Do you have a successful business and need to update your company’s blog? Or maybe you have a book idea but have no time to write it. Regardless of your writing needs, a professional ghostwriter can help you get the content you need. It could be that you even want to become a ghostwriter yourself!
Professional ghostwriters are usually freelance writers who write content for other people, whether that’s books, articles, newsletters, or blog posts. In other words, they get paid to write for other people.
If you’re a busy professional in need of some writing help, here are some of the things to think through if you want to hire a ghostwriter. And if you are considering a career in ghostwriting, you'll also find some valuable tips below.
What do ghostwriters do?
Ghostwriters write content for other people. Essentially, they write under the client's name, or in some cases, be listed as a collaborator. Ghostwriters can write pretty much anything, including books, blog posts, and even social media posts.
Ghostwriters are usually used by busy professionals who don't have the time to write, such as CEOs or entrepreneurs.
Types of ghostwriting services
A professional ghostwriter can help you get your writing project off the ground.
While most people think that ghostwriting services are only used for writing books or speeches, there are many other types of content that writers can ghostwrite for you.
Want to write articles for magazines or thought pieces in your local newspaper but don’t have time to craft them?
A ghostwriter can write bylined articles on your behalf. Most experienced ghostwriters can turn content around quickly to ensure you meet your publication deadlines.
A case study can be an effective sales tool. If you have a company and want to share your customer's success stories with potential clients, a ghostwriter can help you write a compelling message.
You may need to compile the data and potentially provide the writer with interview notes or can have them interview your customers directly.
While white papers were once just used at tech companies, today many companies use white papers to dive in deep on the subject matter. It’s a way for companies to share trends and recent issues with customers.
A ghostwriter can take your data and turn it into a comprehensive paper that explains the issues and also how your company and products fit.
It’s very common for ghostwriters to write books. In fact, many celebrities use ghostwriters when they publish autobiographies.
If you've got a story to tell but aren’t sure how to get it into a publishable book form, a professional ghostwriter can help you craft the story you want to be told.
Some ghostwriters also provide email newsletters. Keeping your clients updated is important, but drafting emails every week can be time-consuming.
A ghostwriter can craft marketable newsletters with tips, updates, and sales pitches to send to your clients.
Blog posts are a great way to get noticed online using Search Engine Optimization but they can be overwhelming to write and update regularly. A ghostwriter can help make sure your company's blog is updated regularly.
Types of ghostwriters
Not all ghostwriters will write the same content. Like other freelance writers, they will likely specialize in specific areas.
For example, someone who is really good at writing books might specialize in ghostwriting fiction books, while another ghostwriter might be good at blogging or writing business reports.
There are even ghostwriters who are really great at social media. Others might focus on speech writing or technical writing such as writing medical documentation.
How to find a professional ghostwriter
If you want to have a professional ghostwriter help you with your writing project, you should first identify the type of writer you want. Are you looking for them to write case studies, a book, or write blog posts for your website?
Consider the qualifications you are looking for if it’s in a specialized field like medicine or finance. Try to find someone whose writing style fits your own.
Also, make sure to connect with them ahead of time and be clear about what you want. Making sure you and the writer are on the same page will help things go smoothly.
Not sure where to find a ghostwriter? Here are some places to start looking:
Start with a simple Google search. You can look for freelance writers offering ghostwriting services in your area of expertise. If you want to meet or work face-to-face then consider looking for a writer that lives in the same area as you.
Social media can also be a good place to find recommendations for ghostwriters. You can ask your network if they know any good writers or send out a call for writers on your social media channels.
It’s also a good way to see the type of work that potential ghostwriters do to get a sense if they will be a good fit.
Freelance writer marketplaces
These sites let you search for particular types of writers using filters. So you can check out the reviews of writers to make sure they are credible.
How to become a professional ghostwriter
With an average yearly income of $60,000, becoming a ghostwriter can be a lucrative career path. If you want to become a professional ghostwriter you need to not only be able to write well but also know how to market your skills.
Because your published work won’t have your byline on it, potential clients won’t know that you wrote the articles.
Instead, you need to market your ghostwriting abilities yourself. Here are a few of the steps you can take to become a ghostwriter:
Work as a freelance writer and offer ghostwriting services
A good way to become a professional ghostwriter is to start working as a freelance writer. Many ghostwriters are freelancers and offer ghostwriting as one of their services.
Having a freelance network of clients can also lead to other opportunities, including ghostwriting.
Build a portfolio on your website
It’s important to have a portfolio of published work for potential clients to see. For one, it shows your skills and lets potential clients know that you’re a professional and have worked with others.
Make sure your portfolio fits the type of work you want to do. If you want to ghostwrite speeches, include some samples of speeches. Or if you want to ghostwrite white papers in the tech industry, include a few sample chapters.
You can either use your freelance work from past clients (that isn't ghostwritten) for your portfolio or create examples of your writing on your blog or website.
Write in different voices and styles
If you want to offer ghostwriting services, you’ll need to develop your ability to write in varying types of voices and styles.
Practice writing the same type of content but in a different style and voice. You can also practice writing different topics, like technical writing or more light-hearted pieces.
Market your skills
If you want to become a ghostwriter, you’ll need to find your own work, especially in the beginning. Advertise your skills on social media and on your professional website.
If you’re a freelance writer, let your current clients know that you are open to ghostwriting. You can also join freelance job boards like Upwork or Fiverr and advertise your ghostwriting skills there.
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Hire a professional ghostwriter or become one!
No matter your writing project, a professional ghostwriter can help you get it done. Make sure to look for a ghostwriter who fits the type of content you’re looking for.
Remember to communicate your writing needs with them. You can find a ghostwriter through freelance agencies or through a simple Google search.
Whether you are a CEO of a company looking to write white papers, get your book written, or need help tackling some newsletters, there are a lot of writers offering their ghostwriting services.
For those looking to become a ghostwriter, build up your portfolio and reach out to your current clients to let them know that you can ghostwrite for them. Building your ghostwriting jobs along with your freelance writing jobs can lead to a fulfilling and successful career as a writer.