Freelance Grant Writing: Tips for Securing Funding

Grant writing is a skill that can help you secure funding for various projects and causes. Whether you work for a nonprofit, an educational institution, a government agency, or an artistic organization, you may need to apply for grants to support your work. However, grant writing can be challenging and time-consuming, especially if you are not familiar with the process and the requirements of different funders.

That’s where freelance grant writers come in. Freelance grant writers are professionals who offer their services to help individuals and organizations write effective and persuasive grant proposals. They can help you research potential funders, craft a compelling story, format and edit your proposal, and follow up with the grantors.

If you are interested in becoming a freelance grant writer, here are some tips to help you succeed in this field.

1. Identify your niche

One of the first steps to becoming a freelance grant writer is to identify your niche. This means finding out what kind of grants you want to write and what kind of clients you want to work with. For example, do you have a passion for environmental issues, social justice, education, or arts and culture? Do you have a background or experience in a specific industry or sector? Do you prefer working with local, national, or international organizations?

Identifying your niche can help you narrow down your focus and target your market. It can also help you showcase your expertise and credibility to potential clients. You can start by researching the types of grants available in your niche and the organizations that offer them. You can also create a portfolio of writing samples that demonstrate your skills and knowledge in your niche.

2. Build your skills

To be a successful freelance grant writer, you need to have strong writing, research, and communication skills. You also need to be familiar with the technical, managerial, and entrepreneurial aspects of running your own business.

Some of the skills you need to develop as a freelance grant writer are:

  • Writing: You need to be able to write clearly, concisely, and persuasively. You need to be able to tailor your writing style and tone to different audiences and funders. You need to be able to structure your proposal logically and coherently. You also need to be able to edit and proofread your own work.
  • Research: You need to be able to research potential funders and their requirements. You need to be able to find relevant data and statistics to support your claims. You need to be able to analyze the needs and goals of your clients and their beneficiaries.
  • Communication: You need to be able to communicate effectively with your clients and the funders. You need to be able to ask questions, listen actively, provide feedback, and follow instructions. You also need to be able to negotiate your rate and terms of service.
  • Technical: You need to be familiar with the formats and guidelines of different grant applications. You need to be able to use various software tools and platforms to create and submit your proposals. You also need to be able to track and manage your deadlines and deliverables.
  • Managerial: You need to be able to manage multiple projects and clients simultaneously. You need to be able to prioritize your tasks and organize your workflow. You also need to be able to handle feedback and revisions.
  • Entrepreneurial: You need to be able to market yourself and your services. You need to be able to network with other writers and potential clients. You also need to be able to set up a website or a portfolio that showcases your work.

You can build these skills by taking online courses, reading books and blogs, joining professional associations, attending workshops and webinars, or working with a mentor.

3. Use job boards

One of the easiest ways to find freelance grant writing gigs is by using job boards. Job boards are websites that list various freelance opportunities in different fields and niches. Some of the most popular job boards for freelance writers are:

  • Upwork: Upwork is one of the largest online platforms that connects freelancers with clients from all over the world. You can create a profile, browse through thousands of projects, bid on the ones that match your skills and interests, and get paid through the platform.
  • Selfgood: Selfgood is a platform that connects freelance writers with clients who need help with grant writing. You can create a profile, showcase your portfolio, apply for projects that suit your niche and expertise, and get paid through the platform.
  • Learn Grant Writing: Learn Grant Writing is a platform that offers online courses, coaching, and resources for aspiring and experienced grant writers. You can also access their job board, which lists grant writing opportunities from various organizations and sectors.

4. Build relationships with your clients

Another tip to succeed as a freelance grant writer is to build long-term relationships with your clients. This can help you secure repeat business, referrals, and testimonials. It can also help you establish your reputation and credibility as a grant writer.

Some of the ways you can build relationships with your clients are:

  • Deliver high-quality work: The best way to impress your clients is by delivering high-quality work that meets their expectations and requirements. You should always follow the instructions and guidelines of the grant application, use reliable sources and data, write clearly and persuasively, and proofread your work before submitting it.
  • Communicate regularly: You should always communicate regularly with your clients throughout the project. You should update them on your progress, ask for feedback, clarify any doubts, and address any issues. You should also respond to their messages and calls promptly and professionally.
  • Meet your deadlines: You should always meet your deadlines and deliver your work on time. If you anticipate any delays or problems, you should inform your clients as soon as possible and offer a reasonable solution. You should also avoid taking on more projects than you can handle and manage your time effectively.
  • Follow up: You should always follow up with your clients after completing a project. You should thank them for their business, ask for their feedback, request a testimonial or a referral, and express your interest in working with them again. You should also keep in touch with them periodically and offer your services for future projects.

5. Create an action plan

The final tip to become a freelance grant writer is to create an action plan that outlines your goals, strategies, and steps to achieve them. An action plan can help you stay focused, motivated, and accountable. It can also help you measure your progress and results.

Some of the elements of an action plan are:

  • Goals: You should set specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) goals for your freelance grant writing career. For example, you may want to earn a certain amount of income per month, land a certain number of clients per week, or write a certain number of proposals per day.
  • Strategies: You should identify the strategies that will help you achieve your goals. For example, you may want to use job boards, social media, or referrals to find clients; use online courses, books, or blogs to improve your skills; or use software tools, calendars, or timers to manage your time.
  • Steps: You should break down each strategy into actionable steps that you can follow. For example, if you want to use job boards to find clients, you may want to create a profile, update your portfolio, browse through projects, bid on the ones that match your niche and skills, and follow up with the clients.
  • Timeline: You should assign a timeline for each step and goal. For example, you may want to create a profile on Upwork by tomorrow, bid on five projects by next week, or earn $1,000 by next month.
  • Resources: You should list the resources that you need or have access to for each step and goal. For example, you may need a laptop, an internet connection, a website or a portfolio platform, a resume or a cover letter template, or a mentor or a coach.

You can use various tools and templates to create your action plan. You can also review and update it regularly to track your progress and make adjustments as needed.


Freelance grant writing is a rewarding and lucrative career option for writers who want to help individuals and organizations secure funding for their projects and causes. However, it requires hard work, dedication, and continuous learning.

By following these tips, you can start your freelance grant writing journey and achieve success in this field.

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