An example of an appropriate profile picture.

Friendly, yet professional! Too bad it’s a stock photo…

Trust is often the underlying reason someone gets hired. Both the stern CEO of a Fortune 500 company and the friendly owner of the local soda shop must be convinced that any potential employee will do a good job. In our case here at Content Runner, Users must trust that a Writer will follow through on their projects, that the writing will be high quality, and that their instructions will be followed. Your application, resumé, and interview are all wrapped up in your Writer profile. If it reflects the best professional version of yourself, you’re more likely to attract new and repeat clients.

1. Update Your Photo

The option to add a profile picture exists for a reason, and that reason doesn’t include uploading a picture of your very-adorable-but-unable-to-use-a-word-processor dog. When choosing a profile picture, make sure it’s a head shot, doesn’t include too much background noise or other entities and objects, and that it reflects an appropriate setting. You might look peachy-keen in that overexposed selfie from Moe’s Tavern last weekend, but it will only show a potential client that you don’t take yourself (or your work!) seriously. Logos, illustrations, and other such images give a spammy, unprofessional feel to the profile, and may result in less work.

Biography text

She’s not off to a great start here.

2. Craft Your Biography

Here are the golden words to heed for your professional Writer profile: don’t over-share. Users want to know what you can do – not why. Your writing skills and relevant experience are what should populate the biography text field, not your life story. While you should use your own unique voice and tone when writing your bio, save the personal anecdotes for your memoirs. Focus on sharing the wonderful aspects of yourself that lend themselves to creating great content.

3. Show Off

There’s a space devoted to strutting your proverbial stuff right under the biography, and I highly recommend you take advantage. By displaying your education and certifications, you’re instilling that all-important trust in your Users. If you have a blog that you feel comfortable sharing, you can add a link here, and you can upload your CV or resumé, allowing Users more traditional insight into your abilities.

Niche and education examples

It’s the little touches that count.

You should also delineate a few niches you’re particularly adept at writing on. This section keeps a running tally of what kind of content you write, and as you contribute more and more articles in these fields, your expertise and reliability grows.

If you’re comfortable with how you’ve presented yourself via social media, there’s also a place to promote your Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook. If you’ve got one too many questionable status updates and awkward pictures, however, feel free to leave this blank.

4. Provide a Polished Writing Sample

If you ignore all other advice contained herein, pay heed to this: include a writing sample! You can write about your great qualities until you’re blue in the keyboard, but as the old adage says, actions speak louder than words. Showing your potential clients what you can do will go far in convincing them to choose you above the other hundreds of Writers on the site!

When choosing your writing sample, there are a few key points to keep in mind:

  • First, you must never upload a sample that you’ve ghostwritten for a client; once you’re paid for ghostwritten work, the rights are transferred to the User and you can no longer claim it as your own.
  • Second, choose writing of a manageable length. Several hundred words is enough to showcase your skills while making sure the reader won’t lose interest.
  • Finally, read your writing sample over. This is your written representation of your skills; if you choose to upload a sample riddled with errors, you may come across as careless, hasty, or worse, unskilled.
Populate your statistics as you write.

You’ll want to build some statistics, of course.

5. Consider Your Statistics

There are a few other ways to ensure that your Writer profile represents you well. From your very first article, consider the statistics that are displayed below your picture. Your star ranking grows and shrinks depending on User article ratings. The more you drop articles or allow them to become revoked when overdue, the higher your drop rate percentage will be.

If your writing is sometimes a little hurried and you miss something stipulated in the prompt, or if you’re just having an off day and require a number of revisions, your revision rate percentage will rise as well. It’s rare that an article is rejected, but if that happens, it will also be reflected in your statistics.

Always remember that you’re encouraged to reach out to your Users; if you don’t understand a prompt or the revision request is unclear, send them a friendly message.

6. Ditch Your Username From 2002

We can’t all use our first Internet alias into adulthood (“supremecelery” on AOL Instant Messenger, anyone? Just me? Yikes). Just like you wouldn’t create a login at the office for “dragonslayer1350,” make sure your user identity reflects who you are in a professional light. Even if you’d rather not display your whole name, a combination of initials, last name, and numbers can be a straightforward, respectable, moderately anonymous choice. And if you’ve already chosen a somewhat dubious name for your login, don’t despair; you can always change it in your account settings.

As a Writer, one of the best ways to get your work taken seriously on Content Runner is to jazz up your profile. It’s a glimpse into your personality and your abilities; just as you wouldn’t turn in a resumé without a thorough edit, make sure your Writer profile is an accurate representation of what you can do.