How to Get Ideas For and Choose Your SEO Writing Niche, Part II

Written by Chrislyn Pepper

In Part I of this post, we discussed the problems many have choosing a niche, how I settled on my niche (medical content writing), and where you can find ideas to help you discover your niche.

In this, the final part of this two-part post, we’re going to narrow down the list of ideas you came up with and settle on a final — profitable! —  niche you can start marketing to. So let’s get started.

Ready, Set, Choose Your SEO Writing Niche!

Grab your list of SEO writing niche ideas.  Using these ideas we are going to rule out all but three niche topics. I’ve ruled mine down to two semi-related topics – business (specifically, SEO and SEM) and medical.

How to Choose a Freelance SEO Writing Niche

Ditch Everything You Don’t Like

Just about everyone at some point does a job they hate, because they need to pay the bills or to get experience.  I worked as a direct care aide at a home for about 6 months.  I hated the job, but felt I needed the experience even though I got beat up, spit on and sexually harassed.

You couldn’t pay me enough to take the job again.  Also, due to the sensitive nature of the patients, I wouldn’t want to research or write about this niche either.  So, it was one of the first fields I marked off.  If you don’t like it, ditch it.

Mark Out Everything You Don’t Enjoy Learning About

If you can’t stand to study about something, you aren’t going to want to write about it. Your SEO writing niche needs to be enjoyable, or you aren’t going to be consistent in your quality of work or in marketing for clients. Likewise, mark off fields you like doing, but you don’t like to research or read about.

I enjoy doing bookkeeping. I can get lost in invoices and bank reconciliations for hours and it feel like mere minutes. However, I fall asleep or time drags when reading fundamental accounting theories or studying internal controls. I just don’t enjoy reading or writing about it, and therefore, I marked out this niche.

Strike Any Low-Paying Markets

Occasionally, I have to write for $0.02 per word for content mills to make ends meet, and I hate it. It becomes especially difficult to do low-paying work when on the very same day I’m writing a 500-words article for $40. Even when it’s a topic I love, it takes me longer to get the job done, since I have to spend more time making sure I’m turning in quality work.

I even find that I write free articles for marketing and publicity purposes faster than I do penny or two per word articles. Besides, writing for low rates is like breaking your leg before a race.  Your monetary goals are the finish line, but if you’re making $10 for 500 words, the distance is a whole lot further than if you make $40.

Yuwanda’s post on how to choose a profitable niche details how to tell which markets are low paying. I used Google’s AdWord Keyword Tool (recently renamed Keyword Planner) to make this determination.  I figured if people are paying $5.00 per click for a keyword, chances are someone is willing to spend money on SEO writing for that keyword, too.

Put a Line through Topics You Love Too Much

Huh? Yes, you can love a topic too much and you need to mark it out. I know people say follow your bliss, and it will color your parachute while you jump toward success. But, sometimes  . . . bliss sends you and your parachute to business hell.

I love writing about gardening. I should have immediately ruled it out, because business and medical niches pay more than gardening niches. Eventually, I had to rule out this field because I get too distracted by the topic.

It gave me excuses to go in my backyard to snap photos, test out a new fertilizer combination or to check how many days it took a sweet banana pepper to reach 4 inches. The point is I did more gardening than writing or marketing. When I did write, I wrote more words than commissioned. (For some reason, I never got a complaint from my buyers. Hmm.)

Doing more work for less money even when you love the topic is a recipe for failure. In some cases, your writing career will step on the toes of what you love and make you miserable doing both.  No, this wasn’t my experience, but I’ve seen it. I’d hate to see it happen to you.

Look at What’s Left with the Eyes of a Businessperson

What’s left on your list should be topics you like to write about that have money-making potential. So, now you just choose three you like the most to become the niches for your SEO copywriting business. I ruled out all of my services except two topics – online marketing for businesses and medical – because they are broad enough to have several niches within them (internal medicine, dermatology, podiatry, search engine optimization, search engine marketing, pay-per-click marketing etc.).

I learned from Carol Tice that you need to select more than one high-paying niche for your business. If one falls through, has a slow period, or you don’t want to stay in the field, you can pull from another one. Once you choose your niches, learn and market them as often as you give out your name.

My Niche and Passion and Why I Chose It

My SEO blog writing service targets medical professionals who are starting to use a website blog as a business marketing tool for attracting client leads. It’s my passion, because I love learning and writing about medical and business topics. I also get to contribute to the financial success of medical practices that help people live healthier lives.

SEO medical content writing is a profitable niche, because not everyone can do it and SEO combined. There are a ton of medical practices across the US to become potential clients. Plus, I understand medical terms, like gluconeogenesis or onychomycosis, and have the ability to write interesting content on these terms for John or Jane Doe that search engines love. This is my marketable skill and niche.

OK. So, What’s Left?

Take a look at what’s left on your list, and choose your niche and passion. Then, stick to it.

The commenter said,

I really want to find that thing that I’m passionate about and that will keep me consistent. I don’t know why it seems to be evading me. . .

Well, consistency is choosing to become a starving dog with a new bone. Every time I touch my computer, I do at least one thing related to running my business whether it is to:

  • send an email,
  • write an article,
  • post on Manta,
  • locate a prospect or
  • further my writing profile.

If I touch my computer – the source of my income – for any other reason and don’t try to further my service as well, I’m letting that reason sideline my business progress. I firmly believe sidelining is quitting.

Yuwanda said on a post that she digs in and tries something 9011 ways before she lets the figures tell her to let it go. If you have gone through each of these steps, the niches you chose are going to make money when you get in front of enough prospects without quitting. So, dig in and start the first of your 9011 ways to market. I firmly believe your figures aren’t going to tell you to quit.

The SBA says there are 23 million small businesses in the US, all of them need to market, and half of them aren’t online yet. That doesn’t count large companies, and there aren’t 23 million SEO copywriters. So that means there’s plenty of work to be had.

You make your passion, so why not make it building your SEO writing business in a field you love working. Run your business every day and at every opportunity. I believe you’ll find consistency and success in your SEO writing niche will no longer evade you.

Share Your Thoughts

Do you think this info will help you settle on an SEO writing niche? Do you even believe in “nicheing it” as a freelance writer?  If you do,  do you think it’s helped or hurt your freelance writing business? Please share in the comments section below.

About the Author: Chrislyn Pepper is a freelance, SEO blog writer. Her niche is SEO content writing for medical professionals, but she writes on a variety of subjects. Visit http://www.chrislynpepper.com to get blog content or SEO blog writing tips. You can also connect with her on LinkedIn or Twitter. Chrislyn Pepper turns blogs into building blocks for businesses.

P.S.: Earn Extra $$ Every Month by Offering Social Media Consulting Along with Your SEO Writing Services.

How to Become an SEO Consultant

P.P.S.: FYI, did you know that the average salary of search engine optimization writers is $66,000 as of this writing. That’s $15,000 above the median household income in the U.S. right now.

SEO Content Writer Average Salary, Fall 2012

Get trained as an SEO copywriter, and gain the knowledge you need to start a thriving, home-based SEO writing business.

P.S.: Earn Extra $$ Every Month by Offering Social Media Consulting Along with Your SEO Writing Services.

How to Become an SEO Consultant

P.P.S.: FYI, did you know that the average salary of search engine optimization writers is $66,000 as of this writing. That’s $15,000 above the median household income in the U.S. right now.

SEO Content Writer Average Salary, Fall 2012

Remember, when you learn how to write SEO content, you learn so much more than this one skill because it gives you the knowledge you need to take control of your financial future.

 

Freelance SEO Writers: How to Get More Clients by Using Content Marketing, Part II (Setting Up Your Website)

Written by Yuwanda Black

In last week’s post, we discussed what content marketing was and how you as an SEO writer can effectively use it to land clients. In this, the concluding part, we’re going to discuss how to set up your website to best meet your content marketing needs.

Do You Need a Website or a Blog to Do Content Marketing Right?

Many are confused by this, and it’s understandable. I was too until I did a search a few years ago to find out exactly what the differences were (if indeed there were any).

Primarily, the difference between a website and a blog boils down to interactivity. Most people today don’t get websites; they get blogs. And even if they do get just a website, they’ll add a blog to it. For example, take the site below that I found during a random search for “a website with a blog attached to it.”

If you go to http://www.webs.com, you’ll see it’s a business that offers websites. All of their services are offered right there on their home page. There’s no “interactivity” though; you have to click through to their blog to get this. See (click for larger view)?

Example of a Website with a Linked Blog
Bottom line, for content marketing, you definitely need a blog. Even though I refer to this site and InkwellEditorial.com as websites, they’re actually blogs because you can interact, eg, leave comments, see the most recent posts, get “Comment Luv”, etc.

As your entire goal with content marketing is to build a rapport with prospects, you can see why a blog is the way to go. Now, as for what type of blog?

What Type of Website/Blog to Get to Maximize Your Content Marketing Efforts?

Well the answer these days is without a doubt wordpress. And don’t get a free wordpress blog (see #2 in this linked-to post), or any other type of free platform. Get your own domain name and pay for hosting. All of this can be done for less than $10 per month – really!

FYI, there’s tons of other advice in that post also about how to go about setting up a blog – professionally.

The Hosting Company I Use for My Sites/Blogs

I use HostGator, for all of the reasons listed in the link. I did my research after I had an internet stalker slander me all over the web. And for that reason — and a whole bunch of other ones — I’ve never regretted my decision.

Set Up Your Own Website/Blog in Just a Few Minutes

HostGator has an easy, do-it-yourself website builder that lets you create a site/blog in just three steps. It’s called SiteBuilder. See info in this section when you click through.

Get a Website in 3 Easy Steps

How to Organize Your Site to be a Master Content Marketer

Accepted internet marketing wisdom is that visitors to your site should be able to find what they’re looking for in no more than 2-3 clicks. How you set your blog’s navigation up is critical to achieving this objective.

When I had InkwellEditorial.com redesigned back in 2008, I put a lot of thought into the site categories, which look like this (click for larger view):

Content Marketing Insight: How to Organize Your Site to Get Traffic and Land
I talk about this in the linked-to post on Meryl.net above, saying in #5:

Write Out a Blog Design: . . . Over about the course of a month, I had been bookmarking blogs I liked. I then went back to those to write out exactly what I wanted.

Some particulars I requested were a three-column design, a 10-point Arial font; a white background with navy (to match my website). I went column by column explaining to the designer exactly what I wanted and where. I also listed the plugins I wanted and even the graphics.

Note: As I had been thinking about getting my blog professionally designed for months, I was able to be pretty specific. If you are truly lost, your designer can make recommendations. But remember, they don’t know your business like you, the purpose your blog serves for you and how your customers relate to your site.

All of this information has to come from you. So, while it may take a while to figure it all out, it is well worth the investment. It is, after all, an investment in your business.

So do your research and think about your categories carefully. If you put together a content marketing calendar, this will go a long way towards helping you clarify what your categories should be.

One caveat here – if you use your blog as your main freelance writing website, but use content marketing to speak to a defined niche, keep who you’re talking to front and center (ie, your defined niche).

To make it easy, you can set up a separate site/blog for your niche/core audience, and another one for anyone else who wants to know about your freelance writing services. I don’t speak to any defined niche on my SEO writing company’s website, but have often thought that I need to set one up for real estate professionals because I do a lot of writing in this niche.

Luckily, I’ve been at this long enough and get business mostly via referral. But if I was just starting out, this is what I’d do (ie, set up a site to speak to my defined niche, then another general one). I’d also cross link the two.

About Site Design

Just keep it clean. What hangs most up who want to get a website/blog is that they overthink it in my opinion. If your site is clean, professional-looking, has good writing samples and the copy speaks to the needs of your target market, you should have no problem getting leads from it – especially if you use content marketing to speak to a defined niche.

FYI, Carol Tice over at MakeALivingWriting.com did a post entitled, Why 200+ Writer Websites Failed to Get A Single Client. The comments are a treasure trove of first-hand insight on what goes into the makings of a great freelance writing website.

Conclusion

Pull out a pad, make notes as you come across stuff that resonate with you while doing your research. Then, select a defined date by which you WILL have your site/blog done. If you don’t set a defined date, you’ll procrastinate forever (trust me on this); I did for a few years on getting mine done.

And remember, nothing is in stone. Designs can always be changed; but don’t let wanting to make it “perfect” stop you from moving ahead, ok? I hope this has helped you clarify what type of site you need to effectively use content marketing to speak to a niche market.

Good luck!

On a personal note . . .

Sorry this post is so late today. I’m preparing to go back to Jamaica for a few months. And wouldn’t you know it, old (dear, lovely) clients come out of the blue and things just get crazy.

Not that I’m complaining, but I swear, it seems that every time I plan to travel and have my days scheduled out “just so” before I leave, this happens. And, I’m in full training for the Reggae Marathon. I guess the busy season has officially begun — aaaarrrggghhhh!

I hope you’re looking forward to the weekend; I have one zillion and one things to do between now and the beginning of October, so it’ll all be a blur for me.

P.S.: Earn Extra $$ Every Month by Offering Social Media Consulting Along with Your SEO Writing Services.

How to Become an SEO Consultant

P.P.S.: FYI, did you know that the average salary of search engine optimization writers is $66,000 as of this writing. That’s $15,000 above the median household income in the U.S. right now.

SEO Content Writer Average Salary, Fall 2012

Remember, when you learn how to write SEO content, you learn so much more than this one skill because it gives you the knowledge you need to take control of your financial future.

 

Freelance Writers: How to Get Ideas For and Choose Your SEO Writing Niche, Part I

Written by Chrislyn Pepper

Thanks to everyone for the comments to my first guest post.  It’s from your comments that I decided to write about SEO writing niches. On my personal blog, I received the following (abridged) comment:

I just recently started blogging. But, I can’t seem to make up my mind as to what topics or niche to settle on, hence why I have been reading articles like yours and Yuwanda’s. . . . How do you get ideas to write about? I guess working in a niche helps? . . . I really want to find that thing that I’m passionate about and that will keep me consistent. I don’t know why it seems to be evading me. . .

At first, I thought that Yuwanda covers every aspect of finding a profitable niche and niche marketing and was going to refer the commenter to several of her posts.

Having Trouble Getting Your SEO Writing Niche Right?

Then, I realized that many writers still have trouble choosing a niche. There have been comments by writers who don’t like their niche.  Several commenters don’t understand how to select niches or why just marketing SEO in general isn’t best.  To be absolutely honest, until Yuwanda’s website review post, my niche marketing had been wrong.

AAdvice for SEO Writers: How to Choose a Niche
I hung my sign out to be a “SEO health writer” on my website, logo and marketing emails.  By comparing my writing to the other “health writers” on the post, I realized some companies automatically disqualified my services as being a writer outside of their field. My niche writing tends to be medical, which is a separate field from health writing.

As soon as I changed from marketing as a SEO health content writer to a SEO medical content writer, I was engaged for a couple of articles within my niche. Though that still leaves the question, how did I get the idea for my SEO writing business’ niche.

Your Work Experience is a Great Source of Niche Ideas

My work experience tended to rotate between working in the accounting/bookkeeping, medical and social service industries. I have other work experience that I deleted from my niche choices, because I spent too little time on it, or the field fit elsewhere. Such as, administrative work that I did for CPAs, hospitals and clinics, I count toward my accounting or medical experiences.

Ask Yourself:

  • What is your work experience?
  • Which jobs did you enjoy the most?
  • What jobs do you keep trying to get?
  • What fields are they?

The answers should be written in a list as part of your niche options.

I don’t know if all work experience is a source of a profitable niche, but mine seem to be.  As a certified professional bookkeeper, I could write SEO blogs and articles to market to CPAs, accountants and bookkeepers for their websites. I could have chosen to write web content for non-profit organizations with my social services experience.

Aspiring SEO Content Writers: Monetize Your Hobby by Niching It

Wouldn’t it be great to make money with something you enjoy doing for free? Of course you should exclude writing since it isn’t a profitable niche, but other than that, what are your hobbies? Add to your work experience list all of your hobbies as sources of possible niches. When I truly enjoy doing something for free, it doesn’t seem like work when I do it for pay.

I enjoy homesteading. I vegetable garden, raise chickens and breed meat rabbits.  I do my own woodworking to build coops and raised garden beds. (Darn Alabama clay!)  I grow and collect my own seeds for the plants I love.

Homesteading is a popular niche since people want to eat healthier and closer to home.  I know I can monetize my backyard mini-farm with my writing, because I have sold SEO blogs on growing tomatoes, starting sweet potato slips, making natural fertilizers and organic pest control. I zipped through these articles, because I love talking about my garden. (For me, writing is just like talking.)

For right now, list every hobby. Remember, SEO is your special skill, not the niche.  Any groups with websites wanting to get search engine attention from a demographic you belong are niches and potential clients.

As a gardener, plant nurseries, seed companies, garden supply companies and garden magazines want to reach me to sell me their books, seeds, plants, fertilizers and tools.  They have websites, blogs, and online newsletters. They need this content to rank highly in search engines to attract more customers like me. So, they need SEO writers in this niche. Since I’m in this demographic, it was on my niche list.

What You Do Every Day Could Be Your Niche

When I made my list, I overlooked things that I do without thinking. However, these are also sources of niche topics.  An example from my life would be parenting.

I raised 3 step-children from young ages to adulthood and have 3 children from 16 to 4.  I have been through terrible 3s to terrible teens with my own and someone else’s children, dating with kids, blended family parenting, dealing with children after divorce, and the list could go on. I didn’t consider the parenting niche even though I have first-hand daily knowledge to market to counselors, online parenting magazines or divorce support groups.

What is your daily routine? Add details from your routine to your work and hobby niche list.  Things you do every day from applying make-up (beauty), getting dressed (fashion), watering the grass (landscaping) or making dinner (recipes) may be the source of your niche.

Voila, You Now Have SEO Writing Niche Ideas!

If you wrote down the answers to the questions above, you have a long list of niche topics to choose from.  If you didn’t write it, and you still need to select a niche, you have homework. Next, I’ll tell you how I narrowed my long list down to my two primary topics and found a passionate subject for my SEO writing niche.

Coming in Part II . . .

Using these ideas discussed here in Part I, in Part II of this post, we’re going to rule out all but three niche topics. I’ve ruled mine down to two semi-related topics, which has helped me to clarify the direction I want to take my business in — a lot! Next week’s tips will help you gain some clarity about your biz as well. Look for the post next Thursday, the 26th.

Share Your Thoughts

Do you “niche it” as an SEO writer, or are you more of a generalist? Do you think SEO writers should choose a niche, or not? If you’re a niche SEO writer, do you think it’s helped or hurt your business? Please share in the comments section below.

About the Author: Chrislyn Pepper is a freelance, SEO blog writer. Her niche is SEO content writing for medical professionals, but she writes on a variety of subjects. Visit http://www.chrislynpepper.com to get blog content or SEO blog writing tips. You can also connect with her on LinkedIn or Twitter. Chrislyn Pepper turns blogs into building blocks for businesses.

P.S.: Earn Extra $$ Every Month by Offering Social Media Consulting Along with Your SEO Writing Services.

How to Become an SEO Consultant

P.P.S.: FYI, did you know that the average salary of search engine optimization writers is $66,000 as of this writing. That’s $15,000 above the median household income in the U.S. right now.

SEO Content Writer Average Salary, Fall 2012

Get trained as an SEO copywriter, and gain the knowledge you need to start a thriving, home-based SEO writing business.

P.S.: Earn Extra $$ Every Month by Offering Social Media Consulting Along with Your SEO Writing Services.

How to Become an SEO Consultant

P.P.S.: FYI, did you know that the average salary of search engine optimization writers is $66,000 as of this writing. That’s $15,000 above the median household income in the U.S. right now.

SEO Content Writer Average Salary, Fall 2012

Remember, when you learn how to write SEO content, you learn so much more than this one skill because it gives you the knowledge you need to take control of your financial future.

 

SEO Content Writers: Why Longer Copy Rules and How to Increase Your Earnings Because of It

Written by Yuwanda Black

Longer Copy Rules!

Proof?

LongER-tail keywords are becoming more popular: The general trend is that the percentage of people who are searching for 2 or 3 word phrases is decreasing and percentage of people who are searching for 4, 5, or even 8 word phrases is increasing.

Longer Copy Ranks Better: The average content length for a web page that ranks in the top 10 results for any keyword on Google has at least 2000 words.

Longer Content Is Shared More on Social Media: Posts that were under 1500 on average received 174.6 tweets and 59.3 Facebook likes. Posts that were over 1500 words on average received 293.5 tweets and 72.7 Facebook likes. [Source: QuickSprout.com, How Content Length Affects Rankings and Conversions]

How to Capitalize Off These Facts as an SEO Writer

Tell your clients to increase the length of their articles, which means you can charge more. Don’t forget to show them the research to get them to understand why this is beneficial to them, eg, the article linked to just above — which is where all of these stats come from (How Content Length Affects Rankings and Conversions).

This article is chock full of info that you can turn into a short special report on/about content marketing to distribute to existing clients and new prospects alike.

P.S.: Earn Extra $$ Every Month by Offering Social Media Consulting Along with Your SEO Writing Services.

How to Become an SEO Consultant

P.P.S.: FYI, did you know that the average salary of search engine optimization writers is $66,000 as of this writing. That’s $15,000 above the median household income in the U.S. right now.

SEO Content Writer Average Salary, Fall 2012

Remember, when you learn how to write SEO content, you learn so much more than this one skill because it gives you the knowledge you need to take control of your financial future.

 

 

Freelance SEO Writers: How to Get More Clients by Using Content Marketing, Part I

Written by Yuwanda Black

This past Monday, I received the following email, which prompted this post. This freelancer is a relatively new SEO writer, and her business has taken off. She wants to do some content marketing to her defined niche, and wants some pointers on how to go about setting up her website to do that effectively. She wrote:

Many Thanks in part to your advice, I’m now well into my third month working for myself and loving it! In need of your advice again if you don’t mind sharing.

I’m looking to set up a website that will host blog posts but also share information on a certain subject in my niche (I think this will really help some of my clients in this field realize that yes- I do know what I’m doing and that content marketing can be really powerful and a good investment when done properly).

That being said, my own website is very basic right now and I’m not sure if there’s a good host/company you would recommend or whether you outsource website management and development to someone else.

As you know, I am “learning as I go” and I simply haven’t needed to look into something like this just yet. Your website for Inkwell Editorial seems just like what I need- a “home base” for blog posts with links and other facets connected to it. Do you have any insight? As always, appreciate your insider knowledge 🙂

My Response

I fired off the following quick response to her, but I want to expand on my answer here. I wrote:

L-:

Short answer — Hostgator for hosting. Here’s why: http://inkwelleditorial.com/best-web-hosting-provider-for-freelance-writers. More in-depth answer to come in Thursday’s post on SeoWritingJobs.com. And congrats on your third month. Glad it’s going so well and that you’re enjoying yourself.

Following is some insight on how to get more SEO writing jobs by using content marketing. In Part II of this post next week, I’ll share some tips on setting up a website to accommodate the content you’ll be creating.

Content Marketing Tips for Freelance SEO Writers

How to Get SEO Writing Jobs Using Content Marketing: 6 Tips

As SEO writers, most of us are accustomed to writing content for clients. It never occurs to many freelancers that this method of marketing is very useful for promoting our own products and services. In fact, I use it all the time, ie, article marketing.

About Using Article Marketing as a Form of Content Marketing

Article marketing is simply another method of content marketing. This can be a highly effective form of content marketing. BUT, it does have its drawbacks from an SEO perspective, especially post-Penguin 2.0 as discussed in the link here.

The primary drawback is that it. Namely that it’s content that’s distributed beyond your own site. So be sure to keep in mind that the goal should be to distribute helpful info to your readers directly, instead of driving organic traffic.

Now, following are a few more insights on how to use content marketing to get more SEO writing jobs.

I. Update Your Site Regularly: Once you get your website, get on a schedule to update it consistently. Optimally for most industries, at least once a week is ideal. Learn more about how often to update your website.

II. Promote Your Content: These days, promoting your content is every bit as important as creating it. And, social media is a driving factor behind this. Search engines like Google use social media as one of the over 200 factors in its algorithm to rank sites.

It can be time consuming; I’m not gonna lie. Just six months ago, I was actively only on a couple of social media sites, namely Twitter and Facebook. I’d spend – maybe – 15 minutes to half an hour on social media daily.

Now, I interact on six social media sites daily – and it takes me a couple of hours to do so. FYI, you can find all of my social media presences here.

How to Choose Which Social Media Sites to Promote Your Content on

1) Where Are Your Customers: You want to be where your target market is. And, each social media site has different demographics. So find out where your prospects are, and get active on those sites.

2) Don’t Get Overwhelmed: When you’re just starting out, in my opinion, you should choose one or two social media outlets where you KNOW you’ll really interact regularly. Then, add others as you can — ie, when you hire a social media assistant.

III. Speak to Your Core Audience: This means knowing exactly who your target market is. It can be tempting to try to appeal to everyone when you write. But, when you create content, you should speak to your core audience. They’re the ones who are most likely to invest in (ie hire you), so create content that solves their problems, which brings me to the next point, which is . . .

IV. Create Client-Focused Content: One of the biggest mistake many content marketers make (and I’m talking big companies too) is that they’re so busy talking about their product/service (ie, it’s features) that they forget to tell the customer how it can solve their problem (ie, talk about the benefits the buyer receives).

So when you sit down to write a piece, make sure you keep the clients problem front and center – and make the info all about solving that problem. Your “promotion” is the fact that YOU wrote the piece. As the freelancer who inspired this post so astutely pointed out by saying she wants to:

. . . share information on a certain subject in my niche (I think this will really help some of my clients in this field realize that yes- I do know what I’m doing…)

V. Make It Easy for Prospects to Subscribe: This is something I’ve yet to do on my own SEO writing company’s site, so here I’m going to ask that you “do as I say, not as I do,” and that is to capture prospect information. Listbuilding is the first step in building a long-term relationship with your prospects.

What You Need to Start Collecting Info from Prospects Who Visit Your Site

In order to build a “money-making list of subscribers” you need a newsletter subscription service like AWeber. With a service like this, all you have to do is cut/paste a snippet of HTML code on your site and voila, you can have a subscriber box on your site. Services like AWeber have tons of customizable subscription boxes. You can change the color of the box, the font, insert graphics, etc.

See the subscriber box one on the right-hand side of every page of InkwellEditorial.com? That’s an AWeber subscription box. Another example is the one found at the bottom of http://FreeAdsSell.info, a site that sells one of my ebooks.

When you have an AWeber account, you can set up different subscriber lists under the same account. You’re charged by the total number of subscribers you have, NOT how many different lists you create. And it’s all billed from one main account.

Listbuilding Tip: The less info you ask for up front, the better. When I ask prospects to subscribe to my various newsletters, I only require that they give a name and an email address. I don’t ask for an address, phone number, etc. because most won’t subscribe if you do. So, keep it simple.

VI. SEO Your Content: Don’t forget to do this, using the most up-to-date SEO writing guidelines.

Bonus Content Marketing Tip

One thing that I’ve done in the past is to write and distribute short special reports. I talked about this in a post I did for Copyblogger a few years ago, writing:

How Educating an Interested Prospect [via a Special Report/Tutorial] Closes the Deal

As I was putting together the tutorial, I had one prospect on the hook. He was the marketing manager for an online gift card seller. He was unsure about which service he wanted to go with, in spite of several phone consultations. …

The next morning, he placed his order. He said the tutorial helped to clarify a lot of the questions he had about internet marketing. … This client chose the article submission package for $595. It’s a popular service that many SEO copywriters offer. Simply selling two of these packages a week will gross you $61,880.

Learn more about how to land SEO writing jobs by writing and distributing special reports.

As you can see, there’s a lot that goes into “content marketing.” So if you decide to use this method to get writing jobs, remember that there’s going to be a time investment. But, it can be one of the most effective investments you make in your freelance business.

Read Part II of this post.

P.S.: Earn Extra $$ Every Month by Offering Social Media Consulting Along with Your SEO Writing Services.

How to Become an SEO Consultant

P.P.S.: FYI, did you know that the average salary of search engine optimization writers is $66,000 as of this writing. That’s $15,000 above the median household income in the U.S. right now.

SEO Content Writer Average Salary, Fall 2012

Remember, when you learn how to write SEO content, you learn so much more than this one skill because it gives you the knowledge you need to take control of your financial future.

 

Getting SEO Writing Jobs: How 8 Out of 15 Prospects Responded When I Contacted Them & What It Means for Future Work

Written by Chrislyn Pepper

SEO Writers: Do You Pan for Marketing List Gold or Leave Clients in Your Inbox?

When reading testimonials and letters of other freelance SEO writers, I wondered, “Do they see their marketing responses as gold mines of future SEO clients?” In the last two weeks, 8 out of 15 of my marketing list contacts have been responding.

The responses have been:

  1. We don’t use freelancers.
  2. Here’s an alternate proposal.
  3. Requesting connections to my LinkedIn or Google+ Accounts. (They’re not connecting on Facebook or Twitter for some reason.)
  4. We don’t need someone right now, but we’ll keep you on file.
  5. We’re hiring. Could you please send your resume?
  6. We don’t need someone right now, but we’re going to need someone next X (month or season)
  7. I’m forwarding your email and here’s the right person to contact.
  8. Write these blogs or articles on trial (spec).

How to Market for -- and Get -- SEO Writing JobsMy best friend’s suggestion was to change my marketing tactics to aim for better immediate results, but I’m excited to get this kind of response.

Yes, I know only one of these leads gets SEO writing business now, but LOOK at the open windows for future marketing messages. In my eyes, responses 3, 6 and 7 have bull’s-eyes on them.

Let’s Connect, Hangout, Tweet or Like Each Other

My social media accounts aren’t on my marketing email or my portfolio page on chrislynpepper.com. So, a business representative has to look at my samples or webpages to connect. I assume they see something they like to even bother.

Plus, if I didn’t have a contact name before, I have a name and direction for my marketing efforts now. Usually, reps making these connections don’t need a writer immediately. Still, I send a thank you for connecting and ask if they need writing services anyway.

I Don’t Need an SEO Writer Now, but Definitely/ Maybe Later

If someone says they don’t need someone now but will at some future date, open your email and start writing. I go into Kurlo (a free email database program) to create three emails and set it to send:

  • An immediate thank you for letting me know and notification that I’m going to stay in touch.
  •  

  • A friendly reminder that I’m still here for halfway between when they need someone and my thank you email.
  •  

  • An inquiry regarding their writing project for one month before the date they need it.

If you don’t have a database program that lets you schedule the send date and time for your emails, write the emails as drafts.  Then, set reminders to send the emails using an event calendar.  This way you automate marketing for new clients, and it counts toward your two emails a day as suggested in 6 Ways to Increase Your Freelance Writing Income During the Slow Summer Months.

Oh, You’re a Freelance Writer. You Need to Talk To . . .

If you get an email saying someone else is the right person to contact, they’re telling you they use freelance SEO writers.  I reply with a thank you to the person who told me the name. Then, I forward a separate, modified-marketing query to the correct contact.

Make sure you’re changing the contact name and email in your marketing database for that company before sending your monthly queries. I gave names out a couple of times in the corporate world, and when the person kept contacting me, I sent all future emails and letters to file thirteen.  Plus, when someone asked me about doing business with them, I had doubts about their ability to follow directions.

As For Those Who Say They Don’t Use Freelance Writers  . . .

I don’t discount the other responses either.  I take people who say they don’t use freelancers and put them on a contact-in-a-year list and create a reminder. I figure the economy constantly changes, so companies start using freelancers that didn’t before. A lot can happen in a year.

I always send my resume when someone asks.  Telecommute for a regular writing gig anyone?

I take alternate proposals case-by-case.  One marketing company invited me to guest post for their website’s blog. Guest posting is part of my marketing plan, and their audience may lead to SEO blog writing work. Other proposals I decline outright, such as reselling their services. My focus is selling my content writing services at the moment.

It seems like a lot, but it goes quickly. Besides, if you aren’t cold email marketing, you won’t have these future opportunities. These gold mines laden with future work depend on you marketing yourself consistently as an SEO writer. Never forget this.

My Next Post on SeoWritingJobs.com

How to Get Ideas For and Choose Your SEO Writing Niche: I decided to address this topic because of a question I received on my personal blog. Following is the abridged version:

I just recently started blogging. But, I can’t seem to make up my mind as to what topics or niche to settle on, hence why I have been reading articles like yours and Yuwanda’s. . . . How do you get ideas to write about? I guess working in a niche helps? . . . I really want to find that thing that I’m passionate about and that will keep me consistent. I don’t know why it seems to be evading me. . .

Stay tuned for this two-part post; the first part will be published on 9/19 and the concluding part will be live on 9/26.

About the Author: Chrislyn Pepper is a freelance, SEO blog writer.  Her niche is SEO content writing for medical professionals, but she writes on a variety of subjects. Visit http://www.chrislynpepper.com to get blog content or SEO blog writing tips.  You can also connect with her on LinkedIn or Twitter. Chrislyn Pepper turns blogs into building blocks for businesses.

P.S.: Earn Extra $$ Every Month by Offering Social Media Consulting Along with Your SEO Writing Services.

How to Become an SEO Consultant

P.P.S.: FYI, did you know that the average salary of search engine optimization writers is $66,000 as of this writing. That’s $15,000 above the median household income in the U.S. right now.

SEO Content Writer Average Salary, Fall 2012

Remember, when you learn how to write SEO content, you learn so much more than this one skill because it gives you the knowledge you need to take control of your financial future.