Chris, the rates you can actually command here are definitely a good bit higher than what you see posted for the vast majority of jobs, and you definitely don't need to pay for a class to make that work.
That said, your initial post made me very curious. You seem to be saying that you were routinely paying $500/short blog post on behalf of your content marketing clients? Obviously there's going to be some mark-up on that, so conservatively speaking, that means a client purchasing four 500-word blog posts per month paid $2500 or more?
Tiffany, blogging was primarily done in-house, though we did occassionally hire freelancers to blog. But yes, we typically paid $350 to $500 for a blog post. We considered 500 words to be standard for blog posts, though I am aware that much of the advice online is to publish 1,000-words or more in order to rank higher in Google.
We primarily hired freelancers to write lengthier articles (up to 2,500 words) for print publications that would often get repurposed online and in tablets. And yes, we paid $1 per word for those, so a single article could net a freelancer $2,500. Those articles, however, required minimum 3 interviews and multiple revisions, so they were many hours work.
I don't know the exact client markup, though the business focused on selling broad packages that included a print mag, blog, social, etc. So the relationships were typically time-based rather than by the article or blog post. I had a couple of clients that renogotiated and renewed each year, and another one that renewed every three years. So It was the managing editor's role to determine how much content to commission that met the client's goals and stayed within budget.
That's very interesting, Chris. I've been in content marketing since long before it had a name, and I've never encountered an agency or direct client that paid the same rates for blog posts as in-depth print publication articles. The rates you mention make a lot of sense for the in-depth pieces, where there's a significant amount of non-writing time involved. For blog posts, though...well...I wish I'd been contracting for your agency, because at more than $500/hour for blog posts, I could have either worked five hours a week or worked full time for one year and never worked again.
It was up to $500 per post, not per hour.
I guess "blog post" means different things to different people. The specific blog I'm thinking of was for a hospital client and required an interview with one of their medical practitioners. So there was time spent scheduling the interview, researching the topic, performing the interview, writing the piece, and making client revisions. Another client I did not work on was a technology firm, and I don't know if their blog posts required interviews but I do know they required research and technical expertise.
That makes a lot more sense, but doesn't really translate to most of the apparently parallel job postings your initial post seemed to be comparing your rates with. The vast majority of 500-word blogging jobs posted on Upwork involve pieces a seasoned writer could easily knock out in 30-60 minutes.
Agreed, it's not a fair comparison if that's the case. I haven't landed a job on Upwork yet, so I don't know what clients here are typically looking for, and many of the job postings lack detail.
His rates aren't too far off. I get $400 from one client that needs a coder to write it. 500 words but I played with their system, installed their thing on my server and wrote some code for some of them.
They just launched a guide for something that was a lot of coding and whatnot. Cost them about $7000 total with all writing and editing rounds.
I notice someone in this forum took "inspiration" from my profile but you can't bs years of experience working with coding teams, so nice try pal.
That makes sense, Jennifer, but I don't think it's representative of the typical writing job on Upwork. I've written pieces in the past that were for print journals or required interviews that paid a much higher rate per word because the writing wasn't the time-consuming part of the job.
I don't often see that sort of work in the blogging category on Upwork--the blog post gigs I've seen here have almost exclusively been of the sort that draws on existing knowledge and perhaps 15 minutes of gathering a few specific stats or the language of a particular provision.