Over the last few years I’ve hired many, many writers. More often than not, when making the final decision, I have to make the tough choice between several very talented writers.
So what’s the single biggest differentiating factor I use in choosing a writer?
Social Media Marketing Experience
Do you have an account at Digg? Reddit? StumbleUpon? Propeller?
If not, chances are that you’re at a disadvantage in the freelance writing job market. And chances are that you’ll be competing against someone who has this experience.
So why does a blog owner like me prefer writers who can help promote their own stories? Well, for a number of reasons. First, it shows an added level of investment and commitment to the job (i.e. it’s not just writing for writing’s sake). Second, social media is all about diversity of numbers. The more people involved in the promotion of a story, the better it’s chances of success. Third, it helps shape a writing environment in which articles are gradually shaped to fit the interests of the readership.
Whatever you think of these reasons, the fact is that all freelance writers should add “social media marketing” to their resume. It makes a huge difference to me, and I assume it makes a huge difference to other site owners too.