When talking to different writers over the past few months I’ve noticed something from people who are fairly good writers, but sell their services for $.01 (or even less) per word. They often complain about all the rewrites, edits and other complaints they get. When I just started out, and was making the mistake of writing for that price, I experienced the exact same thing.
Today, however, I have clients who pay far more than that, and they almost never have a complaint. At first, it seems illogical. If someone is paying more, they should be more demanding and expect everything to be perfect. That’s when I realized that the higher paying clients are demanding, but they know exactly what they want (typically). They will give better instructions, and they will also know that an article is FAR more valuable when it is actually interesting to REAL PEOPLE than when it is over stuffed with keywords for SEO.
Why does Low Pay Cause High Complaints?
The higher paying clients will provide instructions on exactly what they want, and (assuming you’re a good writer) they will be happy with the results. The lower paying writers don’t really understand what they want, and all too often they are hopping from strategy to strategy. One day a client might want 2% keyword optimization. The next, they want it to be 10%. Today they want you to use the keyword exactly as they give it (even when it is grammatically incorrect), tomorrow, they want it to sound proper.
Another reason, I believe, is because many of the low paying clients speak English as a second or third language. Nothing wrong with that, but if they don’t know the language well enough to know what sounds natural, they will have to rely on what they have heard other people tell them about how an article should look and sound. This is VERY difficult for the client to do well. They should be hiring a writer who they can trust to give them the content they need, which, will often cost them much more money. If they don’t have the budget, this can be a vicious circle for them, but make sure you don’t get pulled into it too!
Don’t Lose Confidence
It is really quite a headache. What’s worse, however, is that these constantly complaining clients, who don’t pay much, will often cause good writers to doubt their skills. If I’m getting constant requests for edits and rewrites, I may start thinking to myself that I’m not earning more money because I’m not good enough. The fact is, however, that I’m not earning more money, because I’m going to the wrong clients.
If you’re a good writer, find good clients. Don’t settle for less. *To note, I don’t have a problem with people working for low wages for a short time just to get some bills paid. Most of us have done it at some point, and sometimes taking that $.01 per word job is just what you need. That being said, however, DO NOT get stuck in that type of writing. You CAN and SHOULD make more money! You just have to have the confidence to go get it.
If you can’t seem to find good clients, you are almost certainly doing something wrong. Get a mentor, ask for help, read some guides, do SOMETHING different, or you’ll never get the rewarding clients you desire.