At times when you are doing freelance writing for others, you may be tempted to ask yourself: why not I just write for my blog instead of writing for others?
This is something I am sharing from personal experience because of my blogs, I have been approached by individuals/companies to write content for them. I do accept the assignments when it relates to something that I have interest in. Hence there are times where I find myself thinking if I should focus more on writing for my sites or getting paid to write for others.
I would present this article in 2 parts. The first part below is why you may want to write for yourself and the second part is why write for others.
Why you may just want to write for your own blog exclusively:
1. You get to write at your own terms
Often you do not get your say at what to write about. A guideline may be given on the topics that you are writing about. This is done based on some form of ‘keyword research’.
Sometimes, you may be required to write on topics that you feel strongly against…. just to be able to earn a living.
When you write for your site, you have a free rein on the style and tone of your article. And if you write in an unique way that resonates with your readers, you can easily attract subscribers and convert them into buying customers (if you are selling a product in your site/blog).
2. You get to write topics that you are genuinely interested about
When you have interest or passion in a certain topic or niche, the writing style will show. And you would be motivated to get up to write.
Whereas when you are working for someone or freelancing for a company, you would be lucky if you could paid to write in topics that you have even the slightest interest in. You may get assigned to a ‘boring’ topic that you have not much knowledge about and need to force yourself to do research.
Sometimes I come across sites where the site or blog does provide a lot of resource, reasons or facts. They may be writing a product review article… but as you read on, you could feel there is no passion put into writing the article. Basically they are just rewording stuff that are already mentioned in a bunch of other sites or adding ‘suggestions’ that looks good on theory but you know from experience is simply not practical.
It takes a lot of mental energy to churn out long posts (nowadays long meaty posts are in the trend and no longer short content so you would be required to write long content).
3. No deadlines except for the ones you set for yourself
Having a deadline to deliver a few articles by next morning? Something that you have not got around in doing because you have been facing some writer’s block?
Instead, if you write only for yourself, you get to set your own schedule. When your creative output is at its maximum, you can take advantage of it by preparing lots of posts and scheduling them to be published later. It is good to have some stash of scheduled posts for ‘rainy days’ ….especially during the time where you need to take time off for vacation or unforseen circumstances that prevented you from being active.
4. The articles are owned by you
When you write for an established site, you would have signed the contract which states that you handover the right of use of your original work to them. The masterpiece of resourceful 3000 word article which took you days to write (including research time) would not belong to you.
Imagine if you have invested some time in your life, a month or two to write about 30 to 50 of such long articles and post them on your blog, you would earn the traffic yourself.
5. You are worth so much more than the peanuts pay you are getting
The core of every business is to make a profit. Hence, if you are paid USD50 for an article, the article would need to be able to make back many times of the cost that you are being paid to do.
On the other hand, you have sites like Upwork whereby it is a race to the bottom where pricing is concerned. There are projects whereby they are offering USD2 for each article that are above 500 words. Assuming it takes an hour to write each article, that is below the minimum wage for most developed countries! Yet there are many freelancers who are willing to bid for these jobs and the one who is willing to take the most minimal wage would win the job.
It is demotivating. It is going to kill your passion. You would be better off picking a niche you love and then writing lots of articles around that niche. Then publish in on your site… if it is new, give it 6 months for the traffic to trickle in.
If you are jobless and really need the money, there are part-time jobs you can take up which pays a higher hourly wage than what you are getting at these bidding sites. Such as working Walmart, McDonalds or doing delivery until your site ‘matures’ and start to drive in steady increasing traffic.
When you write for other sites, you often do so at their terms. You would need to deliver the work and probably make multiple revisions before the article can be accepted. Sometimes, you may not even get paid for writing.
Self discipline and passion are two important attributes you need to have in order to continue to keep up with the motivation of writing for yourself.
Personally, as a full time caregiver and unpaid housekeeper, I have very limited hours in a day to work to earn money. Therefore I have to make a call on the choice to take and I’ve chosen more on the path in writing for myself and my sites. I still take on content writing and help to build simple websites but I do not actively market myself out there.
Anyway, this article would not be complete if I do not share on the reasons why writers/bloggers choose to write for others. Do look out for my upcoming blog post on why you may want to choose to write for others…