Writer’s Log #3: Don’t Hang Up

By Joe Dyton

Yesterday, I reached out to a handful of companies via email, so I thought today I’d go “old school” and contact companies by phone.

I’ll admit, I’m much more comfortable marketing my writing services by email, but whenever I cold call companies, it’s never as bad as I think it’s going to be. Most of the time the person on the other end of the line is polite, even if their business doesn’t have a need for a freelancer. Today was no different; I called seven marketing/ad agencies in the area I got put into the dreaded voicemail by four and the other three asked me to send my information to them by email. Whenever I cold call, I always expect companies who do use freelance writers to tell me they have an assignment to give me right then and there. I need to remind myself that it’s very unlikely that’ll happen and I should take a business asking me for my information as a win. It’ll help curb my disappointment when I have nothing to show for all the calls I made on that particular day.

I originally had 10 companies I wanted to call, but only got to the seven I mentioned, so applied for a business writer freelance position and inquired about a couple of copywriting opportunities to make it an even 10. My hope is next week to have 20 companies/publications to contact per day; 10 by email and 10 over the phone.

Also on the freelance front, I finished an article today about effective email campaigns that’ll appear in the U-T San Diego. When I accepted the assignment last week, I was a little nervous because I didn’t think I’d be able to reach anyone this week because of the holiday. Fortunately, I was able to get in touch with two sources I needed. Many thanks to Terry O’Connor of Inteleqt and Tamara Deverell of Esteemed Consulting who answered the questions for my story while she was on vacation. I guess the lesson I learned there is if you have the time, accept the assignment. Usually you’ll be able to find at least a couple people who will take time out to be interviewed; even during the holidays.

The Links:

John Soares asks 19 top freelance writers what their top professional and personal goals are for 2014.

Carol Tice (and other freelancers) offer up 10 tips to help you earn more this year.

Francesca Nicasio gives four tools for finding blogs to guest post on.

That’s all I have for today. Have a wonderful weekend, everybody!

Joe Dyton is a freelance journalist and copywriter in Washington, DC. He can be reached at dytonwande@gmail.com. Follow Joe on Twitter @dyton99

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