by Jargon Writer

Writing my way to becoming a freelancer

Being a Bit Of A Deviant

Sometimes it’s important to step outside our daily routines and reexamine our way of doings things. When you’ve fallen into a pattern, sometimes breaking the pattern can lead to valuable insight. I try to do this whenever possible.

I did it today. My habit after work is to so go straight home, make a cup of tea and relax for a bit, do some freelance work for a few hours, write a blog post and go to bed. Instead, tonight I had a few errands I had to run (it’s my cousins third birthday this weekend and I needed to buy a gift) and I decided to turn it into a deviation from my set routine. It let me de-stress and when I got home I was in the best mood I’ve been in all week. I felt relaxed.

I spent several hours shopping and wandering around the city. I picked up a book and sat at a sandwich shop I like and read and ate dinner, by myself. The quiet time let me think and it let me look at my life with fresh eyes.

I think this is also important in writing. It’s one of the reasons I believe in doing guest posts – they force you to write about something outside the topic you plug along about everyday on your own blog. They give you a chance to examine topics other than your own and to show how they intersect with your beliefs.

I’ve done two guest posts in the last two weeks. I did a post on PR, “From an Editor’s Perspective” for Hello. {Work}, posted last Monday. Then, today, my post on the perks of working with Gen-y went up on SX Gen Y.

A lot of people do guest posts because they think it will help draw in new readers – and it may indeed do that. But that is not the only, nor in my opinion, the most important benefit to writing guest posts. Yes, it creates a link back to your site, which helps with SEO (for more on that see here or here). But in my mind, the biggest benefit is writing about something different.

I may just be drawn to the idea of writing about different subjects on a regular basis – the chance to write about a wide variety of topics is one of the reasons for my decision to work freelance. Yet, despite this prejudice, I think it makes the writer push his or her boundaries, and that’s one of the primary ways that a writer grows. And, unless you think you’re already perfect, growing means better writing, which will draw more readers.

So, if you want a look at my opinions on something other than freelancing, or just to get to know a bit more about a different side of my multi-faceted personality and my diverse interests, check out the guest posts. And if you think you’d like to guest post here, let me know. I’m open to the idea.

March 12, 2010 Posted by | in practice | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Why I Don’t Write About Social Media (A Link Round Up)

You may have noticed I don’t really talk about social media much… I use it to market and promote myself, but I haven’t done a blog post discussing all the best ways to tweet or how to be popular on Facebook — other than the one post I did on using it to create incoming links. That’s because there is already a lot of great information out there on this topic.

Here are some pieces to read on promoting yourself digitally:

Why Should Businesses Engage in Social Media – Lindsey’s post answers the common questions: why do I need it? And do I have to engage once I have it? Who has the time for this stuff, anyway? She provides links to solid resources Gen-Y and social media enthusiasts can use to show the benefits of social media to their boss, their boss’ boss and the guy down the hall. And in the process, you just might become convinced yourself.

The Power of Social Media – It’s all about revolution. The media world is turning upside-down and this piece explains why that is good for you. Leveraging social media is about understanding that personal branding is about two things – your network and you (but mostly you). Mehul explains how these tools can impact the opportunities you are offered in your career and in the business world.

Don’t Waste Your Time with Social Media – Wait, it’s not what you think. Kenetic Ink discusses how to make social media a part of a marketing strategy, instead of dabbling in it in ways that will result in no results. The piece discusses how to assimilate new marketing and branding techniques into more traditional methods and create a brand that pops on multiple levels.

10 Social Media Errors Businesses Should Avoid – Have you heard of the power of a whisper? When you whisper, the listener leans in to hear what you’re saying; they listen more closely and pay more attention. Shouting at your audience does not work — but bribing them might.
In this piece, which is allegedly about what to avoid, Wayne really clues readers in on how to use social media correctly. By explaining what not to do and why, Wayne clearly shows what businesses should do. He explains why Social Media can’t be measured in terms of ROI (return on investment), and other things that people new to social media commonly get wrong.

10 Ideas for Small Businesses to Launch Social Media Campaigns – Also by Wayne, this post reminds you of the little things that you can do to make social networking work. this piece can almost serve as a check list of ideas each business should implement when they begin investing in social media.

Do People Understand the “Social” Part of Social Media?– From the queen of unconventional,  this piece illustrates in a clear way why half-assing social networking doesn’t work. Marian isn’t afraid to cut straight to the punch and does so in a way that both illustrates the point and makes you laugh. Also of interest are her posts on starting a new blog and twitter.

Group, Fan Page or Both? – Entrepreneur discusses one of MY biggest questions – how the heck do businesses use Facebook to create connections? I have a lot of difficultly with this because I don’t use Facebook the way most people apparently do – I use Facebook for two things: to connect with people I already know and have known for a long time and to play Scrabble. But many consumers use Facebook in a number of other ways – and this piece discusses the different ways your business can tap into this marketplace.

Are there other posts that you feel add significantly to the conversation about social media? Add them in the comments.

March 10, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments