Last Updated: Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Use This Website to Find Adjectives to Describe Things


I've discovered a wonderful web resource for us, freelance writers. It's a website called DescribingWords.io.



I've been writing about product descriptions lately, so adjectives are a must to add a little punch. And then I discovered this wonderful tool.

It's so easy to use. Just type any noun on the search field and hit enter. It will then generate a list of adjectives for that noun. You can also arrange the adjective list via popularity.

This is a great tool for freelance writers who have writing projects such as creative essays, fictions, and product descriptions.

Do you know any other tool that's similar to this? Please share your thoughts on the comment box!

Last Updated: Friday, March 10, 2017

How to Revive Your Dead Company Blog


At some point, there will come a time that you won't be able to update your company blog, or any type of blog that you have. Maybe because you have so much work to do, and you can't squeeze in your blogging tasks.

I started this blog on 2015, but I had only written a total of six posts during that year. It was basically a dead blog.

But updating your company blog regularly is really important as it helps you gather leads for your business, position yourself as an authority on your niche, or it serves as a medium to connect with your target audience.

If you want to revive your dead company blog, the solution is simple. Start writing again!

Here are some points you need to consider when reviving your company blog:

Determine how many blog posts you want to write per month.


Most often, your blog ends up neglected because you don't have a goal in mind such as the number of blog posts you want to write and publish per month.

To start, you can publish one post per week, a total of four posts every month. Or if your company now has enough people to help you in your blogging tasks, you can increase the frequency, say two posts per week.

Create an editorial calendar.


Before, I frequently missed being able to craft a new blog post because I already ran out of ideas. But when I started to create an editorial calendar, and plan out what topics should I write for the month, it helped me to stick to my blogging goals. With an editorial calendar, I am now able to write the number of posts I want to publish every month.

To create an editorial calendar, allot a day or two and research for possible topics you want to write for your blog.

Check out the latest blogging trends.


If you have stopped blogging for your company blog a long time ago, chances are, your blogging style too is out of trend.

You may be using the old school blogging tricks such as keyword stuffing, too short posts, cheesy and unclassy stock photos, and so on.

For the latest blogging trends, frequently check out ProBlogger. Every month, they publish a reading roundup called "What's New in Blogging Lately?"

Check out your competitor blogs.


For you to have more grasp on what's the hottest topics in your industry, check out your competitor blogs too.

Start creating blog posts which are of similar topic. If the post worked well for your competitor, then it's also likely that it will work out well for your blog too.

Hire a freelance writer to update your company blog.


Most company blogs become dead because they don't have anyone who can be held responsible for updating the company's blog, or there aren't any sufficient employees who can write a blog.

To prevent your company blog from dying again, hire a freelance writer to help you with the extra blogging work.

Contact Lem Enrile, a freelance writer for hire, through this email address: ranxlem@gmail.com.

Last Updated: Thursday, March 2, 2017

Why Sam Hurley Is My Favorite Digital Marketer


Who is your favorite digital marketer? Is it Neil Patel? Jeff Bullas? Rand Fishkin? Or Larry Kim? They are my favorites too! Until I was able to know the name Sam Hurley.

I accidentally "discovered" him when I was following random people on Twitter. I stalked his Twitter profile because of his cool emojis on his name, and he always appears on my feed.


Some of you may not know him because he seriously doesn't have a website with a large following. (His website is still on the "Coming Soon" status.)

I was only able to know Neil Patel and the others because their articles always appear on the search engine's first page results.

But Sam Hurley? Never.

However, I got curious when Sam Hurley was included in Onalytica's top digital marketer's list despite him not having an active website. It's actually kind of odd.


In fact, Sam Hurley is second to Jeff Bullas in Onalytica's Digital Marketing 2016 Top 100 Influencers and Brands.

After several days of stalking visiting his Twitter profile, I now know the reasons why. Today, he is my favorite digital marketer because of the following:

1. Despite making it big in the digital marketing scene, Sam Hurley does not ignore his followers.

If you will comment on his Twitter posts, Sam never fails to press that heart button, or reply to any of your questions. If he ever missed one, he will post a shout-out on his profile apologizing for unreplied comments or questions.

Compared to other digital marketing influencers, Sam still takes time to talk with his followers. And for me, that's very rare.

2. Sam Hurley values relationships even from "small" people.

Let's be honest with each other. You feature or mention the names of influencers in your articles because you are hoping that they will share your articles in their social media accounts with thousands of followers, right?

But these days, even if you feature or mention the names of influencers, they wouldn't even bat an eye to your article, maybe because they're busy, or they know that you want to get advantage of their large following for your own motives.

But Sam Hurley does not think that way. He often shares articles where he's featured at, even if you're a nobody trying to reach out to him for the first time. He even shares your featured post about him several times using Buffer because he believes that the top strategy for success is building relationships.



Now, I'm not trying to write this article for Sam to share this. (I'll not even share this on Twitter, nor inform him that I featured him on this post.)

It's just that he has an awesome way of connecting with people, and I now look up to him because of that.

I hope that more people will follow suit to Sam's strategy towards success, and that is focusing on building genuine relationships, not for traffic, not for getting some link juice or such, but the heart to really connect and help people.

Last Updated: Tuesday, February 28, 2017

How to Easily Find Out Your Social Media Account's Best Posting Times


A lot of experts have shared the ideal or best posting times in every social media platform such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. 

However, they have also advised that you should look into the analytics of your social media pages to determine what times are really working for you. But this seems rather too technical, especially for those who are not used to deciphering the analytics of their social media accounts.

To make it easier for you, you can use Buffer to help you determine your best posting times. It is actually a social media scheduling tool that allows you to schedule posts ahead of time.

But it also has a built-in Optimal Timing Tool that calculates the best posting times for your social media profile.

To easily find out your social media account's best posting times, do the following steps:

1. Sign up in Buffer.

2. Connect your social media accounts such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Buffer lets you connect 1 account for each type of social media platform. But if you want several profiles connected, you have to avail their premium.

3. For each type of platform, schedule several posts in the morning, afternoon and evening. Or you can schedule posts that are 1 hour or 2 hours apart every day (Monday - Sunday).

This test post is necessary so that you'll be able to discover the best posting times for each day using Buffer's Optimal Timing Tool.

4. Once you have finished the week-long test post, click the "Schedule" tab, and click the "Try our Optimal Timing Tool."


5. Buffer will then prompt you to choose how many times you want to post each day. Then click "Calculate times."


6. Once you clicked "Calculate times," Buffer will show you your optimal schedule, or your best posting times.



If you use Buffer's Optimal Timing Tool, there's no need to go through deciphering your social media profile's analytics just to determine your best posting times.

Last Updated: Monday, February 27, 2017

You Are Doing SEO. You Just Don't Realize It.

seo techniques

Oftentimes, I see people hating SEO, saying that it is insignificant, and it is nothing more than a keyword-stuffed content. True. However, that is already old school. If you happen to see anyone doing that, then they are stuck from the past.

If you are one of the uninformed or misinformed SEO haters, SEO techniques don't only encompass the inclusion of your targeted keywords within your content. It is actually more than that.

And most likely, the SEO haters from all across the globe are doing SEO themselves without even realizing it. Are you one of those SEO haters who are doing the following SEO techniques?


  • Updating, upgrading and republishing of old blog posts
  • Fixing broken links in your website
  • Adding meta title, meta description and meta tags
  • Adding alt tags to images
  • Including internal and external links within your content
  • Including relevant keywords in your content 
  • Doing email outreach
  • Using YouTube and writing short descriptions about your videos
  • Publishing longer forms of content
  • Writing expert roundups
  • Blog commenting
  • Guest posting
  • Forum link building
  • Submission of website to directories
  • Creating search engine friendly permalinks


And many, many more.

So don't you say SEO means nothing if you are doing the above SEO techniques, because keyword-stuffed content is not the definition of SEO.

Last Updated: Friday, February 24, 2017

Why I Stopped Chasing Influencers


I used to chase influencers, especially in the digital marketing niche. I always commented on their blogs. Stalked their social media accounts. Shared their new posts... Any activity that would make them remember me.

Like you, I know how important it is to acquaint yourself with influencers. If you managed to be "friends" with them, you'll be able to guest post on their sites, leech on their own popularity, boost your own website's ranking, and you can even end up landing new clients.

Then a thought struck  me. Why was I doing all of these? Was it really worth my time trying to be friends with them? Did I really intend to get freelance writing clients through them? I realized that it wasn't really.

I've been chasing influencers for months... maybe a year... and it didn't bring me any value actually. Why would I try to please them if there are too many people wanting their attention. It's like making a celebrity notice and love you, when in fact you only have one in a million chance.

Influencers know your motives of wanting to be friends with them, so most influencers today do not actually interact with their followers at all.

Do they reply to your blog comments? Do they thank you for sharing their post? Do they answer your emails? Most influencers don't because they are too busy.

So I realized that instead of chasing them, I now focused more on emailing potential clients. And guess what? That has given me more results than chasing influencers.


Do you still chase influencers up to this day? Does it give you any results?

Last Updated: Saturday, February 18, 2017

The Quick Guide for Filipinos: How to Start Your Freelance Writing Career from Scratch


When I started out my freelance writing career, I learned everything by my own. Way back in 2012, I didn't even know that online writing jobs existed.

I quit my job as a nurse, and enrolled in a language center to study the Japanese language, so that I may be able to apply as a nurse in Japan, my favorite country next to my homeland.

However, I was getting impatient. The language class would never start until there were enough people enrolled. I was unemployed for several months. Unemployed and getting older. I was already 22 years old back then.

Out of the blue, I thought that maybe, there were online writing jobs. I googled it, and I was right. There were only a few guides about freelance writing on the internet, and I was at a loss.

I think I was able to fully set up what I need to start writing for the web within 4 months. From getting a bank account to applying to online writing jobs.

It took me months before I could start because I was not that much acquainted with the web. I only use the internet for researching and copying homework from Wikipedia when I was a college student.

But today, you can easily start your freelance writing career since there are a lot of online guides.

When I started my freelance writing career, these were the steps that I took:

1. Get an RCBC Visa card.

2. Create a Paypal account.

3. Link RCBC Visa to Paypal.

4. Prepare a resume.

5. Apply to online writing jobs.

6. Send a school-type essay and a poem as a writing sample.

Now, if you follow what I previously did, you're off to a very rocky start, and would have minimal chances of landing clients.

As I learned freelance writing on my own, I realized that I should have taken this approach instead right from the start:

1. Get a Visa card such as Unionbank EON.

Instead of RCBC or any other Visa cards, get this one instead. When you link your EON card to Paypal, you'll only have to pay a 50-peso fee for every money withdrawn that is less than 7,000 pesos. Also, the money would be reflected in your EON account within 2 business days.

Compared to RCBC, it will charge you 150 pesos as withdrawal fee, and the money would be reflected within 7-14 days. Plus, it has the possibility that your money would not reflect in your account at all.

It happened to me. I withdrew money from Paypal, but it didn't reflect in my RCBC card. I called and email Paypal several times, and visited the bank back and forth for almost 2 months. Nothing happened. I didn't get my hard-earned money.

2. Create a Paypal account.

Set up a personal Paypal account. It's easy. Just follow Paypal's instructions.

3. Link Unionbank EON card to Paypal.

It's easier to link your Visa card nowadays. Before, you have to email your bank first to get the activation code for Paypal, and their reply would take about 1-2 weeks.

But today, you'll only have to look at your bank statement online to get the code. Once you get the code, it will be activated within 24 hours.

Again, it's easy to link your EON card to Paypal. Just follow Paypal's on-screen instructions.

4. Create three or more writing samples, and they should be published online with your name or byline.

Instead of busying yourself perfecting your resume, do this first. Most clients today don't care about your resume. What's more important to them is to see how you write.

But don't just write any personal essay and poem just like what I did. Your writing samples should be in the form of web content or blogs.

If you want to write about pets, look for pet websites that are accepting guest posts. Remember, your writing samples should be published online with your name or byline.

Most clients today are looking for published writing samples, and sometimes, they don't want you sending them Word documents or PDF files because they are being careful on downloading any attachments. Or maybe they are thinking that you just grabbed any article on the web, saved it in a Word document, and claimed it as yours.

But with writing samples published online with your byline, it proves that you are really its author. Also, it portrays an impression that you are really fit for writing for the web, since other website owners approved your writing or guest posts.

5. Create a presence online through having a freelance writing website and social media profiles.

Despite starting my freelance writing career in 2012, it was only in 2015 that I decided to put up this freelance writing website.

I just noticed that whenever I reach out to new prospects, more and more clients want to see your personal website. It became a requirement to most clients.

Also, clients today want to see your social media profiles for authenticity checks, or they simply want to hire a freelance writer with some online influence.

You see, with so many freelance writers today, your online presence also counts. There are several writers who write well, but they end up not landing the job because they don't have any online presence.

Clients today just don't want you to write; they also want you to share your written articles for them in your social media profiles for a higher reach.

6. Prepare a cover letter and resume.

Just highlight any important information that would be relevant to your application. Say, if you are applying to be a pet blogger, include in your cover letter and resume your interests about pets.

Make it short. 1-2 pages is already enough.

7. Start sending applications.

If you are a part of Filipino freelancing communities, "experts" would often advice you to look for jobs at Upwork or Freelancer.com. However, I think that these places are not the best places to look for freelance writing jobs, since most clients there are only willing to pay $2-$5 per 500-words. But they are great platforms for those who are looking for homebased call center jobs and virtual assistant jobs.

Visit Elna Cain's blog to learn where to find better paying clients.


Conclusion

Some freelance writing experts will tell you that you should just take action and search for clients; that it is only okay to send them whatever writing samples you have such as an essay or reflection paper you have written during your university days. However, with a lot of freelance writers on the rise, samples like these just won't make the cut. There are a lot of freelance writers who prepared writing samples that are truly relevant to their target niche.

For example, you really want to write for a particular website, but you screwed up because you sent your not-so relevant writing sample. Sure, you could try again if the client allows you so. However, there are some clients who will say straight at your face not to ever apply again.

Hence, I would suggest to really prepare your published writing samples first, before you start sending applications.