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Why You Don't Have to Write for Free to Get “Exposure”

Updated on January 13, 2012

Getting Your Freelance Writing Work Out There

More and more Web marketers are asking for Web content and offering absolutely nothing in return. Of course, that’s the point of view of the writer. The client’s point of view is that writing for free will give you “exposure.” It will get you published online. It will get your name out there as a freelance writer.

But, is it really necessary to participate in this little client scheme? Do you really need this kind of free exposure in order to build your name online? To make a long story short- almost never. Most of the clients asking for free content or copywriting seem to be offering writers exposure on start-up sites. That means no traffic and virtually no real exposure. Handing over free work to one of these start ups means getting less attention for your writing than you could get by simply publishing it yourself on an article directory.

Most freelancers who are new to the Web writing world have fallen victim to the “exposure” line at least once. If it’s already happened, learn from the experience. Make the next free work that you do work for your own interests instead of for some anonymous webmaster.

Photo by julosstock
Photo by julosstock

How to Tell the Difference Between Exposure and a Scam

Getting real exposure means getting your name, writing and link on a website that is truly popular in its niche. A start up does nothing for your career. A site that’s been around for a few months has no reputation, despite what the client may tell you.

If you aren’t sure about the age and popularity of the site, plug the URL into and find out how much traffic the site really gets. No page rank? No exposure. Even a site with a page rank of 1 or 2 will get minimal traffic, none of which is likely to expand your writing career. The link you get won’t help you much, and the time you spent to market someone else’s site is wasted.

If you want to create writing samples that are published online, you’re better off creating your own website and using it to expose your work. A quicker option is to open an EzineArticles account and publish a few articles to get your name out there. With a page rank of 6, it’s a better bet than a nameless start up, and it can boost the rank of your own site for even more online exposure.

Getting Paid to Write

If you don't have any published experience and you want to get paid to write while getting your work out there, there are several sites where you can do just that. You can post writing samples and make money writing at the same time. Below are a few sites that allow any freelance writer to post their articles, essays and other pieces and to share in the revenue that they bring. It isn't free work, and it will likely get you a lot more exposure than writing for a tiny start up.

Freelance Writing Resources


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    • profile image

      Beaks 6 years ago from USA

      I hope this will be helpful to anyone interested in freelance writing on any level.

    • dallas93444 profile image

      Dallas W Thompson 7 years ago from Bakersfield, CA

      Much to learn. Thanks for your research and information.

    • mquee profile image

      mquee 7 years ago from Columbia, SC

      Everything you say here makes good practical sense. Thank you for an informative article.