Every now and then, some surprises leave me flummoxed in my role as a content manager. For instance, most people applying to be an online writer do not have their own blogs. As such, they are throwing away countless opportunities out the window. For that reason, I am sharing the benefits of blogging and why it matters for Filipino writers.
Why Online Writers Hesitate to Blog
“I don’t want to share personal experiences,” says one. “I have no idea what to write about,” says another. Seriously, they might as well say goodbye to higher pay rates.
Blogging started as simple websites that list other sites. In fact, the precursor to blogging, weblogs, looks more like bookmarks. Like living organisms, it evolved into online diaries and journals. As such, It became a medium for people to express themselves.
If the purpose of blogging is personal, then it may or may not benefit online writers. Even so, the act of blogging itself can be helpful to growth.
The no. 1 reason why online writers do not blog is that they fail to see its advantages and benefits.
Come to think about it.
Where do clients use the articles written by online writers?
Some can be news style sites while others could be online stores. On the topic itself, it can be anything. But the chances are high that most of these websites use a content management system (CMS).
What is the most popular CMS in the world that powers a quarter of the hundreds of millions of websites?
WordPress – a platform for blogging.
So, knowing that most sites are likely using WordPress, what does that have to do with growth?
Even more important, how does blogging help bring better opportunities?
Blogging comes at a cost. Of course, there are free ones, which are perfect for starters. Also, starting a blog is as easy as 1-2-3 and even children can set one up. As such, it is undeniable that the hindrance is not in creating a blog.
Where it becomes a hindrance is when writers cannot think of a niche or topics to write about. Coming up with ideas is a part of the job description. Having said that, the inability to think of anything to write about suggests a lack of experience. Furthermore, it also implies a limited skill set. Because of that, they fail to take advantage of the benefits of blogging.
When talking about skill, can attitude be far behind?
Skill is only 20% of success, says Zig Ziglar and he is often quoted by all leadership speakers. Attitude, on the other hand, is 80% of success.
In personal development, we refer to having the right attitude in relation with habits. It is a fact that how well we do things is dependent on our habits. Some people have the habit of learning and putting it to good use while others do not have the drive.
To be fair, many clients do not care much about the quality of articles. In fact, these are also the same employers who pay wages fit for animals, not humans. Writers who have worked with these clients are not likely to grow. In fact, they are not likely to learn anything that increases their skill sets. As such, self-learning is the key to securing better opportunities. But like I said, some people do not have the drive to improve.
Desire is one of the most, if not the most powerful motivators. For most Filipino writers, they dream of a better life. For that reason, compensation is necessary.
It is human nature to desire what successful people have. In the writing profession, one such process is blogging. Unfortunately, not everyone is willing to go through the process.
Blogging Pitfalls for Online Writers
In my opinion, the benefits of blogging are too great for writers to pass up. But before I share how to use it as an advantage, let me take you through some pitfalls.
Being a blogger, one of the things I learned early on is the importance of editing old posts. Some of the reasons include updating outdated information and adding more depth. At the same time, I apply new learnings to improve the past articles.
Like I said, not a lot of online writers have their own blogs. Of those who do, many also do not update their old posts. As a consequence, clients may not see their current skill sets. Instead, what they see are mediocre articles which turn them off.
In my circle of blogger friends, most are into blogging because they have the passion for writing. But because writing is not their profession, they are free to do whatever they want on their blogs. But as a writer, having a blog is an added responsibility and maintaining it becomes a necessity. Even more important, they will need to keep it updated to reflect their current skills.
Benefits of Blogging for Online Filipino Writers
It is easy to start a blog but can be hell to maintain one. But if a blog becomes the catalyst to getting high paying clients, will blogging become worth it?
Of course, it is.
Again, people blog for different reasons. But for writers, there are a few reasons why it can be the medium that helps bring in the dollars.
Writers want to earn more, but for that to happen, they have to make themselves deserving.
One of the best ways to write about anything is blogging. A quick search on freelance marketplaces will show what clients are looking for. Evidently, there is no excuse for not knowing what to write about.
No matter how much we read or watch tutorial videos, the best way to learn is to write and keep writing. By publishing on the blog, we want to make sure that we are posting our best content. Potential clients need to see our best, not some nonsense or horrible articles.
Blogging also enables writers to experience publishing online. Even better, for those who have their own domain name and hosting, they also learn the technical side of the CMS. In time, these are skills that become valuable.
Writing alone is not enough to learn. Also important is learning new techniques, adding to the vocabulary, and more. As such, writers should be readers too. Besides reading other articles, writers also need to read and watch tutorials.
People tend to forget the things they learned unless they use it. Having a blog allows online writers to put into practice what they learned. Besides writing new posts, again, old ones also need editing.
CV is necessary when applying for most jobs. But in the world of online writing, samples are more valuable. Most writers submit documents or share their cloud drive containing their sample articles. None are as impressive as having a well-designed blog with excellent and insightful articles.
Furthermore, the added skill of knowing the backend becomes necessary for progression. For instance, one of the reasons why I became a content manager is not only because of writing skills, but also the technical knowledge of the backend.
Instead of outlining everything that a writer can do, a showcase blog already tells clients what they need to know. Seen as an expert, it also follows that employers need to offer a higher compensation package.
4. More or Better Clients
In freelancing marketplaces, some take a hideous 20% commission. Also, most of the job posters are agencies and other freelancers looking for cheap labor. Even worse, some are offering rates that should be considered criminal.
For writers who have their own blogs and posted their services, it could attract new clients. Going back to attitude, the desire to learn and be better becomes much more important in this regard.
The better the quality of the blog and especially its content, the more likely it is to attract the better-paying clients.
Writers Use the Benefits of Blogging for Awesome Opportunities
Not everyone can or are willing to write. For that reason, there is a demand for Filipino writers. Unfortunately, most of the jobs come with atrocious rates. I, for one, started my freelance writing career with rates unfit for a decent living. Even so, there were new things I learned which I used to improve my blog.
Aside from learning how to write better, I also put in the time to learn the technical aspects of blogging. Everything I learned now becomes a part of my arsenal in securing better-paying clients.
Looking forward to the future, there remain many things I have to learn. Already, I have had a taste of what it is like to use blogging to my advantage, and it works. Because of that, I created this new site to share my wisdom and knowledge. In a sense, I am using this medium to help writers, but at the same time, establishing myself as an authority. As I gain more skills and experience, I am already setting myself up for more opportunities.
So, let me end this article with one question for Filipino writers.
Are you going to do whatever it takes and go through the process of setting yourself up for success?