The ancient Chinese martial arts masters were truly that, masters. Sages with the wisdom of the Gods. Realizing that we are not the ultimate in knowledge, they decided to learn from nature.
One of their greatest teachers was the majestic tiger. On my quest to become a master in the art of freelancing, I gleaned a lot of wisdom from Master Tiger.
Wisdom I would love to share with you…
Plan your line of attack
“Tigers are fierce predators with a calculated intelligence that makes them one of the leaders out there in their natural environment.” Tiger’s World.
Be strategic in your planning. Know what you want to achieve and plan towards that.
• Who are your target clients?
• How are you going to reach out to them?
• How much do you plan on earning from your writing?
• Are you planning on being a full time or part-time writer?
• How and where will you market yourself?
These questions will help you come up with a strategic line of attack.
Leaders are planners. No one ever gets ahead in life by chance. If they do, they never stay ahead for long.
Work on becoming a leader in your niche; after all, leaders get the lion’s (or should I say, tiger’s) share of the meal.
Freelance writing is a cutthroat world and only those as calculating as the tiger emerge ahead of the pack.
Your biggest enemy at this stage is procrastination. Procrastination can only be overcome by a clear, concise and actionable plan.
Prowl relentlessly for prey
Scour the web for prey. There are many well-paying clients in the jungle known as Cyberspace. All you have to do is find them. Successful freelance writers have mastered the art of the prowl.
How should you prowl for clients?
Become one with your client/prey
Put yourself in their shoes and think like them:
i. What do they do? What do they want to achieve?
ii. What separates them from the pack?
iii. Where are they now, where do they want to go?
iv. How can I help them reach that goal?
Having this mindset will give you an idea of where they hang out (and how to push the right buttons).
Businesses are always looking for people who can add value to their organization and products. If you can do that, you will become a well-fed freelance writer.
Morph into a search engine
Comb every area of the web for potential clients. Google companies, blogs, and publications that have the potential to turn into a tasty meal. You have to be relentless.
Freelance writing is not a get rich quick scheme. Before your words start feeding you, you have to put in the necessary work.
Zero in on your target
Once you find companies or publications that need your captivating content, it’s time to zero in.
Find the key contact person in that organization. Get their name and email address.
You don’t have to be an FBI agent to do this. There are many online applications that can help you do this. My personal favorite is “Hunter”. It’s free and easy to use.
Some clients are not so obvious to spot. To help you discover an ideal client, know your primary niche(s). Not every business fits into your writing style.
Patiently wait for the right prey
A tiger never eats grass when there is no prey in sight. He will wait for something suitable.
Many a promising writer have ruined themselves by “eating” unsuitable gigs. When the writing is forced, results are typically not your best.
Pick your target well, preferably those that fit into your skill/passion mix. Passion vitalizes the creativity in you, and creativity is what clients pay top dollar for.