Last Updated: Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Don't Start a Business Blog If...


There are a lot of reasons why you should have a business blog, and among these reasons are:

- boosting your website's visibility,
- helping your biz generate more leads,
- and making consumers trust your brand.

However, I suggest you NOT to start a business blog if:

- You (or anyone) don't have the time to commit writing regular posts.

A lot of business blogs become dead mainly because no one has the time to blog for it. If you yourself do not have the time to blog, or if you refuse to hire a web content writer, simply telling your staff that they're free to write anything on the company blog will mostly result to no one writing.

Your social media manager won't blog. Same goes for your graphic designer, customer support, web developer, etc. Because hey, no one wants to add another task on their plate especially if it's already full. And it's not within the job description of your staff to blog and do so.

If your target customers see that your blog is not updated, they might think that your company has already closed its doors and not doing business anymore. But in reality, it is not. So you're better off not starting a business blog.

- You just want to do it because everyone else has it.

I often see several company websites with a "Blog" navigation menu, but there's nothing in it. If you just included a Blog navigation menu just because everyone has it, but you really don't plan putting something in there, then you'd better remove it.

No one is forcing you to put up a Blog section for your company website, so you don't have to feel guilty if you don't have one.

- You only plan to steal other people's posts.

Some small business owners think that the solution for having regular posts even without hiring a web content writer is to copy other people's posts and just credit the owner.

But it's not really a magnificent solution. It's a form of stealing. If you steal other people's work, then how will your target customers ever trust you?


Starting a business blog might be tempting, but if you really don't have a well-thought plan, your company blog can make or break your biz. So don't start if you're not really sure about it.

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.

Last Updated: Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Short or Long Blog Posts: Does Length Matter?


I can't remember which websites or blogs, but I have read that longer posts tend to do well. Gone are the days where 400-500 word posts were in demand.

Whenever I'm looking for freelance writing jobs, most clients now want posts that are between 1500-2500 words long, or even higher. Perhaps they already realized that longer (and quality) posts are ranked higher in the SERPS.

However, I think that length only matters if your "purpose" is to become more visible in the search engines.

If your purpose is to only create interesting and shareable content that has a high possibility of going "viral," then even short posts would do. Examples are:

- News and entertainment websites that mostly write listicle articles with very few descriptions for each item such as Buzzfeed

- Recipe websites such as Delish

- Or even the blog of Seth Godin, the founder and CEO of Yoyodyne

Despite only having short posts, they still garner several likes, shares and engagement from their target readers.


Does length matter in blog posts? What are your thoughts about this?

Last Updated: Tuesday, January 24, 2017

What Do I Need to Learn to Become an SEO Freelance Writer?

seo freelance writer


As you are browsing the freelance writing job boards, I am quite sure that you have stumbled upon several ads like these:

“SEO freelance writer needed”

“Wanted: Writer who knows about SEO”

If you are just starting out your freelance writing career, you may not know what SEO is. 

To give you a glimpse on SEO, it stands for search engine optimization wherein different techniques are used to boost a website’s ranking on search engines such as Google, Yahoo, and Bing. And one of the most effective and most commonly used techniques to improve a website’s ranking is through writing optimized or SEO content.

Though SEO rather sounds too technical, anyone could be an SEO freelance writer as long as you possess great writing skills because writing SEO content could be easily learned. 

If you are wondering what SEO content is, it is just like writing ordinary content, but you’ll need to make it a lot friendlier not only to your readers, but also to the web, through following some special writing techniques.

So, in this post, I will show you some of the most important things that you need to learn to jumpstart your SEO writing career.

Familiarize yourself with SEO jargons.


To become an SEO freelance writer, you need to familiarize yourself with the common terminologies to better understand your client’s instructions. To help you out, I have listed some of the basic SEO jargons that you will frequently encounter:

Keyword – an SEO jargon for word or string of words

Primary keyword – the most important keyword; also known as main keyword, root keyword or focus keyword

Secondary keywords – act as supporting keywords for the primary keyword; words that are relevant with the primary keyword.

Example:
Primary keyword - freelance writing
Secondary keywords - content writing, web content writing, blogging

Long tail keywords – keywords that are longer and more specific; usually 3-5 plus words long

Examples:
what is freelance writing
definition of freelance writing

Keyword density – the number of times a keyword has to appear on your content

Keyword placement – location of keywords

Keyword research – finding the actual search terms that people type on their search engines; keywords researched are then used to optimize content

Permalink – link or URL of the web page

Meta title – the title of the web page that appears on search engine results; ideal character count is between 50-60 characters

Meta description – the summary description of the web page that appears on search engine results; ideal character count is between 150-160 characters

Meta tags – the keywords that describe your web page; meta tags are usually your primary keyword and their equivalent synonymous terms

Example:
Primary keyword - dog training
Meta tags - dog training, how to train dogs, training dogs

Understand keyword density (but don’t think too much about it).


Back in the early 2000’s, keyword density is what matters most for the search engines. However, today, it is not that relevant anymore, since keyword placement is now a more important ranking factor.

Nevertheless, you will still find clients who are a stickler about keyword density. So as not to leave you in the dark, I will still share with you a couple of things about it.

Say for example, your client told you to write a 500-word article with a 1% keyword density.

To calculate the exact number of times the keyword has to appear, multiply the article’s word count with the required keyword density percentage.

Example: 
500 x 0.01 = 5

So, for a 500-word article, the keyword has to appear 5 times.

The ideal keyword density percentage only falls between 1-2% for every 500 words to avoid keyword stuffing. 

Incorporate your keywords naturally.


Writing SEO content gained a bad rap among other writers. They say that it is robotic, reads unnatural and aims to only please the search engines, not the readers.

But let’s take a look on the blogs of SEO experts like Brian Dean and Neil Patel. Do they write robotic posts? No.

While it’s true that there are tons of SEO content that are of poor quality, I think the fault also lies on the capability of the writer to incorporate the keywords naturally.

Here’s a tip. When you write SEO content, just write normally as you would. Don’t mind about the required keywords. Just write.

After you have finished writing, read your article again and analyze which sections could you possibly insert your client’s target keywords.

Of course, to make your keywords fit naturally, you’ll have to do a bit of editing. To make sure that you have written an SEO-friendly post, you may use these tools.


Learn about keyword placement.


Keyword placement is said to be among the most important factors in ranking web pages. Though this might not be a definite rule, web pages will have a higher chance of ranking when certain keywords are found on the following parts of your content:

  • Title
  • Permalink
  • Meta title
  • Meta description
  • Subheadings
  • Intro, body and conclusion

When I’m writing SEO content for clients, I usually receive these instructions for keyword placement:

Primary keyword should appear 1x on title, permalink, meta title, meta description, and any of the subheadings (if applicable). Distribute keywords evenly on intro, body and conclusion. Don’t lump keywords in one place.


Learn how to do keyword research.


Most clients will readily provide the SEO freelance writer a list of their target keywords which are researched by themselves or their SEO specialists.

Keyword research is generally the job of an SEO specialist, so as a writer, all you have to do is creatively and naturally insert their target keywords when writing SEO content.

However, in some SEO writing jobs, the client will ask you to do keyword research yourself and leave everything to your own discretion, since they expect you to be the expert on this.

Keyword research is a bit complex, but you could easily learn about it through reading Brian Dean’s keyword research guide. In this guide, you’ll learn how to find and judge the value of keywords that you could use for your client’s content needs.

Wrapping up


While some writers irked on the idea of writing SEO content, I personally believe that learning how to write one will be advantageous to all web content writers, because today, more and more clients are realizing the importance of SEO for their business websites. Improved search engine visibility will bring them more money on the table. And SEO freelance writers are just among the several persons who could help them achieve their goals.

Writing SEO content does not mean that you can’t write engaging content. So, instead of hating SEO, start loving it and make it as one of your strong points.

Last Updated: Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Why I Chose to Be a Multi-Niche Freelance Writer



I've been an avid follower of several freelance writing experts, and I noticed that among their most common piece of advice is to pick a single niche in your freelance writing career.

Because if you do, you'll be positioning yourself as an industry expert, you can charge more for your writing services, and you'll always be the top pick of your target clients in the vast sea of competition.

I find their points really convincing. However, I still prefer being a generalist or a multi-niche writer due to the following reasons:

1. I crave for variety.

While I could position myself as a freelance writer for hire who specializes in the health or medical field, I've confirmed to myself that focusing on a single niche isn't really my thing.

One time, it was by chance that I had only gotten clients in the health niche. I had written about nutrition tips, weight loss tips and medical conditions for six straight months, and I became really bored.

I don't hate writing about health because it is actually easy for me. I'm a Registered Nurse. I'm familiar with how the body works. And I even understand the difficult medical terms.

But it just so happened that I got bored writing about the same stuff for consecutive months. You may think that I don't really enjoy writing about health, because if I truly enjoy writing about it, I won't get bored with it, right?

But let's be honest here. That's not how it always work. Imagine eating your favorite food for several consecutive days. Won't you get tired of it?

2. It helps me learn something different every time.

Do you like learning new stuff? I do.

Since research is a sister to writing, we always learn something when we are creating our piece. However, if you keep confining yourself to writing a single niche, you'll be unable to expand your knowledge in different areas.

Sure, you could do your personal reading and research about other things that interest you, but do you have time for that? Not always... But if you have a multiple writing niche, you could kill two birds with one stone.

Say, if you have clients on the health, entrepreneurship, digital marketing and pet niches, you could greatly increase your knowledge in these four different fields while you are writing them.

3.  Not all businesses need your freelance writing services.

Freelance writing experts say that you will never run out of clients even if you specialize in a single niche, because tons of businesses are out there - which is absolutely true.

But the question is, do they really need your freelance writing services? While there are several businesses created every minute, some are not really capable yet of hiring the service of a freelance writer.

And if it is really true that you will never run out of clients, then why do some freelance writing experts say that there will be an unstable flow of income in certain months? Meaning, there are really times that businesses won't need you even if you market yourself hard.

Even big companies such as Facebook does not make themselves exclusive to being a social media platform, but they too explored other fields such as gaming and VR. This is comparable to having a freelance writing business. If you explore other niches, there will be more opportunities for you to grow.


What are your thoughts about this matter? Which do you prefer? Specializing in a single niche or multiple niches?

Last Updated: Saturday, January 7, 2017

My Blogging and Freelance Writing Goals for 2017



I never had goals through the course of my 4+ years of freelance writing experience, because I actually do not prioritize it. I have a full-time job, so I only accept freelance writing gigs whenever clients message me. I don't actively pitch, or consistently apply in writing job boards.

However, during the second half of 2016, it got me thinking. It made me want to pursue freelance writing as my full-time career. Write what you want and whenever you want. I don't really care about its perks of writing "wherever" you want, because I hate traveling.

Today, I just finished reading Alicia Rades' latest blog post which is also about her 2017 freelance writing goals. So, it made me want to write my own goals for this year. Here they are:

1. Write 4-6 blog posts to all of my blogs each month.

I have 4 blogs in all. This one, and the rest are all hobby blogs. Looking back to each of my blogs, I have quite neglected them except for this one. So, for this year, I'll be managing my time more wisely, and squeeze in my blogging tasks after my daytime job, or before I login to work, and blog heavily on weekends.

2. Submit 5 guest posts by the end of January 2017, then 1 guest post every month.

This year, I'll prioritize guest posting, since most clients today ask published works with your byline as writing samples. Though I've been writing for a couple of years already, I haven't guest posted a lot because what I do is mostly ghost blogging work.

3. Pitch 500 prospects per month.

Carol Tice of Make A Living Writing (and one of the writers I look up to), always emphasizes the importance of the volume of marketing your services as a freelance writer. If you don't aggressively pitch your targeted clients, you won't be able to get off the ground quickly.

4. Earn at least a freelance writing income of $20,500 by the end of 2017.

Since I still have a full-time job, my freelance writing income goals are not yet that big. Plus, I feel like I would be starting all over again in my freelance writing career because I didn't actively market myself as a freelance writer for hire.

5. Monetize my other blogs and earn a passive income of $500 over the course of the year.

Ideally, this is my dream job - to earn a passive income through my blogs. One of my blogs is already giving results, and ranking in the search engines without me doing anything. It's just a very small niche blog, so it's fairly easy to rank.

Some of my other goals not related to blogging or freelance writing are:

1. Read 2 English novels per month.

I love buying $0.50 books in our local bookstore, but I never find time to read them because I often feel stressed after my daytime job. All I want to do after is sleep.

2. Learn and create 1 graphic design per month.

I'm a self-taught Photoshop user. When I was in college, I was inspired to study Photoshop after seeing our senior graphic designer whipped up some cool designs for our school publication. I even dreamed of becoming a graphic designer, but I really don't have the talent to create original and awesome designs, so I need to study hard.


So, that's it. These are my blogging and freelance writing goals for 2017. How about you? What are your goals?