Not getting the freelance writing jobs you want?
You’re spending hours each day posting on Twitter…canvassing the freelance job boards…updating your LinkedIn profile…making phone calls…sending pitches…building your mailing list…posting to your blog…and much, much more. It feels like all you’re doing is marketing!
So why aren’t clients busting down your door with offers of lucrative writing assignments?
It could be because you’re doing all the right things.
Let’s Stop the B.S.
Every marketing guru out there is pushing their particular technique or platform as a must-do…and you feel you need to do all of it if you want to make a living as a freelance writer.
Not only that, but you’re led to believe that if the marketing technique du jour isn’t working for you, it’s not the technique…it’s you.
Here’s the real deal: Volume is way, way more important than the particular technique or platform you’re using.
- Fifty phone calls will beat out a handful of tweets, a smattering of Facebook posts, and a couple of pitches.
- Six hours per day on Twitter will give you better results than one hour on LinkedIn, one on Twitter, one on blogging, one on your email newsletter, one on creating a podcast, and one on emailed pitches.
- Emailing 50 sales letters per day will land you more assignments than dividing your time between ten different freelance job boards and five forms of social media.
The trick is to find that one form of marketing you love so much you’re willing to do it over and over again. The more you love it, the more you’ll do it. The more you do it, the better you’ll get at it. The more you do it and the better you get at it, the more freelance writing jobs you’ll score.
That’s why I created…
The Volume Marketing Challenge for Freelance Writers
Ready to start really earning as a freelance writer? Looking to make a good living as a magazine writer, copywriter, content writer, or professional blogger?
The Volume Marketing Challenge for Freelance Writers will reveal the form of marketing that will get you the most — and the best — freelance writing assignments.
During the Challenge, you’ll spend one week each working the heck out of four of the most effective types of freelance marketing, to not only start landing gigs now, but to analyze which type of marketing is best for you. Not the best for the guy selling a Twitter class or for the marketer selling a book on sales funnels…but the best for YOU.
Think you can’t do it? In the Volume Marketing Challenge for Freelance Writers, I’ll be encouraging you to produce B-minus work — just good enough to get gigs when you do it in volume. This will keep you from getting so hung up on perfection that you freeze in place like a scared deer, thus destroying any chances you had at landing assignments. And, you’ll see the true power of Volume Marketing at work! You don’t have to be perfect…you just have to be prolific.
Here’s what the schedule looks like:
WEEK 1: Prepping for the Challenge
This first week, you’ll pave the road for the Volume Marketing Challenges ahead by picking a niche (if you don’t already have one), ordering business cards (ditto), building a prospect list, creating a Volume Marketing schedule, and getting psyched up and ready to go.
WEEK 2: Volume Marketing Challenge: Sales Letters
Your Challenge will be to send out 25 snail-mail sales letters or 50 email sales letters per day.* Think you can’t do it? Don’t worry, we have plenty of resources for each Challenge to help you make it happen.
WEEK 3: Volume Marketing Challenge: Phone Calls
The Challenge this week will be to call 50 prospects per day.* (And you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how nice prospects are!)
WEEK 4: Volume Marketing Challenge: Social Media
In this Challenge, you’ll build your presence on LinkedIn or Twitter and reach out to 30 prospects per day.* The real challenge here? Not getting distracted by cat videos and clickbait links.
WEEK 5: Volume Marketing Challenge: Networking
Meet 10 prospects in person at a networking event, coffee meeting, conference, or other event.*
WEEK 6: Analyzing the Results
Use the special worksheets to figure out which form of marketing you enjoyed most…which got the most responses…which resulted in actual paying assignments…and which will be the one you run with from here on out!
* These are stretch goals. They’re high because, well, this is a Challenge! The more you do, the more data you’ll have to analyze later (and the more likely you are to land paying work during the Challenge!). If you truly cannot reach these goals, do what you can — while keeping the spirit of the Volume Marketing Challenge in mind. See below for more details on this!
What You’ll Get
Each week will include:
- An exclusive group on Slack.com where you can share your wins, ask questions, report on your progress, and get support.
- An MP3 and transcript with additional information and tips for each Challenge.
- Fillable PDF worksheets to help you plan your Challenges and track the results. (Prefer to fill out worksheets by hand? They’re printable, too!)
- A “cheat sheet” overview…so you can see at a glance what your upcoming week will look like.
- A beautiful “Commitment” certificate to print out, sign, and hang on your wall…to remind you to keep working towards your goals!
- A homework assignment or Volume Marketing Challenge that will motivate you to push yourself, figure out what works best for you, and make the most of Volume Marketing. You are welcome to adjust any Challenge as needed to fit your personal situation…as long as you keep the spirit of the Challenge in mind and really push yourself!
- A special resource that will motivate you and/or give you the quick-and-dirty details on the marketing forms you’ll be doing.
- A worksheet of additional resources in case you need even more tips and advice before you get started with your homework or Volume Marketing Challenge.
I’ll bet you’re wondering about those special resources I mentioned. Each Week’s materials include a book, recording, course lesson, or other helpful resource donated by well-known experts in their fields. Like these:
- A free copy of my book How to Do It All: The Revolutionary Plan to Create a Full, Meaningful Life — While Only Occasionally Wanting to Poke Your Eyes Out With a Sharpie, for Week 1: Prepping for the Challenge.
- A free copy of LinkedIn Riches by John Nemo, for the Social Media Challenge.
- An exclusive guide created by Diana Schneidman, author of Real Skills, Real Income, for the Phone Calls Challenge.
- A transcript of a tip-filled interview with Alana Muller, author of Coffee Lunch Coffee, for the Networking Challenge.
- An e-course lesson on persuasive sales writing created by Amy Harrison, and offered by Copyblogger, for the Sales Letter Challenge.
- A free copy of my book Commit: How to Blast Through Problems & Reach Your Goals Through Massive Action, to help you commit to your goals once the Challenge is over.
These resources will help you sail through the Volume Marketing Challenges, be more productive…and get more work!
Here’s the Full Scoop…
Questions I’ve Been Getting
Readers have been sending me wonderful additional questions about the Volume Marketing Challenge for Freelance Writers…I’ll bet you have the same questions, so here they are with my answers:
Q. I work two jobs/am a stay-at-home parent. What if I can’t reach the goals?
A. Your Challenge is your own.
The stretch goals are for those writers who do nothing but freelance. If you have a job, young kids, etc., you’ll necessarily be doing less volume. As long as you keep the spirit of the Challenge in mind—do as much as you possibly can, and generate momentum from it—you’re good. We have VMers (that’s what I call Volume Marketing participants) who will be marketing during their lunch hours, while the kids nap, and in spare moments of their day.
Being busy doesn’t exempt you from the fact that to get writing work, you have to market—and the more, the better. You just have to do what you can! If the stretch goal is 50 phone calls and your personal goal, based on your situation, is to make 20, when you post your win in the Slack group we will cheer for you.
Also, Week 1 is Prep Week. You’ll be using this time to get ready for the upcoming Challenges, which includes using worksheets to examine your schedule and make as much time as possible for marketing. When you join the Volume Marketing Challenge for Freelance Writers you’ll have access to all the materials immediately, including the Slack group, so you’re certainly welcome to get a jump start on the prep-work if you feel that will help!
(By the way, way to go for taking on a marketing challenge when you have so much going on in your life!!)
Q. I’m a magazine writer. Editors hate getting phone calls from unknown writers. What should I do?
A. Rethink your preconceptions.
I’m not sure where the idea comes from that editors traditionally hate phone calls. After all, everyone is different! I have landed article assignments with a phone call, and I know many other writers who have, too (including the writer who asked this question!). Even if it’s not the preferred method for editors, for you it might be more efficient because you can get all those rejections (rejections we all get) out of the way with a two-minute phone call instead of a week-long query process.
Q. How do I use the Volume Marketing Challenge work for getting editing/tech writing/grant writing gigs?
A. The same way…mostly.
Volume Marketing works the same way for every type of writing: Whoever you normally would approach and however you would normally do it, you’ll just be doing a lot of it.
I selected the four types of marketing we’ll be doing—sales letters, phone calls, social media reach-outs, and networking—because they’re effective for almost all types of (paid) writing you may want to do.
However, there are probably some types of writing out there where another method would work better. If that’s the case, feel free to adjust the Challenge to use that type of marketing instead! For example, say you feel going door-to-door to downtown businesses would work best. Go for it! (I believe one our current VMers will be doing that soon to find copywriting gigs since she focuses on small businesses!) Simply do some quick research online into that form of marketing if you need to—just enough to be able to do that B-minus work I’m always talking about it—and get started.
As long as you’re choosing proactive forms of marketing, where you reach out directly to your prospects, feel free to give it a try in place of one of the forms of marketing in the Volume Marketing Challenge you feel would be least effective. For example, maybe my VMer would like to set a goal to visit 20 local businesses in a day and talk to the owners instead of doing the social media reach-outs. Great!
Q. I live deep in the forest and have no networking opportunities. How do I do the Networking Challenge?
A. Go high-tech.
In the Volume Marketing course materials, I offer some ideas for how to network in person even in smaller towns—like Meetup groups and BNI meetings. Another option is to look to your nearest big city; for example, when I lived in Massachusetts, a few times a year I would drive to New York City to meet with editors in person. Now that I live in Apex, NC, I would reach out to businesses or magazines in Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill.
But, again—your Challenge is your own! In the Challenge there is a hierarchy of preferred types of networking. Coffee meetings, conferences, networking events, etc. are on top, but if they are truly not feasible for you, the next step would be virtual meetings where the prospect can see your face (Skype, Google Hangouts, etc.). After that would be phone meetings. Just do what you can, again keeping the spirit of the Volume Marketing Challenge in mind!
Q.Your advice on X won’t work for my particular situation.
A. Ignore me.
I’ve been freelancing full time for 20 years, so I know a lot about marketing to land writing gigs…but I don’t know everything.
Anything I say, feel free to disregard if it goes again your own considered opinion. The Volume Marketing Challenge for Freelance Writers is not just about volume—it’s also about experimenting to find out what works best for you. If it doesn’t work, you can switch gears and try something else. You’re free to use the Volume Marketing tactics you learn during the Challenge even after it ends, so it’s not do-or-die! If you learn that something doesn’t work for you, that’s still valuable information and I consider it a win.
Want to join Us for the next one?
The March 2017 Volume Marketing Challenge for Freelance Writer is closed! If you’re interested in learning about the next one, please sign up for the waitlist here.
I look forward to working with you! I’m excited to help writers cut through the overwhelm and find their own path to success…because that’s what being a freelancer is all about, right?
You’ve got questions? I’ve got answers. Feel free to email me at email@example.com or text 508-207-5275.
~Linda Formichelli, your Freelance Writing Success Coach