Tag Archives: social media

What Freelancers Can Learn From The Daily Beast


By Joe Wallace

The Daily Beast ran a fasciating little piece entitled, “How MySpace Blew It” with the accompanying AP photo of Rupert Murdoch, who can’t seem to get a break these days. That’s due in part because the old guard seems almost genetically inclined to get new media wrong even when they try to embrace it.

Remember when MySpace seemed unstoppable? That was, of course, before all those goofy ads of people on webcams with low-cut halter tops bending over suggestively and nonstop barrages of other intrusive ads. Once upon a time, a writer without MySpace was deemed to be hopelessly married to old-school PR.

Today, MySpace isn’t good for much unless you have a band, and some are questioning even that usefulness. Continue reading What Freelancers Can Learn From The Daily Beast

Sometimes, Less is More

writing adviceby Joe Wallace

Have you noticed a social media-driven trend in writing resumes and “about me” blurbs lately? Brevity has always been the soul of wit, but thanks to social media your resume and About Me blurbs need to get even wittier.

Cutting out the flab from a resume is nothing new. Strunk & White have been shouting the “Omit needless words” gospel from the rooftops for generations. But in an age where attention spans are so short that anything longer than 140 characters seems positively Joycean, short bursts of credibility are more important than being fun to read.

If you can’t tell what a person’s About Me is all about at a glance, the feature might be missing the mark. On my Twitter page, for example, I cut out all the fun stuff about being a snarky columnist and music photographer. Yes, I am those things. But I get right to the point now, saying basically, “Joe Wallace for hire. I write finance, medical, SEO and other high-value topics. I excel at quick turnaround projects with insane deadlines.”

And that’s pretty much it. I was sad to see the snarky fun go out of my About Me, but the value of being instantly attractive to a potential client shouldn’t be underestimated.

Writers: If You Want Work–Be Visible

I can’t even begin to tell you the number of times that somebody found me one way or another and then offered me a job. I can tell you that it pays off to invest some of your time and effort into marketing yourself as a writer. If you are visible, you will get work. The question is…how visible are you? Here are some smart ways to extend your reach and let people know you are out there:



  • Have a website. It doesn’t have to be an elaborate creature. Mine is fairly simple, but has enough for people to get an idea of what I have done and what I can do.
  • Start a blog. If you want to write on the web, a blog is great practice. I had never done one before Freelance-Zone and now that I have the hang of it, I really enjoy it. Just make sure you are aware that anyone can read what you put on there. Keep it professional.
  • Stay in touch. Yes, I send holiday cards. I e-mail editors and let them know what I’m up to–or just touch base and say hello from time to time. Staying on their radar means they won’t forget about you when work comes through. Plus, it’s nice.
  • Add a bio. Whenever possible, see if you can add a one-line bio to articles that you write. Include an e-mail or website where people can get in touch with you.
  • Use a signature block. I have said this before and I’ll say it again….the signature block is your best friend. All e-mail correspondence should have one. I have gotten a lot of additional work through this. It should at the very least include your full name, a telephone number and your website and e-mail address.
  • Use social media. Not on Twitter? Today is a good day to set up the account. Do you have a Facebook account? If not, perhaps it is time. Social media can really get your name out there and it is FREE. Take advantage!

Twitter Vs. Digg: Social Media Wars

freelance-writing-advice-3I’ve always been a bit of a come-lately when it comes to the latest fad in social media, but it’s clear even to me that Twitter is taking over. Recent developments including Dave Allen of Pampelmoose.com announcing his migration (more or less) from Facebook to Twitter and a series of articles about Twitter’s increasing dominance over Digg and other platforms has me convinced–Twitter is THE next big thing.

I had an interesting chat with someone behind the scenes in the pro web pages game who tells me that from his perspective, it’s best not to act like a corporate shill when using social media to promote yourself.

That is a total no-brainer to most of us, but Twitter levels the playing field by making it very obvious who the “real” users are and who the carnival barkers and ad men are. It’s tough to appear real when you’re limited to a couple of sentences to get your point across. If your only point is, “Buy my crap!” it starts becoming more apparent all the time…

I use Twitter to promote my blog at CheapToday.com and one of the most important things I do is avoid talking nonstop about it. I like to just contribute to the conversation, mention the new blog posts when they come up, and be a regular guy. The rest takes care of itself.

Look for Freelance-Zone.com to hit twitter with the freelance goodies soon…we’ll drop a line with our link when its ready.

Facebook Networking

I have to admit that my activity on Facebook was minimal until I started getting back in touch with all my old journalist friends from the Air Force TV News days…I find Facebook so much more relevant and interesting than MySpace, which really feels like a one-way radio by comparison. I’ve always been a bit of a come-lately with the latest social media apps, but Facebook’s power and fun can’t be denied.

My question–and feel free to chime in with a comment or three–is how many of you use Facebook for business MORE than you use it for fun? I’m decidedly playing catchup with both Facebook and Twitter, so I am curious to get a reading on what other freelancers are using these apps to get done. What’s your experience? Business or pleasure?