The opportunities available for freelance content writers are endless. But with a growing level of competition (it’s estimated there are almost 240,000 freelance writers in the UK!), knowing where to start can feel overwhelming. To make things easier, this article will walk you through how to find content writing jobs for beginners.
We’ll also look at how to create a portfolio and the best places to look for online writing gigs. With these strategies, some determination, and hard work, you’ll be able to build a successful freelancing writing career!
The first step to finding a content writing job is to create a portfolio to send to potential clients.
How to Make a Portfolio as a Beginner Content Writer
1. Set Up a Blog
If you want to carve out a space to host your writing and content creation, you can set up a blog. Blogging in your target niche provides you with good examples to send to potential clients. Plus, it also allows you to create something for yourself, which can be very motivating for beginners.
There are plenty of free tutorials online that show you how to set up a blog. Starting a professional quality blog doesn’t need to cost the earth, with WordPress offering basic hosting options starting from less than £10 per month. However, there are also other ways to create a blog, such as through external web hosts.
2. Guest Post
Guest posting is another way to build up a body of published work. It involves pitching and writing articles for other websites or blogs in your niche. Initially, you’ll probably have to guest post for free, but it’s a useful way to start your portfolio and build your network.
Guest posting also helps you develop your credibility and authority on a subject. Once you have a few guest posts published, you can send these to potential clients to demonstrate your previous experience.
3. Create an Online Portfolio
There are many different platforms that allow you to set up an online portfolio. A popular free option is Contently. It allows you to easily collate articles you’ve published elsewhere. This is a neat way of showcasing your work to send to potential clients.
How to Find Content Writing Jobs for Beginners (3 Ways)
1. Cold Pitching
Our first way to find content writing jobs for beginners is a little daunting. Cold pitching involves reaching out to websites, blogs, businesses, start-ups, and other potential clients to propose working with them. Let’s look at how to cold pitch in more detail.
How to Cold Pitch Effectively
Start by putting together a list of every blog, business, and website you can find in your chosen niche. Then, create a good pitch that lets them know what you can offer them, including at least three relevant sample articles. If you have a blog or online portfolio, also include a link to this in your pitch.
Always explain these three elements in your cold pitch:
- How you found out about the prospective client
- Who you are and why you’re a credible authority in your niche
- The ways you can help them achieve their goals
Before hitting send, personalise the emails. Research each blog, website, or business you’re writing to and adapt your template email to them. Rejection (or no response at all!) is a part of cold pitching. But if you stick at it, you’ll see results and find work as a content writer. An easy way to get a rejection is to write a generic, non-personalised pitch!
It can be a bit scary at first to write to someone out of the blue and tell them why you should work together. Fortunately, there are a few techniques to improve your confidence when it comes to cold pitching.
Understanding the Client’s Needs Is Crucial
When you’re cold pitching, you want to be able to offer your prospective clients value. This means that your content writing should help them achieve their goals, as well as your own. For example, if you find a business that doesn’t have a blog, you could outline how a blog would benefit their bottom line and then offer to help them create one!
It’s essential that you think of your pitch in terms of what the business needs and not what you need. So, always craft your pitch in a way that shows how you can help a potential client to achieve their goals.
2. Online Writing Job Boards
When it comes to finding writing opportunities, job boards can be a great place to start. There are lots online, both free and paid. Below are some of the best job boards for finding content writing jobs for beginners.
ProBlogger covers all the major niches in the writing industry with opportunities for all levels of content creators, including beginners. It posts new jobs daily, so it’s a good place to visit often when searching for new opportunities.
Writers Weekly posts a list of jobs each week for writers in a range of fields. Although many of the jobs target more experienced writers, there are also a lot of opportunities for beginners content writers too.
All Freelance Writing
While All Freelance Writing doesn’t post as many jobs as some of the other job boards, it’s a great resource for content writers looking for work. It also has an interesting blog with plenty of useful information about finding content writing jobs.
3. Online Marketplaces
There are several popular online marketplaces where creatives can promote their services to buyers looking for people with their skills. Examples include Freelancer and Upwork.
One of the most popular marketplaces for freelancers is Fiverr. With around 3.4 million active buyers currently on the site, there are lots of opportunities for content writers on Fiverr in a range of niches.
How to Use Fiverr
Fiverr is easy and intuitive to use. You simply set up a profile describing your skills and post your gig listings. Fiverr is a good place to find one-off projects that can lead to future work with the same clients.
Every time you complete a job, the buyer has the chance to give you a rating. Good reviews can lead to more work, as potential clients naturally look for highly ranked sellers. This means that it can be hard at the start, as many buyers won’t leave reviews at all. But as you begin to develop a good reputation, and continue to provide quality work, the jobs will start to roll in!
5 Benefits of Fiverr
Fiverr is a popular starting point for beginner content writers for several reasons:
- It allows freelancers to access a worldwide marketplace
- You can build up a strong reputation with good feedback from clients
- It enables private communications with clients
- Fiverr has excellent security, so payments are safe
- The platform supports all major currencies
4. Where To Pitch
Once you have a portfolio, you can start pitching articles and other content to publications. But it’s not always easy to know where to pitch your ideas.
That’s why Where To Pitch is a fantastic resource for freelance writers. It has a great search function to find pitching opportunities in all the major writing niches. By selecting a category, Where To Pitch pulls up a series of publications and their pitching requirements. This can save you hours of research and allows you to focus on the pitching itself.
Should You Work for a Content Mill?
Beginner content writers are often tempted to work for content mills. A content mill, or content farm, is a platform that assigns a large volume of low-paid writing gigs to their writers. They get very mixed reviews so it’s important to think carefully before working with one.
Content mills aren’t usually an easy way to pay the bills. They can pay as little as $5 for a 1000-word article! On the other hand, they may help you find clients to develop long-term relationships with. Once they see your writing skills, they may be willing to pay much more for them.
But this isn’t always the case. Being paid poorly to churn out a lot of low-quality articles can lead to burnout and make you question your dream of writing for a living. So, proceed with caution if you decide to sign up with a content mill. At best, they should be a short-term strategy to kick off your writing career. At worst, they can make you hate writing, and waste a lot of your time!
Finding Content Writing Jobs for Beginners
Finding a job as a content writer can be tricky at first. But as you begin to build your portfolio it becomes easier. As you gain credibility and authority, more clients will seek your services and you’ll soon have plenty of work! As you progress, you’ll find better quality clients, and be able to charge more for your content writing services.
There’s always a lot to learn when you’re first navigating the world of content writing. But by using the techniques in this article, you’ll quickly find jobs to further your career as a content writer.