How can you go about getting Christian freelance job writing assignments?
"I would like to supplement my income with writing for ministries,” wrote one reader. “My challenge is that I have no idea where to start. Where should I look for opportunities? Can you direct me to a list of possibilities for dipping my toe in?"
Faith-based organizations, print publications, websites, churches, parachurch organizations – these operate as ministries and need to follow best practices in order to be relevant and to communicate clearly with readers.
Which means they need writers for their web content, blogs, grant applications, presentations, newsletters, social media, email campaigns …
They need YOU.
The way to go about getting Christian freelance job writing assignments is similar to getting any kind of freelance work, with just a twist or two.
It’s not hard to get started. In fact, there are three simple steps you can take to start getting paid assignments. You need to contact them and let them know you are available. But first things first.
In giving you this plan, I’m making an assumption that you have taken initial simple steps for selling your services: you have acquired basic writing skills, you’ve got a few clips, you’ve chosen a niche or two, you’ve created a website, and you have a prospecting letter and fulfillment package in place. (You can learn more about this important groundwork here.)
Once you get those other elements in place – or even while you’re working on those foundational pieces – you can get started reaching out to potential clients and get Christian freelance job writing assignments.
Find magazine and website publishing markets in Christian Writers Market Guide. Search online for sites in your niche or area of interest. Get on Pinterest and search for pins that reference your niche and trace back to their originating websites.
As you find these potential markets, keep good records. I create a table in which I record the potential market, the date I contacted them, the niche, my proposed article or post, and subsequent responses.
Keep in mind that you can sell first rights and then sell reprint rights later to another publication, thereby leveraging your articles for additional income over time.
Spend some time on the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability website and at Guidestar. . Use the filter tools to identify organizations that resonate with your select niche(s), such as humanitarian relief, pregnancy, homeschooling, or leadership resources. Send each one a prospecting letter with an offer for a free bit of information. (Here’s a template for a prospecting letter.) Follow up with them. And of course, as in #1, keep good records.
Join groups in your niche on LinkedIn. Use the same approach as in #2 above but send your prospecting letter via messaging.
Getting clients is a numbers game. You can expect a 2-4% response rate to start out. That means in order to get 2-4 assignments, you’ll need to send out 100 pitches or prospecting letters.
However, once you start getting work, you’ll find the process snowballs. A few of those initial clients will refer you. Soon you’ll get a few anchor clients that give you long term work.
And then you’ll be on your way to freelancing full-time.
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