The Elance Freelance Writing Guide for All Levels
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The Elance Freelance Writing Guide for All Levels

Learn to enhance your business by optimizing your writing, applications, and communications for Elance!
4.8 (7 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
243 students enrolled
Created by Ashley Surinak
Last updated 2/2015
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Current price: $10 Original price: $20 Discount: 50% off
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  • 3 hours on-demand video
  • 3 Supplemental Resources
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
What Will I Learn?
  • Optimize Elance profiles for growth and success
  • Recognize different types of clients and projects
  • Draft applications that turn into paying and repeat jobs
  • Utilize effective communication practices with clients
  • Adapt top writing techniques to impress any client
  • Uncover strategies for continual growth as a writer
View Curriculum
  • A willingness to better themselves and learn from someone who was in their shoes not too long ago!

Join Over 200 Students to Learn the Basics and Specifics of Setting Up Your Elance Profile for Success!

Becoming a freelance writer on Elance, oDesk, or Guru can be difficult. And, if you're someone looking to solidify your skills, learn how to get jobs on Elance, and most importantly, how to make money on Elance, you've come to the right place!

In this course, you'll learn about everything from optimizing your profile for clients to top writing practices, how to draft applications to managing clients and everything in-between.

The result? A comprehensive guide on how to become a freelance writer and make $2,000+ every single month.

We'll cover several key areas in this course, including:

  • How to optimize your profile and proposals to appeal to clients
  • How to manage clients and build up positive reviews for all of your projects
  • How to draft proposals that will get you more jobs than ever before
  • How to land repeat clients that allow you to focus on your work rather than the job hunt
  • Examples of my proposals and top writing practices to give you the upper hand from the beginning of your career!

It's time to work smarter and harder than you ever have before.

It's time to stop the hustle for inconsistent work at low prices you don't deserve.

It's time to start your bright future as a successful freelance writer.

Once you complete this course, you'll have the tools and knowledge to do just that.


  • Proposal Writing Checklist to guide you through every proposal you write
  • Summary Sheet that keeps all key concepts organised in one, easy-to-reference location
  • 5 Real Proposal Samples to demonstrate how I evaluate positions and respond using my winning proposal template


This course is designed as a series of presentations that provide guidance, screenshots, and real-life experience from my own time on Elance. This means that you'll get an inside look designed to translate useful concepts into easy-to-understand steps you can take to build your own Elance career.

By taking this course, you'll have lifetime access to 3+ hours of lectures and insider information you can't find anywhere else. This means you can refine your skills and propel your writing career quicker, more efficiently, and more effectively than you could on your own.

Who is the target audience?
  • This course is for new Elancers if you know how to create a profile, are a fast learner, and already have experience or education in the field you would like to enter on Elance.
  • This course is for established Elancers who are looking to avoid inconsistent jobs, are struggling to win jobs, or aren't quite sure how to properly identify which jobs are right for you.
  • This course is NOT for individuals who are looking for a basic guide to the administrative tasks on Elance. While we do cover some of the basics regarding your profile, we will not cover how to withdraw funds, disputes with clients, or other technical matters. To learn more about this information, please visit the support section of Elance.
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Curriculum For This Course
118 Lectures
7 Lectures 08:34

If you're tired of trying to learn how to become a freelance writer, you aren't alone. Just 1.5 years ago, I was in your shoes and now, I'm ready to help you learn how to get started on Elance.

This Welcome Video introduces you to the course and sets you up to get learning!

Preview 00:38

This is your official introduction to the course and the beginning of Module 1, an Introduction to The Elance Freelance Writing Guide.

Within, we'll discuss more about topics like:

  • Winning writing strategies you can use to impress clients
  • The application process (and how I use one template to secure all of my jobs)
  • Client communication and management
  • Much, much more!

Enter Module 1 to learn more about each of these topics and what you can expect from this course.

Preview 00:34

Module 1 is your road map to the entire course.

Within, you'll learn:

  • The basics of what you can expect within each module
  • More about me, my Elance experience, and my qualifications
  • Qualities of ideal candidates for this course
  • The course setup and how you can get in touch with me
Preview 00:14

Welcome to the course! In this lecture, we're going to go over what you'll learn in each Module so you can skip around and look for the information you need most if you're already on Elance and are familiar with certain topics.

Preview 02:57

Before we get started, let's discuss more information about my experience and my qualifications.

In this lecture, we'll discuss:

  • My background in writing
  • How you can translate your experience to work for your Elance career too
  • Why this course is the best choice for you when you're looking to not only jump start your Elance career but to also adopt strategies that will help you make $2,000+ per month like I do now
Preview 01:43

Are you in the right place? I sure hope so!

Ideal candidates for this course are those who are:

  • New freelancers who are interested in turning their writing experience into a part-time or full-time income on Elance
  • Freelancers who are currently on Elance but are struggling to secure jobs or secure consistent jobs
  • Freelancers looking to make more money online with strategies I've developed and successfully used over the past 1.5 years
  • Individuals who want to live a location independent lifestyle by becoming a freelance writer
Preview 01:27

This course is set up in videos, video lectures, and downloadable sheets and templates to help you set up your writing career in a simple way.

I recommend going on your own Elance profile and trying out my strategies as the course progresses so that if you have questions, you can have them answered in real time.

My entire goal for setting up this course is to help others succeed online. As such, I'm available for you via both Udemy messaging and email at

Now that the introduction is out of the way, let's dive into the course with Module 2, Elance 101.

Preview 01:01
Elance 101
9 Lectures 12:32

Module 2 is a great resource if:

  • You're new to Elance
  • Unsure about which membership and categories to choose
  • Need additional assistance setting up each part of your profile
Preview 00:27

At the beginning of each Module, we're going to go over an overview of the lectures and why each is important to your success.

The Module 2 lectures include information on:

  • The Elance Setup - We'll discuss memberships, categories, and types of writing projects you can expect to find on Elance
  • The Basics of Your Profile - Get familiar with each of the components on your profile to see what you can add in terms of information, education, and experience
  • How to Set Up Your Profile for Clients - Learn what you can and should add to your profile to appeal to clients
Preview 00:52

There are four types of memberships on Elance:

  • Basic
  • Individual
  • Small Company
  • Large Company

As an individual, you'll need to choose between the Basic (free) Membership and the Individual Membership ($10 per month). I recommend the Individual Membership to give yourself an edge, and in this lecture you'll learn why!

The Elance Setup - Memberships

As a freelance writer, you'll have two primary categories to concern yourself with on Elance, including:

  • Writing & Translation
  • Sales & Marketing

With both the Basic and Individual Memberships, you'll have free access to one category (Writing & Translation being the primary one you'll want to choose). However, I recommend also subscribing to the Sales & Marketing Category to increase access to more jobs.

The Elance Setup - Categories

There are endless types of projects you can choose from on Elance.

Here, we'll go over each and help you evaluate which makes most sense for your skills and abilities (and which I personally recommend) as you're getting started on Elance.

The Elance Setup - Types of Projects

There are several small components of your profile that add up in a large way.

Here, we'll go over a screenshot of my own personal profile and how I've filled it out to give you some ideas as to how you might want to structure your own.

The Basic Anatomy of Your Profile - Part One

There are several small components of your profile that add up in a large way.

Here, we'll go over a screenshot of my own personal profile and how I've filled it out to give you some ideas as to how you might want to structure your own.

The Basic Anatomy of Your Profile - Part Two

Remember all of those components of your profile? Here, we're going to talk about each and how you want to fill out everything properly to appeal to clients.

These components include:

  • Tagline
  • Skype Verification
  • Overview
  • Portfolio Samples
  • Skill Tests
  • Education and Work Experience
How to Set Up Your Profile

Module 2 described several key foundational elements of your Elance presence. As you move forward into Module 3, Jump Starting Your Elance Career, there are a few key lessons you should keep in mind:

  • Choosing the proper membership and categories is of the utmost importance
  • Recognizing and choosing the right types of projects make a significant difference in the beginning of your writing career on Elance
  • An impressive profile is the foundation of an impressive proposal
Module 2 Summary
Jump Starting Your Elance Career
13 Lectures 25:37

Module 3 is a great resource if:

  • You're interested in the common challenges about starting on Elance
  • You want to learn about how to find your first job
  • You want to learn about your "unfair advantage" and how to use it to secure jobs
Preview 00:20

The Module 3 lectures include information on:

  • The Realities of Getting Started
  • Competitively Pricing Proposals
  • How to Find a Job
  • Building Up Reviews
  • How to Identify and Use Your "Unfair Advantage"
Preview 01:25

Starting on Elance isn't always easy, especially if you aren't familiar with what you must do to get started. While other Elance guides promise that you won't have to compromise to get jobs, I think it's more beneficial to recognize the reality of getting started.

Here, we'll discuss:

  • The eBay Comparison (paying more for experience and the same outcome)
  • Taking on work for less than you think you deserve
  • Playing it smart during the first few crucial weeks and months on Elance
The Realities of Starting on Elance

Pricing your first few projects competitively is the key to securing your first few jobs.

This means that it's important to understand:

  • Standard pricing offered by clients
  • Knowing what type of price to offer for different types of work
  • The best method to gradually increase your price over the first few weeks (and months thereafter)
Pricing Your Proposals

Finding your first job can seem next to impossible (believe me, it took me a few weeks too)!

The key to success is knowing which jobs to apply to when searching for your first project. That's why in this lecture, I'm going to discuss not only the best types of jobs as your first freelance writing projects but I'm also going to provide you with the description for my own.

Finding Your First Job

Not all first jobs are going to be the same.

Here, we'll go over the next few jobs I took on after my first to show you what common qualities you should be looking for in your project and how it can help you sort through the projects you're considering.

Additional "First Job Examples"

Your first few Elance jobs are the beginning of your career (and your reviews). This makes it even more important to use discretion in which projects you choose.

Most of your first few jobs will have components with common qualities, including:

  • The project description
  • The timeline
  • The client
  • The topic
Common Qualities for Your First Few Jobs

Are you having trouble finding that elusive first job? If so, there are a few key strategies you can use to simplify your search efforts (and avoid having to search through hundreds of jobs).

These strategies include:

  • Using search tools effectively
  • Considering the date posted and time left
How to Find Your First Job - Part 1

Once you've narrowed down your search and actually found a job that looks like a good fit, there are a few more criteria you should consider, including:

  • Whether or not you meet all project qualifications
  • Whether or not you have any concerns over what you're being asked to do
  • Whether or not the client meets all of your needs
How to Find Your First Job - Part 2

Reviews add to your credibility and your ability to increase your price.

At the beginning, you'll need to sacrifice money for reviews. After all, the first few reviews set the tone for the rest of the time you'll spend on Elance.

The best part is that positive reviews also enable you to raise your price, even within just weeks of getting started!

Building Up Reviews - Part 1

Ready for some more real-life examples?

Here, we'll go over my first few positive reviews and how they enabled me to charge double or even triple my initial price within just one month of getting started (and of course how you can do the same)!

Building Up Reviews - Part 2

While there are hundreds of thousands of freelancers on Elance, none bring the same unique experience to the table as you do.

Your unfair advantage is a direct reflection of this. Here, we'll discuss what your unfair advantage is and how you can use it.

Using Your Unfair Advantage

Module 3 introduced several strategies you can use to begin your work on Elance. As you move forward into Module 4, Getting Into Your Clients Head (Literally), there are a few key lessons you should keep in mind:

  • Proper search tactics make it simpler to secure your first few Elance jobs
  • Reducing initial costs help you develop positive relationships with clients who might use you again at the beginning of your career (and therefore give you multiple positive reviews)
  • Recognizing "first job qualities" prevents time you would waste searching through hundreds of jobs every single day
  • Identifying and using your unfair advantage is essential for any project you apply to
Module 3 Summary
Getting in Your Client's Head (Literally)
10 Lectures 16:13

Module 4 is a great resource if:

  • You're interested in getting an inside look at what clients see of your profile and proposals
  • You're interested in how clients create job postings (and what kind of effect this has on you)
  • You want to leverage your client's Elance experience to your advantage
Preview 00:22

The Module 4 lectures include information on:

  • The Elance setup for clients
  • Tools that clients can use to find out more about you
  • What proposals look like to clients
  • What it means to "meet the client where they're at"
Preview 00:56

Clients are given broad discretion when it comes to what they're able to ask of a freelancer for their job as well as what category they choose for their position.

This directly affects whether or not you're able to apply and whether or not a job will be a great option for you as one of your first few jobs on Elance.

The Elance Setup for Clients - Part 1

As we discussed in the previous lecture, there are several different options clients can choose when they're creating a job.

Their discretion includes the ability to:

  • Invite freelancers to apply for positions
  • Set preferences
  • Choose a category for the position
The Elance Setup for Clients - Part 2

Clients can learn more about you than you might think even from your proposals alone. In fact, the way Elance is set up enables them to form a quick comparison between you and other qualified freelancers applying for their job.

They can view a lot of information about you from your proposal and profile, including:

  • Job History
  • Credentials
  • Portfolio
  • Skill Testing Results
Tools for Clients

Curious as to what clients see of your proposal when they're browsing through all of the applications they receive? You should be, because often the beginning of your proposal and key statistics like your job history and reviews can affect whether they choose to learn more.

Here, I'm going to discuss screenshots I've taken off of Elance to give you an inside look as to what clients see and why what you include in your application is so important.

What Proposals Look Like to Clients - Part 1

Curious as to what clients see of your proposal when they're browsing through all of the applications they receive? You should be, because often the beginning of your proposal and key statistics like your job history and reviews can affect whether they choose to learn more.

Here, I'm going to discuss screenshots I've taken off of Elance to give you an inside look as to what clients see and why what you include in your application is so important.

What Proposals Look Like to Clients - Part 2

Curious as to what clients see of your proposal when they're browsing through all of the applications they receive? You should be, because often the beginning of your proposal and key statistics like your job history and reviews can affect whether they choose to learn more.

Here, I'm going to discuss screenshots I've taken off of Elance to give you an inside look as to what clients see and why what you include in your application is so important.

What Proposals Look Like to Clients - Part 3

"Meeting a client where they're at" means giving them what they ask for and nothing more. If they ask for suggestions, you should provide them (of course). However, never upsell a client on services they didn't ask for (especially if they're incredibly specific on their guidelines).

By meeting a client where they're at, you can secure positive reviews and earn the professional trust of any clients that can generate additional work in the future.

Meeting a Client Where They're At

Module 4 gave you an inside look at what clients see of your profile and proposals (and why this matters so much). As you move forward into Module 5, Clients 101, there are a few key lessons you should keep in mind:

  • The way clients set up their jobs is important, so search smart based upon the topics we've discussed in this Module to save yourself time
  • Implementing ideas discussed in Module 3 sets you up for success based on topics discussed here in Module 4
  • Always listen and respond to clients. Their needs come first, so never impose advice where it's unwanted
Module 4 Summary
Clients 101
7 Lectures 12:22

Module 5 is a great resource if:

  • You want to familiarize yourself with the types of clients you'll encounter on Elance
  • You want to learn to identify warning signs and top client qualities so you can select the right types of projects (and their associated clients) to work on
  • You want to understand what it really means to work for clients
Preview 00:20

The Module 5 lectures include information on:

  • The 3 types of clients you'll encounter on Elance (cost, quantity, and quality)
  • Client warning signs (a.k.a. RUN!)
  • Top client qualities (a.k.a. APPLY NOW!)
  • What writing for clients really mean
Preview 00:48

There are hundreds of thousands of potential clients on Elance, but three primary types of clients that you'll encounter during your time on the platform. These types of clients include:

  • Those focused on COST
  • Those focused on QUANTITY
  • Those focused on QUALITY

Understand the pros and cons of each and which type you ultimately want to work for 100% of the time.

Three Types of Clients on Elance

There's nothing worse than getting deeply involved in a project and then recognizing the negative qualities of a client and how they interfere with a successful outcome to your project.

But what are these common warning signs? They include issues with:

  • Instructions
  • A client's history
  • Hesitation
  • Responsiveness
  • Communication
Client Warning Signs

Of course, it's also important to recognize top client qualities that should attract you to certain projects even more.

So, what are some top client qualities you should keep in mind? They are related to:

  • Project descriptions
  • A client's history
  • Communication
  • Expectations
Top Client Qualities

Content writing for any projects is distinct from countless other forms of writing, but how?

It's different because content writing means having to express a company's brand and objectives, all while engaging readers.

This means that your job isn't to write in your own tone or with your own agenda in mind. It's all about your clients, and you should keep it this way.

What Writing for Clients Is (and Isn't)

Module 5 simplifies clients by discussing client types and what you should look for in all ideal clients. As you move forward into Module 6, Writing 101, there are a few key lessons you should keep in mind:

  • Identifying what type of client is associated with any projects you're interested in is a MUST before thinking about submitting an application
  • Client warning signs help you avoid wasting your time on drafting an application or working on a project with limited hope for a successful outcome
  • Positive client qualities help you identify good clients (and potentially repeat clients) that you WANT to work for
Module 5 Summary
Writing 101
11 Lectures 10:50

Module 6 is a great resource if:

  • You want an overview of the work you'll do in most projects on Elance
  • You want to become a freelance writer and develop your expertise more quickly rather than spend years refining your writing style
  • You want to avoid wasting time learning the best writing practices to use in every project you complete (that I've used and refined over the past 1.5 years)
  • You need to learn how to use tone/voice in each of your projects (to guarantee client satisfaction)
Preview 00:17

The Module 6 lectures include information on:

  • Most typical writing jobs you'll encounter on Elance
  • Top writing practices you should use for each and every project
  • What unique selling propositions are and how to use them
  • Understanding tone and voice (and how this will work to your advantage)
Preview 00:52

Identifying the type of project you'll be working on is the key to undertaking the right approach to ensure its success.

There are three basic types of writing projects on Elance. Here, we'll discuss each.

What Most Elance Writing Jobs Entail

Subheadings make pages less overwhelming for readers and ensure that everyone who visits a page is able to recognize the same key information.

Better yet, subheadings are a great location where you can emphasize a company's unique selling proposition (USP).

Top Writing Practices - Subheadings

Like subheadings, short paragraphs are less overwhelming and are more visually appealing to readers. In fact, the paragraph length can directly affect whether or not a reader chooses to stay on the page or read or simply bounce off.

Paragraphs should have a few common qualities, and we'll discuss each of these here!

Top Writing Practices - Short Paragraphs

Fluff content is something that almost all clients hate. This means that more than ever before, it's important to say the most you can in the least amount of words possible.

Always proofread and remove words when you can. This makes your messaging more powerful and establishes the credibility of a brand.

Top Writing Practices - Keep it Short (Sentences)

The fastest way to ruin your credibility is to not proofread everything prior to sending it. This means that you must proofread your applications, messages, and content before ever sending it over to a client.

Sometimes, you might want to proofread twice and slow yourself down as this will help ensure that no mistake goes unnoticed.

This positions you as a professional and an expert in your field and will make you a go-to writer for many clients.

Top Writing Practices - Proofreading

Like your own "unfair advantage," a company's "unique selling proposition" (USP) is the one quality, or perhaps multiple qualities, that sets them apart from their competitors.

A USP forms the foundation of your content strategy, should be emphasized in subheadings, and should be prevalent throughout a site so that any customer contact points communicate this key information.

Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

Writing for clients means putting your own 
tone/voice to the side in favor of their own. This means that with each project you begin, you must establish the proper tone/voice before ever getting started.

Asking your clients the right questions is a simple way to establish the proper tone:

  • Consider competitor sites your clients admire
  • Consider "buzzwords" that a client can use to identify the proper tone
Understanding Tone and Voice

Module 6 explores proven writing tips that I've developed over the past 1.5 years to fast track your success. As you move forward into Module 7, The Psychology of an Application, there are a few key lessons you should keep in mind:

  • Evaluating the writing style of the job at hand makes it simple to identify if you can deliver on expectations
  • Writing that embodies all of the top practices described in this Module is the simple way to create standout content for all of your clients
  • Utilizing a company's unique selling proposition (USP) enables you to distinguish their brand and create appropriate content depending on the tone/voice you embody
Module 6 Summary

Looking for some additional motivation or just a quick laugh before moving forward?

You're halfway there! Watch this video and please, send me a progress update in Udemy so that I know you're still following along and don't have any questions!

I look forward to hearing from you!

Need Some Motivation? You're Halfway There!
The Psychology of an Application
21 Lectures 32:35

Module 7 is a great resource if:

  • You're having a difficult job creating applications that begin communications with clients or get you jobs
  • You aren't quite sure what to include and what not to include in your applications
  • You need more information about common roadblocks to beginning a job and how you can end negotiations to get starte
Preview 00:23

The Module 7 lectures include information on:

  • What clients do and don't want to see in proposals
  • How to draft winning proposals (based on my own proposal writing structure)
  • Common negotiation roadblocks
  • Turning hesitation into new jobs
Preview 00:48

Not sure what you're doing wrong in your proposals? In this lecture, we'll cover some qualities of bad proposals that might be holding you back, including:

  • The text you use
  • The attachments you include
  • The approach you take
  • Common warning signs
What Clients Don't Want to See in Your Application

Ready to take your proposal writing skills to the next level? In this lecture, we're going to discuss qualities that successful proposals have, including:

  • Connections
  • Manageable structure
  • Samples
  • Thorough
  • Proper tone
What Clients Do Want to See in Your Application

The key to drafting a successful application is properly preparing to do so.

This means taking key steps like:

  • Thoroughly reviewing all parts of a project description
  • Reviewing necessary documents
  • Considering yourself
Preparing to Draft Your Application

Once you've prepared to draft your application, you should also create a structure that will enable you to draft thorough, professional proposals.

In this Module, we're going to go through my own structure piece-by-piece before discussing each section in detail in the following lectures.

My Winning Proposal Template - The Basics Part 1

This lecture elaborates on the job description that will be used for the next several lectures where we take apart one of my real proposals for discussion.

Get the foundation you need for the following lectures, here!

My Winning Proposal Template - The Basics Part 2

In the Introduction Section, you're going to do a few key things, including:

  • Address your client
  • Express your interest
My Winning Proposal Template - The Introduction

In the Main Body of your proposal, there will be a few key elements, including:

  • Elaborating on your writing process
  • Emphasize your attention to detail
  • Give actionable steps
My Winning Proposal Template - The Main Body

Search engine optimization (SEO) writing isn't for all beginners. However, if you're familiar with SEO and are applying for a project where SEO matters to your client, you'll want to address several factors that we'll discuss in this lecture!

My Winning Proposal Template - Addressing SEO

In this next section of your proposal, you'll want to reference not only your positive reviews but also key values that you bring to the table.

My Winning Proposal Template - Reference Key Values

Samples reflect the quality of work that clients will expect as a result of your own project. As such, you'll want to attach samples that are:

  • Of a certain time frame
  • In a certain format
  • That meet several other criteria
My Winning Proposal Template - Reference Samples

The Conclusion of your proposal wraps up everything with cleanliness and conciseness in mind. You might also want to invite a client to message you if they would like to discuss any details you've included in your proposal that they don't understand or have questions about.

Of course, you'll then want to sign off in a respectful way to finish it off.

My Winning Proposal Template - The Conclusion

Additional content at the bottom of your proposal enables you to further set apart your proposal from the rest.

Specifically, you'll want to attach between a particular number of samples along with several other key qualities that we'll discuss in this lecture.

My Winning Proposal Template - Additional Content

Too many attachments are overwhelming, but the right number and type of attachments can easily win you positions.

You should look to attach:

  • Recent samples
  • Relevant samples
  • Published samples
To Attach, or Not to Attach?

All too often, freelancers throw away this new "Approach to the Job" section on Elance, but you shouldn't.

Instead, you'll learn what key information you should enter in this lecture to help distinguish your proposal from competitors.

What to Put When Asked Your "Approach to the Job"

Elance offers you the ability to get "featured" when you pay an extra 2-3 connects when submitting an application.

This can keep your proposal on the top of the page even as 20 or 30 more freelancers apply to the same position. However, it can also mean that you're skipped over depending on the client.

Here, we'll discuss the pros and cons of choosing to get featured.

Should I Pay to Get "Featured"?

Bargaining and delays are two of the most common roadblocks to negotiating the terms and beginning of any project. Recognize that these roadblocks aren't necessarily the worst problem to have, and how you can overcome these issues.

Common Negotiation Roadblocks

Hesitation can occur due to any number of reasons. Most often, it's due to clients that are new to Elance or who have had negative experiences in the past.

In these situations, it's always best to take a few key steps that will seal the deal.

Turning Hesitation Into a "Yes"

Module 7 explores application writing tips that make it simple to structure your proposals for success. As you move forward into Module 8, Client Communication, there are a few key lessons you should keep in mind:

  • Standing out means understanding what clients do and don't want to see
  • Preparing to draft your application is just as important (if not more important) than writing the proposal itself
  • The proposal structure discussed here is your template to win projects that you otherwise wouldn't
  • Recognizing common negotiation roadblocks is the key to turning hesitation into a "yes"
Module 7 Summary

The Proposal Writing Checklist gives you a list of all of the aspects of writing a great proposal discussed here in Module 7 to give you a simple reference guide as you're creating your own.

Download this Checklist and keep it near you whenever you're applying to jobs!

The Proposal Writing Checklist
2 pages
Client Communication
8 Lectures 10:35

Module 8 is a great resource if:

  • You aren't sure how to communicate with clients before, during, and after a project
  • You need to adapt positive communication practices to help establish long-term relationships with your clients
  • You want to learn how to solicit positive reviews from clients after a project is over
Preview 00:17

The Module 8 lectures include information on:

  • Why positive and effective communication is important
  • How to establish effective communication
  • How to solicit positive reviews
  • How to establish repeat clients and keep them coming back
Preview 00:49

Positive communication refers to communication where all parties feel that their needs have been acknowledged. This is incredibly important for clients, especially after you submit your initial draft to them and must make changes.

Positive communication also leads to effective communication where you can reach desired outcomes, leading to positive reviews.

Why Positive Communication is Important

Effective communication involves several main practices to ensure that clients know their needs are being heard and acknowledged.

In this lecture, we'll discuss common effective communication habits and how you can use them for each of your projects.

Effective Communication Habits

While all clients are prompted to leave reviews once your job is complete, not every client will.

However, the right message once a project is complete will enable you to solicit positive reviews in a respectful, professional manner.

How to Solicit Positive Reviews

Repeat clients are an invaluable resource for you as you work to develop your freelance writing career. That's because repeat clients bring you a number of distinct benefits that you otherwise wouldn't have.

In this lecture, we'll go over four distinct benefits of repeat clients.

Why Repeat Clients are Important

While repeat clients are great, learning how to establish repeat clients can be difficult.

Typically, there are a few simple ways to encourage repeat work:

  • Maintain effective communication
  • Check in with clients
  • Maintain a standard of excellence
How to Keep Clients Coming Back

Module 8 discusses positive client communication processes you should adapt as you begin your freelance writing career. As you move forward into Module 9, Managing Clients, there are a few key lessons you should keep in mind:

  • Positive and effective communication shows clients you understand them and promotes successful outcomes for your projects
  • Consistent communication develops trust and maintains it over time
  • Soliciting positive reviews lends itself well to your credibility and allows you to address problems before they manifest into negative reviews
  • Repeat clients generate additional work and help you grow your freelance writing career
Module 8 Summary
Managing Clients
10 Lectures 16:09

Module 9 is a great resource if:

  • You aren't sure how to handle demanding or disgruntled clients
  • You want to learn to protect yourself in situations where work goes bad
  • You want to learn to recognize when it is the right time to cut your losses
Preview 00:22

The Module 9 lectures include information on:

  • How to deal with demanding or disgruntled clients
  • What do do when clients don't like your work
  • How to protect yourself should something go wrong
  • How to control (and exceed) expectations
Preview 00:46

Disgruntled clients are often clients that won't confront you about any work until you've submitted it for initial review. Keep in mind that their responses will be emotional, but your responses should be strictly professional.

This is a great place to utilize your positive communication practices so clients know their needs are acknowledged and you're working to address any other problems.

How to Handle Disgruntled Clients

Demanding clients often have a variety of motives for their response to your work. Often, problems are due to a number of different factors (all of which we'll discuss in this lecture).

By removing the emotion from the situation, you can take control over the project and still reach a positive outcome.

How to Handle Demanding Clients

It's a fact that few clients will accept all of your work without needing any revisions.

If they don't, there are a few different options you'll want to consider to ensure that you're still able to reach a successful outcome for your project.

What to Do When Clients Don't Like Your Work

Unfortunately, cutting your losses is an essential part of successfully navigating your presence on Elance.

There are a few common situations where you should cut your losses, each of which we'll discuss in this lecture.

When to Cut Your Losses

When you're forced to cut your losses, it's important to protect yourself and your work.

You can set up Google alerts to see if a client tries to use your content without paying you.

How to Protect Yourself and Your Work

Like positive communication, positive management is a key component of your success on Elance.

Positive management practices include:

  • Open communication
  • Thorough, consistent responses
  • Lack of emotionality
Positive Management Practices

Your proposal directly sets the client's expectations for any project.

You can set realistic expectations with the goal of exceeding them by:

  • Delivering more value
  • Adding thorough professional guidance
  • Adding detailed notes
Controlling Client Expectations

Module 9 enhances Module 8's discussion of client communication by elaborating on how to manage clients as well. As you move forward into Module 10, Your Future Writing Career, there are a few key lessons you should keep in mind:

  • Managing disgruntled and demanding clients quickly and efficiently is the key to finishing off projects and freeing up time for new ones
  • Knowing when to cut your losses saves you time and maintains your professional reputation on Elance
  • Positive management practices guarantee a successful completion of all projects
  • Controlling expectations ultimately sets you up to exceed them
Module 9 Summary
Your Future Writing Career
10 Lectures 13:21

Module 10 is a great resource if:

  • You want to learn what options you have to grow your freelance writing business once you're established on Elance
  • You want to learn how to leverage your Elance experience to land new jobs
  • You want to learn where you can turn if you want to work on more platforms than just Elance
Preview 00:18

The Module 10 lectures include information on:

  • Is Elance enough?
  • Elance as a foundation for the future
  • Templates for emails to keep in touch with clients
  • Three methods to grow your business beyond Elance
    • Website
    • Digital Firms
    • Other Platforms
Preview 00:54

Elance is great for beginners and experienced freelancers alike. However, there are a few common problems that you might run into while on the platform for an extended period of time, all of which we'll discuss in this lecture.

Is Elance Enough?

Elance can sometimes feel limiting after you've been on the platform for awhile. However, it's a great way to:

  • Build relationships with clients
  • Serve as a point of reference for reviews and your experience
Elance as a Foundation for the Future

It's your job to stay in touch with clients as this is the simplest way to solicit new work and maintain a professional, working relationship with clients.

By doing so, you can always bring up work they might have been considering in the past but have never followed up with you on it. This can generate additional work and establish you as a "go-to" person for a company.

Keeping in Touch With Clients

Not sure how to keep in touch with clients without sounding sales-pitchy?

Try this sample for your emails and simply adjust it according to the specific details of your previous work and your relationship with your client.

Keeping in Touch With Clients - Sample

A website offers several distinct benefits to your writing career, including:

  • A showcase
  • A place to elaborate on experience
  • A place to establish contact
  • A place to blog
3 Methods to Grow Business - Website

Web marketing agencies and digital media firms are always looking for additional content writers.

By contacting agencies in your area and even outside of your area, you can generate additional work and long-term relationships with resources that you can always turn to for repeat business.

3 Methods to Grow Business - Firms

Elance isn't the only freelancing platform. And, by building up your presence on multiple platforms, you can expand your reach and find projects and clients you otherwise couldn't.

In this lecture, we'll discuss other sites you can turn to to help grow your writing career.

3 Methods to Grow Business - Other Sites

Module 10 explores your future as a freelance writer and viable strategies you can utilize to grow your career. As you move forward into Module 11, Mistakes, there are a few key lessons you should keep in mind:

  • Elance is the foundation for a lucrative and enjoyable writing career
  • By keeping in touch with clients, you can generate additional work you wouldn't have otherwise
  • Websites, appealing to digital agencies, and turning to other freelancing sites are great methods you can use to help grow your business beyond just Elance
Module 10 Summary
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About the Instructor
Ashley Surinak
4.8 Average rating
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243 Students
1 Course
Content Marketer | Freelancer | Entrepreneur

Ashley Surinak is a marketer, freelance writer, and entrepreneur with a passion for helping others succeed at establishing their own freelance businesses. While obtaining her Bachelor's Degree in Political Science and Psychology at DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois, Ashley began her own writing business and has co-founded several entrepreneurial ventures with her business partner.

Today, Ashley works one-on-one with several high profile clients to create high-quality copy and articles worldwide. Topics span a wide range of industries and niches, positioning Ashley as a content marketing expert in her field.

Her course, The Elance Freelance Writing Guide, is a reflection of her passion to share her expertise with others looking to create a part-time or full-time income and overcome the same challenges she has in the past year and a half. Her ability to create a full-time living through strategies shared in the course has enabled her to travel the world while working with clients from America to Australia and everywhere in-between.