By Peter Hill

Are you a talented writer? Have you always been one of those rare students who didn’t fear essay questions? Are you great at writing blogs, articles, Instagram captions, and simply expressing yourself in writing?

If you’re all those things, you should consider turning writing in a real business. This is a category that offers tons of opportunities. You can start small by offering writing services through through freelancing platforms, and grow a business from there.

But before you reach such a point, you need to understand how the industry works. This is a guide for complete beginners who are considering starting a writing business, but haven’t made a serious attempt to do so just yet.

Understand Where Writing Can Take You

First and foremost, where will your writing skills take you in future? You’ll need to develop an action plan, so you’ll have specific goals for your future. Otherwise, you’ll just join a freelancing website and may get bored in less than a month. A bigger goal will keep you focused.

These are the career options you can consider:

  • Freelance content writer or SEO copywriter
  • Short story writer or novelist (self-publish or as a ghostwriter)
  • Transcriber
  • Affiliate marketer
  • Podcast writer
  • Writing tutor
  • Business proposal writer
  • Resume writer
  • Screenwriter
  • Political speech writer
  • Journalist
  • Content marketer

The list goes on and on. These are the careers you can develop as a freelancer, working for clients. But if you start off well, you may consider investing in your own writing agency. You can hire freelancers to work for you, so you’ll just hunt for the clients.

It’s Okay to Smart Small

Before you go and invest all of your savings into a business website, it’s important to see how the writing industry works from the inside. It’s highly recommended to start freelancing. Your clients will already know what their audiences want, so you’ll save a lot of time you’d spend on such research.

For example, let’s say you join Upwork. You’ll focus on a specific niche as a writer. If healthy lifestyle is your focus because you want to start a website within that niche in future, you’ll easily understand what that audience wants. Your clients will give you precise instructions to follow. They will tell you what keywords to use and how to include them in the content. You’ll learn valuable lessons on writing meta tags. Plus, you’ll be earning money throughout this hands-on training.

Don’t Shy Away from Cold Emailing

If you stay limited to freelancing platforms, you won’t have access to the highest-paying clients. The competition there is huge, and freelancers tend to drop the prices a lot. So you’ll have to work full-time to go over $1,000 per month.

Cold messaging can kick start your career.

Before you start sending messages, however, you need to work on your LinkedIn profile. It should convey your creativity and writing skills. LinkedIn is essential for networking. You’ll connect with potential clients, and you can send direct messages through the platform. 

And how do you do this cold messaging thing?

Just search for potential clients within the niche you cover. Send them messages explaining how you can become a great addition in their writing team. Include links to your published content. That’s it.

Start Outsourcing

Once you establish a good base of returning clients, you’ll find yourself with your hands full of work. Does that mean that you should make peace with what you’ve got and keep working on that level?

No. Keep searching for new clients. We’re talking about turning writing into a business, and that means going beyond the step of being someone’s employee.

When you realize that you can no longer handle all of your clients on your own, you’ll start outsourcing. First, you may start outsourcing the outlining and editing part of your job. You’ll find great freelancers on Upwork and PeoplePerHour. But you know what? You can also make connections with freelance writers via LinkedIn.

Yes, this means you’ll be investing money. But every business owner invests money, so you’re good with that, right?

Start a Website

By this time, you know how the writing industry works on the inside. You know what the clients need, so you basically know what the audience is looking for.

It’s time for you to make a greater investment in your business. You already have your niche, so that’s a great starting point. You only need to get informed about the regulations for online businesses in your state. And you’ll start your very own website.

We’re not talking about a simple blog. We’re talking about a beautiful, secure website that is going to provide high-level content. You may start offering various services or products, based on your niche.

And if you want to focus on writing as a business, you can focus on starting your own writing agency. You just have to make sure to build a secure system where the clients can make payments, and the writers can receive their money.

This step takes a lot of work. You’ll be searching for clients, but you’ll also be recruiting writers. At one point or another, you’ll need to build an entire team of recruiters and online marketers. But if you’re really ready to make it work, you’ll make it work!

The Sky’s the Limit

You’re not just a writer. You’re a good one, and you have big goals ahead.

Writing can be a humble career that gets you through one month after another. But you can also turn it into something much bigger. You want that, right?