Today’s guest post is by Thingywhatsit, a long-time Helium member who’s written over 900 articles! It’s a true insider’s view.
Read Marisa’s response to this review here. She has a slightly different take on Helium and its benefits.
Table of Contents for this post
Helium.com is a relatively new concept, though one that is taking off in a big way. What it offers to the membership is a chance to write on whatever topic they please, as long as the premise of the article is to add knowledge to the already enormous bank of articles already there. Seems like a simple requirement, doesn’t it, although if wanting to make money from online writing, it means putting in effort, and being rewarded justly for that effort.
Throughout my membership at Helium, I have found that it offers both incentive and encouragement, and that it does reward well written work. While in the beginning stages of membership, many members become discouraged by the small earnings, though having been there and experienced it myself, what happens is that every article written gains value over time as opposed to other writing sites where reviews are initially rated and gain money, and then earn nothing more. It’s a very clever idea since even those articles that I wrote in the first weeks of membership still pay today.
For those thinking of joining a site like Helium, take a look at my page and you may begin to understand how Helium articles works and presents your work. The standard at the moment is improving all the time with recognition for those writers that want to get better. My first articles were limited in their substance and perhaps too European orientated to really suit the site, though little by little, I learned that anyone can earn money if they are willing to put in the effort and build up a repertoire of good quality items.
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WHAT TO EXPECT AT HELIUM
As a member, there are numerous competitions where not only are many articles being added to the site, but where quality pays off. For example, in the latest range of competitions, prizes were offered between 10 and 75 dollars a week for the best articles within given subjects. Here, the leaderboard gave hourly updates of how people’s work was progressing, and this served to motivate writers into aiming at quality.
Serious membership of this site has taken me away from other sites, because the rewards of putting all my energies into one site outweigh those of other review sites. There is the possibility to hit targets of over 200 dollars a month, like I do, though new members should never expect this to happen overnight. It’s very much a build up of effort and repertoire that pays off, and not a site that gives instant reward short term. In the long term, having built up over 900 articles, the pennies that each one collects on a monthly basis, makes the site a very viable one for serious writers.
The potential offered by Helium is that people can earn money from publishers that are seeking certain types of articles. The marketplace area lists all those titles that publishers are interested in and the payment that writers can expect to get for an article. Here, word count and the requirement of publishers is important and members are able to write articles on many different aspects of life, seeing more added all the time.
Ever wondered what it’s like to be published, or what people in the publishing industry think about the potential of an individual’s writing? Helium offers the chance for members to talk to guest celebrities in the book trade to try and help them with questions they may have about the mystery of getting a book published. Tuesday nights are Book People nights, and the wealth of information available to members from real people in the book trade is a valuable tool for the membership.
Most debate sites go downhill and threads turn into rants. The Helium concept is a little different in that all arguments for and against the subject of debates is provided, not as a forum thread, but as a written article, balancing out the possibility of debate in a very constructive and effective way, with percentages gained for and against the subjects proposed built up by member vote and articles to give a great all round balance.
Here, members can post a photograph and be added to writer recommendations on newsletters if their work is of high standard. The profile page also allows members to link to their sites, and to tell other members about you, as a writer. It’s an opportunity to get yourself established.
THE LEARNING EXPERIENCE
During the competitions, what I found as a huge advantage to belonging to a site like Helium is that the research put into what you write teaches so much about subjects that perhaps a member is familiar with though needs research in order to put into article form. The knowledge you gain as a member really is worthwhile.
On the community front, the forum presence of staff is better than on any other site I have experienced, ready with answers to questions, and also willing to help members develop their style and content with a system called Mentors@Helium.com that helps those members that require it. Feedback is available on a feedback area and the general availability of help from other members makes the community part and parcel of the Helium experience.
I have been a member of Helium.com since February, and am a writer who takes her writing seriously. One of the most interesting concepts of a site like Helium is that of the rating system which is governed by the membership. Although on other review sites, ratings are performed, what is different about the Helium concept is that all ratings are performed in a manner that is unbiased as two articles are presented to a rater or member of the site for comparison. Which is the best article ? Here, no-one is aware of whose articles they are reading, and site personality doesn’t come into play or bias judgment as on so many other sites.
WHO CAN JOIN AND HOW DO PAYMENTS WORK?
Anyone who lives in an area that accepts PayPal earnings can write for Helium, unlike with other writing sites like ACC who turn away the opportunity of European membership. Here, members from all over the world are valued equally as members, and what this means is that the balance of the site information is a better representation of international information.
The payments are made through PayPal, are regular and reliable. One area where people can earn as well is by inviting others through their profile page.
CAN I POST ARTICLES THAT HAVE BEEN POSTED ELSEWHERE ?
Of course you can, if those articles are written by you.
I am hooked on the site, and it pays me very well. Once you grasp the concept of each article being a stand alone article, rated against other stand alone articles, it’s easy to get involved. There are areas that are interesting for all and developing writers have a great opportunity of reading around the site to get a feeling about the kind of submissions that are the most successful, shown in chains that reveal No. 1 slots as the best of the bunch.
The site is evolving, does listen to member input and certainly worthy for those members that want a long term investment in written work. I see the site evolving, and the standards improving all the time and in a period of 5 months, the amount of changes made is astounding. If you are looking to add to your online writing potential, anyone is capable of earning money on Helium. The cross section of society that is part and parcel of the site includes many that are realizing their potential as writers from housewives to teachers, professors to doctors, stay at home moms to brain surgeons. It isn’t who you are that matters. It is all about writing.
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