How To Become A Ghostwriter [With No Experience]

How to Become a Ghostwriter (With No Experience)

Remember that feeling you had on the first day of high school? Everyone's bigger than you, you don't know where your classes are, and everything moves at lightning speed.

Your first visit to the gym? Where everyone's in shape and you can't even work the equipment?!

There's a 'first time' feeling when you become a ghostwriter, too. But don't worry, it's not as scary as high school.

From 'beginner' to 'successful ghostwriter' in 6 steps:

1. Pick a type of ghostwriting.

Once you've decided you want to get into ghostwriting, the hard part's over. You've committed. But you have to narrow it down a little further.

As a beginning copywriter, there are five main avenues you could go down:

  • Twitter ghostwriting is perfect for anyone who wants to work with online entrepreneurs, personal brands, and young founders/CEOs.
  • LinkedIn ghostwriting is like Twitter ghostwriting. But it's a better fit for you if you're aligned more with a corporate-y (B2B) audience.
  • Email newsletter ghostwriting works for natural storytellers and sales/direct response copywriters.
  • Blog writing is a good space to get into if you're analytical and skilled at writing long-form content.
  • Scriptwriting is ideal for creative writers who love films, TV, and podcasts.

Choosing a path isn't rocket science. It's all about momentum — lean into what you're already doing, and accelerate the already-spinning wheel.

Take me as an example. I started a Twitter ghostwriting agency from zero and grew it to $50,000+ in monthly revenue.

Why Twitter, you ask?

Because I already spent ridiculous amounts of time doom-scrolling my feed. Twitter was my version of a video game addiction.

I wasted so much time on the platform that I knew a lot about its algorithms, audience demographics, and content styles by default.

Since I also had solid writing skills, Twitter was a natural fit for me.

The key is to leverage your existing skills and interests.

2. Grow your own account.

You can't sell a service you don't know how to provide. And nobody will sign with you unless you have portfolio-worthy samples.

Since you want to be a freelance ghostwriter, you're in luck. This is easy.

To showcase your own work (and practice writing), all you need to do is grow your own personal brand first. Go out and produce high-quality content, network, and build a community around it.

  • Want to get into blogging? Write Medium articles.
  • Thinking about social media ghostwriting? Get on Twitter or LinkedIn.
  • Interested in scriptwriting? Start a YouTube channel.

I amassed over 100,000 followers before I launched my Twitter ghostwriting business.

There are three benefits to publishing your own content first:

  • You'll know for a fact you can do it for others. This gives you the confidence to package and sell it.
  • You'll develop a solid network. Loyal followers, future clients, and other freelance writers who want to help you.
  • Your success is a case study in and of itself. "Look what he did to his own profile. I wish he could do that for mine..." — all your future ghostwriting clients

My third tip goes both ways. Just like you’d never hire an out-of-shape personal trainer, nobody will ever believe you can write for them if you don't publish (good) content.

In ghostwriting, your clearly demonstrated ability to write is much more important than certifications or degrees.

If you aren't sure where to start, here's a piece of advice:

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">&quot;I don&#39;t know what to create content about.&quot;<br><br>• Learn a skill in public<br>• Solve your past problems in public<br>• Pursue and document a goal in public<br><br>Stop rewording other people&#39;s posts.<br><br>Do more interesting things and you&#39;ll create more interesting content.</p>&mdash; Dakota Robertson (@WrongsToWrite) <a href="">November 26, 2023</a></blockquote> <script async src="" charset="utf-8"></script>

3. Choose your ghostwriting niche.

If you couldn't tell, I have a formula for making money as a ghostwriter.

  • Pick a platform
  • Grow your account on that platform
  • Apply that knowledge to others’ profiles as a service

Just like any type of freelance writing, ghostwriting is all about efficiency. You'll write for your clients 100x faster if your "ghost" writing feels natural, like you're writing for yourself.

That's where the "niche" part comes in.

As you build your own personal brand, you'll talk about things that matter to you. For me, that was:

  • Personal growth
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Social media marketing
  • Copywriting

Stuff like this:

and this:

and this:

Thousands of other people also talk about these things. As I developed my online identity, I naturally found myself around more of these people.

Like this guy:

I can tell from his content he's a lot like me (but with fewer followers and less engagement). If I were just launching my ghostwriting services, I'd start connecting with people like him.

Be intentional. Connect with people who might actually buy your services.

4. Build up your skills.

While you don't need a degree or certification to succeed in ghostwriting, you do need a particular mix of expertise. And it's a lot more than writing.

You aren't really a "ghost" writer if the client still has to figure out what to do with the words you've written.

Your first step is to learn the algorithm — Google, LinkedIn, Twitter, or YouTube. This is the root of how users interact with the platform and, by extension, your content.

  • Where does the algorithm prioritize your content?
  • Which specific user actions force it to boost a post?
  • How does commenting impact visibility?
  • What's the ideal content length?

Your second step is to immerse yourself in the language, style, and tone of your target platform. This includes how users view, engage, and use the content they're looking at.

It also encompasses all the residual aspects of growing your account on that platform. On Twitter, for example, DM giveaways are popular because they give free value in exchange for a reply to your post.

Back in June, I did one for my Growth Ghosts cohort.

It got me over 1,600 comments. And more than 313,000 people saw it.

On LinkedIn, clickable how-to carousel posts perform well alongside your written content, so I publish those there.

And they get tons of engagement.

You don't have to reinvent the wheel, here. Someone else is already doing what you want to do (and winning).

  • Follow high-performing content creators in your niche
  • Save content you like to a swipe file
  • Study their frameworks for headings, subject matter, and content structure
  • Apply these concepts to your situation

As an example, I noticed the "Defeating the Monster" framework works well for everyone.

People love seeing others come out on top. It inspires them.

You could apply this to client writing by interviewing them about a time they overcame adversity. Then, you’ll follow this storytelling structure to paint the picture.

5. Land your first client with an irresistible offer.

I have a whole guide on how to find copywriting clients. For ghostwriting specifically, landing writing jobs will all come down to positioning.

You need something with:

  • Low risk (what if they don't see results?)
  • Low effort (is your ghostwriting work ready-to-go for the client?)
  • High reward potential ("pay me $X00, I make you $X0,000)
  • Scarcity (are you a dime a dozen or in-demand?)
  • Social proof (have you actually done what you say you'll do?)

Here's an example of a solid offer:

"For $2,500 per month, I'll curate and publish 4 long-form posts and 8 short-form posts per week, run organic follower growth, and deliver weekly performance reports. Client X saw 15% follower growth in just 2 weeks. If you aren't happy after the first 30 days, it's on me. Apply to work with me here."

6. Deliver outstanding results.

If you've been publishing content under your own name, you've already laid the groundwork. The ghostwriting process is nothing more than using the same content, growth, and engagement tactics, but in your client's voice.

Ghostwriting clients want the following:

  • Followers (audience growth)
  • ROI ($$$ in vs. $$$ back)
  • Convenience (done-for-you service)
  • Comfortability (they're happy with how you make them look)
  • Insights (they’re smarter because of you)

You probably won't have a structure straight away, but using Notion to stay organized will help you manage client delivery, billing, and internal processes.

How to find work as a newbie ghostwriter


Your network is a good place to start, especially if you've already built one on the platform you're selling.

  • Personal friends and family
  • Internet connections
  • Past and current colleagues
  • People you've met at events or conferences

If they're actively publishing content in your niche, they're fair game.

Not everyone has a network, which brings me to 4 other places to find ghostwriting gigs:


Whether you become a ghostwriter for Twitter or not, your target client might be on there. Tons of business owners use it, and they might need help with their online blog or LinkedIn presence.

That said, a Twitter ghostwriter should get most of their clients from Twitter.

  • Find people with content similar to yours but way less engagement. Avoid other Twitter ghostwriters.
  • Engage with their content.
  • Comment on what they post and share content that's relevant to them.
  • Start conversations in the DMs.

Oh, and don't be a total bot. Do the opposite of this:



LinkedIn prospecting is the same as Twitter prospecting in a lot of ways. The main thing to remember is you're starting a conversation, not hard pitching them on a service.

Just like Twitter, be strategic. Look at the type of content they're publishing and whether it has engagement.

Go after the ones who:

  • Aren’t running a ghostwriting business or huge LinkedIn brand (so you know they have money, but aren't trying to manage LinkedIn themselves)
  • Post content you align with
  • Have less success


Email prospecting is the same as social media, from a cold outreach standpoint.

  • Find your target clients.
  • Get their email using Apollo.
  • Reach out to them.
  • Be brief, casual, and conversational.

Avoid leaning on automation too heavily. You have all the time in the world as a newbie freelance writer. Take the extra 30 seconds to learn about them and send something personal.

Otherwise, they'll just group you with the million other emails they get from people who "hope this email finds them well."

Gig websites

The golden age for finding freelance writing jobs on Upwork and Fiverr was 3 years ago. Since then, they've embarrassed themselves.

High-ticket clients know this too — everyone that's left wants a $5/hour writer from Pakistan or some AI-written crap. Or, they'll degrade you and your work for $250/month. And there are tons of scams.

Don't bother. In fact, run away.

Practical Tips for Ghostwriters

Network like your income depends on it (it does).

The more connections you have, the higher your chances of landing high-paying clients.

It's honestly really simple.

  • Engage their content with valuable input (e.g., "This happened to me, too. This is what I did...").
  • Engage enough of their content for them to notice you.
  • Be strategic. You won't get lots of eyeballs on creators with 50,000 followers. Focus on smaller to mid-sized accounts you can grow alongside.

Don’t be afraid of paid networking and information.

Big creators in your niche could help you land ghostwriting gigs through their secrets and large networks. I hired a copywriting mentor back in the day and it took me from 0 to 100 (real quick).

I did the same for Dylan Ladd, who participated in my Growth Ghosts coaching program. I helped him get off the ground shortly after:

Plenty of other copywriters with courses and coaching businesses do this too. On Cardinal Mason's Twitter profile, it's literally pinned:

The message is clear: Have him train you on freelance writing, and he'll help you find future ghostwriting jobs.

By the way, my clients fill out this form and I place them with one of my students.

Learn how to value yourself above all else.

Self-esteem might seem unrelated to ghostwriting success, but it's actually the fundamental way you protect yourself from undervaluing your services...

...and undercharging for them.

There's always going to be someone who tries to steal your work product/ideas. And there will always be those who won’t pay your rates (you will face tons of rejection).

Don’t know how to value yourself? Read my article on copywriting rates.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is ghostwriting limited to writing books?

No. In today's world, ghostwriting encompasses email newsletters, blog posts, social media posts, and anything else you can publish on behalf of someone else. All ghostwriters specialize in specific areas like social media or thought leadership blogs.

Do you need any qualifications to become a ghostwriter?

You do not need qualifications to become a ghostwriter. You only need to be a competent writer with strong communication skills, the ability to write in different voices, and extensive knowledge about the platform you write for.

Who is Dakota?

I show you how to build a high-paying creative business without doing work you hate.

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