What You Should Know as an Indian Content Writing Freelancer?
Freelance content writing if done right is one of the most lucrative jobs out there in the jobs market today!
If you’re successful, you’re highly sought after, are paid well, and can work as little or as much as you want.
But, some writers do end up struggling to make that mark.
Freelance content writing in India can throw up some unique challenges because it is seen as less of a writing job and more of a last resort.
We have grown up believing that any and all convent graduates can write, but that’s not really the case. It is not very often when people choose writing as their primary career option, but things are changing now and we are here to support that.
18 Things You Should Do as a Freelance Writer
Writing is like building up muscle. The more you work at it, the better you get. Freelance writing means you have to write a lot in possibly short amounts of time.
So, let your thoughts flow, practice free writing, even when you are in between jobs, to keep your hands and brain used to the work.
2. Get Organised
You need to be organised as a freelance content writer because you’re going to be juggling between multiple things.
Have a clearly-defined writing process – how you begin your writing, how you create an outline, how do you draft and edit.
Having a style and process leads to faster and more efficient writing, making clients happy!
3. Never Rest Easy
You’re an established writer, you’ve done gigs in creative writing and article writing, and your clients are happy with you. Cool! But, don’t rest.
Create more content and expand your writing horizons by learning a new domain to work on or updating your skills with the trending technologies.
4. Keep Multiple Clients Anyway
Freelance writing is fraught with uncertainty. You could end up losing all your clients in one go. In Finance, it is always advised to not put all your eggs in the same basket. The same goes for when you are working with customers.
Keep working, even if your job is small time.
5. Have a Solid Resume/Portfolio
The first thing any potential client is going to ask you for is your portfolio.
If you’re a beginner, then take a sample of your writing with you to show what you can do. Intern at the start of your career in various content writing agencies to build up your profile and learn the processes.
6. Have a GST Number
With the arrival of GST in India, clients are now hesitant to hire a content writer unless he or she is registered.
If you have a full-fledged freelance content writing career, get a GST number; it will help you in the long run.
Alternative: This is one aspect which is becoming an issue for many writers across India. There is an option to work with organisations who agree to manage the compliance cost and pay GST through RCM on your behalf. Is there a way to find out such companies? Not sure? We, at WittyPen, we take care of the compliance on behalf of the writer.
7. Know How to Invoice!
Whether you’re just starting out as a freelancer or if you’ve been doing it for years, knowing how to invoice is crucial. You need to be able to bill your clients for the number of hours that you have worked.
There are several free invoicing templates available online to get you started.
Be sure to make use of them and never miss adding the taxes!
8. Have a Contract
No matter how small or big the job is, always make that sure you verify your employer and sign an agreement with your client.
You don’t want to put in days of work only to have them vanish on the day you were supposed to get paid.
9. Be Willing to Write About Everything
As an established writer, you get to pick and choose your content.
If you’re new to content freelancing, be ready to research and write about anything that comes your way.
Sports, tech, fashion – nothing should be off the table.
When you know what you want to write about and are confident about your knowledge about the subject, build yourself a niche.
You don’t want to spend half your career doing research, and neither do your clients.
10. Pitching Yourself
Pitch yourself as often as you can.
Clients aren’t going to come to you as often as you might think.
Speak to the needs of a potential client, give them proof of your work, be charming.
But, pitches are rejected quite often, so don’t be disheartened.
11. Create a Website
Clients are inherently mistrustful.
Have a website that lets them see who you are and what you can write.
It doesn’t have to be anything fancy or expensive. It simply should put you there in the freelancing world.
Add samples of your niche writing to your website.
Having a blog can work wonders for you as a freelance content writer.
Not only is it great practice and an outlet for your creativity, it also serves as your portfolio.
It allows potential clients to come across your work and contact you.
13. Guest Blogging
Publish your content on someone else’s blog or contribute on various publishing platforms.
It connects you with new readers and potential clients and is a great way to increase your audience and credibility as a writer.
14. Social Media
The best way to find clients, social media, can be used to put out the message that you’re a freelance writer.
There are various Facebook pages, especially for freelance writers where clients meet writers.
Join one of these pages, be a part of the community and grow your network.
Have a LinkedIn profile! It allows potential employers to know that you exist and allows you to create contacts and build networks.
15. Job Boards
There are several job boards online where content writers are needed.
Check them often, preferably before you go to sleep and just after you wake up as the jobs are taken up quickly.
Always consider asking your existing clients for referrals
16. Don’t be shy about this.
As a freelancer, you don’t always know where your next job is coming from, so make the best use of the clients you have to get new jobs.
If not referrals, get testimonials from them and publish them on your website (with their permission, of course).
You don’t always have to work alone.
Network with other writers and get together to work on projects. It also builds a regular flow of projects from multiple sources.
18. Don’t Oversell or Undersell Yourself
Always be true to your clients, tell them what you can and can’t do.
However, if you feel like the pay is too low for the amount of work you do, then don’t hesitate to voice your concerns.
What to Expect?
Don’t expect the money to come flying in through the door all at once.
Remember, your clients don’t know you.
In India, established content freelancers can earn anywhere from around 25k to 100k INR a month.
As said before, the pay depends entirely on who you work for and how much you write. So, be prepared for uncertainty, always!
To ensure that you get paid duly, consider trying online payment options such as Instamojo, PayPal and Payoneer, which are quick and easy ways to directly send and receive funds.
Most people are trustworthy. But, if you feel unsure about your payments, then start off on a per article basis and then move on to a regular monthly or biweekly schedule. If advance payment is an option, always consider taking at least 50% as advance.
Most writers in India move away from freelance writing after they develop solid foundations.
This does not mean that freelance writing is not the job for you. If you can stay motivated despite the upheavals in your career and are willing to put in lots of time and effort, there is no reason that it cannot turn into a full-time career for you.
The key is to start somewhere and see where the writing leads you.
Here are some more links with information on content freelancing in India and how to get started!
So now what are you waiting for? Get started!
How We Help Writers at Wittypen?
WittyPen was started with the core belief to create opportunities for writers across domains and different experience levels. We not only help you get freelance writing projects, but also bridge the information so that you ca create content which is most relevant to the end reader. Also, we ensure you get paid, always!
Know more at WittyPen.