25 Tips to Become a Successful Freelance Writer

Today is my last day as part of the Freelance Writing Jobs team.  Time constraints and other obligations have made it difficult for me to give this community the care it needs, but I leave you in the very capable hands of Franky Branckaute and the Splashpress Media team.

If you’ve been following my branding series and want to read more about branding and social media marketing, you can follow the link to read a free bonus chapter from my new book, 30-Minute Social Media Marketing, and if you’ve been following my copywriting series and want to learn more, you can pick up a copy of Kick-ass Copywriting in 10 Easy Steps.  Everything you need to know to successfully grow your freelance writing business through branding, social media, and content marketing, as well as how to write effective copy, can be found in those books.  And of course, you can always find me on Twitter (@susangunelius), Facebook, LinkedIn or visit my company website (KeySplash Creative) for all the details.  Don’t be stranger!

With that said, I leave you with 25 tips to become a successful freelance writer (in no particular order).  Feel free to add your own to this list in the comments section!

  1. Don’t give up.
  2. Take time to build your brand.
  3. Network!
  4. Don’t be afraid of social media.
  5. You’re a writer — use that skill for content marketing!
  6. Focus!
  7. Know when it’s time to move on.
  8. Don’t dwell on failures.  Focus on getting better.
  9. Find gaps and fill them.
  10. Continue learning.
  11. The marketplace and the publishing industry are changing.  You need to change to keep up.
  12. Don’t worry about everyone else.  Do what’s right for you.
  13. Don’t get too dependent on one thing or one source of income.
  14. Do your homework.  Success doesn’t come to those who sit and wait for it.
  15. Find successful writers you admire and follow their work.  Connect with them on the social web.
  16. Join online or offline writing groups to hone your skills.
  17. Learn more about marketing and copywriting to help sell yourself.
  18. Remember, volunteering to write for high-profile, authoritative websites can do more in terms of added exposure than a paycheck can deliver.  Just don’t give it all away for free or on the cheap.
  19. Keep up on changing technical trends that affect the publishing industry and learn new tools to stay marketable.
  20. Try to write for fun and for yourself sometimes.  Remember, all work and no play stinks.
  21. Monitor your online reputation.
  22. Go outside and get some fresh air sometimes.
  23. Building a business takes time and a lot of effort.  Commit to the long haul.
  24. Don’t be afraid to experiment.  Test new things, tweak your efforts, and try again.
  25. Stop reading this and go write!

Best of luck for writing success in the future!


4 responses
  1. Steve Avatar


    Thanks for the 25 tips, and thanks for the leads everyday.

    Best wishes with all of your ventures!



  2. becky Avatar

    Sorry to see you go, Susan. I’ve enjoyed your articles. Best of luck!

  3. Angela Avatar

    don’t be afraid to ask for what you’re worth!

    Thank you Susan, best wishes to you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.