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Business Blogging to Boost Visibility

Business Blogging to Boost Visibility

Are you planning to write articles to boost the online visibility of your business? When the pandemic shutdowns began, our ‘online’ world took on new significance. It’s left many business owners with a heightened regard for the value of a strong online presence. For some types of business, publishing articles is an excellent way to attract readers in the target market, start conversations and generate leads. But before you start writing (or paying content writers) it’s important to pin down your strategy and plan appropriate topics. The best place to start is to understand how publishing articles works (when it does) and the common mistakes that could prevent you from getting results. Let’s take a look at the basics. Choosing the right article topics A common mistake we see, particularly with small business owners who are just beginning to publish articles, is that they want to write articles that are about their businesses, or that directly attempt to sell products or services. It’s a rookie mistake. That type of content typically has little appeal to readers. To be blunt about it, ‘How Great is My Business’ shouldn’t be the recurring theme of your articles. So how do you choose the right topics? Thinking about how and why people find and read business blog content can be helpful in this regard. And one of the most common ways people discover content is by searching for information online. To generate suitable content ideas for discovery by search, it pays to understand how our search habits, the ‘buyer journey’ and the sales funnel come together. Searching online for a specific product or service...
How To Optimise Your Content For Voice Search

How To Optimise Your Content For Voice Search

Voice search is the next big trend that’s going to hit marketers, particularly when it comes to SEO and website optimisation. Research by ComScore predicts that in 2020, around 50% of all searches will be done using voice. While mobile search transformed the way we optimised website content, voice search is likely to have a similarly significant impact on the way we write and present content online. The way people search using voice is very different from how they type into a search bar and this is something all marketers are going to need to start thinking about if they want their content to remain effective online. Here are five tips to help you make your content more voice search friendly: 1. Pick long tail keywords or sentences. Unlike when they’re typing, when people are talking into a voice assistant like Siri, it’s unlikely they will use clunky keywords like, “dentist Sydney.” Voice search is typically more conversational, for example a person might say something like, “find a cosmetic dentist in Sydney CBD.” This means you need to start targeting longer phrases in your content and think about how someone would ask for your products or services in conversation rather than what they would type in a search bar. 2. Be specific. There’s no room for vagaries when you’re talking to a voice assistant. We’ve all experienced the frustration of trying to get information and having a voice assistant completely misunderstand a single word or phrase. Searchers know this and they strive to be as specific as possible to get the most accurate answer they can. If you want...
The Dos And Don’ts Of Email Pitches

The Dos And Don’ts Of Email Pitches

As a freelance writer, pitching for work can feel like being on a treadmill of emails, follow ups and rejections. Even if you have a regular stream of steady work, sooner or later there will come a time when you need to get out there and pitch your services to potential clients. A great pitch email will help you stand out from the crowd, show your expertise and encourage your prospect to hire you rather than any of your competitors. So just how do you write a perfect pitch email? Here are a few dos and don’ts to help keep you on track. Do: Keep it short: Chances are the person you’re pitching to is busy, evaluating multiple pitches, and doesn’t have time to read through a lengthy essay. Keep it to three paragraphs or less – if they want to know more, they will ask. Provide relevant examples: It’s always a good idea to provide links to samples in your pitch email, but make sure they are relevant to the job at hand. This reinforces your expertise. Tailor your pitch to the job or client: Make sure each and every pitch is specifically tailored to the job or client. Address the specifics of the project and show how you’re a good fit. You’ll have a much better chance of success if you tailor your response as it shows you’ve thought about the job and you’ve taken the time to address the different aspects of the project. Check and double check for typos: There’s no worse feeling than hitting send on a carefully crafted pitch email and promptly noticing...
5 Questions Freelance Writers Should Ask At Briefing Stage

5 Questions Freelance Writers Should Ask At Briefing Stage

Briefing is the most important stage of any freelance writing job. If a project goes wrong or a client is not happy, more often than not, the problem can be traced back to the brief. Spending a bit of time upfront getting the brief right can save you hours of rewriting, and reduce the risk you’ll have unhappy clients and negative feedback. The purpose of the brief The brief is a simple set of questions that you ask the client before starting a new project. As well as giving you the instructions for what to write (and how to write it), the brief is an agreed upon point of reference in the event of a dispute or if the client is not happy with the end result. Ask the right questions and you’ll have a much better chance of nailing it first time and avoiding endless rewrites and frustration on both sides. So how much should you ask? A good brief is not too long, while still covering everything you need to know to complete the job to your client’s specifications. Before you get in depth it’s a good idea to cover off the basics, like: Type of content (webpage, blog, social post etc) Number of pages Length of content (usually this is given as number of words) What the content is about. Once you’ve got the basics covered, you’ll want to ask a few more in depth questions so you can really understand what the client is looking for in terms of style, tone and what they want the content to achieve. Here are five questions you should...
6 Tips for Setting up a Freelance Writing Business

6 Tips for Setting up a Freelance Writing Business

We all want more freedom and more space to do the things we most enjoy in life. If you crave breaking away from the 9-5, and writing is your thing, setting up a freelance writing business could be your dream. It can offer the flexibility of working the hours that most suit you, from any location you choose. However, when you go freelance, you’re going into business – and if you hope to succeed, you need to be business-like in your approach from day one. Here are 6 tips to help you turn your freelance pipedream into reality. 1. Prepare financially Switching to a freelance career or not, everyone should know their basic cost of living, or the minimum needed to cover the bills and food each week. If you are contemplating leaving a salaried job to start freelance writing, set aside extra savings (if you can) that will cover your living expenses for a period of time once you leave your job. Alternatively, if it won’t cause issues with your employer, start your business and begin engaging in activities to build your client base before you take the leap out of employment. There are multiple avenues for finding regular writing work – we cover this topic in-depth in our freelance course, Build Your Freelance Content Writing Business. 2. Set your business up correctly so you’re ready to trade These are a few things to consider when setting up any business. If you’ve only ever worked as an employee, you’re likely to need to: Register an ABN (Australian Business Number) If you want to trade under a business name...
5 mistakes that prevent freelance writers earning enough

5 mistakes that prevent freelance writers earning enough

The idea of working from home as a freelance writer is very appealing – you get to schedule your day your way, be your own boss, spend more time with family, and so much more. Yet many try to achieve the dream and fail – and head back to the safety of full-time employment all too soon. If you’re stuck in that dilemma now, you should know that it doesn’t have to go that way! Working with freelancers for over 10 years, here’s my take on the 5 mistakes that prevent freelance writers earning enough. 1. Not business networking Nothing comes close to topping ‘word of mouth’ when it comes to getting work. If you think ‘word of mouth’ is limited to people who’ve used your service and tell others, that misperception is probably costing you a fortune. Referrals can come from anywhere, and the best way to start them rolling is by networking. Networking is all about connecting and getting to know people. The more people you connect with, the more people will be able to mention you when someone in a room (or a social media group) asks, “Hey, does anyone know a writer?” But that’s not all – enquiries that come from referrals are much more likely to convert to sales. They’re also less likely to try to haggle over your quote. 2. Under-estimating and under-quoting If you have an ideal hourly rate, under-estimating the time involved in jobs you quote will ensure you don’t earn your goal rate. If you typically charge by word-count, chances are you’re not always getting paid for extra time spent...