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Content Writing for the Clueless: A Butt-Saving Downloadable Guide

Content Writing Guide for the Clueless. Makealivingwriting.comYou read about it everywhere, see tons of online ads for writing jobs doing it, and it’s all the buzz of the online-marketing world. But what is content writing, anyway?

If you’re new to freelance writing, you may be baffled by all the talk about ‘content marketing.’

You hear there’s lots of opportunity for content writers, but you hesitate to pitch or apply for content writing jobs, because you’re not sure you know exactly what people mean. That makes you worry you could get a content writing assignment, and then you won’t be able to pull it off.

Well, good news: This post is your content-writing primer. You should be able to go out and get content writing gigs — and confidently complete them — once you’ve read this post.

More good news: Content writing is easy, enjoyable, and can pay great. It can also be a good source of regular, ongoing writing jobs. So it’s well worth learning about the world of content marketing, and where you fit into it as a freelance writer.

Ready to learn all about it? Great!

I’m going to pull this term apart — content marketing — and train you up on each piece. So we’ll talk about content creation first, and then about the marketing side. (P.S. this post contains NO affiliate links.)

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Writing Headlines: 16 Wicked-Smart Ways to Attract More Readers

Writing Headlines the Wicked-Smart Way. Makealivingwriting.com.What’s the secret to writing headlines that engage readers, drive traffic, and get more clicks, likes, and shares?

It’s part art. It’s part science. It requires great writing skills. And if you have the ability to look inside the human psyche to figure out what keeps your readers up at night, even better.

Writing great headlines doesn’t happen by accident.

In fact, the smartest blogger in the world typically spends 2 to 3 hours writing a single headline, crafting up to 50 variations to get it right.

Ever struggle with writing headlines and just slap something together? Don’t do that, OK.

Learning to write better headlines is a valuable skill that can help you move up and earn more…a lot more.

For example: Smart Blogger CEO Jon Morrow can command $5,000 per blog post, because he knows how to write irresistible headlines that generate millions of views.

Want to learn how to write better headlines? Check out these 15 tips from the most wicked-smart blogger in the world:

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Writing Conferences: 20 Best Events to Help You Crush It in 2020

Best Writing Conferences for Freelancers. Makealivingwriting.com.It’s just a few days into the New Year, and spots for writing conferences are filling up.

Thinking about attending an event to help you crush your goals in 2020?

Writing conferences can be a great way to give your freelance writing career a boost.

How? You’ll meet writers, editors, publishers, and marketing peeps in your niche. And you’ll learn more about the business and craft of freelance writing.

Writing conferences can also open your eyes to aspects of freelancing you might not even know about.

You’ll also get training, marketing tips, and even story ideas at writing conferences that you can pitch to magazines and trade pubs.

So which one should you attend?

It depends on a bunch of things like your budget, calendar, ability to travel. Your niche, current skills, type of writing you do, can also help you choose.

Looking for a writing conference to attend? Check out this list of 20 writing conferences in 2020.

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How to Write a Blog Post Like a Boss: 100+ Insider Writing Tips

How to Write a Blog Post Like a Boss. Makealivingwriting.com.What if you knew how to write a blog post like a Boss?

You know…you write blog posts that drive traffic and get results. And clients are more than happy to pay you pro rates for your blogging skills.

Not those $25 and $50 assignments, either. When you know how to write a blog post like a Boss, clients are ready and willing to pay $100, $300, $500, or more per assignment.

Sound good? Shut the door. Hold your phone calls. Grab an extra cup of coffee. And tell your people you’re busy.

If you want to learn how to write better blog posts, solid writing skills get your foot in the door. But that’s not enough.

You’ll also need some behind-the-scenes knowledge about things like keywords, SEO, headline writing, social media, and more to craft better blog posts.

In this post, you’ll find pro tips about how to write a blog post, engage readers, generate traffic, make your clients happy, and make more money.

It’s go-time. Check out this of list 100+ tips to get started.

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Blog Post Power: 4 Electrifying Tips to Write Fascinating Intros

Electrifying Tips to Write Blog Post Intros. Makealivingwriting.com.You’re doing it again, aren’t you? You’re procrastinating because you haven’t figured out the best way to write your blog post introduction.

You’ve probably already heard the usual tips…Open a blog post with a question, statistic, or quotation. Wait until you’ve drafted the post body before writing the intro. Start in the middle of the action.

But that doesn’t help you to get the actual words out and get your blog post introduction DONE — let alone done RIGHT.

It’s OK. Let the tension out of your shoulders, unclench your jaw, and take a moment to clear your mind. (A short moment. I’m still right here, and we have work to do on your blog post intros!)

Now it’s time to shock your system with some major volts of creativity to write blog post intros that fascinate readers.

By the end of this post, you’ll be ready to write an electrifying intro for your next blog post. I’ll even give you a straightforward step-by-step template to follow.

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Freelance Writing Rates: What Hard-Working Writers Earn in 2020

2020 Freelance Writing Rates: What Hard-Working Writers Earn. Makealivingwriting.com.It’s the biggest question many freelance writers have: What should I charge? More specifically, what are going freelance writing rates for the type of project I’m doing?

After all, we don’t want to leave money on the table… or price too high and lose the gig.

If you struggle with pricing your work, it’s no surprise. Freelance writing rates are all over the place, as there are so many variables that affect appropriate pay for a particular writing job. Those variables can include:

  • Size, age and reputation of the client
  • How important the writing is to client’s income
  • The level of competition in their industry
  • Complexity of the subject matter
  • How well you know the subject matter
  • Country and language used
  • Deadline
  • Volume of work on offer
  • Usefulness of these clips in your portfolio
  • How badly you need money right now

And more. See why the whole concept of ‘going rates’ is problematic? There’s also the question of your personal income goals, time available, living costs… all may factor into what you seek to charge.

What we can learn is what real writers are charging, for roughly similar work. I began investigating what writers earn last year, with the 2019 Writer Pay Survey.

It was a good start. But I only asked about freelance writing rates on a couple of types of writing in last year’s survey — articles and blog posts, mainly. Writers asked for more.

The 2020 Writer Pay Survey

So this year’s survey of nearly 600 writers asks more questions, about case studies, white papers, email marketing, and more. You can grab a downloadable version of all the data and my takeaways at the bottom of this post.

What are freelance writing rates these days? Are rates getting better or worse? Short answer: Some of each.

But I see lots of reasons for optimism in this year’s survey. In reviewing it, I decided it would be most useful to spotlight data from writers who earn primarily from freelancing — it represents 60%-100% of their income.

All the stats shown below are for writers in this more full-time freelancing category. Let’s dig into the data:

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