How to Produce Marketable Articles as a Freelance Writer

The freelance writer has several difficulties to face. It’s easy to produce marketable articles. The difficulty comes in knowing which markets are available and what they want. Once you overcome these difficulties, the actual marketing of the articles becomes easy. It’s a long road for the new writer, and this guide is written from a lifetime of experience to attempt to help writers to market their work more successfully. A niche market is a market which fits the ability and style of the writer. It is this area which a freelance writer needs to aim for and to target. Once they find that niche, the amount of work they can market is only limited to the amount of work required by that market. Therefore, it’s wise to diversify and find several markets so that there is constant demand.

Identifying key factors

The best way to find a market which has a good rate of flow is to research the different types of market to see which fits your writing style. For example, while some writers make ideal magazine style writers of articles which sell to printed magazine companies, others are capable of producing online content. The key factors which need to be examined are what makes one article more successful than another. Often writers who do not adhere to guidelines find that their market is limited and that their sales are diminished. Although their writing may be perfectly acceptable, if they do not target that market which requires work, and step outside of the areas that market requires, their work is wasted. Key factors to take into account are:

Style required
Guidelines
The manner of presentation
Timely manner of production
The SEO value of work for an Internet market.

Looking at each of these in turn, the obvious one is guidelines. It stands at the top of the items chosen because that work which falls outside of guidelines will always be rejected. Whether writing for an online publication or a print publication, you do need to adhere to guidelines.

The presentation also matters. If you were to produce work which is hard for publishers to read then it would have less marketable value. Editors simply return manuscripts when this is the case. For an online publication, an article should be in smaller paragraphs than in traditional print because online readers have a more limited attention span, and reading is different on the Internet. The Internet article should also have subheadings, so that readers can find relevant information with little difficulty.

If you can work within deadlines, this makes your work more marketable for the simple reason that editors or websites can depend upon you to produce the goods. Many websites and all publishers of printed matter have deadlines which writers are expected to work to. You need to prepare, read, edit and edit again all work which is to be produced within a timeline, and make sure that the work is not only written but arrives at the editor’s desk or online within those set parameters. This makes your work more marketable because it means you take the work seriously and will be given more opportunities simply because you are reliable.

The SEO value of work is also important. This means search engine optimization. What that means in effect is that certain words within your written articles bring the website you are writing for extra traffic. Unfortunately, what many writers are finding is that they are producing stilted paragraphs which introduce these words, rather than let the words become part of the natural flow of an article. The trick is to learn how to incorporate key words within articles without it looking like that was the intention. When you produce works which have this SEO emphasis, they must read as if they are written without that purpose for them to be effective in the marketing game.

Diversify

If you want to produce a lot of work which is marketable and which help you to gain stature as a writer, then you do need to have several markets available to you. Depending upon one market is limiting, and although many writers have one particular favorite website, by limiting yourself to one website, you harm your credibility. If you write to several, chances are this increases your presence on the Internet, but it also increases the number of markets you are contributing to. If one website folds, another opening is available to you. Similarly, try different styles in order to find your niche. Magazines and news print may be the ideal media for you, and trying to get into a regular submission process or persuade an editor to run a series or regular column will help you.

What newspapers and magazines want is reader friendly content which is up to date. Never assume that you have all the answers. Research and back up what you write to produce work which is authenticated and backed up by sources which are not questionable. This really matters because without those sources, the work has less value. If you look at newspaper websites, the articles which are contained on those sites have links to other sources as a means of backup. This is vital to success, as without this, your work is opinion based and has little substantiation.

Once you find several markets and produce work on a regular basis, knowing what that market wants, you will find that you get a regular flow of work, and that the marketability of your work increases. Taking all of the above factors into consideration, you are the author of your own success story, and the flexibility of approach that you apply to your writing career is what will eventually set you apart from the competition. There is a whole world of possibility out there. Those writers who are stuck into their old ways of producing self-indulgent articles are the ostriches who bury their heads in the sand, while the forward thinking and flexible writer who knows they can improve their technique will be more likely to succeed.