Private Freelance Writing Clients

Your freelance writing business has room to grow.
It baffles me when I see freelance writers encouraging others to continue what they're doing when they aren't making enough money to pay the bills.  "Keep plugging away on that content site - it'll add up," and "Private clients will find you through content sites; don't worry," and "Why don't you go bid on a few jobs at Elance?"

I always wonder: where's the solid, practical advice to go out and get your own private freelance writing clients?

So it's right here.

If you want your business - and your bank account - to expand beyond where it's at right now, get up and make something happen.

Here's why:

  • The good (synonomous with high-paying and easy to work with) clients aren't surfing content sites looking to establish long-term relationships with writers.
  • Earning a significant amount of money through Elance, ODesk and other bidding sites is difficult; remember, you're trying to get a job that someone wants to fill for as little money as possible and you're bidding against people willing to work for far less than minimum wage.
  • Money rarely floods anyone's bank account from content sites.

The bottom line: if you are motivated and talented enough to make it happen, why aren't you?


You can advertise your freelance writing services in a number of free outlets.  Don't tell me they don't work, because I've been making a comfortable living doing just that.


  • free classifieds in your local paper (or any paper, for that matter)
  • Craigslist
  • eBay

They don't cost a dime, and all you have to do is create the ad.

Cold Calling

It's not going to kill you to pick up the phone and call a dozen people who may need your services.  There ARE a dozen people in the phone book who could use freelance writing services, like:

  • local lawyers
  • local web designers
  • local doctors/health practitioners/midwives
  • any other small business in your area

Same goes for showing up at local businesses.  If you're on your way to the coffee shop to write, why not step inside a few businesses in the same plaza and see if they're looking for a professional freelance writer?

Applying for Freelance Writing Gigs

Dozens of sites steer freelance writers to job ads.  You may be in competition with other writers, but many companies advertising for freelance writers know they need a professional.  There's no guarantee you'll get the job, but it definitely gives you a feel for what's out there. 

When somebody tells you to keep at what you're doing, that's fine - if you're happy.  But if you want your business and your income to grow, you're going to have to venture out of your comfort zone and be a go-getter.  The world's most sucessful freelance writers don't churn out zillions of articles for content mills (although they may have started there) - they go out and find business.

What's holding you back?

Follow me on Twitter, join me on Facebook or subscribe to this blog via e-mail.

© Angie Papple Johnston, 2010; if you are reading this anywhere but on, it's stolen.

Creative Commons License

Freelance Writing Tips by Angie Papple Johnston is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Based on a work at

"Chart" image courtesy of Arinas74 at