Fastest Way to Make a Living as a Writer

This week I’ve been sharing with you some of the questions or challenges I heard most often during my one-on-one meetings with attendees at this year’s Web Intensive …

On Monday we talked about how to get it all done when there’s so much to do and little free time to do it.

Then yesterday we talked about choosing a coach or mentor to help you build your writing business, choose a niche, or improve your skills.

And today I’m going to address a question I not only heard a lot at the Web Intensive, but receive via email and on Facebook every week as well.

In fact, just last week, reader Susan R. wrote me an email asking for help figuring out where to start. She ended the email with …

“I need to know which program would get me started making money sooner rather than later, with the most bang for the buck, with complete information on how to find clients and how to charge for my services.”

Now last month, I wrote an issue of The Writer’s Life that walked you through some questions you need to ask yourself before answering this question. I also offered to help you choose the right opportunity by posting a comment to that blog.

Because, you see, there isn’t really one program that fits all people.

In Susan’s case, based on her background, the right decision was for her to pursue the B2B market. So I recommended she take Steve Slaunwhite’s Secrets of Writing High Performance B2B Copy as well as The "Business Side" of B2B Copywriting.

But for many people, there is another opportunity that can answer that question …

And that’s writing autoresponder emails.

If you’re not familiar, an autoresponder series is a series of short emails that are automatically sent to a new prospect who has just opted in to your client’s email list.

Normally, a series can consist of 3, 5, 7 or even more of these short emails.

You’ve probably actually gotten emails like these yourself.

Let’s say you’re surfing the Web and come across a landing page for something you’re interested in …

The page offers a free report that catches your eye. But there’s a catch. In exchange for the report, you’ve got to submit your email address.

So, you submit your email address and over the coming weeks receive brief emails from someone associated with the website or report. Each email you receive tries to establish a relationship and ultimately get you back to the website or to another offer, only this time, the offer requires a purchase instead of just submitting your email address.

As an autoresponder copywriter, it’s your job to write these emails.

So what’s the reason I say this is the fastest way to make money writing?

Because it’s very easy to learn how to write them, the demand is high, the money is great, and clients have to take very little risk to give you a shot.

Let me explain …

First, it’s easy to learn. Ever since you were a kid, chances are you’ve loved hearing a great story. And chances are, you’ve told a story or two in your life.

That’s exactly what writing good autoresponder copy is – telling a story that your prospect can relate to and using it to develop a relationship.

Stories help people bond … they help the prospect see that the person writing to them is a real person.

And that goes a long way to establishing a solid relationship between the prospect and your client. Do that, and you’re golden.

So, if you can tell a story, you can do incredibly well in this web copy niche.

Plus, this kind of writing is very formulaic. Stick with what works – and chances are you’ll craft amazingly good autoresponder copy every time.

Next, the demand is high.

Famed Internet Marketer Perry Marshal says it best:

“A website without autoresponder copy is like a head without a body.”

The reason? If a company is doing business online, they need autoresponders to monetize the email addresses they’re collecting.

That’s why autoresponder copywriters are in such high demand. They help a website – a business – stay in constant contact with their customers and get them to take the next action.

In addition, the money is great.

Check this out …

  • You can write each email in under an hour.
  • You can make $100 to $250 per email as a novice, and $500 and up as a professional.
  • And, there are typically anywhere from 3 to 7 emails in each series. Sometimes more!

And finally, clients have to take very little risk to give you a shot.


Because other than your fee, it doesn’t cost them anything to test out an autoresponder series – so if you’re able to show them you can write, it’s in a client’s best interest to give you a shot.

Even if you’ve never had a paying client in your life!

Here’s an example I use all the time to show why …

Let’s say I hire you to write an autoresponder series for The Golden Thread, selling AWAI’s new and improved Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting.

That program normally costs $500.

So, even if you charge me $500, I only have to sell one copy of the program to break even.

See? The marketer really has no risk!

Now let me be clear …

All that being said, in a perfect world, I would recommend that you learn the fundamentals of persuasive writing first by taking AWAI’s Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting.


Because autoresponder emails – and really any form of copy for that matter – still use persuasive copywriting principles.

And anyone who starts with a solid copywriting foundation will have a much easier time writing any form of copy. Whether it’s case studies, landing pages, emails, social media campaigns – you name it – a trained copywriter will turn out better copy over someone who just knows how to write a certain type of copy.

And better copy means more success for your clients. Which means it will be easier to find more clients. Which means it will be easier to continuously raise your rates and charge higher fees, and make more money from every project you take on.

But I understand …

The question was: What’s the fastest way to make money writing?

And so my simple answer is writing autoresponder emails.

And once you learn to write autoresponders, check out this article that shows you how to turn that knowledge into additional money-making opportunities for yourself. It's a skill that can be used again and again!

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

At last, a professional organization that caters to the needs of direct-response industry writers. Find out how membership can change the course of your career. Learn More »

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Published: March 24, 2011

1 Response to “Fastest Way to Make a Living as a Writer”

  1. Research for my lead for AWAI Simulated Training - 8 years later! - has led me to this article! Very reinforcing as autoresponders are a key element of Web copy the AWAI training package for which I'm promoting in the training (Web Copywriting 2.0)! As a bonus, with access to the product for research - I'm also learning Web Copywriting 2.0 itself! So, this reinforces my learning as well as my Simulated Training research.

    dvgaleFebruary 27, 2019 at 3:07 pm

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