Many freelance writers get so focused on finding jobs online that they forget about those right in their back yard. I know I’m guilty of this. Recently, I ran across a question from one of my Google+ friends asking how to find more local freelance writing opportunities. Following is his question and my answer, along with some input from others.
Question from a Freelance Writer on How to Find More Writing Jobs Locally
I always have a hard time finding writing gigs close to where I live (Minneapolis/St. Paul) via internet want ads like Craigslist. Can anybody give me tips on how to snare more local clients? I’ve got three total so far (one current, one on standby, one past) but I want to add more.
Join your local Chamber of Commerce. It’s where your community’s business leaders are and hands-down THE best way to meet them and start growing your writing business.
I’ve belonged to a few in my professional life and usually, annual fees run anywhere from $150 (for small towns) on up to $500+ for basic packages in large cities, eg, Atlanta. The fee is well worth it though IF you attend meetings regularly and network smartly.
FYI, here’s a post I did years ago on what freelance writers should look for in a Chamber of Commerce.
Hope this helps.
Other Suggestions for Finding Local Freelance Writing Gigs from the Google+ Community
2) Attend writing workshops at local libraries;
3) Reach out to local businesses you frequent directly; and.
4) Check with local college writing groups.
The bottom line is, if you want to “write local,” you have to “think local.” One freelancer gave this account of finding a local writing gig; saying:
One of my first copywriting gigs was for a local bakery in my neighborhood – if you frequent a place and see that maybe its website or menu needs some polish, it’s a great chance to promote yourself. And since the management will already likely recognize you, they’re already comfortable with you – don’t underestimate the power of familiarity!
Finding Freelance Writing Gigs: 2 Major Advantages of “Going Local”
I know the above type of proactivity works because I’ve gotten work from my dentist and from a lawyer who handled the closing paperwork on a piece of land I bought – all because I simply asked them if they had a website and if they did, if they were happy with the amount of sales and leads they were getting from it.
What I’ve found is that most local businesses aren’t. In fact, many have static sites that they haven’t touched in months or years. But, once you explain to them how you can help, they tend to be receptive.
So open your mouth and let people know what you do. I can’t think of anyone who doesn’t need more site traffic, web leads and sales. All of this starts with content and who better to provide it than you, no?
This is the first major advantage.
Another advantage is that local businesses are probably not being targeted by other freelance writers offline; ie, someone who’s right there in their face. Remember, people tend to do business with those they know, like and trust.
Well, what better way to start this cycle than to be right in front of a prospect.
Share Your Thoughts
Have you marketed for local freelance writing gigs? If so, how did it work out? If not, will you start? Please share in the comments section below.
Here’s to a productive start of the work week!
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