How to Start Online Writing in Kenya [2022 Guide]

How to Start Online Writing in Kenya [2022 Guide]


This is a complete step-by-step guide on how to start online writing in Kenya and make 100K/month. I also reveal the strategies that you need to use to start making money ASAP.

For anyone who is interested in freelance writing jobs in Kenya, this is one of the best guides you’ll ever find on how to take your career as a freelancer writer to the next level.

Freelance writing is one of the most legit ways to earn a living online in Kenya. In fact, it is one of the easiest ways to make money on the side without having to worry about getting scammed.

Most people think freelance writing in Kenya is just for blogs or content sites. However, there are many other platforms that you can get paid to write for.

If you are a foreigner in Kenya, this will definitely be the most profitable side hustle that you could ever start. You’ll also never have to worry about running out of things to write about.

The highest paying freelance writing jobs in Kenya pay more than KES 100,000 per month.

In this guide, I’ll show you exactly how to land such jobs and start making 100K+ per month as soon as possible.


What Is Freelance Writing?

Freelance writing is a way to make money online by creating content for clients. In most cases, you are providing services as an independent contractor for one client or more.

Some of the best freelance writing jobs in Kenya can land you jobs that pay more than KES 100,000 per month. However, competition is tough and it isn’t always easy to find a good-paying job that you love.

If you are willing to put in the time and effort, freelance writing can be a simple way to earn money online without being an internet marketer or trying your hand at affiliate marketing.

After reading this guide, you will have no problem finding clients and making more than KES 100K per month.


How to Start Freelance Writing in Kenya

We are going to go through the exact steps you need to follow in order to get started as a freelance writer from Kenya.

If you already have experience as a content writer, some of the steps may seem familiar. However, if you are just starting out, this is going to be one of the best guides on how to start your freelance writing business.

Step 1: Learn How to Write for the Web


Good freelance writing is about being able to understand your client’s needs and/or niche. It also involves knowing how to engage the reader, whatever the topic may be.

What many people don’t realize about freelance writing in Kenya is that they must learn how to write for the web. Most of us are used to writing standard paper manuscripts or school compositions, but for freelance writing, you’ll be expected to write for the web as well.

Writing for the web involves understanding how the internet works. This includes mastering things like search engine optimization (SEO), website navigation and keyword research.

In fact, many of the freelance writing jobs in Kenya that pay KES 100K+ even require you to have at least some knowledge of how to optimize your content for search engines.

Learn how to write for the web, and you’ll be very close [to] landing clients online.

You can check out this summarised guide on how to write for the web.

Step 2: Understand the Skills and Tools Required to Become a Freelance Writer in Kenya


After learning how to write for the web, you will need a few skills and tools that will come in handy later on.

First of all, you’ll need basic knowledge about how computers work and what software is best suited for your needs. This includes things like text editors, word processors, proofreaders and task management tools like Asana.

Secondly, as a freelance writer in Kenya who wants to make real money, you will need basic knowledge about all the social media platforms out there. This includes things like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. This is because you will need these platforms to find new clients.

Third, to freelance write in Kenya, you’ll need basic knowledge of blogging skills. This is because most clients want blog posts written by bloggers who know how to engage the reader.

You should also be conversant with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) which is a way to make your client’s articles rank betterin search engines (such as Google).

Step 3: Choose A Niche


With your basic knowledge of how to write for the web, social media and blogging, you can now search for a freelance writing niche that fits your skill set.

Find yourself a profitable niche or one you love writing about, then start searching for clients in that industry. Use Google Alerts and other tools to help you find new niche markets to explore.

As an example, you can decide to focus on personal finance or health and fitness. So when a client is looking for a personal finance writer, they are more likely to pick you than someone who writes about everything.

Niching down does not mean that you will now get fewer clients. On the contrary, a niche market will actually help you to get more clients because you are now able to focus and sell yourself as an expert in a certain field instead of a general writer.

The most profitable freelance writing niches in Kenya right now include:

· Personal finance

· Health and fitness

· Online business

· Cryptocurrencies

· Relationships and family

· etc

You can check out this guide on SmartBlogger for a more comprehensive list of high-paying freelance writing niches.

When you have found a niche, try to sell yourself as an expert in that field. Many clients will automatically assume that you are an expert if they find your blog or personal site.

So make sure it states somewhere on your site that you are a freelance writer who specializes in whatever market you wish to enter.

Step 4: Create a Writer Website or Blog


A writer website is where you advertise your services. It has little content whcih usually includes a landing page to attract clients. You can also have a few sample articles to use while applying for work.

On the other hand, a blog is more extensive and has several articles on a certain topic. With a blog, you don’t have to necessarily advertise your writing services but it makes for a great portfolio when applying for work.

First of all, your writer website does not necessarily need to be a very professional-looking website. In fact, many clients expect that you are their ” friendly neighbourhood freelance writer in Kenya”, so try to keep your website simple and relatable for them.

Writers who have a simple personal blog also tend to get more work because clients see them as experts in what they do.

Your website can be anything from a free WordPress.com site all the way up to a custom website designed by yourself or an expert.

This is because your goal should not be to impress potential clients with a fancy website. Instead, you should be using your site to help you get more clients and grow your business.

The important thing is that:

· Your writer website should include information about the topics you are best at writing about

· It should have an email address where people can contact you

· Your website should be easy to share and link to on social media like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google+. This includes your personal Facebook profile as well. Make sure that all of these profiles have the same name so that people can recognize you online.

Step 5: Write Your First Sample


After setting up your website or blog, you will need to write your first sample post to show to clients. This is the first step towards building your portfolio ( more about this in the next section)

Make sure that your first article stands out from the rest. You want to give a good first impression so that clients will want to work with you.

In a nutshell, a great sample article should;

· Be about the niche you are best at writing in ( for example, a health and fitness article if that’s your niche)

· Be 100% unique content, written by yourself

· Have an easily identifiable topic to show people how you can write for them

· Have a catchy and attention-grabbing headline ( see our guide to writing viral headlines )

Always bear in mind that this is only a sample. You can write unique content yourself but you do not need to go overboard with SEO and the like. Clients will want to hire you primarily for your writing skills, so keep that in mind as you write.

Step 6: Diversify Your Portfolio


After writing your first article, you will need to write even more. A good portfolio consists of about 5 articles, which are enough to convince clients that you are an expert in your niche.

Clients will not expect top-notch writing immediately; they understand that you will need time to improve if this is your line of business for the first time.

So write a couple more articles and delegate their distribution to people you know. It is wise to ask your friends and family to share at least a couple of your articles online before approaching clients.

There are plenty of platforms where you can publish articles apart from your own website or blog. For instance, try writing for the following:

· Medium

· LinkedIn

· Major publications like Forbes or Entrepreun ere

· Guest posting on other websites/blogs

· E-zines like Ezine Articles

· Websites like GoArticles.com and Web2PDFConvert.com

While you might not get paid for guest posts right away, they are a great way to build up your portfolio. Make sure that all the articles you publish are relevant to the niche you picked in step 3.

Great! Now you have a wonderful portfolio of your work, it is time to decide on your rates.

Step 7: Decide on Your Rates


Now that you have a fair amount of content to show to clients, it is time to think about how much you want to be paid before actually finding clients.

So how do you decide on your rates?

The best way is to simply charge based on the number of words your write and the technicality of your niche. For example, you might charge $0.02 per word for a start.

Remember that the goal here is to make KES 100,000 per month. This means that you will need to charge a slightly higher rate to avoid writing a lot of articles each month.

For instance, if your charge $0.03 per word, you will be paid $30 per 1000-word article. That is about KES 3,000 for one article (assuming that the rate is $1 equals KES 100).

Now, if one article is KES 3,000, how many do you need to write to make KES 100,000 per month?

That is 100,000 divide by 3,000 which is around 34 1000-word articles per month. That seems like a lot of articles but if you can manage to write at least 1,500 – 2,000 words per day, you can reduce the number significantly.

As you can see, to make KES 100,000 per month freelance writing in Kenya, you will need to find high-paying clients. But how exactly do you do that?

Let me show you how the next step.

Step 8: Start Looking for Clients


Now that you know how much you want to earn each month and how much you should charge per article, it is time to start looking for clients.

There are several ways that you can find high paying writing clients so I’m just going to touch on a few.

If you want a comprehensive list, you can check out this guide on the best websites to find high-paying freelance writing work in Kenya.

1. Social media

If you are just starting out, social media would be the perfect place to start looking for clients. In particular, I find three of these platforms to be perfect for finding writing work fast.

These are:

· Facebook

· LinkedIn

· Reddit

Let’s quickly look at how to utilize each of these platforms.

· Facebook: The best way to find writing jobs on Facebook is by joining relevant groups. Be active in the group by posting relevant content and commenting on other people’s posts. If it is a ‘job board’ group, there is a good chance that some of the members will be posting jobs. If you find a job that fits your skillset, apply a quickly as possible and make sure to share the samples you already wrote.

· LinkedIn Job Search: The job search feature is a great way to get clients fast. However, there are already plenty of freelance writers that use the job search feature on LinkedIn so you will need to make sure you stand out. You can do this by posting detailed and in-depth cover letters for each job you apply to. It is important that you personalize every cover letter as much as possible so take your time and make sure it looks amazing.

· LinkedIn InMails: Similar to the above, LinkedIn INMails are a great way to get clients. However, they tend to be less effective because most clients will ignore your application. In order to increase your chances of being noticed, you can create a template and send an individual message to each client. Being active and posting content relevant to your niche can also help get you, clients, on LinkedIn. Most importantly, ensure that your profile stands out by clearly stating what you do.

· Reddit: Reddit has a massive opportunity for freelance writers. The best part is, most people don’t know about it yet (that’s the good news). If you haven’t used Reddit yet, it is a website where people post links to interesting content. So as a freelance writer, your goal is to share great and relevant content on Reddit. In order to do this:  Find a subreddit that has an active community of readers. Share some cool links posted in this subreddit. Post your links at the most optimal time of day (usually in the morning between 8-12). Be engaged with other users and respond politely when they comment. If you do these steps, you should be able to get some clients from Reddit. You should also join subreddits where they hire freelance writers.

2. Job Boards

Apart from social media, there are also a number of job boards that have freelance writing jobs. Job boards are sites that list freelance gigs for an hourly or flat fee. Popular job boards include:

Here are some popular job boards:  

· Gigbucks

· MediaBistro

· ProBlogger

· Paid to Blog

· Freelance Writers Den.

· Writers Weekly

· JournalismJobs.

We love job boards because they are a quick and easy way to find freelance writing jobs. I recommend using multiple job boards because the competition is lower than social media (where every freelancer usually looks for writing gigs).

3. Email Cold-Pitching

Cold pitching is where you email a high paying client directly and ask them for a job. Cold pitching is very risky because you can end up looking like a scammer so I would not recommend it if you are just starting out.

However, this can be an extremely effective way to get clients when your portfolio looks good  (and you have been writing for a while).

To get started with cold pitching, you need to find a potential client/company that is willing to hire freelancers. You can do this by searching online or looking for companies that have job listings on job boards.

When you find an opportunity, send them an email telling them exactly why they should hire your services. This is the most important part so make sure you write a great email. Be honest and don’t over-exaggerate your abilities.

4. Writing Agencies

Finally, there are also agencies that will find you writing jobs and pay you a percentage for each job. These companies act as your middleman so the client doesn’t realize that you are working for them. This method is very similar to how salespeople get clients in business.

To use these companies:  Sign up with more than one agency so you have more opportunities to get clients. Make sure they are legit companies and not just a scam (you can check their reputation on the Better Business Bureau).

Most importantly, ensure that they pay you on time and as agreed because if they do not, they might cut out some of your earnings or even disappear with them all together.

5. Content Mills

Content mills are content marketplaces where clients post jobs then writers apply for those jobs. They differ from agencies because in this case, the client knows who they are giving the job to.

Here is how most content mills work:

· The client post a job

· Writers bid for the job

· The client picks the best writer based on their pitch and gives them the job

This might seem straightforward but most content mills are actually very competitive and you might have to bid hundreds of times before getting your first job.

The most popular content mills in Kenya include:

· Upwork

· Freelancer

· Elance

· PeoplePerHour

· Fivver

· iWriter

While they are great if you are just starting out, I do not recommend using content mills for long term business because they only pay what is offered (no negotiation) and the payment is usually low. The platform you are using also takes a cut of your earnings meaning you don’t get the full amount offered by the client.

Step 9: Deliver High-Quality Work


After getting your first client, you have to start delivering good quality content. This is probably the most difficult part because as a new writer, you may be afraid of not meeting up to the client’s expectations.

However, this is what separates average writers from great ones.  If you want to succeed in writing then you have to deliver good quality work every time and stick with the clients until they are content.

In order to deliver high-quality work, you need a personal writing process that works for you (which is different for everyone).  You also have to constantly research and update your skills so that you can communicate better with your clients.

To do all this, I recommend creating a strategy and following it.

Step 10: Keep Learning and Sharpening Your Skills


Learning how to be a better writer should not stop as soon as you get your first client. It should be something that you do constantly.

Keep learning about topics that interest you and skills that will make you a better writer. Read books, download e-books, take online classes, speak to experts, read blogs from writers who are doing well (I recommend following these)- do anything that will help you get better.

Most importantly, keep practising until you reach a level where your writing is competing with top writers in the world.


Conclusion: What You Need to Do Now

After reading this guide, you need to start taking action.  Here is everything we have talked about in a nutshell:

· Sharpen your writing skills

· Choose a niche and stick to it

· Create an impressive portfolio of your work

· Get published in at least one major publication

· Polish your social media profiles and start looking for work

· Get an account with freelancing platforms (Upwork, Freelancers) and start bidding for jobs 

· Create a personal strategy to follow while pitching clients  

· Deliver quality work and be patient with your clients until they are fully satisfied

· You need to keep practising until you get better. After all, you are new to this and there is a lot of improvement needed on your writing skills.

I hope you have learned a thing or two about writing. If you have any questions, shoot them in the comments section below and I’ll be glad to help you out.

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