Low start-up costs and flexible hours are just a few perks associated with starting a writing business out of your home. Drafting a business plan and ad. Home Businesses Freelance Writing. What kind of writing do you hope to do? What are other writers doing similar work charging? Can you compete with those other writers in terms of quality and cost? Answering these questions in a thoughtful, thorough manner will give you a solid sense of where and how you should be directing your writing business.
Contact other writers in your field or a similar field to ask for advice and tips on how to start and grow your own writing business. Writers are friendly folks and many will be willing to help you.
Draw up an executive summary. The executive summary delineates the overall position of your business and where it is headed. This is regarded as the most important aspect of a business plan since potential investors will see the executive summary first. Your vision statement should be your specific list of goals and actions which can build your business in the future. Your mission statement should, by contrast, be based in the present and represent the continuous process your business is engaged in.
Your executive summary should also include general info about your company history, your growth, the services or types of writing you provide, and an overview of your funding request, if applicable. If your situation changes, or you decide that your writing business needs a better business plan, you can always alter the plan.
Keep your business agile and adept at analyzing the writing market. In a new home-based writing business, you should focus on the decisions that led you to found the home-based writing business, and how it will fill a gap in the writing market.
Delineate the organization and management of your business. If your business consists of, say, just you and your partner, explaining your organizational structure might seem unnecessary, but to potential investors, knowing who does what is important. Demonstrating your business has an organized structure is an important step in attracting new partners or staff if you decide to expand your business in the future.
Decide what kind of business you want to operate your writing business as. Craft your funding request. Include data on potential future funding requests as well. Project at least five years out. Describe your past and potential future earnings. As a new business, you might need to draw on your past writing experience in order to show you understand the writing market.
Maintain a safety net in the early stages of building your writing business. Work part-time with your writing business early on and keep your full-time job. Decide carefully when to write full-time. Set some benchmarks to know when you should transition to making your home-based writing business a full-time endeavor. Maintain enough savings to carry you through months of lean times. You should have enough money saved up to cover your expenses for at least six months.
If possible, maintain flexible part-time work which could be scaled up in the event that your home-based writing business is not providing you with enough income to meet your needs.
Set up your home office. Get a chair which supports your spine and provides support. Invest in the software and digital tools you need. Most computers today come with free word-processing software. If, however, your computer does not, you might need to shell out a few hundred dollars to get MS Word or another reputable word-processor. A good word processor should have a clean, simple interface and be intuitive and easy to use.
Decide on a pricing strategy. There are several ways to price your writing. If you price your writing per word or per page, the longer the article, the more you get paid. Charging per hour can also be hard, since an employer will have no way of verifying how long you took to write a given piece. Ensure your prices are competitive.
Analyze the going rates for the type of writing you're specializing in and set your price at a comparable level. Decide what you want your salary to be when setting your prices. Resume edits and reviews are generally easy, so you need not charge a high rate for them. Medical or technical writing, on the other hand, require a high degree of accuracy and know-how, and can justifiably earn a much higher wage.
Plan around your financial needs. Advertising can be expensive. Other business expenses like travel, insurance, computers, or web hosting costs should also be considered. Draft a business plan in order to secure funding from banks or loan agencies. The business plan should provide specific funding requests and describe exactly how loaned money will be used.
Post high-quality content to your website or blog. Make your site and its content useful and easy to navigate. Having a degree related to writing is a useful bona fide, but practical credentials are more useful. If you can cite other writers or articles which link to your writing, or you know how many average page visit you get per day, use this info to bolster your reputation.
WordPress or Tumblr are useful, free content systems which you can utilize to present your work. A table of contents can be helpful for longer proposals with lots of details. List each section and subsection with their corresponding page number.
In general, we recommend keeping your proposal as short as possible. Once you have presented your overall case in the Executive Summary, you can outline the specifics of your proposal. Include information on scheduling , logistics, and pricing. You can use data charts to illustrate key concepts and can also include testimonials from past clients and a link to your website.
The body is also where you include caveats , or disclaimers about the type of work you can deliver. As Andy explained, this is one of the most important parts of your business proposal — and one of the trickiest arts to master. To avoid this type of responsibility, you can write caveats — both about the type of work you offer, and for your pricing. We reserve the right to charge extra in the of an issue that is not listed above.
Once you have outlined the details of your proposal, re-emphasize the exceptional results your company can provide. You should conclude with a call to action that encourages the reader to contact you or visit your website for more information.
Ideally, you want your client to take an immediate action, even if it is something small. The Appendix is an optional section that you can use to include information that might not fit well in the body of your proposal.
For example, you can include resumes or additional graphs, projections, and customer testimonials. All it does is put pressure on your client to sign the deal quickly. While this was a common sales strategy in the past, many small business owners have veered away from this philosophy today.
The only time you should use a deadline is when your resources are limited depending on the time frame. In particular, custom fields remind you and your employees to collect this information, and make it easily accessible later on. Whenever possible, send it to somebody else to read over. A second set of eyes can catch errors you may not notice. You can always hire a freelance editor to review your proposal. Second, you need to pay attention to the tone and length of your proposal.
In particular, make sure your proposal is short enough to read in a single sitting, and contains language that is professional, yet clear. You want your proposal to be as short as possible without missing any key information. As Andy explained to us, this is for a very simple reason: Best case, this prolongs the sales process. Worst case, it pulls you out of the running. What can I do to make my proposal shorter? Any superfluous information, like testimonials, graphs and charts can be moved to the appendix.
As far as the text itself, keep an eye out for repetition. Rather than emphasize your value proposition again and again, find a single example that drives your point home: Make sure you use clear, concise, and simple language that avoids industry jargon and technical terms. There is one exception: As Andy explained, this is because you never know who is reading the proposal.
Often it gets passed from a business owner to other employees, spouses, and even friends. A joke that lands well with your client may fall flat with somebody else.
Email tracking is offered by a number of different programs — including Insightly CRM. Write your message either from scratch, or using an email template , attach your proposal, and send.
Email Tracking in Insightly. Waiting for the perfect time to follow up should be a simple, but significant, part of your proposal strategy. A prospect will be far more receptive to a follow up conversation when your proposal is fresh on their mind—whether they gave it a full read through, or just a quick glance. Utilizing email tracking tools, like those offered by Insightly, is another easy step you can take to master the follow-up process.
While you might be thinking the challenge ends with a signed contract, this is not exactly the case. This means, again, keeping the details straight and staying on top of deadlines. This automatically transfers your custom fields, notes and documents.
Then, follow a new pipeline to deliver the product. In terms of how to write a business proposal, the most important thing is to try and think like your client. If you can put yourself in their shoes, you will be better able to explain why your company is the best for the job and anticipate all the questions they may have.
Want to learn how to incorporate business proposals into your sales process and manage them in a CRM? Check out these other in-depth articles:. Jeremy Marsan is a business analyst and staff writer for Fit Small Business currently specializing in small business healthcare issues and product reviews. The steps outlined in the article should help you create a basic business proposal for yourself.
Wishing you all the best in your academic pursuits. Thanks so much for opening my mind for I was stressed up on how to start. Am ready to prepare one.
The purpose of business writing is to convey information to someone else or to request information from them. To be effective writing for business, you must be complete, concise, and accurate. To be effective writing for business, you must be complete, concise, and accurate.
Because of the relative ease of entry, very low start-up costs and a better than average opportunity to work from home, writing is a highly competitive business. Further, because the market is full, pay for .
Knowing how to write well allows you to deliver your ideas with the power they deserve. Good writing also conveys a sense of your professional excellence to the world around you. In this course, you'll master the simple, effective skills that drive all successful business writing. Business writing is a type of professional communication—such as memos, reports, and emails—used to communicate with internal or external audiences.
Starting an Online Business for Dummies by Greg Holden (he interviews me in his book). Sign up for my small business ezine, eCommunication Food for Thought. Writer's Digest: a site you'll want to bookmark. Download the Pricing Guide, and will help you price your services. Jun 30, · Good writing skills in business can differentiate your company from the masses. When you communicate effectively, it matters.