But what if you want to blog for pay? That’s not so easy.
Paid blogging work is out there, but you have to know where to look for it, or if you can’t find it, how to create your own opportunities.
A while back, I asked writers on Freelance Success, a members-only writer’s message board, about their paid blogging gigs. Two dozen responded. The subjects they’re blogging about and the clients they’re blogging for are all over the map including:
- Health care topics for a Fortune 100 company
- Breaking business news for a major business news site
- Securities regulations for a regional financial association
- Electronic health records for a government agency
- Household topics for baby boomers for a major TV network’s website
- Restaurants and food for a travel website
- Pregnancy and parenting for a major online consumer information hub
- Menopause for the website of a major women’s magazine
Pretty diverse, eh?
How can you get a similar paid blogging job? For starters, you’ve got to have pretty decent blogging chops. If you don’t already, you can pick up some pointers from earlier posts I’ve written on how freelancers can get started blogging here, here and here.
Here are some ways to find paid blogging work:
1. Check help wanted ads. The publishing business is still shaky, but there is freelance work to be had, including blogging assignments. For help wanted ads, look on JournalismJobs, ProBlogger, Freelance Writing Jobs, Mediabistro and LinkedIn Jobs.
2. Pitch a blog to a publication you already write for. Publications, including consumer, business and trade magazines, are using blogs to publish fresh content on their websites on a daily – and in some cases hourly – basis. If you’re already freelancing for a publication, suggest yourself as a candidate for starting or contributing to a blog. Explain why a blog is a good idea and why you’re the right person for the job. If they’ve already got a blog, suggest starting another on a related subject, or opening it to multiple authors, including you.
3. Pitch a blog to a publication you’d like to work for. Use the same strategy to pitch creating a blog for a publication you’ve been dying to work for. Maybe they’ve been thinking about adding a blog and could use your expertise to make it happen. Write the same type of letter of introduction you’d use to introduce yourself to an editor you want to freelance for. Only instead of a story query, pitch a blog, including what it would cover, some sample post topics, and why you’re qualified to do the work.
4. Pitch a local business or organization. A few of my writer acquaintances have used this technique with great success. Research businesses, nonprofits or other organizations in your area to find some that could benefit from a blog. Then pitch them on why adding a blog to their website would be good for business. Not all enterprises are up to speed on the advantages of having a blog, so be prepared to make a case in language they understand, i.e., how it could affect their sales, marketing, customer service, reputation or all of the above.
6. Do great work and let offers come to you. Sometimes offers will come to you. An editor I’ve known for some time approached me to write a few features for a new website. After the publisher added a group blog to the site, the editor asked me to contribute. But just because you get an offer doesn’t mean you have to take it. For it to be worthwhile, a paid blogging gig should have a topic, frequency and pay rate that makes sense for your freelance business.
6. Create a personal blog to showcase what you can do. If you’re going after paid blogging work, you have to have something to show editors what you can do. If you aren’t blogging for other clients, start your own. If you have a blog, you can point prospective customers to it as an example of your writing style, familiarity with content management systems, and grasp of using social media to promote your work. Who knows, maybe an editor, publisher or company executive will happen upon your blog and decide you’re just the blogger they’ve been looking for.
If you’ve got a paid blogging gig, what is it, and how did you find it – or did it find you?