If you're a freelance writer who has been grinding it out trying to land your first client, you might get mad at me for this, but…
I actually never planned to start freelance writing. Before getting my first gig, I wasn't actively searching for jobs, I just kind of stumbled upon one.
For most freelancers, that's not how it goes.
Many writers struggle for weeks or even months to find their first client.
Other writers work for content mills getting paid barely anything for all the hard work they're putting in.
In order to hopefully make your grind a little bit easier and to help you find your first freelance writing job faster, I'm going to tell you how I found mine.
In my opinion, this is one of the best ways to find freelance work, whether you're a writer or you offer some other type of service.
The Facebook Group Method
It all started out with me joining a course called the Facebook Side Hustle Course. This course has nothing to do with freelance writing but stick with me here.
When I got to the client acquisition stage of the course, there were several different methods to choose from. One, in particular, stood out to me:
Joining Facebook groups to find clients.
So, I started joining Facebook groups that were focused around a topic I was interested in.
The topics of these groups included things like blogging, entrepreneurship, personal finance, copywriting, and digital marketing. I joined about 10 different groups in one day.
I recommend not joining too many groups at once to the point where it's overwhelming. Stick to a number that's manageable and add more later.
After getting accepted into some groups, I began interacting in them as much as I could. Anytime I had a question, I'd post it. If I saw an opportunity to join a conversation, I'd do it.
What's the point of all this?
- It's fun interacting with people who have the same interests as you
- You'll learn a lot
- People will start to recognize you and you'll connect with a lot of people in your space
How I Found My First Freelance Writing Gig
Now we're getting to the good stuff. Here's how it went down:
It was a normal day. I was scrolling through Facebook looking through my groups when I came across this post (personal info has been blocked out for privacy):
Now, even though I wasn't looking for a freelance writing job at the time (I was looking for FB ads clients), this post intrigued me.
- Small project – I had no freelance writing experience so starting out with a small project seemed nice and easy
- Looking for multiple writers – I had no experience writing for other people but since they wanted 5-10 writers I figured my chances were pretty good at landing the job
- Trial run – A trial run with more work at the end? Perfect skill-tester for a newbie like myself.
- Must know how to use WordPress – Already had this skill from running my own blog, and this is why I believe every freelance writer should start a blog.
- Extra money – I'm always looking for some ways to make extra money, and this was an opportunity for me to test out my writing skills AND make some money.
How I Landed the Job
I saw that Facebook post about a day after it was posted, so I immediately sent the poster an email asking for more details.
Here's the email I sent (again, personal info has been blocked out):
At this point, I still had no idea what type of content writing project it even was, so I made sure to ask for more details first.
I also made sure to put a link to my blog in the email so that they could see some of my past writing. (Again, I think every freelance writer should have a blog.)
After I sent that email, they sent me more details about the job, I said I was interested, and the rest is history.
This first job was only a trial run, so it was pretty short. All in all, I wrote some short pieces of content that took me about 2.5 hours and made $25.
It wasn't a ton of money, but I was psyched to have just completed my FIRST ever freelance writing job. I thought the pay was pretty good for my first gig as well. Definitely better than $5 for a 1,000-word blog post.
What Happened Afterwards
After working really hard on that first little job, the client asked me if I wanted to do a bit more work. I said yes.
It didn't stop there either:
Eventually, I was asked to help finish the entire project! I was so pumped!
Not only was my confidence building as a writer, but I was also getting a nice bit of income from this little gig.
I've now been working with this same client for over 3 months doing part-time work, and I've made over $3,000!
My Top 5 Tips to New Freelance Writers
I'm still a new freelance writer myself, but here are my tips to others in the same position:
- Try the Facebook Group method – If I hadn't been in those Facebook groups, I would have never found this gig.
- Start a blog – Having your own blog gives you a place to improve your writing skills, showcase your writing, and it could even make you money.
- Exceed deadlines – If you can, try to get your work done before the deadline. This makes you look more organized and the client will appreciate it.
- Provide your best work – This is pretty obvious, but really try to impress the client. This will increase the chances of recurring work and/or referrals.
- Respond quickly – If your client sends you an email asking a question, respond as soon as you can. This again makes you look organized and it's just nice to get a quick response from people.
One of my favorite things about freelance writing is how much I learn while I'm doing it. I'm practicing my writing, learning more about SEO, and learning about the things I'm editing/writing about. I love it.
Another thing I really like is that there's a ton of variety. Every post I work on is a brand new challenge.
If you've been thinking about getting into freelance writing or you're having trouble finding work as a freelance writer, I highly recommend trying the Facebook group method.
Here's a quick recap on how to use the Facebook group method:
- Join Facebook groups that you're interested in, or groups you think your ideal client would be hanging out in
- Ask questions, provide value in the groups, answer questions, interact, etc.
- Look out for opportunities!
The best part about this method is that it's easy to use alongside other client acquisition methods.
Here's another important tip:
Schedule a specific time each day to go through your Facebook groups!
By scheduling a specific time each day (eg. 1pm-2pm) you won't miss anything in your groups, and you won't get stuck mindlessly scrolling through Facebook for hours (it happens to me more often than I'd like to admit).
Other than that, that's really all there is to it. If you have questions, leave them in the comments!
I'd also like to hear from you:
What's your favorite client acquisition method? How did you get your first ever job/client?