Help me: would you buy this recurring writing service?

29 replies
UPDATED: If you don't want to read my rambling before I got to the idea, you can skip to the underlined part. :p

I can never seem to stop thinking of new ideas, it's really annoying.

I'm pretty happy with how my writing services are going, but I've started to wonder if I can turn them into more than just a one-time, variety show kind of deal. That is, people place an order, give me the details, pay, I write it, they like it, end of story (though I get a lot of repeat customers).

I've seen sites where people get a new article each day or a pack a week, but I really prefer offering unique, customized content. I don't want to get into PLR as it exists now because it has such a bad name, and I refuse to offer spun content at all, ever. Basically, quality trumps quantity in my business plans.

So... what about some kind of service deal where I have one spot open each day, and people reserve days as they wish?

For example, I could sell a $100 package that consists of a product review (online or offline) and four "supporting articles" to be used for traffic generation or backlinks. One such package sold per day, because I don't want to devote my whole life to the project. Then people send me their keywords/products as their day draws near and I get into a nice routine of doing this. Would anyone be interested in that?
(This idea is on the back-burner for now.)


Would you purchase a membership of some type where people pay a fixed amount per month, like $50, and get to order an article on a topic of their choice each week?

Any other ideas? I'd love anything you can think of as I try to bounce ideas around and come up with a viable, unique one. Thanks so much for your feedback!
#recurring #service #turn #writing
  • Profile picture of the author The Storm
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    • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
      I set up subscriptions for certain packages where people can get a set number of articles per week or month. That might work for you.

      It hasn't been a huge seller yet but I do have some subscribers. I haven't put any promotion into it other than adding it to my Warrior for Hire thread but I believe if I did, it would do well.

      One complaint I hear a lot is that the good writers tend to book ahead so we can't offer the short turnaround times that people often want. Subscriptions ensure that they have a spot booked so there isn't any waiting.

      Tina
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    • Profile picture of the author Zabrina
      Originally Posted by The Storm View Post

      I like the membership idea. X amount of dollars gets you X amount of articles/services per month...sounds like a great service.
      Thanks for your comment. I'm hoping others feel the same way. I suppose it's all about finding the right numbers for X, if the market is there.

      Do any of these sound good...?

      $50/month for 4 articles?
      $25/month for 1-2 articles?
      $100/month for 2 hours of my time each month whenever you need them (obviously if you provide more details, I can get more done so you can ask me to do, eg, one great article and provide research sources, or five fairly good ones)?

      I'm trying to find what kind of existing needs IM'ers really have that I can fill with a membership service.

      Originally Posted by TMG Enterprises View Post

      I set up subscriptions for certain packages where people can get a set number of articles per week or month. That might work for you.

      It hasn't been a huge seller yet but I do have some subscribers. I haven't put any promotion into it other than adding it to my Warrior for Hire thread but I believe if I did, it would do well.

      One complaint I hear a lot is that the good writers tend to book ahead so we can't offer the short turnaround times that people often want. Subscriptions ensure that they have a spot booked so there isn't any waiting.

      Tina
      Thanks very much for your feedback. That sounds very similar to what I proposed -- pay a certain amount per month to get a set number of articles. Glad to hear it seems do-able, and that's definitely one issue I've encountered. Keeping turnaround times under 48 hours for everyone is a challenge!

      Hmm... so if I went ahead with a service like this, do you think I should get people to give me their topics and keywords on a certain day each week, or as they want...? I'm trying to figure out the best way to manage this without it turning into a logistical nightmare full of "I'll get back to you tomorrow"s and "can I save the articles for the next month and have you write five at once next month"s.
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      • Profile picture of the author fredjr1978
        Originally Posted by Zabrina View Post

        $50/month for 4 articles?
        $25/month for 1-2 articles?
        Wait! You're seriously making more than 10 dollars per article?
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        • Profile picture of the author Sandi Valentine
          Originally Posted by fredjr1978 View Post

          Wait! You're seriously making more than 10 dollars per article?
          Quite a few of us do. I start at $15, with a 20% warrior discount. I regularly make $20-25 a page for reports/ebooks, etc.
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      • Profile picture of the author The Storm
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        • Profile picture of the author Zabrina
          Originally Posted by fredjr1978 View Post

          Wait! You're seriously making more than 10 dollars per article?
          My normal rate is $0.05/word, with a 20% Warrior discount, so I sell most articles at $20-$25 depending on where the customer came from. This would be a discounted rate because they're long-term subscription customers, so they benefit from quicker turnarounds and guaranteed availability, while I benefit from guaranteed customers.

          Originally Posted by The Storm View Post

          I dont see the certain day each week thing working out too well...I would keep thinking on it. Just speaking from my point of view if I signed up for a service like that I would want to be able to send you information at my convenience...
          Hmm, good point and thanks for the feedback. I guess I could launch it and revise the system if need be.

          Any more feedback on this? Would you, as an IM'er, take part in this kind of service? I'd like to be sure there's a need for it.
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      • Profile picture of the author kyhell
        Originally Posted by Zabrina View Post

        Thanks for your comment. I'm hoping others feel the same way. I suppose it's all about finding the right numbers for X, if the market is there.

        Do any of these sound good...?

        $50/month for 4 articles?
        $25/month for 1-2 articles?
        $100/month for 2 hours of my time each month whenever you need them (obviously if you provide more details, I can get more done so you can ask me to do, eg, one great article and provide research sources, or five fairly good ones)?

        I'm trying to find what kind of existing needs IM'ers really have that I can fill with a membership service.


        I would be interested in this but have a couple of concerns as a potential client
        1. do you provide references?
        2. do you provide a portfolio?
        3. how much can you write in 2 hours?
        4. is what your writing original or PLR rewrite?
        5. what are the minimum words of these articles?
        my point is your rates seem a bit high but not by much i would just need to know where the value is for the extra money is all.
        If you some how included publishing the articles to my wordpress blogs id jump all over it
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      • Profile picture of the author asiabird01
        Hi Zabrina,
        I'd definitely sign up for this! Actually, it's something that I've kind of been looking for. Can I email you? I think my account here on the Warrior Forum is still too new to send PMs. What is your email address?

        Thanks,
        Asia
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  • Profile picture of the author Audrey Harvey
    Yeah, some people do, Fred.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kecia
    Originally Posted by Zabrina View Post

    For example, I could sell a $100 package that consists of a product review (online or offline) and four "supporting articles" to be used for traffic generation or backlinks. One such package sold per day, because I don't want to devote my whole life to the project. Then people send me their keywords/products as their day draws near and I get into a nice routine of doing this. Would anyone be interested in that?
    I think this would turn into a hassle. Your clients would be likely to forget to send you the keywords or the products they want review, so more of your time will be spent contacting them each week, asking where the information is.

    Though, you could do something similar to what Tina suggested. Offer writing in say, 5 niches, and offer clients the chance to get a set number of weekly articles in the niche of their choice. I'd limit to one niche per client to make it easier for you to keep up with who gets what. Then, set a day of the week in which each client will get his/her content, and make sure you have the set number of articles sent by then. I'd suggest 5 articles per client per week (less if you can't handle that many), and you could charge whatever would equal out to making $15-$20, since each client is getting unique content and not PLR.
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    • Profile picture of the author Zabrina
      Originally Posted by Kecia08 View Post

      I think this would turn into a hassle. Your clients would be likely to forget to send you the keywords or the products they want review, so more of your time will be spent contacting them each week, asking where the information is.

      Though, you could do something similar to what Tina suggested. Offer writing in say, 5 niches, and offer clients the chance to get a set number of weekly articles in the niche of their choice. I'd limit to one niche per client to make it easier for you to keep up with who gets what. Then, set a day of the week in which each client will get his/her content, and make sure you have the set number of articles sent by then. I'd suggest 5 articles per client per week (less if you can't handle that many), and you could charge whatever would equal out to making $15-$20, since each client is getting unique content and not PLR.
      Hmm, that's true. I like that idea... offering a set number of niches so I don't have to consult them for keywords. Do you mean $15-$20 per week, per article, per client...? Normally I charge this for one article, so it'd be ~$100/week. I'm not sure if there's a market for this.
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      • Profile picture of the author Kecia
        Originally Posted by Zabrina View Post

        Hmm, that's true. I like that idea... offering a set number of niches so I don't have to consult them for keywords. Do you mean $15-$20 per week, per article, per client...? Normally I charge this for one article, so it'd be ~$100/week. I'm not sure if there's a market for this.
        I meant $15-$20 per article. But you could do it as a monthly fee if that would be easier to manage. So, if you offered 4 articles a week to each client, it'd be $60/week or $240/month, for example.

        If you are getting continued, recurring business from a client, though, I would consider charging a little less per article, similar to what you would if someone ordered a bulk pack from you. Maybe $10 per article, so $40/week or $160/month.

        I think it's a good idea if you can get enough interested participants!
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    • Profile picture of the author Daniel Brock
      Originally Posted by Kecia08 View Post

      I think this would turn into a hassle. Your clients would be likely to forget to send you the keywords or the products they want review, so more of your time will be spent contacting them each week, asking where the information is.
      Who says you have to contact them? I'm pretty sure it's their responsibility to send you the info...

      If that don't, that's just free money for you.

      Only problem would be making people stick.

      Regards,
      Dan
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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
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    No .. .never. I would only find a writer I like and pay them per article.
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    • Profile picture of the author Zabrina
      Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

      No .. .never. I would only find a writer I like and pay them per article.
      Great, thanks for your feedback. If I might ask, why not?
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      • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
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        Originally Posted by Zabrina View Post

        Great, thanks for your feedback. If I might ask, why not?
        I prefer to do business that way. I don't want to pay for promises. I pay for services actually performed or products. I don't like membership sites, as they always promise big and underdeliver sooner or later. I don't like continuity programs of any sort. I feel like I get my money's worth by paying for what I actually receive.
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  • Profile picture of the author JasonB
    Yeah, Its a great idea...

    I do kind of the same thing, but I also throw in a distribution service for those articles....

    I currently have some monthly subscribers that pay me anywhere from $160 to $370 per month, for articles, press releases and a distribution of both across the web.

    Obviously a little more than just providing articles, but yes, they will subscribe if its great content with a quality service.
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  • Profile picture of the author jrussell
    Hi Zabrina,
    Sounds like a great idea. I offer a writing service also and think recurring business is a profitable idea.

    Make sure you offer a reasonable discount for recurring business to make it more attractive in achieving offers of work.

    Hope it works out for you!
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    • Profile picture of the author Wechito
      I don't know... I think it is better if you just to offer a price for article (or even some discount packages, such as 1 article=$x 5 articles= $x-20%). People who regulary needs the service will hire you every week,or every month,or whatever...Meaning you will end up with something simmilar to a recruiting system, withou the hassle a recuiting system may be sometimes, for you and/or for the client.
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  • Profile picture of the author MarkGerry
    Yeah, much like the split debate in this discussion - I'm not really sure. You could definitely make some money with this - but the question is whether or not you could do it right. I know I could..but more power to you if you can.
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    • Profile picture of the author Daniel Brock
      You know what...

      Why don't you just do it?

      I'm sure you could have your website created in a few days with a $200 budget.

      Would be a worthwhile experiment IMO...

      And if it works out, you are positioned to make a ton of money...
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  • Profile picture of the author thatgirlJ
    Zabrina,

    I think it's a good idea! The only thing I would caution is that you'll be locked in. You won't be able to raise your prices, try different services, take a short break when you've reached the overload point, etc.

    Of course, you might want to work it into your client agreement that you OR someone from your team will do the work (and that it will always meet their specifications!). That way, you will be able to outsource/use your team if things get too overloaded.

    You would have to give your clients confidence that this isn't something you'll just do away with in 2 months time once it gets to be too much.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dana Forsythe
      No prolly not. Its a good idea but the price is just too high and I prefer to pay on performance as well. I pay $3 per unique article to my writers and they do an excellent job with them.

      Good brain storming though
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  • Profile picture of the author Davioli
    I think people do something similar to what you want to do.

    They offer blogging services where the buyer gets a set number of posts written for him every month. Some sellers even get the buyer to set up an author account for them so they can post it for them as well..
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  • Profile picture of the author thewealthywiseman
    I'm guessing there is a better potential for ghost writer ebook services in the inet marketing arena -- not in volume but in dollars. If I was going to write articles I'd probably get into either financial services or the pharma industry -- really deep pockets there. Perhaps even the marketing aspect of those two industries.
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  • Profile picture of the author Lightlysalted
    it's a nice idea and i can see where you are coming from, but generally clients of article writers use them primarily because they haven't got the time to write enough articles themselves. If a client would like a quick turnaround, then reserving a slot my not be the best option for them and they'll just go elsewhere, losing you the sale. I do agree though that customised articles are best, not mass market PLR
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    • Profile picture of the author Zabrina
      Originally Posted by GuruCreation View Post

      Yeah, Its a great idea...

      I do kind of the same thing, but I also throw in a distribution service for those articles....

      I currently have some monthly subscribers that pay me anywhere from $160 to $370 per month, for articles, press releases and a distribution of both across the web.

      Obviously a little more than just providing articles, but yes, they will subscribe if its great content with a quality service.
      It's good to hear that it works already. Thank you!

      Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

      I prefer to do business that way. I don't want to pay for promises. I pay for services actually performed or products. I don't like membership sites, as they always promise big and underdeliver sooner or later. I don't like continuity programs of any sort. I feel like I get my money's worth by paying for what I actually receive.
      Fair enough -- I don't like membership services myself, but I know some people prefer the convenience and hassle-free experience of a recurring membership.

      Originally Posted by Kecia08 View Post

      I meant $15-$20 per article. But you could do it as a monthly fee if that would be easier to manage. So, if you offered 4 articles a week to each client, it'd be $60/week or $240/month, for example.

      If you are getting continued, recurring business from a client, though, I would consider charging a little less per article, similar to what you would if someone ordered a bulk pack from you. Maybe $10 per article, so $40/week or $160/month.

      I think it's a good idea if you can get enough interested participants!
      Yeah, that sounds reasonable to me, good idea. I may well do this. It's definitely a good idea to charge a reduced price per article for the repeat business.

      Originally Posted by Daniel Brock View Post

      Who says you have to contact them? I'm pretty sure it's their responsibility to send you the info...

      If that don't, that's just free money for you.

      Only problem would be making people stick.

      Regards,
      Dan
      Hmm, good point. Thanks.

      Originally Posted by jrussell View Post

      Hi Zabrina,
      Sounds like a great idea. I offer a writing service also and think recurring business is a profitable idea.

      Make sure you offer a reasonable discount for recurring business to make it more attractive in achieving offers of work.

      Hope it works out for you!
      Thanks for your feedback! We'll see how it goes.

      Originally Posted by Wechito View Post

      I don't know... I think it is better if you just to offer a price for article (or even some discount packages, such as 1 article= 5 articles= -20%). People who regulary needs the service will hire you every week,or every month,or whatever...Meaning you will end up with something simmilar to a recruiting system, withou the hassle a recuiting system may be sometimes, for you and/or for the client.
      That's what I already do, but I'm looking for a way to expand my services to reach people who might want regular articles (like many of my current clients).

      Originally Posted by MarkGerry View Post

      Yeah, much like the split debate in this discussion - I'm not really sure. You could definitely make some money with this - but the question is whether or not you could do it right. I know I could..but more power to you if you can.
      Well, what do you think is required to do it "right"? Keeping it up for a long enough period of time? Writing well enough? I know I won't have problems with either of those things.

      Originally Posted by Daniel Brock View Post

      You know what...

      Why don't you just do it?

      I'm sure you could have your website created in a few days with a $200 budget.

      Would be a worthwhile experiment IMO...

      And if it works out, you are positioned to make a ton of money...
      Good point -- maybe I'll do that. I'll have to wait until I'm not swamped with individual jobs like I am right now, though.

      Originally Posted by kyhell View Post

      I would be interested in this but have a couple of concerns as a potential client
      1. do you provide references?
      2. do you provide a portfolio?
      3. how much can you write in 2 hours?
      4. is what your writing original or PLR rewrite?
      5. what are the minimum words of these articles?
      my point is your rates seem a bit high but not by much i would just need to know where the value is for the extra money is all.
      If you some how included publishing the articles to my wordpress blogs id jump all over it
      Thanks for the questions, I'll be sure to address all of them if I launch. That's a really good point! I'd definitely provide references and testimonials from other warriors, along with a portfolio of sample articles similar in quality to what you could expect to receive. As for how much I can write in two hours, it depends how much research I have to do. For an advanced forex topic, I might be able to write two medium articles, but for a green living or homeschooling topic, I could probably write at least six. My writing would all be original, none of it PLR rewrites. And the minimum words would be 400-500, but I usually go over (550ish is my usual length, depending on how much the topic needs).

      With that added information, would you be interested if you saw a thread advertising the service I described above, or would you have any additional concerns? Also, I don't think I'd be publishing the articles, but I might look into that as another option.

      Originally Posted by Jenn Dize View Post

      Zabrina,

      I think it's a good idea! The only thing I would caution is that you'll be locked in. You won't be able to raise your prices, try different services, take a short break when you've reached the overload point, etc.

      Of course, you might want to work it into your client agreement that you OR someone from your team will do the work (and that it will always meet their specifications!). That way, you will be able to outsource/use your team if things get too overloaded.

      You would have to give your clients confidence that this isn't something you'll just do away with in 2 months time once it gets to be too much.
      That's an excellent point, thank you very much. I currently have no team and do all the writing myself, but I won't limit myself from expansion (though I'd still guarantee top quality if I ever did move to outsourcing, which isn't viable at this time). Is outsourcing really worth it?

      Originally Posted by Dana Forsythe View Post

      No prolly not. Its a good idea but the price is just too high and I prefer to pay on performance as well. I pay $3 per unique article to my writers and they do an excellent job with them.

      Good brain storming though
      Thanks for the feedback anyway.

      Originally Posted by Davioli View Post

      I think people do something similar to what you want to do.

      They offer blogging services where the buyer gets a set number of posts written for him every month. Some sellers even get the buyer to set up an author account for them so they can post it for them as well..
      That's a good point, though I'd be looking to write articles as opposed to blog posts.

      Originally Posted by thewealthywiseman View Post

      I'm guessing there is a better potential for ghost writer ebook services in the inet marketing arena -- not in volume but in dollars. If I was going to write articles I'd probably get into either financial services or the pharma industry -- really deep pockets there. Perhaps even the marketing aspect of those two industries.
      Hmm, interesting points. Neither industry really interests me that much, though, and I've committed to only doing work that I love from now on. Thanks for your advice though!

      Originally Posted by Paid Surveys View Post

      it's a nice idea and i can see where you are coming from, but generally clients of article writers use them primarily because they haven't got the time to write enough articles themselves. If a client would like a quick turnaround, then reserving a slot my not be the best option for them and they'll just go elsewhere, losing you the sale. I do agree though that customised articles are best, not mass market PLR
      I'm not sure I understand what you mean. This would be a way to get to the top of my priority list by reserving a spot, so that if I have four jobs to do in one day and then one of these clients requests their weekly article(s), they'd get written first.

      Wow, so much feedback! Thank you very much, guys. I'm tentatively hopeful that there is indeed a market here.
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      • Profile picture of the author WritingMadwoman
        Originally Posted by Zabrina View Post

        That's an excellent point, thank you very much. I currently have no team and do all the writing myself, but I won't limit myself from expansion (though I'd still guarantee top quality if I ever did move to outsourcing, which isn't viable at this time). Is outsourcing really worth it?
        I agree with Jenn on this one, Zabrina. And it's not so much a point of whether you feel like doing all the writing or not - but God forbid what if something happened to you, you fell ill or were in an accident. While your customers would likely understand and be patient, they will only do so for so long. My personal opinion would be to start lining up freelancers who could jump in to help if you needed it. You may decide not to outsource at first, but if it ever became necessary it's not a bad idea to have a plan in place for it.

        I do like your idea overall, I think it could really work - I might even be interested myself!

        Wendy
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        • Profile picture of the author Zabrina
          Originally Posted by WritingMadwoman View Post

          I agree with Jenn on this one, Zabrina. And it's not so much a point of whether you feel like doing all the writing or not - but God forbid what if something happened to you, you fell ill or were in an accident. While your customers would likely understand and be patient, they will only do so for so long. My personal opinion would be to start lining up freelancers who could jump in to help if you needed it. You may decide not to outsource at first, but if it ever became necessary it's not a bad idea to have a plan in place for it.

          I do like your idea overall, I think it could really work - I might even be interested myself!

          Wendy
          Thank you for your feedback, Wendy. Excellent point that I had thought of once or twice but never followed through with -- thanks so much for giving me that prod I needed. I usually can't find freelancers whose style really satisfies me, though. Better to start finding them when I don't urgently need to, I suppose.
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          • Profile picture of the author BryanJoseph
            What type of articles are they?
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