$100K Club

Freelance writer earning $207,000/year

Jimmy Daly
December 14, 2021

Welcome to another post in the $100k Club series. You can see the full series here. This is "My Morning Routine" for content marketing folks making six figures. The goal is to shed light on the skills and habits that enable people to achieve lucrative jobs and help get more people in this club.

These will be anonymous and updated regularly. If you make more than $100k/year and want to contribute, email me.

For more info on content marketing salaries, check out our salary report.

What was your first full-time job in content? What was the salary?

I started out as an apprentice at a small marketing agency. I earned just over $20k per year.

List out your income by year for as long as you've been working in content marketing.

My income has increased every year I've been running my business:

  • 2019: $94,000
  • 2020: $151,000
  • 2021: $207,000

How much do you earn today? What's your job title?

I'm a freelance writer for B2B companies. I turned over $207k freelance writing in 2021.

What's the single biggest salary jump you've made? (either from job-hopping or a promotion/raise)

I jumped from $94k to $151k in one year, which is a 60% increase. This is largely due to specializing in one niche, actively asking past clients for results and testimonials to add in my portfolio, and consistently increasing my rates.

What is your most valuable skill?

Research. The outline stage is where I spend the majority of my time. This is a competitive strategy for me: clients know they tap into my research skills, absorbed knowledge from the news sites I read, the data aggregator sites I subscribe to, etc. when they hire me. The client gets the benefit of this: better rankings, more authority, and generally better quality content in a world where everything on page #1 looks/sounds the same.

What's the best book you've ever read on writing, marketing, sales, business or productivity? (Feel free to suggest more than one!)

I loved Company of One by Paul Jarvis. I felt pressured to grow my freelance business to be a larger team, but I knew that wasn't right for me. This book made me realize that's OK.

Have you had a career mentor/coach? If so, how did you find them and what have you learned from them?

No official mentor, but a ton of incredible freelance buddies who I compare rates against, refer jobs to/from, and have virtual coffee chats since I am a company of one. The freelance writing community is incredibly supportive. That's one thing I love about my job.

What skills or habits help you thrive at work?

I get hired repeatedly because I'm reliable. I hear horror stories of clients who've worked with freelancers who ghost after receiving an assignment, or let the deadline go by without checking in with a status update. I pride myself on never missing a deadline. 3+ years and going strong!

What advice would you give to someone who wants to join the $100k club?

Get the basics right. Deliver on time; have a genuine desire to help; be proactive and quick to respond. It's easy to try fads or "quick wins" but they won't work if you don't have the foundations laid.

Where do you live? What is your gender and ethnicity?

I’m a white female living in the UK.

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