2013: The Year of the Online Writer

2013: The Year of the Online Writer

Reader Comments (122)

  1. I couldn’t agree more regarding Google, authority and authorship having a major impact on the Internet marketing and content creation efforts in 2013 and beyond. As if Google, Search, Plus Your World wasn’t sufficient reason for online marketers to get on board with Google+. Now Google+ communities provides another frontier. Thanks for sharing.

      • Not in the long run, or even the medium probably, G+ is growing fast and has a lot of relevance to SEO; in that realm it’s leading and others follow for obvious reasons. I think smaller businesses should focus on whichever social network works best for them, but anyone of any size, or dedicated to online services/marketing/relationships has to exploit the big three names at least.

  2. I’ve just started building my Google+ communities. It’s hard to keep up with Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin, now I’m adding Google, Pinterest, and more. I’ll keep slowly building and content is always my first focus.

  3. Nice application of the “Bikini Effect” in the image.
    Besides that, very compelling message.
    As usual, you are seeing a step ahead and pointing the way through action which is why you have my attention and patronage.
    Thank you for leading the way!

  4. Well, Brian, I love what your are saying and offering. I just hope that the paying public will be hopping on board as well. Too many years of cheap and crappy content has put web writers in a very defensive position, and jumping up and tooting our own horns won’t work unless we can actually prove ourselves. Ad agencies have faced the same challenge for years, and now it’s our turn.

      • Great! I look forward to the opportunity to contribute and advocate on behalf of other writers, as a law school graduate who chose a different career path. Once again, you are at the forefront of the rumblings and the groundswell of planetary shift, Brian. What a great day for it!

  5. Thank you, Brian and Sonia, for another great year filled with great content. Through you we have met so many other great writers who feed us through Copyblogger on a daily basis. If you mean to celebrate the writer, look in the mirror and raise the glass.

    Happy 2013!

  6. I’m SO excited! and looking forward to the return of Entreproducer Brian.
    I also think your comments are just as pertinent to the book writing/publishing community, who are authors of a different kind but certainly content producers.
    Last week in publishing came the depressing news that thousands of books are being generated by algorithms and uploaded to Amazon for the Kindle, and there’s a huge rise in “make money fast” on the Kindle. It sounds just like the internet marketing of the early years, with lots of hideous content that’s not quality or useful for anyone.
    I think that Amazon will have to do something like Google Panda/Penguin and change their algorithms to account for this – so the move to quality across the board is an excellent one.

    So it remains Plan A for us all – create great content, keep doing it over time, build a list of true fans (and have a good time doing it!)
    Thanks Brian, Sonia and the Copyblogger team – I can’t wait for 2013!

  7. How empowering. It is our responsibility as SME to bring our learning and experiences to our readers in ways that compel and stimulate. Thanks for doing just that.

  8. Best article a writer could read today. Thank you, Brian. I’ll be sharing this.
    I was already stoked about Content Marketing and 2013. This article takes it even higher. May need to lay off coffee this afternoon.

  9. Well, “Question Authority” is already taken. Maybe “Bludgeon Authority”? But “The Author in Red” does have a lovely ring.

    B&S, thanks for all your good stuff over the past year; looking forward to opening 2013’s presents. That is, if the world doesn’t end tomorrow…

  10. Just enough information to want to become one of your favorite people. A sentiment that I’m sure will grow in popularity as more is revealed, however.

    Hope you all have a wonderful holiday season! And if you’ll forgive the use of a “flat adverb” … travel safe!

  11. I would love to see realistic pricing on quality content. I truly wonder if it will ever happen. How can you make a living when Internet marketers are satisfied with what they are getting for a penny or two a word.

    I can make a lot more money writing a term paper or a thesis. At least there they know they must have the quality.

        • I know it’s tough, but don’t talk to those people. They’re not the right prospect for a professional writer. They’ll get it when they start to fail, maybe.

          Another key is to stop even talking about price per word. A solid pro writer sells a comprehensive content, conversion, and search strategy, not dollars for sentences. Don’t worry, we’ll talk more about how to do that in 2013.

  12. I’ve been a silent reader for a while now and can’t help but add a comment. Your site is tremendously helpful, and I hope all the best for Copyblogger in 2013. Continue strong. I run a team of 30 writers and a $130,000 copywriting business and we’ve only been around for 18 months. I foresee next year as HUGE – ever since Panda our services have been in demand, and it’s only growing for the better. Let’s just hope there aren’t any Internet rules passed under next year’s dictatorship….

  13. P.S. I’m hoping your idea is a plugin that will let me take my upcoming book text, paste it into a WordPress post, click a button to convert that sucker to a .mobi file ready for Amazon, and give me a field to enter my title and several hundred bad-ass cover arts to choose from (which combined the title into the artwork). Voila! Ready to sell!

    P.S. If it isn’t, get on that!

  14. Sure Google right now owns the search business and arguably the internet but what about in the future? Certainly Google’s reign won’t last forever. I wonder how that will affect bloggers and small-business owners alike!

    • Google could disappear tomorrow in a vortex of Mayan mysticism and it wouldn’t change a thing about the demand for online content. But … I’m guessing that doesn’t happen. 😉

  15. It’s tomorrow already here in Australia! and good news Mayan mysticism mania missed this time round!

    I’m dancing Gangnam style to celebrate!

    Thank you as always for your stellar performances in 2012. Have a great holiday one and all. xS

  16. Here’s my prediction, Brian.

    I can’t help but think that this is a similar moment for writers with history repeating itself. It’s one of those silent revolutions like the Sixties where a plethora of truly amazing artists emerged at the zenith of the music business where the business was young enough to embrace the talent but developed enough to put them in the stratosphere. This created a golden age of electric music that set the bar forever after.

    Right now, truly talented writers are going to be here at the convergence of the Internet’s young maturity, self publishing, social sharing and the ability to shine in front of the world. And they can now do it themselves. Those who can climb that mountain to the summit of excellence will have a beautiful view from the top. They’ll be recognized for their work and will command a high price for their talents.

    I’m very excited!

  17. I am stoked to be moving forward with my writing. It’s an exciting time to be putting stuff out there. Amazing the impact the Internet has had on this world.

  18. This is inspirational. I focus on content marketing and copywriting and I’m getting more and more requests to write e-books. I’m definitely feeling the momentum as we move into 2013. It’s good to know that writers will finally be appreciated.

  19. Happy Holidays to the Copyblogger crew!!! I look forward to seeing what awesome stuff you will have for me next year. And long live the internet writers! We are here to stay. 🙂

  20. Thank you so much. I often feel neglected as a little writer in a big agency. This encouraging post is definitely the boost I need to know that I am actually worth a lot more than some may think. Thank you.

  21. Thanks for another year of leadership in showing just how powerful content marketing can be. There’s nothing I know of in the history of media that’s put so much power into the hands of individuals. Your insight into these changes and respect for individual writers of all kinds is fantastic. Oh, happy holidays too.

  22. Interesting post. I wrote a novel a little while ago and recently I have been exploring copywriting as an extension of my interest in writing. I am very much a newbie, but it is a fascinating subject to be sure.

    Aside from the quality of the information on your site and others like it, I am rapidly discovering the value of the furniture on the pages; the absolute need to break copy with graphics, paragraph headings and so on.

    I shall subscribe!

  23. As a beginning blogger, I’m encouraged to see that there is such a flourishing market for online content writers. This article was extremely helpful . . . time to start figuring out Google Plus.


  24. “We finally feel like the rest of the world has caught up with us, and more importantly, you.” AMEN!

    “Content makes the Internet work, but without the writers and other content creators, it wouldn’t happen at all. Never forget that, and never underestimate how much you’re worth in this brave new world of a content-driven, convergent medium.” This is FINALLY a truthful, viable statement. Fortunately, I found a GREAT job that recognizes the value of quality web content years ago. That said, it’s good to know that online marketing professionals as a whole will finally recognize the value (especially monetarily) of professional writing across the board.

  25. Hi Brian, I’m happy you’re excited about me in 2013 because I’m excited about you too :). As the cofounders of a leadership coaching practice, being writers beyond materials for our clients wasn’t a focus when we first opened our doors last year. Now we have a good handle on our client material and have begun diving into our site and blog.

    We understand the importance of content marketing and a few months ago I began consuming your incredibly useful content. Now I have a far better understanding of the “how? piece. We are putting together a strategy for building a solid content foundation to help fuel our Teaching Sells programs (so many ideas!) and ultimately our coaching business.

    This week I have been living in Scribe pulling the data for our cornerstone content tutorials and an auto responder. Understanding where we stand with existing content is amazingly helpful. Now we know if we need to focus on content, links or social media. We are super excited to have a much more clear understanding of where to spend our time to see the results we are looking for, especially since it is just 2 of us learning, producing and implementing. So, from someone who fell into content writing as a necessity, thank you! We are super excited about this model and are convinced it is right for us.

    We are still drinking from a fire hose but I will certainly have my eyes on you and Sonia and the rest of the team in 2013. Happy holidays. Sara

  26. Brian/Sonia, what about the impact of video on writers? The next generation is being weaned on Youtube and less on the written word. Heck, even the adults of this generation read less and watch more. How should writers prepare for that?

  27. Great post!

    I’m took Jon Morrow’s advice and put up a web page to build my email list before I launch my author website. I’m giving away the first three chapters of my book, “Color Your Life: Daily Meditations for the Creative Soul” when people sign up. I’m also experimenting with automation. I’m testing out TweetAdder on my author twitter account to see how fast I can build a following. And…I’m experimenting with Pinterest, although the site still drives me crazy. I had to figure how to follow people. I don’t necessarily want to follow all of their boards. I don’t know. Pinterest is still mind boggling to me. Plus, I’m aware of copyright issues and don’t want to follow people who may be in violation of copyright laws. Sigh.

    Have a great weekend. 🙂

  28. Brian, I haven’t been a reader for the full seven years but I have been reading the blog religiously for about two years and I think it is without doubt one of the best blogs online today. If I want bland articles with titles that a million other blogs have then I can search Google for those but your writers also come up with very unique content with even more unique post titles.

  29. Could you life the curtain a little higher? lol

    I’ve only been around copyblogger for 2 years and can’t believe I didn’t come here before that time. I must of been drinking the wrong type of coffee.

    I can’t wait till 2013. New beginning for all of us. Time for some new goals and looking forward to that curtain being raised.

  30. Those Google updates changed the entire Internet this year and now writers own the world. I’m a majorly happy camper, because I love to write and I love metaphors and storytelling.

    2013 is going to be a blast.

  31. Here’s to 2013 (cling…). A numerologist predicted time after 12/21/2012 will be the time of opportunities and happiness, especially year 2013. As you pointed, content is everything. Hoping 2013 brings more of quality content writers or entreproducers ahead.

  32. 2013 will definitely be a great year for writers. It never hurts to have a little motivation from posts like this though 🙂

  33. Love the term “Entreproducer” – and yes what I used to do with larger companies I now am able to do completely on my own, control my work schedule and direction I take my company…pretty phenomonal change for those of us Entrepreneurs.

  34. Content should’ve been the focus every year. Took us all long enough to realise it this year or should I say until Google slapped everyone with their algorithm updates. Can’t want to see how people deal with Mobile SEO. Gonna be a whole new game!

  35. I’m glad that the days where the Internet “was different! are over. Today we are no longer anonymous and honest marketers don’t want to. If I produce a piece of content I work on for days I really want to get credit for it and see that people are happy about it. I’m proud of my content and my site and I want anyone to know that it was me and not a writer I hired on Odesk or wherever but something I did, without taking any shortcut, for my audience. Thanks for the article, looking forward to 2013

  36. Thanks for all you do, Brian. For a newbie blogger like me, there can be no better encouragement, and no better timing. It’s comforting to know that all the changing Google algorithms, social media trends, and digitization of the marketing process will still rest solidly on the word-craft. When I started 18 months ago, I saw this wasn’t going to be a short road, because I had to focus most of my efforts on honing that craft. As Stephen King puts it, a “competent” writer can become a good writer with lots of reading and writing, so I set out to do just that.

    Now you’re telling me the curtain is about to be lifted on all our efforts at the same time I’m about to move up out of the “competent” ranks? Wow. What fun! Enjoy your holidays, everyone. Looking forward to connecting with the world’s online writers over the next few months.

  37. Thanks Brian, your site and update information is great. I agree the authorship module is a breakthrough for google. It’s great to see the end of the most links wins strategy and bad content era. Keep up the good work and wishing you and all your readers a great Christmas and new year.

  38. I started blogging a couple years ago. It’s changed my world. Just over a month ago, I was turned on to this site. I tackled the archives with a fury and read it, day after day, until my eyes bled. Seeing the reference to copywriting, I read your review of Michael Masterson’s Accelerated Copywriting Course and realized something…

    15 YEARS AGO, my dad bought me that same course. I was 18 at the time. Having the attention span of a goldfish back then, I think I gave the course about 3 weeks, read maybe 20 pages, and let it sit on the shelf… Unread…

    When I read your review of it, I realized how much time I had wasted. I immediately re-upped my membership with AWAI, got all of the updated materials, and am dead set on finally following through on becoming a copywriter.

    Thank you, Copyblogger, and your community of incredible writers for lighting the fire that has lead to me finally taking action and doing this… Thanks for writing posts like this one. Genuine. Honest. Inspiring. Here’s to 2013!

  39. Thanks for all the helpful and useful information about the importance of content creators and content producers because I couldn’t agree more. I see the future as being a place where those who have a unique message to share and contribute to the online community will benefit the most from writing online. Authority is so important for building a following on the web. I look forward to seeing those big plans. Thanks

  40. You just had to do it … again, didn’t you BC 😉

    Just what we needed to do what we do … again.

    Go ahead and sign me up … again.

    I know it’s gonna be epic … again.

    Don’t you ever get tired on winning … again 😉

  41. Hey Brian.. You made me a little happy, as am a newbie in the world of blogging. I am not so sure where my career is heading, I chose writing over my MBA+Btech Career just because I love to write. Don’t know when can one be able to make content writing a business.

    I would like to thank you for this post. Hope I will get more steps upwards in my interest of writing. I started a blog http://www.graduateloop.org with a theme of Youngsters.

    Lets see where will it take me.

    Thanks again for the post

  42. Thank you, Brian and Sonia! For this particular post and for all you’re doing!

    Look forward to the new stuff in 2013! Content Marketing rocks!

  43. Thanks Brian and Sonia. Always love reading your e-mails and posts.

    For the lot of us writers, this is definitely good news.

    It’s an interesting paradigm, the “death” of traditional marketing methods and the advent of new ones still keeps writers and copywriters at that, in the mix.

    It might seem like a scary transition, but the truth is there are TONS of opportunities for writers like us to capitalize on. Not only that, it gives us a chance to not just be keyboard jockeys, but the chance to be valued service providers that can help elevate the game of our clients.

  44. 2013 will be the year that the Internet world of blogging recognizes me. With your tips and my writing, I will shoot for the best possible blog yet! Having a blog that is full of integrity is what I want to achieve, & 2013 will be the year I do it!

  45. 2013 is something I am really looking forward to. I have just got into freelance writing and have kicked off with a bang. I am very pleased to be in this sort of business in this day of age and I feel that 2013 will be a really big year for blogs and forums. That been said the competition is certainly getting harder to overcome with the cheap prices and sheer amount of freelancers out there now. I am going to have to brainstorm (as I think others will have to) about how to overcome the competition but still make the prices reasonable.

  46. The only thing i’m expecting is google to harrass us even more than they did in 2012 🙂
    Nontheless – welcome 2013 🙂

  47. I like this angle of thought on Google changes, it is good for writers and it’s better for users too, fed up with seeing whining posts around the web about Google destroying businesses, businesses which relied entirely on a good domain name, hundreds of spammed and spun article postings, or thousands of forum postings saying “thanks for posting this information! http://www.blahblah….”. The web got better last year precisely because Google started forcing quality.

  48. Honestly, I don’t believe Google Authorship has been a success for Google. Also, it is easy to create fake profiles and authorships which can be misused. And when looking at rankings, I would say Google doesn’t rank quality content that high. There are many sites with low quality or no content and their numbers didn’t get lower after Panda and Penguin.

    But I believe Google will give more weight to Google Authorship and Google +1 votes when they optimize these systems.


  49. It’s a good thing that Google is spitting out spammers but I think it also affects us as to become better content writers. I have a feeling that Google does not like a lot of stuff that is related to marketing.

  50. Concentrating more on the quality of the content and writer’s authority makes a lot of sense. It’s a good way to fight spam.

  51. I’ve been in two minds about filling out my Google+ profile, since I already have a bunch of other social media accounts. But I can’t help noticing the number of Google+ profile pictures popping up in my search results. And, if anything else it does look rather cool. So I shall have to succumb.


  52. This is very good news. It was about the time for Internet to grow up.
    The informational era brings also another good thing: the democratization of business.
    Like books exit the editors’ offices, businesses exit the consultants and big corporations’ offices.
    Just imagine what the new entrepreneurship in the content era can do !

  53. I, too, was one putting off getting involved with Google+. Just staying abreast at Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn was (and is!) a challenge. However, there’s no delying that Google Authorship is changing the landscape. Whether you embrace it is not, it’s now on my “must do” list. To ignore it could be akin to professional suicide.

  54. Thank you for drawing attention to the value that decent content writers can bring to the web in general and business specifically. It is great to see the evolution towards quality content. I note some comments say that the Penguin and Panda updates have had no or little effect on the quality of search engine results. I tend to disagree because I have noticed as a civilian that the returned results have increased in quality and relevancy on a huge scale. And this is just the start. Google will drive their own tools in the search for user-friendly search engine results and Google Authorship will, eventually, become a must have.

  55. Thanks Brian for your great post. I totally agree with you. I also think guest posting will be the biggest trend in 2013 as the best way to build backlinks. No more low-quality link building again (just like i used to do in the past.. hehehe..). This year is going to be the toughest battle for bloggers or writers out there. Good luck everyone!!!

  56. Circles… thank the gods for circles 🙂

    The “content is king” cry rising up (big, big, big 10 years ago), sort of dying down (over the past few years, but not gone for good), replaced by “social media is everything,” back to what no one can deny… it’s all about content. And always will be.

    For my newbie clients, I use the word, “words.” Everything, even video, requires the use of words (what we’re calling content).

    What would be absolutely wonderful to see would be the black hatters of the net give it a rest OR better still understand that cheap is cheap and turning the fast buck at the expense of others flies in the face of “the Golden Rule.” (And pigs will fly.)

    But, if that’s not possible, at least let’s see 2013 as the year that those in need of great “words” (content) see the light.

    It will take education, and in some cases re-education. Newbies in particular are constantly sold a bill-of-goods belief that no work brings huge rewards. (What I call the school of hard knocks.)

    Yep, coming late to this post, but I’m still within “guidelines” (it’s still January)… So here’s to a very bright and Happy New Year!

  57. What if i’m not a native english speaker and want to attract more regular reader return to my site?

  58. I like your article so much. I would love to see realistic pricing on quality content. I truly wonder if it will ever happen. How can you make a living when Internet marketers are satisfied with what they are getting for a penny or two a word.

  59. Totally agree with you Brian, I have already set up my Authorship on my blog and as I am just starting out, intend and will provide epic content so here we go 🙂

  60. I love this post! Thank you so much Brian, for writing it. This article gave me lots to think about and eventually gave me the boost I desperately needed. As a result, I am taking an entirely different direction with my online writing. My grandson passed away suddenly in October, and since then I’ve just been piddling around taking the odd writing job here and there. This article has gotten me all fired up again with more clarity in my career goals. I’m getting out of Ghostwriting and freelance writing as a service, and writing solely for myself. My goal is to help someone, like you helped me. Thanks again!!!

  61. Thanks for this informative, reassuring article!

    I’ve been a freelance writer for nearly 4 years now and I can feel within myself a newfound sense of confidence and pride in my work, because right now I really have the perspective to see just how much I’ve improved my craft in these past years. I’m really looking forward to writing a lot more in 2013 and develop my skills even further by writing on new subjects, expanding my horizons and really becoming a writer in the full sense of the word!

  62. Thank you for the inspiring and reassuring article! I am a new copywriter and reading this is exactly what I needed today.

  63. Hi Brian,

    This was a great article and it gave me a renewed sense of confidence. Thank you!

    I just started as a freelance content writer and it would be great if you had any advice for me regarding my career path. I’ve always loved to write and read and finally I’ve found something I like doing! But the path ahead is still a bit blurry and I’m not sure how to build myself up, get better and bigger and make myself a lucrative career as you have done.

    Any tips would be much appreciated!

    Thanks a lot!

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