The single biggest challenge in freelance writing is your mindset. New freelancers want to treat their new business as a job, but it’s not a job. It’s what you make it. There are no rules.
Let’s contrast two mindsets. A freelance writer who has a “freelancing job” mindset is: where do I find great writing jobs?
On the other hand, the productive freelancer’s mindset needs to be: how can I make money out of this? Or: how can I make MORE money out of this?
You can (and should) apply a monetization concept to everything you do.
Freelance writing mindset: “how can I make (more) money out of this?”
Ask the question when:
- You accept a commission to write for a magazine or website;
- Write an ebook, whether fiction or nonfiction;
- Do market research for a client;
- Look at jobs listed on an outsourcing website;
- Create a new blog…
Whenever you accept a commission, or begin a new project, take five or ten minutes to brainstorm ways you can make more money from what you’re doing.
Free money: brainstorm ideas to make more money from what you’re doing right now
It can be simple. One of my students won a gig blogging for a company website. She thought about how she could make more money from that opportunity.
Within a minute or two, she had a list, which included:
- Ask the company to promote her as a freelancer (give her a link on every blog post, and promote her as a freelance writer on their home page);
- Promote her new gig to her mailing list (she did, and got two new blogging commissions in 24 hours);
- Use what she learned to develop an online “blogging for business” course…
I know that initially it’s challenging to make this “monetize everything” mental adjustment, but this mindset will soon become a profitable habit. As a freelance writer, all you have is your time. Your primary goal in freelance writing is always to turn your time into MONEY.
Freelance writing and your blog: “when do I monetize my blog?”
Over the past week, several writers have asked questions about blog monetization, either their own blog, or clients’ blogs. With the right mindset these freelancers wouldn’t be asking the question — they’d know the answer. 🙂
Which, for the record, is monetize your blog NOW — immediately. I know that I’m a blogging fanatic, and maybe I don’t emphasize the monetize it! angle often enough, but if you have a blog, and if you write for money, then make money from your blog. Otherwise, blogging is just a hobby. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that.)
There are unlimited ways you can monetize your blog. Ideally, monetization starts before you create your blog… never create a blog without knowing exactly how you’ll monetize it. Of course, you can make a mistake. A blog concept for which you have high hopes turns out to be a dud. That’s OK. When something isn’t working, stop doing it.
If you have a blog with one or 100 posts, and you’re thinking about monetization, monetization can be easy, or very hard. Adding a few affiliate links to a blog which doesn’t have a clear focus rarely works out well. Millions of bloggers have affiliate links on their blogs, so just adding a link or two won’t make money.
Instead, create a campaign to promote an affiliate product. Give your blog’s readers a goodie for buying via your link. Each month, create a new campaign, and a new goodie. At the end of 12 months, you’ll be promoting 12 affiliate products, and will be making a nice income.
Don’t stop there however. Remember your monetization mantra EVERY DAY, in everything you do. Keep asking yourself: how can I make MORE money out of this? If you remember that mantra, at the end of 12 months your affiliate income will be a small part of your overall income, because you’ll have found dozens of other ways to monetize your blog, and your writing in general.
How to stop missing out on monetization opportunities
So, how do you stop missing out?
That’s simple. Start looking for monetization opportunities. Brainstorm. You will find opportunities, and your income will increase way exponentially, way beyond your expectations. Onward. 🙂
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