Interested in Building a Article Writing Business, any ideas?

35 replies
Sorry for the miss post in the copywriting forums, still new to this community.

Hey warriors!

I have an issue that has been bugging me. I am an article marketer and article writer looking to build up my business. I have been using my article writing to fund my efforts in article marketing, but business has been hard to come by.

I have college level writing experience and have satisfied all previous customers I have worked with. My goal is to develop this into a business that I can run on a day to day basis, but I don't know how to make it efficient and I am having troubles finding the business in the first place.

I have charged relatively low in the past, but the time and effort I put into those articles seem to be higher than the amount paid.

Any ideas? I have the skills, I just need to work on the business model.

Thanks everyone!

~David
#article #building #business #ideas #interested #writing
  • Profile picture of the author Jill Carpenter
    Why not put together some PLR article packs to sell? Then you can get money over and over for the same articles.
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  • Profile picture of the author megaresp
    Originally Posted by dcimonline View Post

    I am an article marketer and article writer looking to build up my business. I have been using my article writing to fund my efforts in article marketing, but business has been hard to come by.
    Hi David

    If you're reasonably sociable, investigate business networking organizations in your local area. For example: BNI, BRX, NRG, 4n and similar. These allow you to build relationships with the people in your group, practise your networking skills, get an education in business networking, and expand your network considerably (not just to the people in your group -but the people they know - and even other groups within the same networking organisation).

    NOTE: Business networking is not MLM, and has nothing to do with network marketing.

    You can make a living writing copy and promoting yourself via these groups. You can make a lot more money if you learn how to write SEO content.

    There are plenty of SEO guys in business networking organizations, along with web designers, developers and social media people. They're always on the look out for people who can create SEO-ready content. It pays well, and occaisionally you'll come across a company that wants you to produce X amount of content per month. Get enough of those, and you gain some financial security.
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  • Profile picture of the author ADAMw3
    Through up a WSO and see if you can pick up some clients.
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  • Profile picture of the author Motiv8td
    I agree with Tina.

    Create some sort of site that will allow potential clients to see what you're made of. Speaking for myself I'm always looking for someone who can do a great job with articles.

    I want more Real Estate related articles which is hard to find someone to do a great job with but I'm always willing to pay a hefty price for a great article. Once I find someone who does do a good job they'll be getting a lot of regular work just from me.

    Feel free to PM me if you do end up having the ability to showcase some of your work. I don't expect to be given free articles for you to earn my business, I personally just look for the ability in the articles that I'm reading to capture my attention and make me feel like I want more.
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  • Profile picture of the author dcimonline
    Thanks everyone for the input!

    Ill start working on a portfolio. Any ideas on what kind of topics I should write on to showcase my work?

    I used to charge $1 per 100 words, but I am not sure if thats a common or fair price to me. Any input on that would be great.

    And about the PLR articles, I have always been skeptical on what people would be willing to pay for a pack. I would be willing to write these packs, but with all the PLR competition out there, I dont know if I could even sell any considering their low prices.

    ~David
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    • Profile picture of the author Jill Carpenter
      Originally Posted by dcimonline View Post


      And about the PLR articles, I have always been skeptical on what people would be willing to pay for a pack. I would be willing to write these packs, but with all the PLR competition out there, I dont know if I could even sell any considering their low prices.

      ~David
      Everyone likes FRESH PLR. You can command more depending on a niche and how long they are - and you can offer in WSO's.
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    • Profile picture of the author robinana
      Originally Posted by dcimonline View Post

      Thanks everyone for the input!

      Ill start working on a portfolio. Any ideas on what kind of topics I should write on to showcase my work?

      I used to charge $1 per 100 words, but I am not sure if thats a common or fair price to me. Any input on that would be great.

      And about the PLR articles, I have always been skeptical on what people would be willing to pay for a pack. I would be willing to write these packs, but with all the PLR competition out there, I dont know if I could even sell any considering their low prices.

      ~David
      Just a thought.... If you charge $1 per 100 words, that equals $5 for a 500 word article. Let's say the article is about things to do in Bonita Springs, Florida.... You will need to look up and read at least 3 or 4 different and trusted websites to gather enough information for an interesting, intelligent 500 word article.
      This will have taken you at least 30 minutes. Now you need to write a punchy, interesting article and then edit it for mistakes. Another 30 minutes. So, as long as the person you are writing for doesn't request any additional info or editing, you've just cleared $5 an hour.
      All I'm saying here is if you are writing quality content, you will need to charge for it. If you charge $5 per article you will simply kill and burn yourself out. You are a writer. You are intelligent. Writing is a skill. Don't sell yourself short.
      Do what you love, write on subjects you enjoy and charge no less than $15 per 500 words.
      You can join Demand Studios, which is a writing site (no, I don't own it or have any affiliation with it)... and at least get $15 per article through Paypal and be paid once per week.
      Writers, stop killing yourselves for peanuts!!
      Big hugs........Robin
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  • Profile picture of the author robinana
    I am a freelancer. I do things a bit differently than you might, but at the end of the day everyone has to find what works for them.

    I am a writer: A very intelligent, relevant and hard working writer who can easily switch from copy writing to deeply researched articles.
    I am a graphic designer: Although I've been involved in television production and graphic layout and design for many years, I enjoy the simplicity of creating blog headers, eBook covers, etc. So that's what I stick to.
    I build word press blogs: After learning everything about Thesis, Word Press and Plugins for my own blogs (I own and run about seven), I decided to offer my services to others.
    Basically, what I'm telling you, is to take the unique combination that makes you "YOU" and put it to work. And don't undersell yourself. Unfortunately, I personally would not recommend that you put an ad on the Warrior Forum. Warriors are awesome, but many are notorious for wanting things done for very low pay. Many Warriors like PLR and rewritten "filler" type content for their sites (which is fine if that's what works) but I am just forewarning you that it is a good idea to use the Warrior Forum as an "idea" getter and then go out there in the world and get some clients.

    I don't write articles for less than $15 (400-500 words) and those are subjects that don't need much serious research. Most of my articles go for about $20-$40 each and that works well for me. I charge $50 for a header design and put blogs together for free as long as my client uses my affiliate link for their webhosting. That gives me $65 and if they buy Thesis theme from me as well, that's another $30 for me. All together, I have no problem putting together a Wordpress theme and setting it up for almost $100. It takes me about 2 hours and I do a very thorough job.
    I love what I do, but what I'm saying to you is FIND YOUR PLACE.... FIND YOUR NICHE .... and unfortunately, don't count on the Warriors to pay your bills when it comes to writing.
    Find subjects that you are good at and that you enjoy writing about ( I enjoy holistic medicine, careers, diseases, children, psychology, etc) and then look up some newer blogs. Approach the blog owner with your skills.
    Have a bio, a portfolio of your writing (a blog works well for this) and your prices clearly drawn out. Be a "people person".... Be positive and determined to offer quality and unique writing services. I promise, you will do well if this is the approach you take.

    That is my advice and I believe in it because it has worked for me. If you have any other questions, don't hesitate to contact me. (oh and also, build up a following on Twitter). I have about 13,000 followers on Twitter and got it all organically. I don't use any black hat tricks or weird tools. I just add people daily and talk about whatever. I do use Twitter to advertise my writing abilities and lead them to new blog posts.

    This will take some time, but don't give up. You can do it!!!!

    Big hugs and God Bless! Robin
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  • Profile picture of the author dcimonline
    Thanks again for the quick responses!

    Concerning writing PLR - Ill have to look into that more. I have no idea what to charge for content like that, and again I have always been skeptical. Thanks for the idea though!

    Thanks robin! I would love to talk with you more about this. I have added you on AIM but other than that I have no means to contact you yet. I don't have enough posts in to PM so ill get to work on that. My AIM name is lxlDClxl (those are L's) and I am always on and willing to chat.

    I want to take this seriously and I know I can make this work. I just have to get a plan together and get things rolling = )

    Thanks again!

    ~David
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    • Profile picture of the author robinana
      No problem. I'm always willing to toss around ideas and don't keep secrets. There's plenty of money out there to be made!! If you go to either one of my sites, my email address is on them... or feel free to contact me at partnershipmktg at aol. That is my personal and business email address.
      Yes, you can do this... even in this economy.
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  • Profile picture of the author jeffsolochek
    What about offering a service where you give a person enough articles to submit to all the different article directories a different article. A better way to look at it, newbies on the net are told to write and submit articles for backlinks to their site's.
    When I first started I bought Article Post Robot and would then write one article and submit that same article to 400 diferent directories which Google does not like

    Article content rewriter software produces articles that are not for people to read, only for SE's to read. I thought about outsourcing this overseas but the problem is they write English but not American so to speak.

    What about creating a service to do this for people?

    Just a thought
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  • Profile picture of the author LilBlackDress
    With so much free PLR out there, I am not sure it is the best market to tackle.

    I do a variety of writing and have found it pretty easy to get clients. I will send you a pm with content sites you can write for.

    As far as $1 per 100 words no that is not a fair charge to yourself. Taking time to research an article and write it well is worth a lot more.
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  • Profile picture of the author RebeccaL
    Put together some packages that cover what people want these days.

    Many marketers set up networks of web 2.0 sites - providing content for those sites in package deals can be a good way to market your services and set yourself apart from other writers.
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  • Profile picture of the author dcimonline
    Thanks again everyone!

    Right now I will be working on setting up my business plan for all of this. I might throw in something other than just writing to keep myself going. Any ideas for other types of services that would be interesting to run?

    I used to do web design in the past, but that was a long time ago and I'm not used to all the new coding like php and the like.

    Any more ideas would be great. I love asking questions here, you guys seem to be always up for the challenge = )

    ~David
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  • Profile picture of the author Kael41
    I started down this road back in 2005. I made the initial jump by actually offering 10 free articles in exchange for user feedback on digitalpoint. After some successful reviews of the content production, i started to build some steam:

    1) Built a website to list my content production services
    2) Did some basic SEO on that site
    3) Advertised services on Sitepoint
    4) Purchased a subscription on Elance and started to develop new clients/jobs that way
    5) Ran adwords campaigns targetting webmasters who were in need of fresh content
    6) Contacted offline businesses who might be in need of press release writers for online exposure via prweb
    7) and a bunch of others that aren't springing to mind since it was about 4 years ago
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  • Profile picture of the author dcimonline
    The free articles for a review sound alright. I will be writing more in depth articles that are worth more than the every day content filler (I hope), so maybe offer just 1 article for a review? That might get some business rolling in.

    How about any other ideas other than writing to maybe round out the business? Maybe offer a selection of services? Any ideas?
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    • Profile picture of the author Hamish Jones
      [quote=dcimonline;999668]The free articles for a review sound alright.[quote]

      I would avoid this at all costs. Your time is more valuable than that. Chuck up a WSO with some cheaper article writing for warriors. That way you get paid and a testimonial.

      I've made some great contacts throught the WSO section and got some great testimonials and still have money in my pocket.

      Oh, and if you are going to put up a website, don't advertise your rates(except maybe for PLR packs.) If you are offering individual work, make the offer sound great so people will contact you for a quote.

      Then you can quote at a rate which makes your time valuable.

      Cheers,

      Hamish
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  • Profile picture of the author clickonitphil
    You might be able to find some prospective clients by going to eZine articles or similar. Check through the articles and see who's got an ongoing article writing campaign going and where they point to. Check the site for contact info or whois. Contact them and see if they would like additional articles done, or better quality ones if needed to improve viral marketing.
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  • Profile picture of the author dcimonline
    Any ideas for things other than writing? Looking for more ideas to round out the biz.
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Hancox
    Hi David

    robinana has given you some pretty good advice. I'm just putting the finishing touches to a report which is written to help writers earn more.

    I think the biggest problem is that many writers don't know how to sell their own writing service.

    For example, just a few moments ago I was looking at a site from a writer. It was nice enough, but it read like a resume. Many writers seem to do this, as if they're "looking for a job".

    You need to "sell the difference". Imagine your writing service is a product, with each skill you bring to your writing as a "feature" of the product.

    You say you "have the skills". Great. Now write down all the skills you have, that are related to your writing and that can benefit your potential clients. Example: "I can adapt my writing to suit whatever 'style' or 'tone' my clients need."

    This is one skill... it's also a "feature" of your writing service. List all of the skills you can think of.

    Then, write down WHY each skill will benefit your client, by adding a "This means" statement after each skill. Example: "I can adapt my writing to suit whatever 'style' or 'tone' my clients need. This means they can be confident of using the material on their blog or elsewhere, and it can boost subscriptions (and maybe sales at a later date)."

    This is the "benefit" of your "feature", what it means to the client.

    Finally, add an "Other writers may" statement to the beginning of each skill, along with a "This means" statement. Example: "Other writers may not take into account the style and tone the client wants... this means their writing doesn't 'fit' well on their blog or wherever, which means lost subscribers and possibly lost sales. I can adapt my writing to... <etc>"

    This is the "risk" your clients are taking by using someone who doesn't have that skill.

    In my report, I call this a Skill Sheet. It's NOT for public viewing, it's for your benefit, so YOU can see what differentiates you from other, perhaps less skilled writers.

    Then, you must convey these differences in everything you do, from your sales letter to your emails.

    This is one of the many techniques I'll be talking about in my report about earning more as a writer. The point is, you can charge much more than $5 an article when your potential clients know and understand what kind of value you are bringing to them.

    Too many writers just give their potential clients the online equivalent of a resume. But as a writing BUSINESS, you must "sell the difference". You must also put on a salesperson's hat, and sell your service as if you were selling a product, so that the "features" are clearly explained, and related to the client as "benefits".

    So first make sure you have a business to offer them!... including a sales letter (to pitch your service), a pricing structure (so they know what you're offering), samples, and an offer (to give them a reason to buy now).

    Then, you need to market your business. A signature file in your profile here on the Warrior Forum, linking to your site's sales letter would be a good start. Write articles on EzineArticles, set up a Twitter account... and go out and find business. That''s what Internet marketing really is... it's about marketing yourself and your business... which really, all that means is putting yourself in front of potential clients.
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  • Profile picture of the author la dominatrix
    Originally Posted by dcimonline View Post

    Sorry for the miss post in the copywriting forums, still new to this community.

    Hey warriors!

    I have an issue that has been bugging me. I am an article marketer and article writer looking to build up my business. I have been using my article writing to fund my efforts in article marketing, but business has been hard to come by.

    I have college level writing experience and have satisfied all previous customers I have worked with. My goal is to develop this into a business that I can run on a day to day basis, but I don't know how to make it efficient and I am having troubles finding the business in the first place.

    I have charged relatively low in the past, but the time and effort I put into those articles seem to be higher than the amount paid.

    Any ideas? I have the skills, I just need to work on the business model.

    Thanks everyone!

    ~David

    I have been a full time writer for eleven years and have built a full time living from it. It certainly can be done, in the last few weeks there have been a lot of posts here on the forum by marketers who cannot get good writers. Type in "writers", "writing" "outsourcing" in the search. Type in Steven Wagenheim because I have a feeling he has participated in a few of the threads. Then I would pm all the people that have trouble outsourcing and ask them if you can write for them.

    Put an advert here on the forums and advertise your services. Try <a href="http://www.rentacoder.com"> Rent A Coder</a>
    There are only about ten full time writers there until about a year a year ago there were only two and I was one of them. Anotehr place to get work is <a href="http://www.elance.com"> Elance</a>

    There are probably more but those are two I can recommend. I am here to learn how to become an Intenret marketer myself because having perfected my keyword research skills, and my writing skills I can make an authority site for myslef and get the profits myself. There will always be people who want to outsource their work. Unfortunately many of those people do not care about you or your work and do not value your time, but they are out there. Copywriters can earn good money, but ghostwriters do not.

    Hope this gives you a germ of an idea David
    La dominatrix
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  • Profile picture of the author Brad Spencer
    As far as business models go for article freelancing, people have covered PLR packs, etc and I would add that you get on Elance, guru.com, and other sites which have freelance services. Definitely "nichify" yourself as a "health product copy writer" or something like that and then get involved in the community.

    As far as being more efficient...there are tons of ways of doing that. My favorite is the stop watch method where you time yourself for 5 articles, then consistently try to knock off 30 seconds per article with various tactics. This has consistently shaved minutes off my writing time.

    Cheers,

    Brad Spencer
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  • Profile picture of the author dcimonline
    Thank you all for the great ideas guys!

    I will be working most of this week to get my portfolio and services all written out. I like the idea of setting myself apart with the description of services, very clever.

    Any ideas of other services that I could offer? Something that could add onto the benefit my writing? Or maybe another service to give people more options?

    After long thought I just want the writing to be a section of what I have to offer. If I keep my options open, ill be more interested in advancing my business.

    ~David
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  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    If you want to have a writing business, then may I suggest you don't restrict it to an article writing business which many writers do.

    Writing articles are a good way to start, but are normally the cheapest form of writing.

    Move outside of IM and you will find people willing to pay a higher rate for the work they want/need to be done.

    I would say, if you want to go outside of IM to earn a decent rate, then I would say you shouldn't put up a blog. A blog will normally restrict the income you can earn. I know, all the writers with blogs will say differently, and say they have static pages, but the reality is their income could be a lot more if they had a different perspective about their sites.

    We rarely now write articles, but not because we said we won't but we have people asking for other work. This year we have written a couple of manuscripts for people to publish their books in the mainstream market. We have done a lot of writing work which isn't generally talked about in the world of IM.

    Not having a blog has meant our rates are now at least $0.10 a word for articles, and $0.25 a word for ebooks. We have been paid up to $150 for a 500 word article this year.
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    • Profile picture of the author Jeremy Kelsall
      Originally Posted by Bev Clement View Post

      I would say, if you want to go outside of IM to earn a decent rate, then I would say you shouldn't put up a blog. A blog will normally restrict the income you can earn. I know, all the writers with blogs will say differently, and say they have static pages, but the reality is their income could be a lot more if they had a different perspective about their sites.
      lol - Are you serious?

      I know more than a few writers that have professional looking blogs that are doing "more than OK" - Outside of the IM niche, I doubt many of your clients would know the difference between a blog and a "regular" website.
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      • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
        Originally Posted by Jeremy Kelsall View Post

        lol - Are you serious?

        I know more than a few writers that have professional looking blogs that are doing "more than OK" - Outside of the IM niche, I doubt many of your clients would know the difference between a blog and a "regular" website.
        Jeremy, yes I am serious. I know quite a few writers who have a professional looking blog as well. I didn't mention professional looking.

        Well, considering you don't know the people outside of the IM niche, I don't think it is a fair judgment to say they wouldn't know the difference.

        My information came from these people who don't know the difference, as you say.

        I put a different point of view and people can take it or leave it. If people want to know more then they can ask.
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        • Profile picture of the author Jeremy Kelsall
          Bev, not trying to go tit for tat here

          Originally Posted by Bev Clement View Post

          Jeremy, yes I am serious. I know quite a few writers who have a professional looking blog as well. I didn't mention professional looking.
          But, I would assume that any writer that was trying to have writing as a profession while looking for clients online would have a professional looking blog. If they didn't, I doubt their "regular" website would be professional either.

          Originally Posted by Bev Clement View Post

          Well, considering you don't know the people outside of the IM niche, I don't think it is a fair judgment to say they wouldn't know the difference.
          You are misinformed on this point. Don and I have well over 20 offline clients that we have put sites up for and so far, I don't think a single one of them knew the difference. According to them as long as you type www in the address bar it is a website. I'm not saying that there are not people offline that don't know the difference, but my experience has been different than yours.

          Originally Posted by Bev Clement View Post

          My information came from these people who don't know the difference, as you say.
          What exactly did they say? "I guess I'll do business with you because you have a regular website instead of a blog"?

          Originally Posted by Bev Clement View Post

          I put a different point of view and people can take it or leave it. If people want to know more then they can ask.
          The only reason I said anything at all is because I can see new people that might want to make a living writing running out to rip down their blog and throw up a regular site because you stated your opinion like it was a fact.

          Like I said, I'm sure there are plenty of people offline that know the difference between blogs and regular sites. However, if they determine who they do business with based on what kind of website the provider has over what type of quality content they produce, I would guess they are the types of clients that you don't want.
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  • Profile picture of the author dcimonline
    Man the more I look into this whole idea, the more overwhelming it sounds.

    I know I am a good writer, but I have a huge fear of failing. Having a disappointed client scares me to death.

    Ive faced information overload before with IM, and now its turning its ugly head again...

    Like I said, I'm afraid of disappointing people and I fear what will happen if I do. I don't know how to get around this. It freezes me in place. It prevents me from doing anything.

    I have always considered writing PLR content, but with the type of competition out there, I don't think I have a chance at it. Its the fear of failing that keeps me down.

    Anyone have any ideas to help me with this? I know there is no one right answer, but I feel like the world is on top of me right now and it sucks... Big time...

    Thanks again for all your support everyone.

    ~David
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    • Profile picture of the author D.K. Magnus
      David

      I know some people on this thread are telling you to stay away from writing free articles, but writing them and getting positive feedback, is a good way to overcome your fear.

      You will spend some of your own time, but since they are free you really can't disappoint people too much.

      This is my personal experience anyway.

      Dar

      Originally Posted by dcimonline View Post

      Man the more I look into this whole idea, the more overwhelming it sounds.

      I know I am a good writer, but I have a huge fear of failing. Having a disappointed client scares me to death.

      Ive faced information overload before with IM, and now its turning its ugly head again...

      Like I said, I'm afraid of disappointing people and I fear what will happen if I do. I don't know how to get around this. It freezes me in place. It prevents me from doing anything.

      I have always considered writing PLR content, but with the type of competition out there, I don't think I have a chance at it. Its the fear of failing that keeps me down.

      Anyone have any ideas to help me with this? I know there is no one right answer, but I feel like the world is on top of me right now and it sucks... Big time...

      Thanks again for all your support everyone.

      ~David
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  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    David, if fear is that big a part of the problem, you could try something different. Get hired by a writing company who will pay you a decent income, and let them deal with the clients etc.

    You will be able to see how this works, and if it is something you really want to do, then you can.
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  • Profile picture of the author dcimonline
    Im thinking about trying PLR. I know it will probably be filled with tough competition, but if I write a free example article, to give people an idea of what they are getting, then I think Ill have a better chance.

    Any thoughts?
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  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    Jeremy, you are totally right in your comments about offline, but I didn't say offline.

    I might be misinformed, but my data comes from over 200 clients who all gave me the same information. Also, my data comes from in excess of 1,000 writers who all have blogs, and who all have the same problem.

    Again, as I say this isn't about offline clients.

    I have been in this niche for a number of years, and I have been giving this information during that time.

    I find it interesting that when people say throw up a blog, write a couple of articles and state it as a fact it is OK. When someone says something different, we are not allowed to state it as a fact.

    Affiliate marketing, CPA all work well with a blog in my opinion and I have no problem with people having a blog.

    I don't have a problem with people creating a blog for a writing business, I don't have a problem with people writing for $1 an article, I don't have a problem with anyone doing anything they like.
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  • Profile picture of the author David Chung
    Perhaps you can look into providing some added value to your articles, either specializing in a niche and writing really, really good articles, or perhaps creating spin-ready content, including an article directory submission or bookmarking service, including keyword research, and other things like that. Then you can justify a higher price and maybe attract even more clients than if you were just writing articles. Then they can get all those services from one place (you) and not have to go to several different people.

    Also you may find that if you have a really good reputation (maybe from writing for a lot of warriors or getting testimonials from established members) then people are more willing to shell out money because there's more of a guarantee that they'll get quality articles on time than if they risked their money on someone who's relatively new and unknown.
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