You’ve probably heard about them, but do you know who they are, exactly? Well, ghost writers are professional writers who create content for clients, taking up the client’s voice and following their instructions to draft what they want but can’t write themselves.
Ghost bloggers do the same, except instead of writing books, press releases, and any other kind of content; they mainly write blog posts for their clients.
Besides getting money as compensation, ghost writers and bloggers also get reviews, ratings, and testimonials which help them bag new clients later.
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Why you should start ghost blogging now?.
Many businesses today acknowledge the importance of having an online presence, such as social media pages, websites, and even business blogs. They’ve mainly realized that blogs are a gold mine for drawing traffic to their business websites and possibly turning this traffic into conversions.
Ghost-writing is an excellent opportunity for any freelance writer, such as you, who dreams of having a long list of loyal, direct clients some day. Ghost blogging is now a ripe opportunity that you should try your hand at.
To help you get started in ghost blogging, here are some practical tips you must know and follow.
1. You need to be a good writer.
You don’t necessarily need to be a seasoned writer, but at least be good at the art. Aim to dazzle your clients to get good ratings, reviews and testimonials, because customers are more likely to hire you when there’s clear evidence that you have mastered your art.
You’d never get a hairstylist with lots of discontented clients to do your hair, would you? No client would hire someone with negative feedback from dissatisfied clients either. You don’t necessarily have to be an expert in the beginning, although it wouldn’t hurt to be one either, just be a better writer than your clients so that they’ll need you. Also, keep learning and improving your skills every day.
2. Create a portfolio.
Besides testimonials, how else can you prove to potential clients that you’re a writer worth your salt? Well, have samples. Have links to your published content and have written samples in a vast array of niches too. All your work should be of top-notch quality, 100% original and well edited. As such, avoid providing portfolios that contain errors or those that you feel do not reflect your true capability.
Remember, you get only one chance to make a first impression, so make your portfolio shine.
3. Always observe deadlines.
You want to earn your client’s trust by proving yourself reliable. To do this, always submit your work well within the set deadlines. If you can deliver earlier than the deadline, that would be even better for your reputation. If you know you’re going to be late, which should only be under unavoidable circumstances, communicate this to your client promptly and ask for a deadline extension.
Never assume that the client will understand your reasons for being late no matter how valid they may sound or appear. So, if you anticipate that you may not deliver on time as had earlier agreed, let your client know well in advance.
4. Conduct in-depth research.
If you want to write excellent blog posts, you must lay a strong foundation for them by doing thorough research on each topic before writing. Extensive research helps you come up with solid facts which you can use to draft authoritative pieces.
For best results, concentrate on finding clients who need work in niches you understand well and are passionate about. For example, if you are passionate about travel and nature niches, try looking for clients that are looking for writers in those particular areas. Writing about unfamiliar topics not only takes up more time than necessary but also causes you unwarranted stress.
5. Understand your clients’ needs.
Ghost-writing is a form of writing where you get paid for your work, and the client takes full credit for it. As such, the work should read, as much as possible, as though your client wrote it himself.
You must, therefore, assume their voice when you write. Only say things they would say. Because you’ll end up working for numerous clients who you’ve never even met, the best way to understand them is to interview them.
Ask lots of questions. Find out what they like and dislike. From their responses, you’ll be able to figure out how they talk.
6. Be trustworthy.
As a ghost-writer, everything you write is a secret between you and your client. You must, therefore, be capable of remaining quiet about what you write. You can’t brag about it to anyone, no matter how impressed you are with yourself and your work. Some clients will even make you sign non-disclosure agreements before being hired. This means they can sue you for disclosing anything about your job. Of course, you do not want to start having to deal with the lawmakers at this point.
7. Sign a contract with all clients.
Regardless of whether you do or don’t know them, ensure you sign a contract with every client with who you work. The agreement should contain details regarding your pay, word count for posts, the number of posts you’re expected to write and how often you should write them. Signing a legally binding contract is the only way for you and your clients to stay protected.
8. Find customers.
Wondering where to get clients? Well, clients are everywhere! And well within your reach too, if you look closely enough and market your skills efficiently. Be it online, offline or even in your hood, everyone you interact with could very well be a potential client.
You’ll need to be smart yet aggressive at marketing your skills. Leverage the internet and social media platforms to accomplish this. Communicate promptly and efficiently with potential clients. There are numerous freelancing sites such as Fiverr, People Per Hour, Upwork and Craigslist, Media Bistro, Problogger, etc., where you can create your freelancer profiles and hunt for clients.
Ghost blogging involves a lot of self-drive, discipline, determination and hard work.
But nothing good comes easy, right? With the necessary skills, burning passion, and consistency, you can acquire many clients and earn a decent income from it.
So why wait? Start now!