Komal Ahuja, Writer & Marketer, Shares Tips On How To Grow As A Freelance Content Writer Today


Komal Ahuja is a Freelance Content Writer and Marketer who helps brands create, connect, and market their content. She helps brands create content that directly speaks to their audience, establishing them as a thought leader.

She humbly says, “While content marketing is something I'm still evolving into, writing remains my first love. Understanding consumer psychology and buying decisions not only helps me be a better marketer but also a better writer and I wouldn't have it any other way!”

Find out about her journey and tips she has for budding writers.

1. Why did you choose to work as a freelance content writer instead of being associated with a company?

I had never thought about working as a freelancer until one day someone approached me on LinkedIn to work with them as a freelancer. I grabbed the opportunity and have never looked back since then. I feel when you’re freelancing, more than anything you get exposure and an opportunity to upskill yourself.

Everything is in your hands right from pitching, closing, working, marketing yourself, invoicing, follow-ups, and more. Amidst all this, I’m also working on my personal brand, which I wouldn't have been able to if I was working with a company.

Being an employee, there are ample opportunities within the company, but now that I’m freelancing, I’ve given interviews, spoken on webinars, created my own videos to educate my audience about writing and content marketing. This has not only given way to exploring freelance gigs but extended opportunities for speaking, training and mentoring.

My learning curve has only gone up, and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Being independent is scary, but it’s definitely worth it!

2. As a content writer, is there any field that you haven’t written for but are keen to write on?

I haven’t written about the hospitality industry and weddings. This is one niche I’d love to write for, given my love for weddings, entertainment and hospitality. Moreover, two of my family members are in the wedding and entertainment industry, so the excitement is at par. However, I haven’t really come across anyone inquiring for content in these fields, but I’d love to write for them.

I’ve written on lifestyle, relationships, lab testings, startups, entrepreneurship, remote working, travel, but I most definitely enjoyed writing about marketing. That is one niche I’m intrigued to write about every time such a project comes my way.

3. As a freelancer, what changes do you see taking place within the content writing space as the gig economy is booming like never before?

I’ve seen a sudden surge in content requirements by brands and startups with the onset of the pandemic, such that everyone has realized the importance of a digital presence and how essential a role content plays in it.

Today, everyone wants to have a top-notch website with great content and content-churning social media platforms, which certainly wasn’t the case a while back. Locked down inside our homes, content was the only means brands had to communicate with the audience and keep them engaged.

This also saw an increase in the number of content writers especially in India, but what I do feel is that now content won’t be taken for granted and the role of a writer in an agency- employee or freelancer has increased multifold and is here to stay!

4. What according to you makes a good piece of content? How do you know if your content is well received?

A good piece of content speaks directly to the audience. I feel with every piece of content; you deliver a certain value and intent which is reflected in the message. This intent directly correlates with the target audience’s needs.

If my content adds value to people such that even 1 person is benefited from it, my work is done. Because, at the end of the day, if I’ve written content from the end-users perspective and it’s received the way I intended, nothing better than that.

5. What writing tools are you familiar with and make use of while writing content?

For exploring content ideas, I use Quora, Reddit, and Answer the public.

For keyword research, I use Ahrefs and for proofreading, Grammarly.

When I started out, I used to rely on a number of tools to get my work done but not anymore because if my content wants to convey a message and evoke emotion, then tools can’t help me, but being human can. And that includes making mistakes.

So, I keep the use of tools limited to the criteria that it increases my productivity. If it does, I use it and if it hinders my creativity; I say bye-bye!

6. What are your strengths and weaknesses when it comes to writing?

I’d say my strength is drafting a storyline such that the message is conveyed with emotion. Even if it’s a tech article, if a layman can not understand or relate to it, the writer has failed. So, I feel that is something I’ve been able to do.

My weakness is spending too much time on research because although, yes, researching and writing the outline before writing the first draft is important but so much content consumption has conditioned me to skim through content while doing the research. I look for stuff that isn’t out there and can contribute a fresh perspective to the writeup. So, in the process, I end up taking a lot of time to research, but I’m working on that!

7. What do you love when it comes to writing?

Ah, the creativity!

My first draft is a canvas my tap of creativity paints with its thoughts and I absolutely love it.

The fact that after research, my thoughts can create original ideas for the content and a perspective which strives to differ from the existing content on the same topic excites me. It’s a challenge, and it is super fun. Some days I have to force myself to be creative and others it’s a waterfall refusing to stop.

8. Any tips that you may have for writers wanting to get into writing and as a freelancer?

Don’t stop being authentic!

Research and so much content consumption influences the original thought and take on things around us and that is one thing which can make our mind work like just any other writer, eventually producing a similar output.; here being your authentic self can create a world of difference.

Moreover, consuming different types of content like podcasts, videos, interviews, web series and books should be a constant activity because to prevent the mind from being monotonous, feeding it different types of content is necessary.

Upskilling should be a definite thing on the list because till your learning curve is on the rise, opportunities won’t stop gushing down your way!

9. How do you integrate SEO into your content?

I don’t chase SEO to guide my writing but I do instill the necessary like:

  • Using long-tail keywords

  • Keyword density

  • Optimizing the length of the content

  • Using enough white spaces

  • Using bullets and numbering to keep the structure consistent

  • Using headers and subheads- H1, H2, H3

Rapid Fire Questions:

The book you are currently reading

‘This is Marketing’ by Seth Godin.

Favorite travel destination

Goa

Last series you binge-watched on Netflix

The OC