10 lessons from 10 years in business

The Entrepreneur’s Wordsmith turns 10 years old today.

Here’s a thread of 10 unexpected lessons learned going from $1.67/hour freelance writing to earning millions ghostwriting.

1. People would rather pay you more to do more.

A published book is more valuable to an entrepreneur than a Word document. Price accordingly.

2. Selling writing > writing well

Yeah, I could write sales copy. But if I couldn’t sell sales copywriting services to business owners who need it . . . could I really write sales copy?

3. Selling writing = writing well

The better you understand HOW your written content makes your client look good (makes the money), the better you are at both writing and selling the writing.

4. The least sexy skills are the most essential.

The world’s highest paid ghostwriters are the world’s highest paid ghostwriting project managers.

5. Promote yourself where competitors don’t.

Writers are famously introverted. So I’ve promoted my writing services through extroverted activities: speaking, networking, video publishing.

6. Market your services when you’re booked. Especially when you’re booked.

Aim to book yourself solid for the next 6-9 months, at all times. You’ll feel a security not even a 8-5 job provides.

7. Raise your prices when you don’t need to.

Because you won’t get the chance when you do.

8. Don’t take the course if you can hire the instructor.

You can waste months sifting through that online training for material relevant to you. Or you can pay the instructor for 1-2 hours of their time to tell you what you need to do. No brainer.

9. Treat courses you create like employee training material.

When it’s time to build your own online course, design the curriculum like you’re going to pay your students to do the work the way you teach it.

10. Public figures will pay a lot to look good. 

The best way to sell public figures on your services is to make them envy your previous clients. Showcase your work at all times: on sales calls, on social media, on your website and blog.