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(Last Updated On: December 30, 2017)

 

I used to write for loads of music publications. Loads. I would pitch hundreds ideas and often write them up before they had a place to go. At first I did it for no money at all, because I really didn’t know what I was doing. Then someone told me I was a freelance journalist and I figured I deserved at least a couple of pounds for my effort. Again, shows I had no ideas what I was doing.

Since those times, I picked up a few different skills and have applied them to various online freelance and gig opportunities that have come my way over the years.

Let’s run through all of the ones I remember and how much I’ve been paid for them all:

Copywriting

I swear down the grades for GCSEs in 2007 were inflated. I managed to get an A* in English (Lit or Lang, I can’t remember), despite the fact I know I was still using commas where full stops should have been. Shocking stuff. Looking back at writing I was doing online in 2007, I somehow used to regularly misspell ‘ballad’ as “ballard”. How?

Anyway, move on a few years and journalism taught me to fix up on my writing. I then got a little freelance SEO copywriting work. They paid £5 per 200-word article to write about topics relating to their clients. It meant that I got familiar with the history of wooden toys, things to do in Cambodia, and to this day I can make a flawless moving house checklist in under 10 minutes.

My copywriting led me to write blog posts for fashion brands (one of which only ever gave me a t-shirt in return), right up to an industrial cleaning company that paid me some serious cash to rewrite all of their website’s copy. Unfortunately, I’ve forgotten the best way to clean marble floors, but I know I can write about any topic for the right price.

 

Lowest pay: A t-shirt

Highest pay: £6,000 for two months of work

Up for it now? Yes

 

Transcribing

This was one I really didn’t like. Five years back I knew this woman. Friend of a friend. She loved interviewing musicians, artists and comedians. Couldn’t get enough of it. It was her hobby to break away from her job as an ad buyer. What she didn’t like was the sound of her own voice. She said that after transcribing one of her own interviews, she couldn’t do it again. She then handed me her dictaphone and offered me £10 an hour to write it all out for her.

I did it once, and the next week she emailed another. It just took forever, and I felt bad for charging for more than two hours. I did it a few more times until I got other job that meant I had no time for hers. I never looked back again.

 

Lowest pay: £10 per hour

Highest pay: £10 per hour

Up for it now? No

 

Proof Reading

I found this one hilarious when I started. It was the in-thing to do on Fiverr in 2012, so I through a gig up and wondered if anyone would bite. $5 (around £4) to read through what someone wrote, make a few amends and send it back. How easy is that? I did around five gigs and each of them was so smooth. They took barely any time at all to do.

What I didn’t realise is that document tracking is a thing. The last gig around these times ended in bad feedback, because the person said I didn’t change anything and my lack of tracking meant I couldn’t even prove I had. I got shook, closed my account, and ducked out of the game for a bit. I enjoy finding and changing grammar and spelling errors, so I eventually returned (doing it the right way). I even got a little work from Mrs Transcribey woman.

This is probably the only one on the list I would never get bored of doing.

 

Lowest pay: £4 for 2,000 words

Highest pay: £7 per hour

Up for it now? Yes

 

Copy Editing

I treated my copy editing as a mini step up from the proof reading work. All of it was done through Fiverr or clients I found there. They would send me ebooks that were in a proper state, and I would make them flow. I don’t know how, but all of the gigs I did for this were with people with very poor English, usually talking about topics I had absolutely no knowledge of.

My favourite task was for a Nigerian fella that wrote a novel and sent over chapters in 2,000-word chunks in a completely random order. I had no way of piecing it together, but he would keep asking me to do more and more of them until he abruptly left.

I’m willing to do more of this.

 

Lowest pay: £4 for 2,000 words

Highest pay: £200 for a 7,000-word ebook

Up for it now? Yes

 

Press Release Writing

A record label I was close to asked if I could write a press release for an upcoming EP launch. I didn’t know what press releases were at the time, so I read a few guides, used an online template and got busy. I loved how formulaic they were, much like news writing. It inspired me to do more. My next client was a Wolverhampton-based label. Then I kept doing more.

I then thought about doing a PR mailing list, since I had built up a massive list of journalists, bloggers and DJs. For whatever reason, I didn’t follow through with it, and my press release writing slowed down.

 

Lowest pay: £1 per press release

Highest pay: £5 per press release

Up for it now? Yes

 

Social Media Management

I would have played 2012 so differently if I could. 2010/2011 was when all businesses were freaking out that they didn’t have a social media presence/didn’t understand Twitter. I managed a few small brand accounts through work in 2012, and knew I could do it for other people. So I did. I reached out to a few different brands I saw that were struggling and I promised to steadily grow their numbers with a few regular posts. I just didn’t put as much effort in as I could, and got bored with it.

It was such a big opportunity back then. I did things through Fiverr and found clients myself, but it’s unlikely any of those brands are still around. There are still hundreds of businesses that require this kind of work, so well worth trying to get them on board if you can, but it’s not for me. I know people that can do a better job now anyway.

 

Lowest pay: £4 for a month of posts

Highest pay: £100 for four hours of work

Up for it now? No

 

Digital Marketing Reporting

What can I say? I know my way around Google Analytics. I’m down with OPC (other people’s clients), so I have a couple of people that come to me when they have social media marketing contract work to get a little add-on reporting done. I go through the impact of their social activity, how it may have reflected on visits, and also SEO performance.

This is one of the things that seems a lot more technical than it seems. Once you know your way around a few analytics suites and you have the templates, most only take around half an hour to do. It’s going to cost if you want insights off the back of it though.

Lowest pay: £14 per report

Highest pay: £30 per report

Up for it now? Yes

 

Content Strategy

My Dropbox is full of brands that could have happened. Ecommerce, marketplaces, affiliate websites, all kinds of different things. It’s got to the point where I can make a 12-month Gantt chart marketing calendar for a brand in a couple of hours, filled with YouTube, blog and social media content. Getting in the practice of doing these for myself meant that I was confident enough to do it for others.

The strategy part is easy, but the implementation doesn’t always happen as planned (see: this blog). I’ve only done a handful of these, but if I’m going to do it, it’s going to be thorough.

 

Lowest pay: £300 6-month content plan

Highest pay: £2,000 launch strategy

Up for it now? Yes

 

Blog Coaching

I’ve worked with bloggers since 2010, and lifestyle bloggers since 2012. I know a lot about what it takes to make a good one and what brands look for when they’re dishing out opportunities. As I’ve stated previously, I’ve got so many people into blogging, because I know they’ll do a great job if they stick at it.

I’ve got so many tips for bloggers that want to get more from their sites, social media accounts and any other associated assets. Whether freebies, monetisation or fame is the goal, I know a few shortcuts.

 

Lowest pay: Free

Highest pay: £30 for an hour of consultancy

Up for it now? Yes

 

 

What's Next?

I've got lots of new things in mind. Whether I make enough time to actually do them is a completely different story.

If you're thinking of freelancing, I did a little something about considerations to have in mind. It's well worth a read before you dive into all of these kinds of things like I did.


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- Chiino

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