July 01, 2008 | By: BangDhika

Opportunity Spotting : Freelance Writing Is Booming

The word freelance was first coined by Sir Walter Scott, a renowned Scottish historical novelist and poet when he wrote his novel Ivanhoe to refer to a medieval mercenary warrior. In 1903 the word was officially recognized by etymologists and made it to the Oxford English Dictionary. Simply put, a freelancer is a person who is self employed. Freelancers seek out different projects which vary in their size, scope and variety. In case of freelancing writing, projects may include article writing, book writing, ebook writing, Technical reports, editing, proofreading, white papers, direct mail, copywriting, newsletters, Ezine writing… and much more. A Look at Current State of Industry The freelance industry has literally boomed. $60 billion of work is now outsourced to specialists’ worldwide. According to the US Department of Labor “35 million Americans class themselves as independent professionals.” In the past three years, companies have increased their outsourcing by 22% A survey done predicted that companies using freelance services will more than double from 20% to 50%. This trend is not a localized trend to be seen in USA or a few countries but is slowly becoming a global phenomenon. Looking at it ,being part of a $120 billion industry won’t be bad! But why exactly has freelance writing boomed? Though there are many reasons behind this phenomenon ,two reasons which clearly stand out above the rest. The explosion of the Internet The Internet is a relatively new medium when you compare it to other mature mediums such as television and radio and is still in its Wild West days. Apart from being a huge information resource it is also a huge advertising medium where companies get their businesses from. Shift in business practices: Back in the good old 60’s and 70’s you could set up a successful business and could expect to reap profits for a long period of time. Businesses could afford full time employees in all areas. With hyper competition and large fluctuations in technology, businesses have adopted a different model. They only do the thing which they do best and outsource all other activities to specialists. So rather than having a full time writer on the company’s payroll, it’s more efficient to find a writer who specializes in a particular type of writing. If a company needs articles written for their website they would post a bid on a website such as Elance.com for a web content writer, get it done and move on. Another time they need a good copywriter they would post a bid for a copywriter, get the job done and move on. The key point to understand is that companies now place more value on specialists - freelancers who are more skilled in a narrow focus of work. For freelancers, this literally means a world of opportunity. You can work from home, doing interesting and rewarding work, working with customers all over the world. You can be paid directly into your bank account, and earn more than you ever dreamed possible in your 9-5 day job.
by: David Drake


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