Blog for Money: The Genius Pitch That Got One Writer $500 Per Post

Blog for Money Like a Genius. Makealivingwriting.comWondering how to blog for money and make a living writing?

Maybe you’re pitching businesses and magazines to blog for money, but you never hear back.

Or maybe your pitch to blog for money is good enough to get a response, but you keep getting rejected.

Been there, done that? It’s happened to me a lot.

The catastrophic-thinking part of your brain tries to tell you: “There’s no way in a million years they’re going to hire you. Don’t even bother trying.”

But the truth is, if you do your part to craft a well-written pitch to a prospect, that’s almost never the case.

Don’t give up that easy. You’re smarter than that. That prospect could be your next freelance writing client worth thousands of dollars.

Before you totally write off a prospect that rejected your pitch to blog for money, or gave you the “not-now-maybe-later” answer, take a minute to try and understand why. Follow up. Ask a few more questions.

Here’s how I turned a not-so-sure-prospect into a gig that pays $500 per blog post.

Show prospects your value to blog for money

Are you running into objection after objection when you pitch companies on freelance services? Changing their minds might be easier than you think.

Freelancers are great assets to businesses, but sometimes, they don’t see that right away. Especially if they haven’t worked with someone remotely or on a freelance basis.

The good news?

If you know how to approach these clients, the results can pay off, big time. Here’s how:

Identify a potential client

When you’re first starting out as a freelance writer, expect to spend most of your time identifying potential clients in your niche.

You’ll study their site, business, and content marketing materials, and then write a pitch to blog for money or other writing services.

  • Get a client on your radar. When I first came across the company that pays me $500 per post, I didn’t think it was a match. The company was local, and I figured they’d try and rope me into a work in-house arrangement. But months later, a connection I had who worked with this company told me the employee who wrote blog content was leaving.

Write a pitch, see what happens

Once I found out about this gap in the company, I knew it was the perfect time to pitch. So I asked my connection who I should reach out to. Then, I sent a super-simple email (or letter of introduction) to the director of human resources:

Hi (name), 

I hope you’re having a great week! Briefly, I’m reaching out because (my contact’s name) mentioned that (company name) is looking for help with blog posts. I’m a freelance technology copywriter with experience creating content for companies like (company name). 

You can find me on Linkedin: (link)

And check out my portfolio here: (link) 

I’d love to discuss what your current needs are and how I can help. Would you like to book a quick call to chat about this? 

Best,

Alyssa

Beat rejection with a phone call

From there, the director of human resources and I got on a quick call. This part was a little bit tricky to navigate. Understandably, I could already hear some “employee” language coming from this potential client.

Wait for it…catastrophic thinking and a big rejection. But that didn’t happen.

However, they were straightforward with me. They said that they understood my work style, but they hadn’t worked with freelancers before. Then came the question that I was dreading:

  • Would you be willing to come in for an in-person meeting with our CEO?

I was hesitant, but I agreed to attend an in-person meeting as a courtesy, as long as everyone was aware that I was a freelancer and I work remotely.

Be prepared to close the deal

Now, it was time to prepare for the most important part of this process, the in-person meeting. I did in-depth research on the company’s blog strategy before this meeting. To do this, I took several factors into consideration including things like:

  • Blog post schedule
  • Post quality
  • Length of blog posts
  • SEO optimization

The in-person meeting: Less than a week after the initial pitch, I was in their office for an in-person meeting. Honestly, I was nervous. But quickly found that the meeting was very similar to the discovery calls I typically have with clients. The company just wanted to share what they were looking for and hear how I could help, which included:

  • Speak content marketing. Fortunately, I was prepared. I walked them through what was good and bad about their current strategy, and how I could improve it.
  • Demonstrate value. Before the meeting even came to a close, they were writing down their own notes on my recommendations. On the way out, we agreed that I would send them a proposal.
  • Send a proposal. Later that day, that’s exactly what I did, even though rejection was still on my mind.

The results: Get paid to blog for money

Once I sent the proposal with all the details, the company signed a contract the same day. They mailed a check to get started. And all those worries about getting rejected kind of floated away. The whole process was not as daunting as it once seemed.

4 smart steps to land great clients

If you want to land great freelance clients, expect rejection to be a regular part of the gig. It happens. But it doesn’t have to prevent you from being able to make a living writing. Here are four smart ways to turn prospects into clients:

  1. Keep track of leads. Sometimes, a company or publication will pop up on your radar that you’d love to work with, but the timing isn’t right. Keep track of those leads! I got this gig because I was able to “strike when the iron was hot.” I popped into their inbox immediately, once I knew they had a need for my services.
  2. Do your research. This is key for any pitch you send. That said, it’s even more critical when you know that your potential client has objections about working with freelancers or why they reject some pitches but accept others. You have to show these potential clients that you understand their business as much, if not more, than anyone they could hire to work in-house.
  3. Stick to your policies. One of the biggest perks of being a freelance writer is that you get to complete work on your terms. However, you have to be confident in your terms and policies to make that a reality. If you waver on this, you’re going to lose credibility with potential clients, and enter working agreements you don’t like. Be the confident, awesome, business owner you are, and stand your ground when clients try to negotiate on terms where you’re not willing to budge.
  4. Know the value of what you do. If you want a client on your roster who hasn’t worked with freelancers or has a reputation for rejections, be prepared to explain why you operate the way you do and how it’s beneficial to everyone. I was asked about working in-house and about how I price my services several times. To get this blogging gig, I did have to do a little bit of educating on why freelancers are great assets.

Bottom line: Keep pitching until you’re fully booked

Sometimes you’ll pitch a prospect that never responds. Some of your pitches will get rejected. And sometimes a prospect you’d like to blog for seems like an impossible dream. But it’s not. If you can present yourself as the freelance writer in your niche and navigate their questions, you can blog for money and make a living writing.

Need help with your pitch writing skills? Let’s discuss in the comments below.

Alyssa Goulet is a full-time freelance technology copywriter. You can connect with her on Twitter @alyssagwrites.

Join my freelance writer community: Freelance Writers Den

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19 comments on “Blog for Money: The Genius Pitch That Got One Writer $500 Per Post
  1. James says:

    This Article rocks Carol!
    Being new to the digital marketing scene, article’s like this are pure educations, thanks again!.

  2. Luke says:

    Great Article Carol!
    As a new comer who’s just started a digital marketing agency, article’s like this are great educations and lessons.

  3. Karon O'Connor says:

    This is a really good read. I’ve always been interested in blogging, especially about motherhood, physical fitness, and ironically, food! Definitely going to be looking further into this!

  4. Ivan Boychuk says:

    Thanks Carol! As a freelance copywriter, I’m always on the lookout for my “next big project” and I found this to be a very helpful post!

  5. Anthony Nebel says:

    I’m still looking for my first client cold-pitching and networking with people in my area! It’s really hard with the amount of overwhelming information on what to do and countless rejections that sometimes I can really feel the grind.

  6. Mesa says:

    Hey Carol,

    I know you don’t address it here, but can you tell me how YOU keep focused?

    I try blog writing and I’m good for a few days. Then I procrastinate – and then it never gets done again.

    -Mesa

    • Carol Tice says:

      Mesa, this isn’t my post — but staying focused isn’t a problem for me. I’m super-passionate about helping writers, and 1000 posts in, I still have lists and lists of posts I want to do. Just added a couple new entries to my wish list of posts today! Many people start a blog without a focus or an intended audience, and don’t really know what they want to write about… and then it sputters and dies out.

      What IS a problem for me, Mesa, is people who comment on my posts only so they can stuff a link to their pool-cleaning service, or other totally unrelated thing to freelance writing. Luckily, I solve that problem by deleting the links all of those people leave me.

      I figure if you’re posting because you actually are interested in freelance writing, you’ll be back, because stuffing a link wasn’t the reason you were posting. If this is just an SEO play for you, then best of luck stuffing that link on other sites. We don’t play that.

  7. Anthony Taylor says:

    Awesome article. Very inspiring. I do agree that most of us things are impossible sometimes but we really need to keep working towards our dreams. You are the living proof that there is more potential than we think to make money with blogging. It’s truly good to see that’s it’s all possible. Bless you.

  8. Ryan Colbert says:

    This is great. One of the ways I like to get people talking is by asking them what goals their content seeks to achieve, and IF they are currently meeting those objectives.

    I then give away a couple of little nuggets to show them that I am knowledgable in my field and can definitely give value.

    thanks for the post!

  9. Nate says:

    This is a great reminder of how we can always find different ways to generate more income. We just need to do the work and put in the effort!

  10. Sanjay says:

    Blogging is undoubtedly the best way to create an income source. But one have to learn the basics of marketing so that they don’t miss any potential lead.

  11. Molly S says:

    I don’t think that this is a helpful article. The writer knew someone at the company, and so had an “in”, and got the inside scoop that that their writer was leaving. That’s two giant advantages.
    While I’m not saying that this was a “done deal”, this particular writer had an advantage that rarely happens.
    Most of us have to do cold-call pitching.

    • Alyssa says:

      Hi Molly,

      There are a lot of ways that freelancers can find an “in”, this is just the one that worked in this case. I do a lot of cold outreach as well, so I get where you’re coming from. That said, networking and building “warm” connections is key with companies that are reluctant to work with freelancers.

      • Molly S says:

        Hi Alyssa,

        Yes, I agree that networking is key – and that’s the message of this article. This isn’t a genius or helpful pitch at all. Having a great network of friends and professional alliances who can get you introductions to the powers that hire is the genius move.

        I worked as a fulltime editor for a print magazine 20 years ago and the Editor in Chief is still there. She contacted me last year when one editor was on a medical leave and asked me if I was interested in writing a couple of articles. I said “yes” and she told me whom to contact and I got the assignments. I’d never tell people that I have a genius pitch to share, I don’t. I had a great connection, and the lesson here is don’t burn bridges, stay in touch with connections, even if it’s only a Happy Holidays card, or complimenting their new puppy on Facebook.
        My “genius” move was doing good work when I was full time, and letting the Editor in Chief know I’m still around because we stay in touch on social media due to our love of kitties.

    • Carol Tice says:

      Don’t know if I agree on that…we’re all capable of networking and hearing about things.

      That’s how I got my blog gig at Entrepreneur. I was writing for one editor, chatted her up, and learned they were firing the editor who was doing their blog, and were looking to outsource it, next editor didn’t want to do it.

      We should all have our ear to the ground!

  12. Gina Crisci says:

    Hi Alyssa,

    I’m a freelance copywriter who would LOVE to write website content or blog posts for specialty food companies, but I haven’t had any success with getting responses from them.

    I think my approach must be way off base, but I’m not sure what else to try.

    Any suggestions would be a huge help.

    Thanks,
    Gina Crisci

    • Alyssa says:

      Hi Gina,

      Are you approaching them via email? My first suggestion would be to track whether on not your emails are getting opened. There are several free tools you can use for this.

    • Molly S says:

      Gina,

      I would start with your local vendors. Walk into your neighborhood bakers, pastry shops, butchers, fish stores and tell them you’d like to write them up, interview them, watch them bake, etc etc, and then pitch some local blogs or newspapers with your story ideas.