Okay, so you know how to find work and your portfolio is ready to go, but do you understand the online writing terminologies thrown around in the freelance writing community? If you don’t you will never really know what you’re bidding on.
If you already know the meaning of phrases like spinning, keyword density, CMS, meta tags, copy writing, auto responder, and call to action then you can skip this article and continue bidding on new projects.
If any of that seems unfamiliar, strange, or completely unrelated to online writing terminologies then you absolutely must read everything here.
Online Writing Terminologies Defined
Spinning refers to articles that are written in a specific format. A piece of software processes the formatting and randomly replaces specific words with synonyms. It is used to take one piece of content and turn it into dozens, if not hundreds, more. It is not freelance writing in the traditional sense. It is one of the most commonly confused online writing terminologies, which is why it is featured first.
Keyword density or KWD refers to the unique number of times a specific word or phrase appears per one hundred words in the article. For instance, if you were asked to write a 500 word article based on the keyword “dog food” with a 1% keyword density you would need to include that phrase 5 times in the article.
CMS stands for “content management system.” The two most popular are WordPress and Joomla. Some clients will need you to understand how to “post to the CMS,” so make sure you understand these writing terminologies before bidding on those jobs.
Copywriting is one of the most confusing online writing terminologies. It specifically refers to writing used for sales and marketing purposes. It requires a unique flair and a specific freelance writing portfolio to break into this market, but it can be incredibly lucrative.
Auto Responders are applications that send a series of prewritten emails to subscribers. If you are asked to write a series for an auto responder, such as aWeber or MailChimp, you will need to write several different messages with the goal of informing the reader on some subject, and ultimately persuading him or her to buy something at the end.
Call to Action
A call to action is easy to understand. The easiest example to understand is when you read something that instructs you to “Call NOW!” It tells the reader exactly what to do and when to do it. It’s an important concept in sales copy and auto responder series, so study up on effective and persuasive calls to action if you are hoping to break into this freelance writing niche.
Avoid Using These Online Writing Terminologies in Your Proposals
Now that you have a better idea of what these online writing terminologies mean you may think it is a good idea to include them in your proposals. That would be a huge mistake. Most of your clients will not know what most of these things mean.
If the RFP (request for proposal) indicates that these things are important you absolutely should show the client that you understand them. If it doesn’t you are just going to confuse your prospective client and will end up being passed over during the bid review process.
Understanding Freelance Writing Jargon isn’t Tough
You might not realize this, but the fact that you are dedicating so much time to understanding the world of freelance writers gives you a serious competitive edge. Every day thousands of people try to start a career in this market and few of them ever take a single moment to learn more about it.
You do have an uphill battle before you. You will be paid far less than you’re worth on your first several assignments. You may have to work for less than minimum wage to really build up some momentum and start earning a solid living.
But if you stick with it long enough you will eventually find yourself being rewarded quite handsomely for your skills. Your patience will take you a long way and you will learn a lot of new terminologies and jargon. Understanding the online writing terminologies in this guide is one of the best things you can ever do to get your career moving in the right direction.
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