Editor’s Note: The following content is provided to Writer’s Digest by a writing community partner. This content is sponsored by American Writers & Artists Inc. www.awaionline.com.
Writing content can be an extremely profitable option for working writers …
Sure, there are fiercely competitive content markets where writers fight over penny-a-word contracts. But, those more obvious opportunities in highly-competitive markets aren’t what I’m talking about.
There are far better opportunities for writers looking to make a living … and that’s my goal with this blog each week:
To help you learn about — and take advantage of — REAL opportunities that will allow you to make a living as a writer.
One in particular stands out in my mind right now — as we’re talking a lot about it over at AWAI …
It’s a place where there are more jobs available than writers with time to do the work. Plus, the rates can climb to $2 (or more) per word.
The only catch? To see the vast opportunities here — and appreciate the scope of what’s on offer — you’re going to have to open your eyes to a world most writers have never realized existed.
The “Hidden” World of B2B Content Writing
Most of the time, if we think about advertising, we think about companies hooking into our feelings to sell us everything from clothes to laundry detergent.
But the personal consumer side of marketing is just a drop in the bucket compared to the overall business world …
Companies also sell things to each other, in what’s known as the Business-to-Business (B2B) market.
Instead of a bottle of laundry soap, picture the effort it would take for a company to sell an industrial washing machine to a cruise line.
In that kind of transaction, the sale is not so simple. Multiple people — a Purchasing Agent, Laundry Director, Chief Housekeeper, and Head Engineer, for example — are involved in making the buying decision. And the dollar amounts can be staggeringly large …
With huge sums of money at stake in each sale, do you think the industrial washing machine company is going to hire a writer for pennies a word?
No … if you were a company looking to make that kind of sale, you’d want to have high-quality written materials on your side. And, you wouldn’t expect to make the sale in your first meeting …
Instead, you’d expect to spend time building trust, developing a relationship, and educating the various people involved about why your equipment is best for their needs.
Perhaps you’d send over a great case study about how your machines cut down the staff time spent on each load. Maybe you’d fill your corporate website with top-notch articles about how your equipment handles the variety of table linens, pool towels, and bedding. And you’d definitely have a white paper on the machine safety features and the reduced risk of fire or electrical issues.
You’d keep the conversation going … offer up a continuous flow of relevant reading materials to provide the buyers with all the information they need. All in the name of making that final meeting — the one where they buy hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars’ worth of product — as easy as possible.
So the name of the game becomes content, content, and more content.
Which means your company needs writers, writers, and more writers.
There’s just one problem … as a B2B company in North America, you’re competing with 5 million other B2B firms who all want … need … to publish as much content as possible also.
And as the Bureau of Labor Statistics reminds us, there are only 129,100 professional writers out there …
A Supply-Demand Problem That Works For You
Think about that math for a moment.
Five million B2B companies … 129,100 professional writers.
Now, how many pieces of content do you think Maytag wants to publish in any given month? How about LG … Sears … GE … Speed Queen …
All of these firms have enough work to keep multiple writers busy, and that’s just a few brands in the commercial washer market!
And it’s not just super-big firms marketing in the B2B space, either. Your local Laundromat has to buy washing machines … hotels have to rent table linens … country clubs have to buy towels … and so on …
As you can see, once you start digging into the B2B world, it reveals itself as a vast “Blue Ocean” of opportunity. And all of these companies are willing to pay top dollar to writers so they can compete for even more lucrative business contracts of their own.
So, what can you expect to earn as a content writer?
B2B content expert Gordon Graham (known in our business as “That White Paper Guy”) shared some of the price points for the most in-demand B2B content types:
- Blog Posts: $250 to $500
- Case Studies: $1,000+
- E-newsletters: $500+ per issue (As I’ve explained, e-newsletters are a great way to land valuable retainer contracts)
- Press Releases: $250 to $500+
- Slide Decks: $100+ per slide
- White Papers: $2,500 to $10,000
He recently put together a great “Crash Course” for writers on the how-to aspects of B2B content writing.
In it, he covers what goes into each kind of project … the research you’ll need to do … how much time it will likely take … what you should bill your clients … and even how to turn that first project into a steady stream of ongoing work.
All great stuff from an expert with 35 years of writing experience …
Now, normally I don’t like to “sell” anything in this blog. But because this blog is about making a living as a writer, and this new program covers in detail 12 different writing projects you can get started on right away, I hope it’s okay if I make an exception …
I encourage you to grab a copy of Gordon’s “Crash Course” as soon as possible and begin exploring it … especially if you’ve ever been offered a gig that paid pennies. There are better, more lucrative opportunities out there for you, once you know where to look.
And this “Crash Course” can get you access to these high-paying projects faster than you ever thought possible.
To your success,