was immediately feeling better, but I was still feeling horrible about my job. But I was going to stay there because, as with anyone else, I needed that job.

My job had other plans for me.

That is what led me to finally follow my dreams and start my own online freelance business.

That was when I discovered how to start freelancing in 9 easy steps.

If you are on the fence about how to get started, don’t sweat it, I’ve been there, and I can help you.

It may seem too good to be true, but trust me starting your online business is easy than you can ever imagine.

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How to start freelancing for beginners

Have you ever sat, maybe on your couch, and thought to yourself that it would be great if you had your own business? Did you think it would be great to not have to worry about pleasing your boss day in and day out? 

I am right there with you. 

There is nothing more stressful than knowing you are doing a great job, but you’re suffering from self-doubt or imposter syndrome.

Plus, your coworkers and boss do not appreciate you. 

Coming up with the concept of your business is pretty simple. You think, “Oh, nobody has that!” or “My family and friends love my knitted sweaters!” 

Creating that business is a tad bit more teadious. 

But if you can write an email and send it to the right person, then you can create an online business. 

I’m going to guide you through this mind-blowing topic, from how to get started to the skills needed for freelancing. (part 2 of this article)

So, let’s do this! 

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Ready to get started with your freelance business? Need pitch templates! For a limited time, get your Freelance Pitch Pack for FREE!!  €60 value

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online freelance business

9 Easy Steps to Start your Freelance Online Business

 

 

1.What is your purpose?

Decide what is that you are passionate about and what is your reason for creating this business.

 

Being purpose-driven will be drawn from your commitment to stay true to your values and passion, which are at the core of your business.

 

When creating your business, you want to have a reason for people to make a connection with you, and what better way to do that than with your passions.

 

Millennials want to be engaged with their work and feel the need to contribute to the bigger picture, to do that, you must be transparent and show you value purpose over profit.

 

According to a study by insider intelligence, 27% of consumers would switch brands for better value alignment.

 

Meaning if the core values of the company do not align with the values and desires of the consumer, then consumers will go somewhere else.

 

 

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2. Learn all about your passion-decide if you can love it for a long time

 

While discovering your passion and purpose is exciting, you should also do a little more digging about your purpose and how long you see yourself continuing your freelance life.

 

For example: Let’s say you enjoy photography. Friends and family members compliment you on how well you take pictures, and you think it would be fun to turn that hobby into a business.

 

Good choice.

 

Now think about the type of clients you want to work with. Can you work with screaming kids? Demanding Brides?

 

Or pouring over photos while doctoring them up on your computer for a long time?

 

Can you see yourself doing this day in and day out? Do you see yourself getting sick of having to please hard to satisfy clients?

 

If for a moment you thought “No.” then perhaps you should rethink this avenue.

 

The reason this is important to think about now is that you’re making a lifestyle change, a big one. Not only that, but you have to enjoy what you’re doing; otherwise, you’ll hate it, and your purpose will not align with you or your business.

 

Free Download-limited time offer!

Ready to get started with your freelance business? Need pitch templates! For a limited time, get your Freelance Pitch Pack for FREE!!  €60 value

Click the button to sign up and get your download!

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3. Create a business plan

As a self-proclaimed organized queen, I love a good business plan.

Regardless of where you are at in your journey, you will need a business plan.

Why?

A business plan helps freelancers when:

 

  • -you have nothing in your inbox, and your feel anxious
  • -your super busy, overworked, and not paid what you are worth
  • -you have no idea what to do
  • -barely tried anything
  • -feel overwhelmed
  • -you want your business to grow.

Check out An easy Freelance Business plan with a template to help you get started.

 

While many business plans are over twenty pages long, you don’t have to add everything, including the kitchen sink.

 

You’re setting up a freelance business, not a corporation. At least not yet.

There are only a few times you should make sure to include.

  • -company summary
  • -projections and goals
  • -marketing, competition, and sales strategies.
How to become a freelancer online

Free Download-limited time offer!

Ready to get started with your freelance business? Need pitch templates! For a limited time, get your Freelance Pitch Pack for FREE!!  €60 value

Click the button to sign up and get your download!

4. Create a business brand

While you’re the face of your brand, that step is done.

 

You need to build trust; building your brand will help you do that.

 

Share your journey on social media, and be geniue. Tell your story! And be ready to fail.

 

Check out Forbes 10 Golden Rules of Personal Branding and get going!

My story of how I got started is being mentally abused and harassed at my former job.

As embarrassing as I feel about this, How could I allow that to happen to me? I share this story to help myself and connect with my followers.

 

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5. Create your business website

 

My favorite part!

Of course, it would be my favorite, there is just so much creativity involved!

With WordPress and Squarespace, it is easier than ever to create the professional writer webpage that you deserve.

Literally, drag and drop kind of easy!

 

Why do you need a website?

You should have a website where you can build a following and highlight your skills.

This is a place where you can link your portfolio and use that link when pitching yourself.

Be sure to check out my latest post on building a portfolio without experience.

The main elements you need for your website are as follows, but of course it is your website these are just suggestions!

  • -Home page
  • -about page
  • -services
  • -contact page
  • -portfolio

Protip-to strategically keep your SEO high, make sure you use your homepage to link to a splash page, then a deliverable page, and finally a book now page.

 

The reason? The further away from your homepage, the lower your pages will rank for SEO.

You want to have a pillar page (a page that covers a topic in-depth and is linked to a cluster of related content.)

 

This is also a great strategy to use when creating content. Linking pages to each other will not only build your value but demonstrate your authority.

 

 Check out Big Picture Branding, the founder Courtney Fanning, gets deep into how you should set up your service pages, and the best part is she has templates for you! 

freelancing in 9 easy steps

6. Create a Marketing Strategy

The only way potential clients will know you exist if you create a strategy to get the word out. 

Creating a marketing plan is easier than you think, and you’ll be up and running in a few steps.

  • -customer persona
  • -research the market you are infiltrating
  • -analyze your products and services-what problems. Can you solve
  • -goals for your business
  • -what is the budget-sometimes you may not need to spend a dime on it. Case in point social media or SEO strategies.

 

Read on how you can create your very own business marketing plan!

 

To help you with your goals, be sure to check out. Should you know about SMART Goals?

 

Smart goals are a great way to help you make sure to accomplish the goals you create for yourself and your business.

 

 

7. Create a Social Media Profile

Social media is a platform where people can connect. The whole purpose of social media is to connect, and one of the ways to do so is to be your authentic self.

 

AND-it is where you network.

 

One of the most important things you can do for your business is to create meaningful relationships with those you meet online.

 

Networking is how you grow your business without having to spend a dime.

Think backlinks; when you’re not guest posting or helping someone with other types of projects, you’re looking for ways to get backlinks.

Your relationships can help you get those precious backlinks that will, in turn, boost your SEO ranking.

Research which platform works best for you and your business.

 

Many writers tend to use LinkedIn, where sometimes clients come to you. But Instagram may work better for you and your business.

A word of advice don’t have too many social media accounts.

You’ll end up overwhelmed and feel as though none of your efforts worked because you can’t be as authentic as you should be.

Check out my blog post on How to Tackle Networking Using These 3 Tips that will help you grow your business.

 

Freelancing in 9 easy stesp

8. Set up your business accounts/register

 This will depend on where you live. It is pretty simple to register your business and get a bank account.

Think about setting up your PayPal account; super easy!

Here are a few resources to help you where ever you are

Where ever you are in the World

Working for yourself-GOV.UK

How to set up a business entity as a freelancer

 

9. Set your Freelance Rates

Some freelancers will charge by the hour, many by the service.  Focus on your goals, this will help you to determine what and how you should charge. 

 

I charge by the project; many of my packages are personalized to the client; therefore, the prices are personalized.

 

In my blog post, Are you charging what you’re worth, I explain why you should set a professional rate for your services.

Final Thoughts

These are just a few steps to get you started on your freelance journey.

 

They may seem a bit overwhelming but trust me; they are not.

 

You don’t have to finish each one right away.

 

Take your time getting your freelance business set up, and don’t worry about launching as soon as you hit publish on your website.

 

You want to make sure you’re putting your best foot forward, making the best impression.

 

Stay tuned for part two of this blog post, the freelancing skills every freelancer should have! 

 

Ps: You probably already have many of them. 

How to Easily Create a Writing Sample

How to Easily Create a Writing Sample

Are you ready to start looking for a freelance job?  Or you have applied for that dream writing job, but you don’t have an idea how to write a writing sample.

You are not alone.

In the beginning, I started out thinking I would just use my blog as my “sample” while that did work for guest posting, it wasn’t enough.

Why?

Because of serious publications and business, I looked like an on-the-side hobby blogger, which is not the vibes I wanted to send out into the world.

 

I am a writer.

 

Therefore, I must reflect on that, and so I created my writing samples.

 

Trust me, it is super easy!

christina q writes

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Why do you need writing samples?

Think of writing samples as your resume. The samples you create demonstrate how well you write and what you are capable of. 

 

Writing samples can come in several different types of pieces, based all on the niche or specialty that you are targeting.

 

Such examples can be the following:

  • Articles
  • Emails
  • Newsletters
  • Landing Pages
  • Social Media Campaigns/Ads and content
  • Case Studies
  • Product description

 

The type of writing sample you choose must be well researched and thought out.

When you use your portfolio as a writing sample for a potential client, you are showing examples of how well you can follow directions, research, execute the ideas and demonstrate your eye for details.

 

If the potential client asks for specifics, be sure you stick to those, they are looking for a writer who can match their brand and demonstrates an understanding of their products and services.

christina q writes

How to Create Your Sample

 

Read the description to fully understand what the client is looking for.

 

Don’t send in a random article you feel is a good fit.

Print out the description, reread it, highlight the important details and then take notes if needed.

 

I do this because I must have paper. In fact, for this article, I wrote notes out by hand, typed then printed them for editing.

 

Nuts, I know but trust me, it works when you are trying to create good work. (either for yourself or others)

 

Take your time to analyze and study the instructions, then once you feel ready, decide what skills they are looking for and your approach to demonstrating your skills.

 

Example:

What: We’re looking for a long post on (Title). While we want it to be written exceptionally, entertaining, engaging, and unique-we simultaneously want it to be an organic attraction to our audiences and inspire the reader into our offer. 

Must haves: Structure the article as explained in the following pages, internal linking, links to resources outlined in the following pages

christina q writes

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Steps to Create your Sample

 

1. Read the job post

I know I said this before, but it bears saying again. You should read, dissect, and highlight the vital information listed in the description.

 

Not only will you be ahead of the competition, but you will show you can follow directions and, above all else, demonstrate you pay attention to details.

 

2. Research the brand

When creating a piece, it is essential that you get to know and understand what they are about.

Look at their website, their adverts, and social media.

Take note of anything you can use in your same.

Learn from the content they post on their website and social media to get a genuine feel of the voice.

 

When I worked with a strict client, who I adore and respect completely, I learned so much from them about the tone or voice I use.

I learned that when working with a client, it is not enough to be a fantastic writer; you are hired or hoping to be hired to write in the place of someone from the business.

Understanding their voice and tone will help seamlessly incorporate your writing into their content. I learned this increases your value as a writer.

While researching, you want to understand who they are and what makes them stand out.

Understand their purpose. What are their goals? What problems are they trying to solve, and what solutions do they provide.

Who is their target audience?

Knowing this will help you understand how to craft your piece, which leads me to the voice.

Speak to the audience, and discover what tone you should use. Serious? Fun? Informative?

Again, check out their website; it is the holy grail for information.

christina q writes

3. Come up with ideas

Brainstorm how you can improve their content, how can you add value to their content with your expertise?

The directions in the job listing for your writing sample is a great source to help you during this part of the sample.

 

4. Comb through for the best ideas

Read what you have come up with and highlight what you feel are the best ideas.

You will want to use those to help you choose the best ideas to look for the following:

  • What excites
  • Is most valuable
  • Aligns with the brand’s purpose
  • Fits their voice
  • Targets the audience
  • Does it fit the job description or instructions for submission?
  • Write your sample

 

As you put the article together be sure to format it as they would on their website.

 

Doing this will add an extra level of paying attention.

 

If you are adding this sample to your online portfolio, check out your favorite blogs or online publications and decide which formatting best suits your article.

I discovered this tid bit from an online friend who helped me establish my portfolio.

Personally, I think it also demonstrates your skills in formatting, if anything it helps you to practice.

 

5. Now take a break

You know like Ross and Rachel?

 

Take a break.

 

Have yourself a nice bubble bath or read a book, whatever you like to do to relax.

 

Then, perhaps the next day, come back and read what you have created.

 

 Why take a break?

 

To help give you a fresh perspective on your piece.

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6. Edit Edit Edit!

 

Once you are satisfied with the article or particular type of sample you have created it is time to edit.

 

Really take your time. I personally first read the article a few times then I turn to Grammarly.

 

I take my time there as well, and sometimes argue with Grammarly but hey AI isn’t always perfect.

 

Once you feel you’ve edited enough, or you’ve gotten a 90% on the Grammarly meter, then submit or post on your portfolio.

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Type of Samples to Create

 

Can’t think of a sample to create? 

 

When I began my portfolio, I wanted to post anything I ever wrote. But that was not the best choice because the articles I had were varied in my skill, but they were lacking in bits.

 

I needed samples that could highlight what I could do, not something I recycled from my previous blog.

 

The type of samples you want to think about are:

 

  • Blog post-that offer value, such as a book review or a how-to post
  • SEO Post-something that demonstrates your knowledge of SEO and ranking
  • Landing page
  • Long-form articles
  • Guest post (Link)
  • Specialized Samples:
  • Whitepaper
  • Sales pages
  • Landing pages
  • Ads for social media such as Facebook or Instagram
  • Product descriptions
  • Case Studies
  • Emails-Newsletters

 

Final Thoughts

 

Looking for a writing job is undeniably stressful, especially when you are asked to give a writing sample.

Remember, you are a writer, and as a writer, your resume isn’t a typical piece of appearance you send to clients.

Your writing samples are your resume that clients look out for to determine if you’re the right fit for their brand.

When I started quillsandtypewriters.com, I wanted to throw a lot of articles into my portfolio, but as I researched and read my samples, I realized that many of them were not worthy of a portfolio.

Before you begin putting pieces in your portfolio or sending articles to clients, study them and determine if each article is indicative of your value and what you can do for companies.

Be sure to make sure you edit!

Happy Writing!

Must Have Research Skills for Freelancers

Must Have Research Skills for Freelancers

Have you ever wandered over to another blog or read an article and then instantly felt as though your writing and research skills were not what you thought?

 

Or perhaps you were painfully made aware that your academic writing needed to be explained before the point was understood.

 

Freelance writing is complicated enough with the stress of pitching and knowing where a comma is supposed to go in a sentence.

 

There are also skills you must sharpen as a writer. The main skill of course is strong writing skills, but another important skill is having strong research skills.

Research is how writers, journalists, students, and other writers answer questions or understand different viewpoints.

 

Ok, so research is essential for a writer. But it has to be done well in order to be considered valuable.

 

In demand freelance skills

 

I learned this the hard way when I was assigned a monster of an article.

 

Not only was there research that I had to go through and make sure to include I had to learn how to implement article “research”.

 

Of course, I knew that, but again implementing it was not connecting in my brain.

 

Luckily I worked with a great client who pretty much mentored me.

 

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Remember when you had to write an essay or thesis in school and you had to sift through endless books and websites to support your ideas?

 

Well, that is essentially the same for any type of writing. Just remember the way you use that research is different.

 

When it comes to writing an article it may be informative but know it has to provide value, you know help someone out in a way that no one else can.

 

I pride myself on being a strong researcher but that took time. The basic research skills I learned in college but the rest I had to foster and nurture.

 

Super lucky I had a great mentor, and I hope to pass on the knowledge!

 

freelance research skills

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Developing your Research Skills

Start broad then narrow your specifics into a general idea. Once you have that then move into researching reports and surveys.

 

Identifying quality sources is simple when you know what you should look for.

 

The age of the publication is incredibly important because you have more information that is fresh and possibly wasn’t disproved.

 

The more current the source is the more up-to-date the article is regarding the subject.

 

Create a list of questions-ignoring what you already know about the topic.

 

Really dig into the research to find new information that surprises you and helps you bring freshness to the topic.

 

For example, I’ll use my novel since I’m currently working on that, it takes place in 1940 Occupied France.

 

Now the first initial gut instinct is to immediately dive into research from an American soldier’s standpoint.

However, that is incredibly easy. Why? Because you have basic knowledge of what Americans endured on D-day and beyond from your High School History classes.

 

Instead of researching the gore details you just look at the things you already know.

 

Meaning you pick up a book that talks about D-day and familiarise yourself with the details proving you remembered what you learned in high school.

academic and research skills
Freelance Writing Skills

6 research skills every writer should have include:

 

1. Knowing which source is relevant and which isn’t

2. Knowing which source is reliable

3. Putting yourself in the reader’s shoes and answering questions you feel the reader may have

4. Gathering as much needed information as you can, with sources

5. Learn what is good and what is not

6. Cutting out the fat-knowing what is fat.

Tips to Help Refine Your Research skills

One thing I love to do is collect. I know that sounds like hoarder speaks but honestly, I love to collect little tidbits that I find interesting that I know I will use later.

 

Thankfully I have a computer and loads of cloud storage so I don’t have all this “research” laying around.

 

But I also collect books from every genre, just about.

 

Fiction, fantasy, non-fiction, history books, biographies, etc.

 

While I am not telling you that you should do the same, what I am saying is to keep researching, even when you don’t need to.

 

Creating a habit, or practicing your skills will benefit you in later projects.

 

Another tip I like to offer is to use your local library.

Get creative learning new freelance research skills

 

Freelancers have limited time and money. Using your local library is important if you need some reference materials not freely available on the web.

 

Sure it may take you longer and you may end up making a ton of copies but you will develop a nose for the scoop!

 

And that is priceless.

 

 

Final Thoughts

Developing research skills is incredibly easy if you understand what you are doing. 

Just like with any skill. 

As with any skill you need to practice, sure one day it will feel like riding a bike but until then-practice. 

 

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