This post is going to be a bit out of the ordinary for us: instead of me picking a subject and nattering on about it for a few hundred words, I’d like to shine a spotlight on one of Content Runner’s most successful Writers: lisakroulik. Lisa has been kind enough to let me tell her story, using some of her own words, which have been lightly edited for context, clarity and length.
Meet Lisa Kroulik
Lisa made writing her full-time career in 2011, focusing on online copywriting exclusively for two years before branching into self-publishing. She spent the first few years working across at least a dozen different freelance platforms. At each one, she said, transparency was an issue. She found herself unable to communicate with her clients directly—or prevented from even knowing who she was working for.
“I had a regular client on [another platform] for 2 years and I never knew the company’s name or who I was talking to in emails because they edited out any contact information. Eventually, that made it hard for me to do my job because I didn’t know the client’s goals or vision. My writing became stale and the client fired me.”
Lisa’s experiences on other platforms are exactly why we decided to create Content Runner in the first place. We wanted to build an open marketplace where Writers and Users—their clients—could work freely with one another on their own terms. All the services that were on the market at the time relied on the same sort of heavy censorship of communications between writers and clients that Lisa experienced. Between the draconian radio silence policies and shockingly low prices, it seemed that those platforms were far better places to be a client than to be a writer. Without being able to even exchange a simple email, writers on other sites were left to fend for themselves and, with little or no ability to contact their clients directly, guess at what they were expected to write.
Transparency is extremely important to us: we want to encourage our Writers and Users to develop real, lasting working relationships with one another, and it’s impossible to do that when you’re not permitted to communicate. We think Lisa is exactly right: Writers who can work closely with their customers are better Writers and produce better content, making for happier clients. Everyone wins!
“Last year I took several temporary data entry jobs for very low pay because I couldn’t make a living at this anymore. I hated that after the flexibility of working for myself for the previous three years. I considered going back to school to learn how to start my own copywriting business, but at my age [Editor’s note: we’re not telling!] I wasn’t too enthused about that. I also just like to write and not have to take care of the business end of things like finding clients and billing.”
We’ve heard similar stories from lots of our Writers, and we wanted our site to be different. First of all, we wanted our Writers to be able to earn what they’re worth! To that end, and to reward Writers and Users who forge meaningful long-term working relationships, Content Runner now takes a lower fee on transactions between patrons who work together frequently. (You can read more about the Fee Scale here, if you’re interested.) And we wanted to take the burden of “the business end of things” off our Writers’ plates. We hope that Content Runner is a marketplace where Users who need content can easily meet and form working relationships with our talented Writers to produce stellar content, without all the hassle.
As of writing, Lisa has written just shy of 200 articles on Content Runner, and her cumulative star rating is an impressive 4.8—one of the highest on the site. A quick visit to her profile will provide a bevy of glowing reviews from satisfied Users. But it isn’t just her stellar writing that’s earned her a reputation for excellence on Content Runner. Lisa is also very communicative, proactive, a skilled hand with research into even the densest subjects and a genuine pleasure to work with besides.
And it’s clear that all that hard work is paying off! Lisa’s industriousness and quick turnaround time have made her one of the site’s highest earners, and for good reason. Here’s Lisa again:
“I have recently had the chance to speak on the phone to [two different clients], both of whom send me regular Direct Orders. This is exciting to me because I feel like meeting them and understanding how my content fits into their company goals makes me a better writer. I love that Content Runner trusts its Writers enough to allow us to develop relationships with clients.”
Music to our ears!
We’re Always Working for You
We’ve always been dedicated to both our Writers and our Users, and we’ve never censored messages to prevent certain kinds of information, like email addresses, from being shared. We recently rolled out a number of small features that we think will help our Users and Writers connect and communicate more easily.
Users can now include an attached file with every order they upload to give the Writer all the information they might need—whether it be images, video, a template web page to be filled with copy, or any of a limitless number of other things. Users now have the option to request a cancellation for an article; if the Writer consents to cancel the article, they receive no penalty in their statistics and the project is simply removed from their Dashboard.
Writers are free to create and post Offerings that showcase their unique talents and set their own price for that content. If a Writer were an expert in animal husbandry, for example, they may never see an order from a User that would allow them to display their expertise. Creating an Offering is a great way for Writers to advertise skills and niche knowledge that Users might otherwise not know they had. You can even advertise your Offerings on Twitter to attract more attention from a wider audience. (Lisa was an early adopter of this feature, too—you can follow her on Twitter here.)
We’re proud of each and every one of our Writers, but I wanted to take a second to shine a spotlight on Lisa because she’s done such an amazing job of making Content Runner work for her. Thanks for everything you do, Lisa, and all our Users and Writers! We wouldn’t be where we are without our community of Users and Writers, and we promise to keep working to improve your experience on our site.
If you have any questions or comments, feedback, funny stories, adorable pictures of bunnies or hilarious cat videos, send them my way! I’m always happy to help.