Freelance writing rates have always been all over the place. This is due to a variety of factors, eg:
I. Factors That Determine Writing Rates for Freelancers
Following are three of the biggest factors that determine how much you can charge.
Niche: Some niches pay more than others. For example, you’re much more likely to earn more as a tech writer than a fashion writer.
Type of Writing: Like niches, some types of writing pays better than others. For example, did you know that you can earn a few thousand dollars writing sales pages? You can. A bargain rate for this type of writing is a couple of thousand dollars. Successful writers who do this type of writing charge five figures, eg, Bob Bly.
If you’re interested in this type of high-paid writing, Google phrases like “direct response copywriting” or “direct mail copywriter” to learn more.
Industry Rates: Although freelance writing rates do vary – extensively – with research, you can find an industry standard. As one freelancer put it, “If everyone can afford you, your rates are too low. If no one can, your rates are too steep.”
FYI, Writer’s Digest publishes an annual Freelance Pricing Guide, which helps you to “calculate your expenses, hourly rates, and project rates, and learn how to negotiate for more money. It also lists sample rates and has more resources to help you perfect your pricing.”
There are more factors that go into figuring out what you should charge as a freelance writer, but these are three of the most important. Now that you have a better idea of what goes into pricing a writing job, there’s good news for freelancers in 2016.
II. Rates on the Rise
This year, all signs point to freelance writing rates going up.
One of the main reasons is content marketing. According to the 2016 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends report by the Content Marketing Institute, a leading resource for content marketers, 88% of B2B marketers use content marketing and 51% expect to increase their content marketing budgets next year.
Content marketing has become all the rage the last few years, and companies are not only allocating more of their budgets to this form of marketing, they’re investing in in-depth content. Proof? The Inc article, 7 Ways 2016 Will Force Your Content Marketing Strategy to Change, explains why, stating:
“… quality standards are becoming stricter and more important than ever. If you want to survive in 2016 and beyond, your content will need to be… better-researched, better-written, and more valuable to your audience.”
What this means is that firms are investing in skilled writers you can’t hire at cheap rates.
III. Hone Your Skills
One things clients are looking for is results: eg, how many clicks did a post get, ow many times did it get reshared on social media, how many new subscribers did their newsletter get.
What this means for writers is not only honing your writing skills, eg, learning how to write headlines that get clicked; but also becoming more effective at interacting on social media. Why social media? Because it drives a lot of web traffic. So you need to know what, how and why people interact via the various mediums so you can create content that they consume.
There’s never been a better time to become a freelance writer. Keep these points in mind if you decide to take the plunge.