Marketing tips for editors: How to promote yourself online

by Amy Haagsma

As editors have traded red pens for tracked changes and proofreading stamps, the way we do business and promote ourselves has also gone digital. A successful online marketing strategy can help you reach prospective clients, demonstrate your expertise and differentiate yourself from your competitors. You can develop your online presence in a number of ways, including a business website, a blog, social media profiles and online directories such as EAC’s Online Directory of Editors. Regardless of the platforms you choose, it’s important to maintain a professional profile that communicates your ability to prospective clients.

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Create a business website

A website is one of the easiest ways to establish an online presence and is a relatively inexpensive form of marketing. With prospective clients increasingly turning to the internet before making purchasing decisions, a website helps your product or service become one of the considered options. Clients and prospective clients will also look at your website to find out more about what you do and how to contact you. EAC membership is an excellent way to differentiate yourself and give you added credibility, so be sure to include the EAC member website logo to your site.

Your website does not need to be complex; even a one-page site can communicate the required information. Additional pages could include an about us page, a services page, a contact page, an online portfolio and client testimonials. Depending on your level of technical expertise, you may decide to build your own website using WordPress or a similar platform.

Web copy should be concise, well written and easy to scan. To help search engines find your site, be sure to incorporate keywords that prospective clients would use when looking for an editor with your skills. Google’s Keyword Planner can help you focus your web copy, and an analytics program such as Google Analytics can monitor your reach.

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Write a blog

A blog is an extension of your website and can help you increase your online presence. It can drive traffic to your website, generate interest in your services and help you position yourself as an expert. Unlike a website, a blog is updated quite frequently. This generates a steady stream of fresh content, which Google and other search engines view as favourable.

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Establish a presence on social media

Social media can be an excellent channel to reach and engage with clients. LinkedIn and Twitter are the most popular sites for business networking, while Facebook tends to be used more for social networking. However, many businesses have used Facebook very successfully. For example, Grammarly, an automated proofreading service, has more than one million Facebook fans.

It’s important to realize that social media should not be a sales pitch. As a rule of thumb, only 20% of your content should be used to promote your brand and 80% should be designed to engage your audience. Your followers will often share posts that are interesting and useful to them, which can extend your reach and potentially lead to new business. It’s ideal to post at least a few times a week to maintain a regular following.

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List your services in the EAC Online Directory of Editors

The Online Directory of Editors is a searchable directory of EAC member profiles. Prospective clients can search for editors by keywords, skills and experience, working languages and location. Profiles include a listing of editorial skills, media/genres, subjects and other interests, as well as a summary statement. The summary statement should highlight your unique skills and incorporate a variety of keywords that a client might use to find you. The first 150 characters (about 20-25 words) of your profile are displayed in the search results page, so a compelling introductory sentence is especially important.

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Amy Haagsma is a marketing communications professional and a student in SFU’s Editing Certificate program.

Image by Shutterstock

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