The Second Stream of Income Every Freelance Copywriter Should Develop

You’re a copywriter. You know how to write. You know how business works. You know how to write in ways which capture your readers’ attention.

These are all qualities you use to pursue your career as a freelance online copywriter.

As your career unfolds, you will find yourself working hard. But, from time to time, there’ll be periods when you have less work than you want. This happens to all of us. However successful you become, there will always be a few hours a week when you are not writing, and have time on your hands.

What can you do with this down time?

My choice has been to use those hours to slowly build and develop a second, totally passive, stream of income. And, I use the same skill set that serves me so well as a copywriter.

Let me tell you exactly how this process unfolded for me.

A little over three years ago, I was working for a client in the coffee business. He had an online coffee store and I was rewriting many of the pages on his website. Over the course of a few months, I learned a great deal about the coffee business.

Shortly afterwards, at a time when I was not as busy as usual, I started to write a website of my own, called CoffeeDetective.com.

It started out as an experiment, no more than a hobby. I simply used what I had learned about the business to write my own site, with pages devoted to helping readers who liked gourmet coffee, but didn’t know much about making it at home.

I didn’t use my “work time” on this project. I still applied myself full-time to my freelance writing business. But occasionally, I would find a little time towards the end of the day to write another page or two. I would also find time to work on the site during the evening or at weekends.

To start there was no real return on the time I spent. But then I noticed that my hobby site was beginning to make a level of income which made a real difference each month.

First, it made enough to pay the month’s phone bill. Then, the level of income increased enough to cover both the phone bill and my car payments. After a couple of years, the monthly income from my hobby site was approaching $4,000 a month.

That made me sit up and take notice.

There were some aspects of that $4,000 which I really liked. First, I didn’t have to deal with any clients to make that money. I made my own choices and worked at the times that suited me best. No deadlines. No approval required. Also, I didn’t have to find new clients or assignments each month to make that money. It just flowed in from my site, month after month. Finally, I realized it was a totally passive kind of income.

Passive income? That’s right. When I took two weeks off as vacation, my freelance copywriting income would grind to a halt, but the money from my coffee site just kept on flowing. I didn’t need to be at my desk for that money to flow into my bank account.

Today, my coffee site continues to grow, and the income it makes from ads and affiliate programs is growing, too.

As I look back, I realize that all I did was take the skills I had as a freelance writer and decide to apply them to developing a source of income that was truly my own.

When you do this, and make money from your own websites, it’s a great way to fill the gaps between paying freelance gigs. It means there is no longer any down time. Unbillable hours are transformed into productive and profitable hours.

In my case, because I’m no longer a spring chicken, my money-making websites have also become a secure source of income for my upcoming retirement. No shrinking 401Ks for me. I’ll simply keep building these websites until I am generating enough passive income each month to finance a comfortable retirement.

If you are younger, you can use this extra income to buy a new car, put a deposit down on a new home, or put your kids through college.

The beauty of this model for copywriters is that it taps into the same set of skills we are using every day on behalf of our clients. When you learn to write for a company’s website, you are also developing the skills required to create your own websites.

In other words, my paid work for clients has given me the knowledge to develop my own source of passive income, on my own terms.

After a few years of success with this model, I wrote a program to help others do the same. It is a complete how-to guide called, How to Write Your Own Money-Making Websites.

And next, starting today, I will be giving a series of three teleseminars, each of them focusing on three essential elements within my program.

September 21st: How to choose the ideal topic for your website

September 23rd: How to quickly and easily get your site online

September 25th: How to turn your site into a visitor-attracting, money-generating machine

If you like the idea of using your copywriting skills to create your own passive source of income by creating one or more money-making websites, find out more about this teleseminar series here.

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

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Published: September 21, 2009

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