By Kenesha Collins
Aspiring writers may find if overwhelming in the early stages of developing an audience for their work. Building a platform is vital in 2019, but it is especially important to authors and freelance writers. A lot of companies would prefer an author who has a professional platform of their own before they will hire them. If you are looking to build a platform from scratch, here are some starting points:
Develop a niche
Selecting a niche helps you establish yourself as an expert on a topic. You can
have more than one topic you are knowledgeable on, but it is best to focus on one. By
focusing on one niche, you will be able to select your target audience, and grow your
platform based on that. Write several on point articles about your niche and post them
on your website or blog.
A website can sound very intimidating for people who are not graphically inclined. There are several cheap web hosting platforms with easy to use templates. You can build an eye-catching website in a matter of minutes. It doesn’t have to be the best website, it
just has to be clean, contain great content, and show your followers where you are in
your writing journey. Set up a blog on your website, and upload new and fresh content. Offer to guest post on someone’s blog. Book a speaking engagement if you have great presence and interpersonal skills.
I use LinkedIn because it is a social media platform that is strictly professional. When you are on LinkedIn, you are there for one purpose; to network. If you don’t have strong interpersonal skills, it is a great platform because you don’t have to worry about making contacts on a personal level. The other platform I chose was Twitter. Twitter is a great way to send a powerful message with few words. By using a simple hashtag, anyone can create campaigns that reach millions of people.
Having an online presence is powerful, but you can’t just hide behind your computer.
You also need to be a physical presence in the community. Whenever I first relocated to
a new state by myself, I didn’t know a sole. I was introduced to Meetup.com. It is a
social media platform that hosts hundreds of events for people with the same interests
both professionally and personally. I was able to connect with people professionally and
make a few friends with similar tastes as mine.
Write for Free
The sole purpose of freelance writing is to sell your eBooks, articles, and books, but
there will be times where you will have to give your services away for free. Nonprofits are a perfect place to build your portfolio if you are an unknown writer. These organizations have limited funds, and often not able to hire full-time writers, so they are more likely to give you a chance. You will have to provide writing samples, or you may
have to write a piece that’s relevant to their mission.
Building an author platform is not easy, and the process doesn’t happen overnight. You
have to put a lot of time and energy into it. The hard work will pay off when you receive
endorsements on LinkedIn, likes on your blog, and requests for writing samples from