Darren Rowse reports Google is combining Goolge Analytics data with Google AdSense stats. This means a great deal to bloggers running AdSense campaigns; you can track ad effectiveness using the power of GA. It’s not happening all at once, Rowse says the rollout is being phased in and publishers who have access the new combination will find an invitation waiting for them in the AdSense admin section. If you are a blogger interested in Google AdSense or are just getting started, this development won’t mean much to you…yet. Once you discover how powerful these two features are when combined, you will learn a great deal.
Jennifer Mattern has some sage advice for writers who want to branch out as professional bloggers. Do you want to start earning money from your own blog? Mattern’s article is a great place to begin, but even if you’ve been in the blogging game for a while, check out her Make Money Blogging post and have a look. You’ll find some good advice I think gets overlooked in the rush to sign up for affiliate marketing programs and Google Ads; there is plenty of money to be made with e-books and digital downloads.
Of course, you have to have something to say in those e-books and downloads, but that’s another issue for another post. The real value of this article is in the common-sense approach it takes. No, not all bloggers are going to earn big money from their work. Mattern points out that many people just don’t know how to market a blog effectively. But those who take the time to learn the ropes and follow the advice laid out in the article stand a much greater chance of getting those paychecks.
I love AllFreelanceWriting.com for its BS-free writing and a complete refusal to claim that ANYBODY can do this stuff. The advice is great, the attitude is much appreciated, and if you need a good kick in the pants motivationally speaking, this site is the place. Recommended.
I haven’t done any resource posting in a while, so I thought I’d throw up some links to different articles and blog posts that might give you a bit of perspective on setting a fair hourly rate for your work. As always, NONE of these pages should be taken as the final word on the subject–differences of opinion vary greatly. This collection should be viewed as a way for you to form your own notions about what your time is worth as a writer:
Payscale.com has a handy chart listing hourly rates by amount of experience. I disagree with the first entry on that chart, if for no other reason than it is pretty tough to earn that amount of money in the first six-nine months. This chart is for technical writers, but even you tech writers might agree that it’s going to be a tough sell in the opening months of your career to earn $20+ an hour unless you have something you can put on a resume to sweeten the deal.
E-WritingJobs.com gives some food for thought on the difference between WORKING hours and BILLABLE hours.
Debra Jason wrote this one for The How-To Catalog on WriteDirection.com, a nicely detailed breakdown of fees vs. expenses and overhead.
Writing-World.com’s “How Much Should a Freelancer Charge?” by Moira Allen is required reading AND has a list of other resources (not listed here) to help you set your fees.
This one might not help you set your CURRENT fees, but is definitely inspirational. As someone who is only about 10K shy of being a literal six-figure freelancer this year, I can vouch for both the encouragement AND the criticism found in Michael Kwan’s blog post, How to Earn Six Figures as a Freelance Writer.
A great article giving you some perspective on what your clients are reading: Linda Alexander’s Working With Freelance Writers.
These are only SOME of the resources out there that can help you set fees and determine a realistic price structure, but in the end it is up to you to determine what your time is worth. The most important thing you can do is avoid the freelance newcomer’s mistake of undervaluing your time. If you don’t feel comfortable charging higher fees, perhaps you should ask yourself WHY. If you struggle with the notion that you are giving value for the money, consider taking some time with a writing coach or attending classes that will help you hone your skills and give you additional confidence that you CAN give the right value for your rates.
One of the most important things any freelancer can do is establish an effective web presence. Some freelancers need two or three individual sites to promote what they do, especially if they are multi-disciplined. In my own particular case, I started off with a single web page, but as I branch out creatively I find that my needs demand multiple sites.
My current web presence, Joe-Wallace.com, is effective at telling the world that I have a LOT of experience, but if I were to start seriously marketing myself in my other skill sets (voiceovers, video, radio, television production, and photography) I’d need to create specific websites to showcase each of those talents.
My background as a military reporter for Air Force News Agency, the Navy Media Center, the Pentagon Channel and other networks is enough to give me some serious clout as a writer, but if I wanted to promote myself as a television reporter/anchor again, I’d need to do far more than what I’ve got listed at my current site. For writing, it’s enough for me to brag on my former life as a globe-hopping journalist. Continue reading Stepping Stones: Building a Web Presence Part II
I was browsing PoeWar.com and ran across an interesting article by Meryl K. Evans about making the most of the freelance writing game. Some of the advice is standard motivational and money management stuff, but one excellent point made in this piece makes this one shine–the portion titled, “Make marketing a regular part of your job”. A brilliant suggestion many of us–even established writers–sometimes neglect. This is a good read. Check it out here.
If you like the article, have a look at Meryl Evans’s site. She has plenty of articles and there’s a lot of info for those of you who are getting into content writing. Drop her a line and tell be sure to mention that Freelance-Zone.com sent you…
A Wired Magazine article posted today explains why you’re having trouble seeing Freelance-Zone.com with Internet Explorer. If you have IE 5.5, 6.0 and 7.0. chances are you have gotten a message saying the site cannot be loaded and “operation aborted.”
Read the full Wired article to learn more, but suffice it to say that this is a damn good reason to switch over to Google Analytics, even if it doesn’t do IP tracking in the name of privacy. Personally, I LIKE the IP tracking option because you can trace trolls and spammers with it, but Google has the clout, so it’s about time we made the switch.
If you have a blog and you are using Sitemeter (the cause of all the trouble), you might consider joining us in the switch to GA. And no, they didn’t pay us to say that. Personally I am still steamed over Google’s judgement errors re: Chinese net censorship, but that’s another article for another day. The tool is still relevant and vital in the work of running a blog successfully, regardless of what I think of their politics.