by Lyn Lomasi, Staff Writer
As a long-time web writer who now also helps fellow writers succeed, people often ask me how to make more money. What are the best ways to succeed in web writing and how does one apply them for the maximum reward?
Maximize your content. Keep the rights to your content as often as possible and re-purpose it when you can. Many publications will accept non-exclusive work, which means you can do the work once and get paid for it repeatedly. Just be sure that the information stays up to date and syncs well with each publication it's submitted to. Even if you have ti make a few changes now and then, it will be easier than writing new content every time. While new content has its place as well, there's no reason you can't re-purpose existing content when appropriate.
Be flexible. We all have our own habits and methods. However, sometimes it pays to bend personal rules if it makes a client happy to do so. You of course want to always let a client know when you feel what they want isn't what's best for them. However, you should also be flexible in some of the ways you work so that may better provide the service in the way clients expect. They each will expect something different. Therefore, it pays to listen, keep an open mind, and be able to adapt to varying situations.
Meet or exceed deadlines and expectations. Happy clients will often be repeat customers, which means there will be more money lining your pockets (or your PayPal funds). A big part of keeping clients happy is meeting the deadlines and guidelines laid out in the contract. When you can do this every time -- and exceed expectations when possible, clients are more likely to use you again or even recommend you to others. Just like any other business, word of mouth can be paramount to making more money in web writing.
Spread your talent. Some people will be content with just one client. I've been there before. However, no matter how well one client pays, it's always good to have more than one. That way, if something happens unexpectedly, you don't lose all of your income. Keeping a variety of clients also provides more experience writing upon request in varying styles and topics.
All web writers need a website. I've said this many times before. But I will say it again and again. All writers need a website. Your website is where clients can find more about what you do and contact you for services. A good writer's website should include at the bare minimum a contact form, an online resume, samples, and a blog. For more on what to include, please read "8 Musts on a Freelance Writer's Website." If you use your site correctly, you'll be making more money just by having an easy way for clients to interact with you.
Maintain a blog on your professional website. As mentioned above, a blog is an essential part of a writer's website. In addition to helping fellow web writers succeed, keeping an active blog helps showcase what you can do to clients, which can lead to more money. Some things successful web writers can blog about include writing tips, marketing tips, information for clients, book releases, tour/book signing dates, events, and special features of your work. The possibilities are endless. Just keep it active and keep it relevant. The more you blog, the more traffic your site will get if you do it right. This can lead to more clients. Active writers generally make more money than those who are simply waiting around without action.
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by Lyn Lomasi, Staff Writer
Most who know me will know that I spend a considerable amount of time utilizing social media. I still will. It’s essential to the work I do and is a significant method for keeping in touch with those I care about. However, starting tonight, I’ve decided to go about it in a different way. I’m minimizing my mobile notifications for Facebook and Twitter – specifically, the SMS (text) ones… and yes, I can feel the shock coursing through the veins of anyone who knows me personally, as they read that statement.
SMS is Outdated and Unnecessary
Why the heck am I getting both text alerts and push notifications for the same exact things on Facebook? I receive several types of push notifications. Two of those include email and Facebook – and I get Facebook alerts in my email too. This means I am getting three notifications for the same updates (email, Facebook app, and SMS). Why? This is a bit excessive. At first, it was a precaution to be sure I don’t miss anything important. However, there hasn’t yet been a time when any of those methods has failed. Besides, with push notifications coming directly from the Facebook app, SMS is actually quite outdated, not to mention unnecessary. Why would I choose text alerts when the push notifications get me directly to the update in the Facebook app? The text notification leads to the mobile web version of Facebook, which is not how I prefer to access Facebook. I prefer the app because the features are better and it loads faster.
Text Alerts Are Annoying
My poor loved ones have to hear the constant annoyance that is my text alert going off literally every second sometimes. This is ridiculous and I’m putting an end to it. In fact, it’s even starting to annoy me and I’m the one who set it up that way. Yes, some of the notifications are important – some. But as I mentioned above, I’m already getting them via my mobile device in other ways. So the SMS is really just an unnecessary annoyance and distraction. Text messages that happen all the time are not cool and neither are those that wake people up in the middle of the night, unless they are an emergency. I don’t need to receive a text message every time a friend or business updates their status on Facebook or tweets on Twitter. I check those that matter via apps or my laptop anyhow. Seeing them more than once is annoying and takes time away from more important things.
My Family Deserves More Attention
I am a mother first before anything and these notifications can be a distraction. I’m not the type to ignore my kids. But glancing at my phone less is something they’ll likely appreciate. The same could be said for my lover, friends, and other family. I’m sure everyone in my life wouldbe very happy if there were fewer reasons for me to glance at my phone during fun activities. I still get things done and if you ask any of them, they’ll tell you I’m very loving and attentive. However, it’s just the principle of the matter.
I’m Hoping for More Productivity
I added so many notifications to increase productivity. Those who know me will also know that I am extremely productive. They’ll probably also be shocked if I can increase that and wonder how I can do that with fewer notifications. If you remember what I said above, you’ll remember that I am getting the same notifications more than once. Therefore, this should actually save me some time. If I’m being honest, I actually don’t look at every notification. However, I do sometimes look at the same ones in more than one place. So taking these away will end that possibility.
My Cell Phone Battery Dies Too Quickly
More notifications equal less battery juice. The whole point of a cell phone is having it available for use at any time. That becomes less possible if I am on the go and for some reason am unable to charge my phone for a lengthy time period. My cell phone battery often dies quickly because I have so many notifications coming in every direction. Cutting off most of the SMS alerts will help remedy a great deal of that issue. Twitter and Facebook notifications come to my phone so often that if I stop receiving text alerts for even five minutes, I know that my phone is having issues and I need to restart it. It’s cool to have that indicator, but at the same time, that’s just too much. In addition to reasons stated above, I need my cell phone to keep its juice.
Certain SMS and Mobile Alerts Are Staying
Because some people do rely on me for emergency situations, certain alerts will still come to me via SMS. However, most will not. For instance, Twitter DMs will stay for people I follow back because those people rarely DM me unless it’s important and about work. I need those SMS notifications, as I do not receive push notifications for anything Twitter-related. But Twitter notifications for specific people and companies will likely go away. I really don’t need to know every time every entity I follow posts to Twitter. But I do need to know when someone needs assistance.
In short, I’m cutting off many of my mobile notifications for family, life, and business purposes. Therefore, if you notice me slowing down on responding to less important things, that could be part of it. I love all of my friends on both sites. But there’s a point where too much is just…well, too much.
**Photo Credit: Lyn Lomasi
I originally published this on BUBBLEWS (no longer published there)
by Lyn Lomasi, Staff Writer
Because of my career choices (and because it became quite fun), I found myself spending tons of time on Facebook daily. Although I have the application on my phone AND receive text and email notifications, I would always have at least one tab open in FireFox with something from Facebook. But lately that has changed and here’s why.
I’m busier with other aspects of my career. I offer a good portion of support surrounding my work via Facebook. There is also much more to it than Facebook support. Once I answer what is necessary there, I simply have to go away to get other things done, such as answering emails, writing articles, writing reports, publishing, editing, and so much more. Sometimes that means I can’t answer my friends right away. But I will always answer eventually.
I’m spending more time with family. Summer break is over and my younger kids are back in school (the older ones are in homeschool). That means that when I pick them up from school in the afternoon, once I’m finished with my work, they want my attention. They haven’t seen me all day. Therefore, they want and deserve my attention. I love my family and friends on Facebook too and I do my best to keep up with everyone. But as any parent knows, the kids must come first. I’m a single mommy as well, which adds to their need for me to be there.
I’m doing more things that keep me away from Facebook. Blogging is one of the things I like to do that keeps me away from Facebook. You may get an indicator that I’m online and think I’m available to talk. But really, I’m probably in another tab on FireFox posting to my blogs. Or maybe I locked the computer screen instead of turning it off and I’m actually gone walking the dogs on the trail. I’m a busy person, both in work and play. While I do have Facebook installed on my phone, it isn’t always appropriate to check it, depending on what I’m doing. For instance, if I’m cuddling up to someone I love while watching a scary or suspenseful movie, I’m sorry, but I’m not checking Facebook. My phone is probably on silent in the other room with the screen locked and I probably won’t see it for a while.
I’ve organized my notifications to prioritize work and family. Another thing I’ve done on Facebook is create lists, as well as organize my notifications in various ways. This means, I look at things related to work and family first. Then, I answer other things, based on time, as well as urgency. Sometimes I even miss things because I get thousands of notifications daily. Also, if you message me and I’m not your friend on Facebook, your messages are likely not going to show up in my regular inbox. They’ll probably be in my “Other’ inbox, which I don’t check as often because honestly, sometimes I forget about it. I have strict filtering activated on Facebook, due to spam issues.
I just don’t have the time. I know that many of my Facebook friends are used to me responding as soon as they send messages, tag me, or leave a post on my wall. But the thing is, it has gotten to a point where there are just so many that I can no longer do that every time and still have time for everything else going on in my life. There was a point where I couldn’t stand to leave anything unanswered longer than a couple minutes. Now, it can sometimes take a couple days or more for me to reply to a message. There are just so many of them and so many other things going on in my life that I just don’t have the time anymore to spend so much time on Facebook.
Nowadays, aside from career-related support and tasks and conversing with my closest family and friends, I haven’t been doing much on Facebook. Although, I usually do come in at random times and meme-bomb my wall. I’ll look in my favorite lists I’ve created from various pages rather than the regular newsfeed and I’ll post a bunch of memes in a row and then leave. Hey, I can’t help it! They’re funny! Facebook is supposed to be fun!
**Photo Credit: Lyn Lomasi
I originally published this elsewhere (no longer published there)
by Lyn Lomasi, Staff Writer
How many of my friends use a pen name when publishing their work? The name I use for the majority of my published work right now is Lyn Lomasi. If you use a pseudonym, do you have a creative way that you came up with your name or does it have special meaning? Mine is both creative and sentimental.
The name Lyn means "waterfalls" or "rain showers" and the name Lomasi is generally used as a first or middle name in a Native American language. It means "pretty flower". I chose to use it as a last name to be different. A good writer buddy also used to call me "pretty flower" so I purposefully chose a native name that meant as much. Lyn is my birth middle name. Combined, the two names mean to me "When the rain falls, a pretty flower emerges".
It holds significance to me because I identify with it on many levels. Obviously, one reason is because of my friend. Another is because I have been through quite a bit in my life. But, like a flower, I always emerge strong and beautiful no matter what kind of storms life brings into my life.
Tell us about your pen name in the comment section.
Photo Credit: Lyn Lomasi
(Yep, it's another pic of me)
(I originally published this on BUBBLEWS (no longer published there)
by Lyn Lomasi, Staff Writer
No offense meant to the writers this applies to. But I have been doing this a long time and am a natural observer. I've noticed that oftentimes the writers who have the most interaction from readers are those that update their profiles, especially photos. I mean, who wants to look at the same picture for years, no matter how good looking it might be?
When you update your profile photo often, it shows that you are active and it also gives readers something fresh to look at. Think of your profile photo just as you would your written content. Random browsers may find an older photo or piece of content interesting. But those faithful followers need something new to look at or they might wander somewhere else more interesting. Yes, most of what readers will be focused on is the written content. However, it does help when the author photo is shiny and interesting. People on the interwebs like shiny things. It's a given -- and new shinies appear often.
How often do you update your profile photo? Have you observed the same things I have? Tell us about your experiences in the comment section.
Photo Credit/Copyright: Lyn Lomasi
Why would online article writers need a website if many article submission sites allow a professional profile? This is a question I get asked often when I mention the idea. Learn some of the many reasons all freelance web writers need a website of their own.
When applying for online writing jobs and gigs, reference links and/or a resume are often required. This will be much simpler for those with a website. Some may create an area where a client can download their resume by requesting the link. Others may post links to samples. Yet others may do both or handle it another way. Online article writers need a website in order to reference their work all in one place.
Professionalism is key, even though you don't see your clients face-to-face when writing online. A freelance writer's website is like a virtual resume, meeting place, and office at the same time. This is where you can let your clientele know you are professional by including all of the right things. A bio, samples, and a contact page are just a few. Read "8 Musts on a Freelance Writer's Website" for more details on those and other must-include items for professionalism.
Even if a client finds your work elsewhere, they may want to know more than they can find in a limited bio attached to your profile on a content site. This is where your website comes in handy. Many content sites allow article writers to place a link to their website in their profile or bio. Also, be sure to link to it from any blogs or other profiles you have. Giving clients (both potential and current) a place to find more information about you as a person and as a writer is very beneficial to them as well as to your writing career.
If you have any big writing projects, off days, exciting news, etc it can be posted to your website. Of course you don't want to announce information that is too personal, but a web writer's website can serve as a great way to spread the word. Doing this has many benefits. Some include letting clients see that you are accomplishing things, engaging with your audience, and also depending on the announcement it might bring in more readers or clientele.
Depending on how much bandwidth your site allows, this can be a great place to store certain files. Of course you still need a hard copy backup, but storing them in a secure, hidden location on your website can help you keep everything related to your online article writing all in one spot. This also can free up space on your computer if you'd rather not have the files there. Just be sure, as mentioned above to keep a hard copy if you go this route.
Lyn Lomasi & Richard Rowell are life & business partners. Owners of the Write W.A.V.E. Media network, they are your content superheroes to the rescue! Running their network, tackling deadlines single handedly, and coaching fellow writers & entrepreneurs to be thought leaders is their top priority. While rescuing civilians from boring content and marketing, they conquer the world, living the RV life and making Crafts For A Purpose with their awesomely crazy family while recounting The Nova Skye Story, along with Kymani’s Travels. They also strive to one day cuddle with lions and giraffes. Until then, they’ll settle for furry rescue kitties and doggies.
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