As the need for high-quality, on demand nursing related content continues to increase, nurses have unlimited opportunity to become well-paid writers. Whether choosing to write articles that speak to a particular audience, or developing individualized content for hire, nurse writers are very much in demand.
Because nurses are able to speak to an audience in a way that others without our industry experience cannot, we are able to leverage our expertise in a way that helps to secure writing gigs and build a strong following. Even if you’re only interested in writing for fun, there are still a few things you’ll need to do in order to get your writing noticed.
Since you’ve read this far, I’d assume that you are interested in learning more! So without further adieu, here are 5 things that every nurse writer needs to know:
1. Build a Beautiful Website to Host your Work
When you are interested in learning about someone and the work they do, where do you go to find out more? If you said “their website” then you are just like everyone else! It has become an expectation for all businesses and freelance professionals to have a website that not only lists their products and services, but serves as a communication platform for their clients and readers as well.
When you are building your website you want it to look professional, but don’t be afraid to show some of your personality too! Your website doesn’t have to be fancy. If you look at my services page, you will see that it is a simple page that clearly defines the services I provide. The most important thing is creating a website that clearly represents you and the work that you do.
2. Find Your Niche Audience and Write to Their Needs
Finding a niche audience and writing to their needs has been one of the most challenging things for me to accomplish. With all of my varying experiences, opinions, and worldly views, I found myself wanting to write about whatever popped into my head. For example, one article would be about reality shock and then the next would discuss hospital value-based purchasing. Although both topics are nursing related, they cater to two very different types of reader. The problem with writing this way is that it is difficult to gain a loyal following.
I have since figured out that my niche audience is nursing students and new grads. I provide them with what they need: study tips, coaching, mentoring and tutoring. By creating content that is specialized and focused on providing value for my niche audience, I have gained a larger, more loyal following.
3. Write on Topics You Love
There’s always that one writing assignment we agree to, and wind up hating – but that’s okay! What’s not okay is continuously accepting writing assignments that you’re not excited about. Let’s face it, if you can’t muster up some form of positive thinking on the topic, it shows in your work.
Readers have a keen ability to feel your presence, hear your tone, and read in between the lines. Trust me when I say that if you’re not passionate about the subject you’re writing about, they will know it. This will cause you to lose followers, as well as potential clients. So, the next time you are considering a writing assignment that doesn’t get you pumped and ready to go, – DON’T! You and your readers will be glad that you decided to say no, thank you, and kept moving.
4. Network with Like-Minded Individuals
When I first started writing, I felt that it would be best to do all my research independently. This meant not sharing my ideas for content creation with others. For some silly reason, I was under the impression that if others learned of my ideas, that they would swoop in and steal it. I didn’t want someone taking my intellectual property and creating the amazing business I was set out to create! Well, I learned real quick that wasn’t the way to go. Not sharing my ideas with other like-minded individuals was a huge disservice to my professional growth.
In fact, it wasn’t until I started to share my ideas with other like-minded individuals, that I began making real progress. I learned of questions I never thought to ask. I learned of potential flaws, and learned how to identify many business opportunities. I learned how the sharing of my ideas could inspire, motivate and attract others who want to cheer, support and validate my work. It is with no doubt that seeking out other like-minded individuals and bouncing ideas around is easily one of the most valuable things I have ever done for my professional growth as a nurse writer.
5. Carefully Listen to Your Audience and Clients
The power of listening to your audience and client base can’t be stressed enough! The last thing you want is to create content that does not meet the expectations of your readers. Whether you’re writing for a group of eager nursing students or a prestigious nursing organization, make sure to listen carefully.
It’s also important to let clients voice their concerns openly and honestly. It may seem intuitive to reassure them, rather than letting them express themselves, but it isn’t good for either one of you. Trust me, I speak from experience. I’ve learned the hard way that it’s important to allow people to fully express their desires, hesitations, and needs before formulating a response. Not only does this method provide me with a better understanding of what they are asking of me, but it gives me the opportunity to form a comprehensive response as well. In the end, it winds up being a win-win situation!
I hope that you find these 5 things valuable to you and your writing journey, and don’t forget to be a gem and share this with others who may benefit from this advice!
Damion Jenkins is a nurse educator, mentor, tutor, blogger, content writer, and CEO of The Nurse Speak. He has been teaching nursing related courses for over six years, has more than 20 years of leadership and mentoring experience, and takes great pride in helping his students and clients meet their individualized needs!