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Venting on Advertising Yourself as a "Cheap Writer"

Discussion in 'Copywriting' started by gbartlet, Jan 5, 2009.

  1. melovillareal

    melovillareal Peon

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    #41
    very well said shulace
    SEMrush
     
    melovillareal, Jan 13, 2009 IP
    SEMrush
  2. alexa_s

    alexa_s Peon

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    #42
    I hear you, I think. Most of my own writing isn't for the web, and to that extent I'm perhaps coming at it in a slightly different context from yours, but to me that sounds a little like "playing not to lose" rather than "playing to win", if you see what I mean?
     
    alexa_s, Jan 13, 2009 IP
  3. jhmattern

    jhmattern Illustrious Member

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    #43
    It seems logical, which is why so many do it. But it's bad business. That is not the only way they can market themselves--if they don't understand value versus cost, and learn to market effectively in the beginning, they'll increase their chances of failing in the long run. It's fine for hobby writers or those who don't care about making a long-term go of it. Anyone serious about a career in writing though will learn quickly that competition doesn't revolve solely around price. They'll develop a better usp or they'll forever just be a "cheap content writer" in the eyes of buyers. The reality is that you never have to undervalue your work, even in the beginning to get started, and if you're smart about marketing you won't even consider it.
     
    jhmattern, Jan 13, 2009 IP
  4. emasaa

    emasaa Peon

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    #44
    Maybe some of us "cheap writers" should learn from the oldest profession. Once they stay cheap, they not only stay cheap, but are chased away by cheaper.

    Get your own blog and stop working for peanuts. I can assure you that most offering you "cheap" payments are just article brokers. You are being pimped by selling yourself "cheap". Heck there are guys here who on one post are offering article writing services and on another are asking for "cheap writers".

    No right thinking webmaster would like to have his website looking like a "cheap" website. With "cheap" articles, meant to bring in "cheap" clientelle. However, this can be achieved by hiring a "cheap" writer.

    Sorry to dp for using such uncouth and "cheap" language.
     
    emasaa, Jan 13, 2009 IP
  5. LinkbuildingServices

    LinkbuildingServices Banned

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    #45
    Do the more expensive writers amongst you pick up much business on the DP forum? What do you call cheap these days? Just interested :)
     
    LinkbuildingServices, Jan 13, 2009 IP
  6. jhmattern

    jhmattern Illustrious Member

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    #46
    I can't speak for anyone else, but I still pick up quite a bit of business through DP, and my rates are nowhere near what you'll generally find advertised in the BST area. I just don't waste time posting a bunch of ads to bring in business, and the folks who hire me rarely do either. They find me here through my posts or through referrals, and they contact me privately.

    I think everyone's going to have different definitions of cheap. Normally when I use that term here I'm referring to the types of writers charging $.02 per word or less, but in a more general sense I'd consider anything lower than the $.10 - .20 per word range very low (I just don't see enough people here willing to advertise services publicly at those rates to really think about that group when I'm on DP).
     
    jhmattern, Jan 13, 2009 IP
  7. lightless

    lightless Notable Member

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    #47
    The definition changes from person to person. For me anything lower than 1 cent per word is cheap, no matter which country you live. If you live in a country with a proportionately higher cost of living, you'd have to charge much more than that. If you are a real full-time writer whose only/major source of income is writing, you should charge even more.

    But you are in the top half of the food chain and a specialist at that. If I was a start up/struggling writer, I would take your definitions of "cheap" and "very low" with some salt. ;)
     
    lightless, Jan 13, 2009 IP
  8. alexa_s

    alexa_s Peon

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    #48
    I'd be a bit careful with that part of the food-chain, if I were you: too much salt is bad for all of us and can cause hypertension. :eek:
     
    alexa_s, Jan 13, 2009 IP
  9. jhmattern

    jhmattern Illustrious Member

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    #49
    I'm actually nowhere near the "top half of the food chain" in the grand scheme of things. ;) But those who want to get closer to that point shouldn't waste time building the wrong image and doing it with the wrong market to begin with. I remember what it was like to be a starting Web writer. I remember undercharging (although never in the $5 - 10 per piece range). I also remember struggling to pay the bills when I first went out on my own, and feeling tempted to "take anything" for that start - the edge I had was the background in marketing and PR that taught me to be smarter than that and stay strong about the minimums I set for myself and the image I wanted to convey.

    Refusing to write for pennies per word, putting a lot of focus on my network early on, and learning how to target the right markets are the reasons I'm able to charge what I charge now, and that wouldn't have been possible had I started in the $.01 - .02 per word range. The longer people try to justify those kinds of rates to themselves, the longer they'll be writing for those markets rather than pursuing the "right" ones.
     
    jhmattern, Jan 13, 2009 IP
  10. mdvasanth86

    mdvasanth86 Notable Member

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    #50
    I don't see anything wrong in that....

    People generally will work for cheap initially to build a network, clientele, portfolio and so on...
    The term "cheap" is kinda tricky. It is cheap for the buyer and not for the service provider/writer in this case.

    It is a kind of marketing.. You know the importance of promotional advertising....
    Why do companies give freebies to customers????


    having said that, i do agree that there are some cheap writers writing cheap content and selling them for cheap rates. :)
     
    mdvasanth86, Jan 14, 2009 IP
  11. cd928

    cd928 Peon

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    #51
    I'll wait for yours as well. ;)
     
    cd928, Jan 14, 2009 IP
  12. alexa_s

    alexa_s Peon

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    #52
    There are, but I think most of them don't stay the course: a year or two later, they're mostly the ones doing something else instead, aren't they? There's a huge turnover of people trying with little if any lasting success and moving on to something different. But I suppose that's true of many other things, as well.
     
    alexa_s, Jan 14, 2009 IP
  13. lightless

    lightless Notable Member

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    #53
    Some will wear out, some will get frustrated and stop, some will find it isn't as easy as they thought it would be and a very small minority will adjust rates to become standard edition writers.

    But there will always be a new wave of people to replace those who fell out, and they will have no idea of what happened to their predecessors. History repeating itself again and again.
     
    lightless, Jan 14, 2009 IP
  14. MattSanti

    MattSanti Well-Known Member

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    #54
    I guess maybe the only appropriate time to work for cheap is when you are first starting out in a new field and are trying to get some clients under your belt and in exchange for some testimonials. But by providing quality writing, you should definitely demand higher pay for your services after having a few successful clients and getting yourself established.
     
    MattSanti, Jan 14, 2009 IP
  15. alexa_s

    alexa_s Peon

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    #55
    Exactly so. And I'm afraid this is also a more widely generalised feature of "making money" online.

    The same is true of many people joining some of the dreadful "business opportunities", many people trying affiliate marketing without knowing what they're doing, many people trying to use "funded proposals" to develop a "network marketing" business, and many of the other things people try in difficult circumstances as a way of making some money. The current global economic climate isn't going to do many favours in this regard, either. :(
     
    alexa_s, Jan 14, 2009 IP
  16. latoya

    latoya Active Member

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    #56
    Or there'll be those - like me - who get smart and charge more. If I could do it all over again, I would never have accepted low rates just to get started. I had a lot of skills that made me valuable, I just didn't know how to leverage them. I thought because I didn't have bylined clips that I couldn't command a higher rate - wrong. There were other ways, I just didn't know about them or was too afraid to try. I think there are quite a few "cheap" writers out there like that. But from what I've seen, the vast majority of cheap "writers" shouldn't be writing at all.
     
    latoya, Jan 14, 2009 IP
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  17. cd928

    cd928 Peon

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    #57
    A different thing happened to me. I have bylined clips (although some I'd be embarrassed to put into my portfolio lol) yet went with the low rates since I thought it was the going rates here. :D

    Learning how to sell yourself better makes the difference I think. :)

     
    cd928, Jan 14, 2009 IP
  18. jeewant_gupta_051275

    jeewant_gupta_051275 Well-Known Member

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    #58
    Well, this has been discussed here a number of times. Writing is definitely an art form, and if I were supposed to write at a buck per 500 words, I would rather sell the articles to AC! Every writer should know the value of his or her content and quote accordingly. Having said that, marketing your strengths rather than your price is the way to go, I suppose
    Regards,
    Jeewant
     
    jeewant_gupta_051275, Jan 15, 2009 IP
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  19. sarah_harvey

    sarah_harvey Active Member

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    #59
    Mmm.... you never know. You might find a diamond in the rough? ^__^ Here is a nice way of saying it-

    ~Cheaply-today-Expensive-tomorrow-You Choose! A service beyond delivering the fantastic at great prices~

    lol
     
    sarah_harvey, Jan 17, 2009 IP
  20. loudbeats

    loudbeats Active Member

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    #60
    Thanks for the -ve rep, and whoever did it can also elaborate on whatever uncivil in that post. Oh and if it was some moderator, I think you answered it for me. :p
     
    loudbeats, Jan 17, 2009 IP