This is the last post in a 3-part series dealing with alternative ways of making a living through writing. It is a guest post by Alina Bragina, who shares her experience as a technical writer at Amasty. Alina is a keen online shopper who loves to try out new solutions. She believes self-enhancement and spot-on goal-setting contribute to any project’s success. Being a regular buyer at numerous online stores, she loves to work the fine line between customer needs and merchant interests.
How To Make Something You Like Work For You: A Career In Writing
Do you like writing? Of course, you do! So, why not to change your hobby into a profession?
Oh, you don’t know where to start? Alright then, let’s get started together. I’ll share with you my personal experience working as a technical writer for a technology company and maybe you will get enough inspiration to help you along your journey.
Do I Need a Strategy, First?
A strategy does help. You can look at your writing career as building a content marketing strategy. Although you are not actually going to create a marketing campaign for a company, you are making something great for your professional career as a writer! The technical term for your strategy is, “individual content marketing strategy.”
What is an individual content marketing strategy?
Once you have decided to make a living writing, you need to think of ways of achieving this. This is where an individual content marketing strategy comes into play. Content marketing is the process of creating, publishing, and distributing content with the aim of attracting your targeted audience, boost traffic to your website, and make users aware of your brand. Does all this sound like you need to do as a writer? You bet!
Here are four scenarios for your possible strategy. You can:
- take up a position at a well-known company;
- work as a freelancer;
- run your own blog;
- write it for fun in a form of a live journal.
How do you choose? Well, it really all depends on what you enjoy doing the most and to your life situation. As for me, I decided to go with the first option and become an in-service writer for a technology company.
Becoming an in-service writer for a technology company
Taking a position at a company as an in-service writer sounded like an insurmountable objective. So, I broke down each of the main stages of my preparation into mini-tasks and set distinct deadlines for each of them. I ended up with the following tasks:
- I learned the ‘motto’ of the company, the service or products it offers and its targeted customers.
- Part of my job would be writing technical texts in the Information Technology (IT) area. So, I needed to delve deeper into IT and to consult several freelance resources. I started out by helping out on a start-up project and making a script of a video conference in IT.
- I prepared a complete portfolio consisting of a short biography, professional achievements, certificates, and screenshots of my published works.
- I created accounts on social media networks for professional needs, like LinkedIn. Also, I subscribed to the profiles of those companies I wanted to work for and found workers there. I asked them to share their experience and got some great advice from them.
- I stayed social by posting my articles on several top-rated resources to make my name recognizable.
- I did it all with love.
How to hammer your writing skills away?
In my case, I needed to find out what tools were used by my future colleagues. For instance, what blog platforms are in-demand (e,g, WordPress); what SEO tools they use for key search (e.g.: Ahrefs); what fragmented knowledge system they use to find relevant terms, etc.
I tried to walk in my future readers’ shoes and discover their intents and needs. To do this, I had to choose a content type that was appreciated by them: short texts, complete guides, bullets, infographics, videos, presentations, media galleries, etc.
Finally, I practiced writing in what was a new area for me. I had to write in the way users wanted me to. I also made sure my texts were friendly for both users and search engines using up-to-date SEO data.
The bottom line
Decide on your professional goal and divide this arguably huge task into smaller steps to see if your strategy works correctly. Congratulate yourself for each subtask completed in time. Keep a close watch on the latest tendencies in content marketing and implement new solutions to the texts you write. Have your finger on the pulse and, last but not least, don’t give up!
Thanks to Alina for this information. And thanks for sharing this informative series Nicholas. 🙂
Thank you, D 🙂