Newbie Launching Ghostwriting Business - Advice Appreciated

by madbe
24 replies
I'm in the midst of creating my ghostwriting website, but lack the necessary writing samples and testimonials to post on it. My writing experience up to now has been limited to the legal field (both as a paralegal and legal marketer). Suggestions of how I gain the necessary experience writing articles for posting would be greatly appreciated.
#advice #appreciated #business #ghostwriting #launching #newbie #website
  • Profile picture of the author tpw
    Write your own articles.

    Write about things that interest you, and write about how people can benefit from your services, then post those articles on your website as samples.

    When I am in the zone, I can write 1-2 over-the-top awesome articles per day. If you are a good writer, you should only be days away from having samples out the wazoo.
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    • Profile picture of the author madbe
      Good idea - thanks Bill.
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    • Profile picture of the author talfighel
      Originally Posted by tpw View Post

      Write your own articles.

      Write about things that interest you, and write about how people can benefit from your services, then post those articles on your website as samples.

      When I am in the zone, I can write 1-2 over-the-top awesome articles per day. If you are a good writer, you should only be days away from having samples out the wazoo.
      Me too. I can write 3-5 articles per day with no problem.
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  • Profile picture of the author hmk14
    Offer some cheap gigs on fiverr. At least you'll make a few bucks and someone else will be coming up with the topics for you.
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    • Profile picture of the author madbe
      I'll definitely head on over to fiverr and check it out.

      Thank you.
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  • Profile picture of the author danr62
    No, stay away from Fiverr. You don't want to work for cheap. You only cheapen yourself doing that, and it doesn't help your reputation at all.
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    • Profile picture of the author Gail_Curran
      I agree - stay away from fiverr. If you have knowledge in the legal field, consider specializing in articles/writing on legal topics. Every lawyer with a website needs relevant, well-written content to educate clients and make the search engines happy. And they can afford to pay for quality. Find those lawyers and make contact.
      .
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      • Profile picture of the author madbe
        Great advice - thank you!
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      • Profile picture of the author WriterWahm
        Originally Posted by Gail_Curran View Post

        I agree - stay away from fiverr. If you have knowledge in the legal field, consider specializing in articles/writing on legal topics. Every lawyer with a website needs relevant, well-written content to educate clients and make the search engines happy. And they can afford to pay for quality. Find those lawyers and make contact.
        .
        Just to add to this: Lawyers are looking for articles and from people who understand the industry. If you do a quick Google search on 'personal injury lawyer' you will see what I'm talking about. The field is saturated and everyone wants to stand out.

        How do I know this? I used to write for someone who provided this service. I stopped because well...I guess he didn't pay enough attention to his capital and had to close shop.

        So I would suggest you specialize in internet writing for the legal field. I highlighted that because writing for the internet is vastly different from legal writing so you need to also highlight that - it could be your USP.

        While you're at it, throw in some legal research (which you'll charge for separately). You are a paralegal, that shouldn't be a problem.

        It's okay to be able to write on a wide range of subjects but the real moolah is in specialization.
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        PM me if you want a romantic fiction ghostwriter.

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        • Profile picture of the author cashp0wer
          Sit down and write some articles to put on your site. Make sure they are high quality articles with no spelling or grammar problems. Once you get going it is easy to write articles - I know when I am in the zone I can write a few each hour.
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  • Profile picture of the author WebPen
    Honestly, I think it just takes practice.

    Check out the sites that other internet marketers are using. Amazon product review sites, Clickbank product reviews, informational articles, etc.

    Ezinearticles.com has like hundreds of articles going up every day, so you can skim through there to get a feel for different writing styles.

    As far as getting testimonials- that takes time. Get some samples together, list your service on the Warriors for Hire forum, Craigslist, Elance, etc., and get your offer out there.

    Hope this helps
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  • Profile picture of the author Ken Hoffman
    I totally agree with the comment of "writing in the legal niche." There are so many content writers out there, you must specialize. You mentioned writing for legal marketing. Even better. Copywriters get paid more than article writers.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mission0ps
    Do you have your own little blog promoting what you do?
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  • Profile picture of the author Tadresources
    You know the saying, write what you know. Offer legal writing until you are comfortable with other types of work. In the meantime, practice makes perfect. Study up on other subjects and writing styles and once you feel secure with that post a few samples on sites like Ezine to show clients.

    Posting a gig on Fiverr is a great way to get aid experience, but if your writing isn't up to snuff you might end up with bad reviews. You would probably do well to offer legal writing there too though. Good Luck!
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    • Profile picture of the author danr62
      Originally Posted by Tadresources View Post

      Posting a gig on Fiverr is a great way to get burnt out and waste a lot of time.
      There, I fixed that for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author angela99
    Originally Posted by madbe View Post

    I'm in the midst of creating my ghostwriting website, but lack the necessary writing samples and testimonials to post on it. My writing experience up to now has been limited to the legal field (both as a paralegal and legal marketer). Suggestions of how I gain the necessary experience writing articles for posting would be greatly appreciated.
    As others have said, you start by writing some articles to show what you can do.

    Bear in mind that your website's also a "writing sample", as is the post you've just written. For writers, EVERYTHING is a writing sample.

    Before you write your sample articles, decide on an area of specialization.

    Obviously, since you have experience working with lawyers and the law, you need to focus on this. It's a viable area of specialization -- a good one, because few writers have your experience...

    So, write five articles targeted for a general audience -- "the law for idiots."

    Post the articles on your website as writing samples.

    Next, you need to get some clients.

    The fastest and best way is to make a list of companies which may need a ghostwriter and pick up the phone.

    You'll get gigs. Out of every 100 calls you make, you'll get between 5 and 10 gigs.

    If you're nervous, don't be. You have a skill, and you're helping people.

    You'll still be nervous after writing just five articles, so you may not have the confidence to cold call.

    If this is the case, you can use the WF to get some more writing experience, and to get some easy testimonials.

    Create a Warrior Special Offer (WSO) or three.

    You could:

    * Offer some cheap PLR articles on how to hire a lawyer, what to do in traffic court etc.

    * Offer some cheap exclusive articles to build a list of buyers -- five articles for $10 each, or similar.

    In a nutshell: START WRITING, and keep writing.

    There's endless opportunities. However, you need to show what you can do. Interact here. Ask questions. Get a client, and then another one.

    You should be able to create a full-time business within six months or less -- as long as you remember to WRITE. Don't think too much about it, just do it.:-)

    Cheers

    Angela
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    • Profile picture of the author madbe
      Thanks to everyone who responded to my query. I'm grateful for your advice and look forward to implementing many of the suggestions offered.
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  • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
    Originally Posted by madbe View Post

    I'm in the midst of creating my ghostwriting website, but lack the necessary writing samples and testimonials to post on it.
    Advertise thusly, or something similar.

    I will write six 500 word articles for your website for free, with only one catch.

    You have to send me a review of my writing, and choose one article that I can use as a writing sample for potential clients.

    The other five are yours to keep and nobody else will ever have them.

    If you would rather not write a review, I will write the same six 500-word articles for (price).

    You have one week from delivery of the articles to send your review, or you will be invoiced for the work.

    Here's how to order.
    When you have enough samples and testimonials, pull this ad and switch to "I will write six 500-word articles for (price). Here's how to order."
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    • You can start writing for article directories such as Ezine Articles. Another good option is Yahoo Contributor Network. You can also try HubPages. These website receive millions of visitors and some of them will give you advice and help you improve your writing style. The more you write, the more experience you will gain. After you learn how things work, you can start writing for others and selling your articles.
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  • Profile picture of the author TiffanyLambert
    I always teach my ghostwriting students to launch with at least three samples (unless you plan to write strictly about legal issues):

    Health
    Wealth
    Relationships

    This snippet of talent (half page each is fine) will allow most marketers to see whether your style is what they need it to be.

    So for instance, you might this:

    - half a page on Managing Your Diabetes
    - half a page on Making Money Online
    - half a page on Saving Your Marriage

    Many marketers don't concern themselves with experience as much as they do your price and talent. If you come in with an attractive offer and the ability to do what they need, they won't care if you started writing 10 minutes ago or 10 years earlier.

    Tiff
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  • Profile picture of the author WhosGotMoves
    madbe, I have a project that I could use a hand with creating some sales copy that will be public online. It's for my newest product which I won't mind you using as a reference and I will gladly leave a real testimonial of my experience. I know you can't PM yet so I'll send over my email address if you're interested. I'd be happy to pay you and even to help you get started. Just jumped on WF today to find a great writer and saw your post so hopefully you have something to offer in that arena.
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  • Profile picture of the author BudaBrit
    This thread makes good reading, guys!

    In my case, I do not have a specific niche to target - there are things I enjoy, but none of them are things I believe have a particularly high demand. I am putting forward that I can write anything so long as I can research it. Do you think there is a market for a "jack of all trades" writer out there.

    And also, how would you all position yourself on price? I've been toying with the idea of $0.03/word, is that too low, as I wouldn't be able to get much research in on $15/article. Should I be aiming for $0.05, so that I can produce articles that are really top notch? Currently, I'm writing for a couple of clients at $0.02, which is fine for half an hours work per article, but not if I wanted to produce really top notch copy.

    It's the thing I'm really struggling with where to position myself.
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  • Profile picture of the author YasirYar
    I know a lot of people who have started ghostwriting businesses after doing some freelance writing work themselves. I think that is an ideal way to build a client portfolio. Just jumping into ghostwriting business without any contacts would make it much harder to get started.

    If you were to register on any outsourcing marketplace, such as www.elance.com or vWorker.com: How work gets done. Guaranteed! ; you could try getting some writing jobs etc. This would ensure that you get some experience, testimonials and possibly some samples as well.

    More importantly, if you get some recurring clients, which is quite common in the case of writing jobs if your content is good, you can work through your business rather than the site you initially worked with them on.

    Also, avoid using weird blue colored fonts when communicating with people
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  • Profile picture of the author blillard
    Why not research hot topic that people will gladly pay for and create PLR pack instead writing for hire? If your going to spend time anyways writing you might as well do it fir you and create products that you can sell over and over again. You could easily bundle like 6-10 reports and flip that as a WSO with PLR rights, build your following and keep writing = )
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