How Freelance Writers Can Profit With Local Content Marketing Services

By Sean Ogle •  Updated: 05/11/23 •  8 min read

As freelance writers, we’re used to focusing most of our job searches online.

We go through job boards, send cold emails, connect through social media, and hope for the best. But because of that, we often overlook one of the very best places to get freelance writing jobs.

What is that place?

Your hometown.

Hitting up small and mediums sized businesses in your area and offering your local content marketing services is a great way to get more work.

Interested in learning more?

Keep reading, or check out the video.

Why I Love In-Person Meet Ups in Complementary Industries

Back when I was doing freelance SEO, one of my favorite ways to get new clients was to go to in-person meetups in complementary industries.

We get so caught up with the world of the internet that we often forget. Oh, yeah, there are real people out there. And, in doing so, we’re missing out on a great place to find work — or, at the very least, start building local connections.

Since I was doing SEO, I’d go to web design meetups. These designers weren’t professional SEOs, but they were building websites for clients who want their sites to be optimized for search.

Hint: web designers are great potential partners for freelance writers too.

We’d get to chatting, and I’d tell them I do SEO, and they’d say, ‘Hey, we’re building this website for this client. That client needs some SEO work. Would you like to partner with us?’

You can guess what my answer was.

Yes, it can be that easy.

That’s not to say avoid meetups and events in your own industries, you can still build great networks and even find work, but you want to be strategic about these things. There could be 50 or 100 people at these events, and I was the only SEO guy.

So, I was the obvious choice for any designer who needed a partner for that.

Now, how does this relate to freelance writing?

A Hidden Goldmine, Right in Your Backyard

One place that’s often overlooked by freelancers is your hometown and, more specifically, working with local businesses.

In your area, there are all these jobs that are sitting right under your nose. And the best part is, these are some of the easiest jobs to get.

So how do you find them?

I think there is a huge opportunity for freelance writers and copywriters in your hometown. I’m talking bars, restaurants, florists, dentists, printers, office cleaners, landscapers, you name it.

Most of these small businesses probably don’t have a dedicated marketing team. And on top of that, they may not know a whole lot about marketing, but they know they can benefit from content marketing services like blogging, email, and website updates.

In fact, they may stand to benefit more than online first businesses because they haven’t optimized their content, email list, or website for any of it. They know they probably should, but they just don’t have the bandwidth to do it.

That’s where you come in.

Right now, you have an opportunity to offer your local content marketing services to other businesses in your area.

Things like:

All of these things have the potential to have a huge impact on a local business, so there’s a lot of low-hanging fruit for you to swoop in and start moving things in the right direction.

You can make a relatively big impact for not a ton of work.

If you connect with a company with 3,000 people on their email list and they haven’t sent an email in three years, chances are just starting those emails up again will get that list re-engaged and a few new clients.

And that’s not even digging into great email marketing campaigns and sales emails. It’s just laying the foundation.

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Here’s How It Could Work

So imagine you’d love to offer email marketing services, but you don’t have a ton of experience.

This is a good thing because you don’t need to go into a lot of advanced tactics with a lot of small businesses; just get the basics up and running.

Rather than focusing all of your marketing and outreach efforts online, devote some time to contacting these local small and medium-sized businesses.

Tell them for $500 a month, you’ll help them with their email strategy. Get five of these new clients, and now you’ve got an extra $2,500 a month coming in.

There are a lot of benefits to this approach. First, you’re helping these businesses make more sales, and if they are happy, you’re building a big referral network. Now suddenly, you’re the email marketing guy or gal in your town.

On top of that, you’re getting great experience that you can use as demonstrated proof in your online portfolio, which you can use to get better-paying gigs with bigger brands (if you want).

And, finally, with this type of work, you’re probably not spending more than a few hours a month per client. So you still have time to find other clients or do blog writing on the side.

You can do the same for any type of content marketing service.

Contact local restaurants and offer to re-write their websites to optimize for SEO so they show up in search engines. Find the companies that do have social media but have neglected it and offer to get it back up and running — here’s where you can use some AI writing tools to your advantage.

How to Offer Local Content Marketing Services

So how do you actually go about doing this?

Well, first off, decide if you want to niche down. In some cases, it can make things a lot easier.

Say you want to work with florists. Then, get on Google and search for all the florists in your area. Once you have that list, get in touch. Send over an LOI, or since they’re local, head over to the florist shop and introduce yourself.

There is so much magic to meeting someone in person. If you can actually meet someone and shake their hand and build a little bit of rapport, it gets so much easier to turn that person into a client.

But if email is the way you want to do it, have a cold email strategy in place. And since you’re local, it already helps you stand out.

Here’s one I’d try:


My name is Sean, and I’m a professional marketer and copywriter for florists. I also live in Portland. I love what you’re doing. I actually just bought some flowers for my mom from your place. I’d love to send over some ideas I think might help you get more business for relatively little work.

Is this something you’d like to talk more about?

And then see where it goes. If they say yes, I’m interested, then you can have a conversation in person. If not, it’s ok. Rejection happens as a freelancer; move on to the next offer.

Yes, that’s a little more work, and it can feel daunting, but you can really get so much from having a chat with someone offline.

So start with Google.

Another place to look is your local Chamber of Commerce or Business Associations. These sites usually let you join for relatively cheap, but if you don’t want to join just yet, check out their website and see who are members.

There are some benefits to joining, based on your local area. For example, many have young members’ clubs, monthly meetups, and happy hour meet-and-greet events.

These are great because everyone is there specifically to meet someone new and chat about business. So you don’t have to feel awkward going into events like these, and it gives you a perfect chance to talk about your local content marketing services.

This comes full circle back to my strategy of going to in-person meetups in complementary industries.

See what I did there?

There’s so much that can be done in person.

Get Out There and Start Connecting

Start thinking about how you can help out other small business owners who probably don’t have a huge marketing budget but can afford around $500 or $1,000 a month (even better if it’s more) to get someone to take blogging, email writing, copywriting, or social media off their plates.

Show them how you can help them make more sales and get more customers, and you’ll make some amazing connections, build a solid portfolio, bring in more referrals, and of course, make money.

Often small local businesses can be some of the most fun client relationships you have, you can make the biggest impact quickly, and it can have a positive effect on the businesses within your local community, which is really cool.

Sean Ogle

Sean Ogle is the Founder of Location Rebel where he has spent the last 12+ years teaching people how to build online businesses that give them the freedom to do more of the things they like to do in life. When he's not in the coffee shops of Portland, or the beaches of Bali, he's probably sneaking into some other high-class establishment where he most certainly doesn't belong.
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