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Internet Market Strategy For Serious Online Marketers

December 11, 2003

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(c)Copyright Jeff Smith 2003

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Expert Interview!

Freelance Writing Success
- with Nancy Hendrickson

Hi all

It's been a while since I have brought you an expert interview, many of you were wondering if I had stopped doing them.


In fact, there are many more on tap for the New Year, 2004 will definitely kick off with a boom.

Today, we're going to find out how to squeeze more money out of your writing with successful freelancer Nancy Hendrickson

Nancy has been a freelancer since 1987, with a list of publications that include LA Parent, San Diego Parent, Family Chronicle, Smart Computing, Family Tree Magazine , Writer's Digest, Men's Health,, , Today's Collector, and Business Life.

She is the author of the incredible "Secrets of A Successful Freelancer" where she outlines the a to z of making it as a successful freelancer.

She is also just releasing her soon to be great book called "Make Money ePublishing".

Having written and co-authored many other books, we're going to hear some secrets from Nancy's personal experience that are likely to shock you.

You've heard me say it before, developing high-demand content is your ticket to wealth on the internet.

There is a massive demand for interesting writing of all sorts online and offline.

Here's just one example --

I do a fair amount of marketing consulting. When I consult on the topic of online marketing, be it an individual or large corporation - 9 times out of 10 we need to put a follow-up email system in place to capture the 98% of visitors who do not buy on the first pass to a website.

Now, here's the issue. Most individuals and companies know they should do this. Everyone's heard that the majority of customers buy after 7-exposures right?

Where almost everyone gets stuck is what content do they produce that adds value to your visitor's experience, attracts them back to your site again and again and, over time, influences them to buy your product.

Let me tell you - in 100% of the cases I have found that the individual or company goes outside to find that expertise.

Why can't that be you?

Same goes for newsletters, articles, brochures, white papers, business plans, resumes, and one and on...

So, I wanted to get someone who is an expert in the field of freelance writing to tell you the TRUTH about how to make money using nothing but your mind and your words.

Nancy Hendrickson, author of the book "Secrets of a Successful Freelancer" has been kind enough to offer up her time and knowledge - so without further delay, here is today's expert interview.

If you enjoyed this interview - let me know and I'll continue tracking these down for you.

Thanks for reading.


Today's Expert Interview


"Making Money With Freelance Writing"

with Nancy Hendrickson from the WritingforNicheMarkets website.

Did you know...

There have been well over 30 interviews included in our newsletters over the last 2-years!

If you've missed some of our past POWER Interviews with the experts, then you'll want to hear what Joe Vitale, Yanik Silver, Marc Goldman, Damon Zahariades, Willie Crawford and many others are doing to create, and grow their own Infoproduct Empires. Check out our archives right here...

Now, for this week's interview excerpt!

Jeff [Question]

Nancy, thanks for giving up some time to share your knowledge with our readers today. Can you give us an overview of your writing experience and what types of writing you have done to earn a living?

Nancy Hendrickson [Answer]

Jeff, I've written five books and over one-thousand shorts, features and Web pieces. My clients include, Family Tree Magazine, eBay Magazine (when it was still in print), Men's Fitness, Personal Journaling, Writer's Digest, The Writer,, History Magazine, LAPTOP and Personal Computing. As you can see, I write for a large variety of companies and interests.

Jeff [Question]

You have a fabulous book - "Secrets of a Successful Freelancer". When did you come up with the idea to write this book and where did the idea come from?

Nancy Hendrickson[Answer]

I met writer after writer who really didn't know how to get started in the magazine industry. The book evolved from a series of e-mails I developed to answer the qestions I received about the in's and out's of getting published--or advancing a writing career.

As you know, for someone without clips (samples of published work), it seems almost impossible to get someone in the industry to notice you. However, if you go about it the right away--and are willing to do some jobs for free or low pay--you WILL get published. And, once you've been in print once, it's easy to move up from there.

Jeff [Question]

Many of our readers REALLY wonder if you can make a good living selling your own writing - without being a top author or expert writer. What would say to them?

Nancy Hendrickson [Answer]

Well, I'm living proof that you can make a living as a freelance writer--and clearly, my name isn't Tom Clancy!

Jeff, it's all a matter of building a business from the ground up. It takes time and perserverance, and an unwillingness to give up. I have a very thick file of rejection letters I received when I first started writing--but instead of making me want to give up, they just spurred me to try harder.

Also, I believe all writers MUST be willing to branch out into several directions (i.e. also writing for the Web or writing e-books), and learn about promotion and marketing. Let's face it - - as writers, we're selling ourselves, and we need to know how to do that most effectively. In fact, your readers might also be interested in a new e-book I'm writing now that covers the nuts and bolts of e-publishing for writers. It's called "Make Money e-Publishing" E-books are a fantastic way for writers to make an ongoing passive income--which I'm all for!

Jeff [Question]

One of the questions I get asked the most from people looking to earn a living writing is "How do I find topics to write about that people will buy?" Whether it be articles, books, ebooks, special reports - what methods do you use to find subjects and titles that people want to buy?

Nancy Hendrickson [Answer]

If your readers concentrate on developing interesting topics that they, themselves, enjoy reading about, they'll have a wealth of topics to draw from. For example, I'm one of those people called an "early adopter". That means when a new tech gadget hits the market, I'm one of the first to buy it. In my case, that holds particularly true to digital cameras and personal digital assistants (PDAs).

How I use that to my advantage is to find spins to those general topics that I know other people will be interested in too. For example, I've written at least a half-dozen articles on how to use your Palm-based handheld for genealogy. I've also written about using handhelds for health, keeping track of your kids' soccer schedules, keeping track of your wine tastings, and travel. I'll probably keep writing about this general topic for years--but putting a different spin, depending on my target audience.

If there's one "secret" I'd like to pass on to your readers, it's this: Find ONE topic you really love and write down at least 25 different ways to spin the topic for different audiences. Once you do this, you'll find how easy it is to come up with salable story ideas. In fact, in my book, I did a list of 25 ways to sell stories about San Diego (where I currently live). It was an interesting exercise for me--and valuable as it helped me sell several articles.

Jeff [Question]

Excellent stuff!

Nancy, you are obviously very accomplished - do you recommend that people specialize on a certain market niche or that they go broad with their writing?

Nancy Hendrickson [Answer]

I discovered an interesting fact awhile back about that question. It's not really important if YOU consider yourself a specialized writer---what's important is that EDITORS think you are. As an example, I write about several fields, but each of my editors in those fields consider me an expert in THEIR field. So, my technology editor thinks I'm just a whiz at tech articles, while my genealogy editor thinks I specialize only in genealogy.

Yes, you HAVE to market yourself to editors as being expert (or knowing where to get expert interviews) in their field. However, you can still write for more than one field--and in fact, you really need to. So, although I'm really a generalist, I'm also a specialist.

Jeff [Question]

Where do you see the leading opportunities in the field of writing - examples: articles, corporate, travel, books, ebooks, self-published versus published, etc...

Nancy Hendrickson [Answer]

Jeff, in terms of the magazine market, I think you'll see more and more articles on health and business. As boomers age, their health is a MAJOR concern--they want to live longer and be healthier than their parents.

If your readers have an interest in this field, I'd suggest signing up to take a class on health writing--or read all you can about it.

Also, I write more about business now than I ever did. In tihs global economy, competition among businesses is so intense, businesses need solid stories on their industries to help bring them more clients.

In the world of e-books, my advice is a little different. Write about what you love and know--trust me, there will ALWAYS be other people with the same interests--and they're your target audience. Reaching these markets is one of the major subjects of my new e-book.

Jeff [Question]

Nancy - I want to thank you for your time, sharing your valuable experience with our readers. Before you go, can you offer our readers your advice on the 3 most important things to know about freelance writing?

Nancy Hendrickson [Answer]

1. Never give up--I don't care how many other writers there are in this world--none of them brings YOUR eyes to the business. What you have to say is valuable.

2. Treat your writing business like a business. If you want to succeed, your focus has to be on building a business, not indulging in a hobby.

3. Learn to become a master marketer--whether you're writing a query or selling an e-book, you must learn to sell yourself and your products or ideas. Once you've mastered this skill, it'll be hard for an editor, or a potential customer, to say no.

Also - feel free to mention any upcoming books, projects or teleseminars you have coming.

Thanks Jeff - - I would like to mention again the new e-book, "Make Money ePublishing" I have coming out at the end of January. I'm offering a pre-order discount of 25-percent for anyone who orders up til January 31, 2004. After that, the price will go up. The book is all about selling your fiction or non-fiction e-books, including setting up a Web site, marketing, developing a mailing list, pricing--all those things writers need to know in order to start creating a passive income.

I'm also offering a teleseminar just before the book is released. If any of your readers would like more information as the date is established, they can e-mail me at

Jeff [Final Remarks]

Thanks again Nancy - your information and book really help us understand what separates the starving writers from those who use the written word to write their own ticket to a terrific income.

Folks - if you're curious about Nancy's products, you'll find them right here:

Secrets of A Successful Freelancer

Make Money ePublishing


Give some of Nancy's ideas a try, hopefully you found this interview valuable.

I'll see you in a week with the next full issue of "Online Marketing Success Secrets Revealed!"

Here's how you can reach me...

Have a super weekend!

Jeff Smith


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Jeff Smith
Editor Online Marketing Secrets Revealed