Recently we hosted the TapChief Huddle for Writers at our HQ in Indiranagar. We had content writers and marketers, freelancers and full-timers join us for a panel discussion followed by an hour of networking with experts. The experts we had the pleasure of hosting were freelancing veterans from the writing and digital marketing industry.
The discussion was focused around getting started with freelancing in content writing and marketing – finding leads, landing projects, pricing strategies, upskilling, and much more.
About the speakers
We had three speakers for this edition, who shared their insights, lessons learnt and experiences that came with their vast experience in the field.
An alum of Christ College and Jyoti Nivas College, Bangalore, she holds a Masters degree in English Literature and has been freelancing since 2002. She has been a contributor to Deccan Herald, Times of India, and The Asian Age. Her work has been published on websites such as Sulekha.com, TeachAbroad, and a German-based travel magazine, Subsidezine, and more.
She authored Worlds Apart – an epistolary novel with Dorothee Lang, and won the Deccan Herald Short Story Contest 2018. She has also worked on a collaborative novel on dystopian themes with six other writers from different continents; publication of which is currently under consideration.
Currently, she is the director of Life Wordsmith Content Services.
Deepa has over 17 years of total work experience with close to 13 in writing and editing as a freelancer/consultant. She has also created content strategies for micro-sized businesses and ghostwritten for several authors.
In addition to being a writer, she also has worked as an editor for publications and authors and has headed the editorial for an e-commerce service provider in Mumbai.
Some of the top clients Deepa has worked with as a consultant/freelance writer/editor are Femina, New Woman, Mumbai Mirror, L’Officiel, Yahoo, The Leela Group of Hotels, MakeMyTrip, Verve Dubai, and various PR & Digital agencies in Mumbai and Bangalore.
Soumendra is an experienced freelancer who dons many hats.
He is a content marketer, digital marketing expert and trainer, graphic designer, website designer and more.
Some of the clients he has worked with are Oyo Rooms, Pagelinko Technologies and Suyes network.
Without further ado, let’s jump right to the 8 tips our speakers shared during the Huddle.
1. Say YES more!
When you’re just starting off, saying yes to everything that comes your way will help greatly, even if the pay for the projects isn’t very appealing. It helps you gain visibility, experience in the field and work samples to show for. Trying out different kinds of projects in the beginning, also helps you understand what kind of work actually interests you to eventually pick a niche.
2. Publish and promote your content
Publish your content. On a blog, a self-publishing platform, forums. Promote and share it far and wide. Putting your work out helps build confidence and the constructive feedback you may get on your work will help you improve your writing skills.
3. Build your personal brand
Market yourself! Nobody else will do it for you. Promote yourself and your work ruthlessly. Building your own brand will help you land gigs easily especially via platforms such as LinkedIn.
4. Have a growth mindset
You’ve got to develop a learning mindset. Build a thirst for knowledge. Try to learn new things every day. Step by step, you pick up new skills and this increases your employability and boosts your rates as a freelancer since you’re able to provide more value to the clients.
For instance, as a content writer, SEO, SMM, graphic design are some allied skills you can pick up.
5. Always cite sources!
Content is rarely original, it’s more often than not inspired. But the right way to go about ensuring you have no plagiarism claims is to always credit sources.
6. “Write drunk, edit sober”
Whatever writing it is that you’re working on, once you finish the draft, take a break for a few hours or even a day, and revisit the content. You’ll be looking at the content with fresh eyes, you’ll, therefore, have fresh perspectives to add, and be able to edit your own content better.
Like a famous writer once said, write drunk, edit sober.
7. Find ways to increase your productivity
It is easy to get carried away, procrastinate and lose track of time when you’re working remote. It is therefore important to set a schedule for yourself and write down your goals for each day for everything you want to accomplish, so the thought remains in your subconscious and drives you to be more productive.
Here a few tips to help you increase your productivity.
8. Take care of your mental health
Working alone for long bouts of time can have an impact on your mental health. You may start to feel lonely, have a burnout, hit a creative block, and so on. A few things that may help tackle these are working out, going out often, working out of cowering spaces or cafes, attend networking events. Develop a good network of friends who can be your support system.