Don’t be intimidated and have the confidence to approach people asking for their business because if you have the passion for writing and your good at it, that is a skill that many people want to hire you!
Award-winning medical writer, Melissa Crawford, talks about all things medical writing. We dove into A LOT in this episode – especially setting rates and booking clients!
First of all, Melissa is a second-degree nurse; she also has an English and Spanish degree as an undergrad but never really used it. She was so enthralled with nursing, and a lot of things have to do with patients she met and took care of. She felt the need to write, and writing in a blog format became an outlet for her, shared with her classmates, family, and friends. But after she graduated and started working, she quickly realizes that nursing is for someone special.
Melissa thought of developing a second gig that she also loves. So, she enrolled in a class, took a course about medical writing, and it took it from there. With all the referrals, she eventually started landing clients; it was a slow progression but satisfying.
Creating a website was part of the course she took, and it also involves writing assignments every week and giving you an idea of how to start freelancing. She loves talking with people, hearing about their passion, and trying to convey it in a way to reach their audience.
She improved her writing over time by reading style guides, and there is so many blog post that can help a beginner to become a better writer. Participating in LinkedIn and connecting with other writers to get tips for your writing is also a great step. While the biggest thing you need to do is keep on writing to improve your craft.
Owning your business is unnerving; you’ll just need to handle it as it comes along. She admits that her business skills are her weakest point, but she learns and grows with them.
She keeps a simple, elegant, and updated website to gain clients. And, she volunteers to write for professional organizations and create personalized content. For her, volunteering is the new advertisement!
It is the best way to get clients by contributing more to your community, and those clients will find you! Talking on the phone with clients is what she prefers to do after engaging with emails. Her clients are usually incorporated or organized, which makes it easier for her to set rates. It’s also part of what she learned in her class with Emma Nichols. If you want to know more, there are blog posts that help with setting rates.
Also, you can get so much more when talking with a client than with emails. It solidifies what they want from you and what you want for them because there would be times misunderstanding occurs. It will be much easier on both sides to make that phone call.
Don’t be afraid to charge too much or charge too little, especially writers that are starting to go towards for too little. Melissa’s tip for setting rates is to estimate the appropriate amount of time per project. Most of her rates are per project, and ask for an amount you are comfortable with. Remember always to charge what you’re worth!
Setting Rates and Booking Clients with Award-Winning Medical Writer, Melissa Crawford
Grab a pen, you’re going to need it for this episode!