“Hello everyone in the Cafe,

Can anyone of you give a suggestion or lists of companies that need writers in the Making Money Online niche?

Any suggestions please.”

That was a post I saw a while back in my Facebook group. We talked about it then, but I wanted to revisit it because I still see people making some of the same mistakes.

I’ve also been seeing some people online lately giving away Free Leads!

​Here’s the problem. If you’re getting those free leads, guess what?

So are hundreds or thousands of other writers. Pretty easy for anyone to get their hands on those leads…or a list…or suggestions…just as easily.

Then you have tons of writers all clamoring for the same posted gigs.

Terrible positioning, right off the bat.

What would I recommend instead?

Make up your own list. Go online and find people and businesses you’d like to write for.

I’ve been touting my Hot 150™ system for a long time now, and my Premier members get the inside scoop on exactly how to do this, implement it, and follow through.

(Doors to the Premier community will be opening up again September 21-30, and the first ten days of every new season, quarterly. Watch for more info here and by email.)

Contact them, connect with them, get to know them. Establish some rapport (there’s a lost word these days).

Find out what they’re all about, and let them know what you’re all about.

Have a great Client Conversation with them (something else we talk about, and role play, on the Cafe Confidential calls, for Premier members only).

Bring them into YOUR world instead of going into the world of “companies who need writers.”

Positioning is key.

Then you have to know how to sell.

(And no, you won’t hear me talk about “not being salesy.” Selling is good. Selling is right. Selling is fun. Selling serves people.)

Then you have to deliver the goods.

Then you have to continue to offer as much value as you’re charging (hopefully slightly more) so they don’t look elsewhere.

There’s no shortage of clients out there.

But if we’re waiting for lists of companies, suggestions, referrals, posted gigs on Job Board sites, or Free Leads! from someone sending out the same free leads to everyone, we’re behind the 8-ball.

We’re standing in line with too many other people with their hands out.

Terrible positioning.

Create your own much better positioning

Make a list of businesses you want to work with. Not ones who are advertising a need.

Create something really cool that you can do for them. Package it in a way that’s easy to understand. Make it easy for them to buy.

(You’ve seen my 11 Clear Steps to Copywriting Success, right?)

Connect with them.

Sell them.

Deliver good work for them.

By the way, there are clients for copywriters at every level. If you’re just starting out, don’t go after mid-tier clients. Start lower.

If you’re an intermediate, you still might not want to go after serious Big Dog clients. You might get chewed up and spit out.

It’s okay to stretch, and I recommend you do, but start where you are.

I see too many copywriters trying to emulate their favorite copywriting hero right out of the gate, when they don’t have the goods yet to back it up.

I also see too many copywriters charging too much for what they’re actually doing.

We all see these “Charge what you’re worth!” posts that tell copywriters to stop letting cheap clients get away with paying peanuts.

But, if you’re just starting out, and competing in a crowded marketplace, maybe something is better than nothing.

Better to have some paid work and be getting experience than sitting around practicing for nothing because your fees are too high and your schedule isn’t full.

Start at the level where you are.

If that’s a beginner, start with lower level clients who aren’t as demanding, don’t have as big of a budget, and will be happy with the ideas, advice, and copywriting you give them.

Pricing is a whole other topic for another day.

So, on the one hand I’d say “This ain’t easy” because to do it well, it isn’t.

On the other hand, it is easy in a way, at least to jump into the fray. The barrier to entry is so low these days that anyone can join in.

That creates a lot of noise and confusion for clients, who often can’t distinguish one from another.

And since there are a ton of good writers and copywriters out there, you still have to do something extra to stand out.

It’s the big reason I wrote The Freelancer Manifesto: 11 Big Ideas to stand out and thrive in the New Economy.

It’s the reason I’ve given away a ton of free information in these blog posts over the past seven years.

It’s the reason I’ve spent thousands of hours on the phone with members, helping them through all this.

It’s easy to get into this game. Not easy to stand out and make it. It’s not for the faint of heart.

Every day, I advise people not to do this. It’s not for everyone.

We have to decide. Are we willing to do this? Are we willing to put in the work?

If so, GO!

If not, there are a lot easier ways to make money.

Steve Roller

Author Steve Roller

I'm a business coach, author, copywriter, world traveler (33 countries on five continents so far), and professional speaker. In addition to helping companies get more customers and make more money, I help other writers create profitable businesses. I offer one-on-one coaching, professional copy critiques, and live, in-person business-building workshops. When I'm not writing, coaching, or speaking, I enjoy nothing more than hanging out with my wife and four kids and planning my next adventure.

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