Being a freelance content writer means dealing with clients, invoices, and deadlines along with the isolation that the job entails. You don’t have the advantage of networking with your colleagues every day and gleaning new industry insights through observation and conversations.
If you want to grow as a freelance content writer, you must stay abreast of the latest trends in your industry. Writers must know a bit of everything – marketing, psychology, consumer behavior, business communication, SEO, grammar and punctuation, time management, and so on.
Remember, learning is a lifelong activity.
How can freelancers stay up to date?
The COVID pandemic hasn’t made it any easier for freelancers to network. At least we had the options of attending conferences and trade fairs or working at co-working spaces earlier!
However, what you can still do is read up on the important trends and best practices in your field.
There are plenty of good-quality blogs that you can follow but it isn’t possible to read them all. So, be smart about your content consumption and bookmark these blogs to start with:
a) Grammar Girl
I don’t think Mignon Fogarty, the founder of Grammar Girl, needs any introduction because she is the God of Grammar. Ever since I began to work as a content writer, I have heard her name being mentioned whenever the subject of grammar comes up.
Her grammar tips are easy to understand, engaging to read, and answer nearly every grammar query under the sun. Her USP lies in making grammar accessible and well, fun!
If you want to avoid common grammatical errors and improve your writing style, read Grammar Girl’s blog regularly. Even one tip a day will help you become a better writer.
Let me get you started with some useful Grammar Girl posts:
b) The Write Life
The Write Life offers comprehensive resources for freelance writers under six heads – freelancing, blogging, publishing, craft, marketing, and tools. From helping you find high-paying freelancing gigs to teaching you how to write better to guiding your marketing efforts, The Write Life team have you covered.
When I stumbled upon this blog, I realized I had found a one-stop shop to all my freelancing and writing queries. The website has both free and paid resources to help you market your services better, upskill yourself, and become more successful.
Some posts to get you started:
Which content writer worth his/her/their salt does not know about HubSpot’s super useful inbound marketing blog?
HubSpot also has some valuable free courses and certifications on marketing and sales. Plus, you can find loads of free ebooks, guides, and templates to level up your freelancing game.
I’ve referred to HubSpot’s blog posts several times over the years when I’m writing my own pieces. They offer unmatched insights in a conversational tone with plenty of examples to explain their point.
Check out these blog posts:
d) Social Media Examiner
Without social media, it is difficult to market yourself and spread awareness about your services. Unless you have a dedicated and loyal subscriber list!
Social media examiner offers tips and resources to improve your marketing efforts on LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook. Being up-to-date about the latest social media marketing trends will help you stand out as a freelance writer.
The website has articles and video tutorials so you can choose the format you’re comfortable with. I enjoy the in-depth nature of the content posted to this website.
Some interesting posts:
- Comprehensive video guide to the Clubhouse app – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7gv7U-rZl8&list=PLyqdnWmgSb_ZPcCYKqK1ZNZl5VlWKn72E&index=2
e) Content Marketing Institute
If you haven’t heard of the Content Marketing Institute, you’re definitely living under a rock. It’s a mecca for content marketers and content writers!
CMI has everything – articles, whitepapers, ebooks, how-to guides, courses, events, magazines, and so on. A wide variety of experts contribute articles to the website, making it one of the largest collections of resources on content creation.
You can learn about content optimization, SEO, social media, content distribution, strategy, measuring ROI of content, and the latest industry trends.
Posts you can start reading now:
This is my list of must-read blogs for a freelance content writer. If you read nothing else except a few posts from these five blogs, I’m sure you’ll pick up enough to grow steadily in your business.
(Because that’s what I do!)
There’s a lot of information on the Internet competing for our attention. Don’t get distracted by shiny infographics. Learn to sort the gold from the dirt. 🙂
Let me know if you read any of these blogs. Do you recommend any other blogs?