Professional freelance writing starts with creating an effective portfolio.
New writers rely only on their communication skill. They believe this skill will help them establish contacts with customers and to get some orders. They have nothing to show their clients, so basically they offer a pig in a poke.
Professionals act differently. They already have an experience in working with different types of texts and can demonstrate customers their achievement.
However, even professional writers sometimes do not know how to create a portfolio that will attract more clients and bring more orders.
Here, we provide you with a step-by-step guide on building an effective portfolio of a freelance writer.
1. Determine the Goals of Your Portfolio
It seems that all freelance writers have the same goals for their portfolios.
In fact, these goals are different. Your portfolio may stick to the following objectives: attracting more clients, growing revenue, sales enhancement, or even advertisement of your writer’s personal style and approach to creating texts.
2. Select Content
When you have determined your goals, you may start to select the most effective pieces to content to add to your portfolio. It is better to choose already published materials.
Of course, for the more efficient portfolio, you should select articles appeared on high-rated websites (if you are an online writer), magazines and journals, or publishers with your personal records. You always should have proof that you have written this article.
You should include at least several links or pieces of content in your portfolio. Create a spreadsheet of your works: add articles written in different styles (unless you promote your own recognizable style), various approaches to building texts, range your works according to the types of writing you have previously worked with.
For example, you can add the following piece of content to your portfolio:
- Blog posts (especially effective for bloggers and SMM writers)
- Newsletters, press releases, promo materials (for marketing writers and copywriters)
- Essays (for academic writers)
- Reports, interviews, short notes (for reporters and journalists)
- Storytelling, naming, brand strategies (for copywriters)
The main requirement for content is high quality and lack of mistakes. Besides, content should reflect your abilities and follow previously settled goals.
If you are a marketing copywriter who works by creating names for brands, advertising ideas, and logos for new companies, you have no need to include essays into your portfolio.
Academic writers do not need to add creative writing pieces to their portfolio as that does not reflect their professionalism in their sphere.
Develop a catalog if you have more than 10 pieces of content to include in your portfolio. This will help your clients navigate quicker and find relevant content.
3. Add a Biography Page
Your clients look for a professional who can create effective texts. But they also look for a person with whom they will find a common language. Relations between writer and client are critical: if there are no communication and understanding, no one will be satisfied with the results.
This creates a necessity to add at least basic information about yourself.
To make this bio page effective, add the following information:
- Your pen name
- Your field of writing (journalist, academic writer, etc.)
- Your main achievements
- Links to your profiles
- Brief experience review
4. Choose a Platform for Your Portfolio
Your clients should have quick access to your portfolio. Instead of sending various links to different websites or doc. files attached to your email, you should choose a special platform. In this way, you will develop your authority as a professional writer and will be able to create your own website over time.
Quietly is one of the most popular platforms for freelance writers who want to enhance their portfolios. Here, you can regularly update content, download different pieces of writing and add your bio page with a photo. Moreover, here you can also find some orders, as this is a platform for hiring professional
Contently has several advanced features that enhance your portfolio and help track your development as a freelance writer. Besides, here you can also join a team of freelance writers and get orders according to your experience and preferences.
Being created as a platform for journalists, today it attracts the attention of all writers. Journo Portfolio incorporated the most important traces of an effective portfolio platform: free access, custom domain, a variety of themes and customization options, possibility to upload files, bio page, direct publishing of posts, privacy options for portfolios, Google Analytics to track the effectiveness of your portfolio.
5. Remember Things to Avoid
These four basic steps lose their effectiveness if you avoid the following three tips:
- You have grammar or spelling mistakes in your portfolio
- You do not update your content
- You add irrelevant materials
- You steal content
- You do not communicate with your clients
Becoming a professional freelance writer is a long journey. However, you should always remember that the obstacles you meet on your way to success, enhance the quality of your work. If you have already reached the desired results, you probably think that the time to stop growing has come.
Perhaps, you already have several permanent clients and think that you no longer need an effective portfolio. Always remember that customers come and go, but your reputation remains.
Your portfolio is a representation of your achievements. And you should always work on improving your portfolio and making yourself a well-known writer with a crystal clear reputation of a professional.