Content marketing is a must for any business across every industry. In such a competitive business landscape, organic reach and reputation are imperative for brand building and growth.
Many brand goals can be achieved through content marketing. It’s a great way for you to infuse value to potential and current customers and to nurture leads long-term. When prospective clients are looking for services or products from companies like yours, they’re more likely to reach out if you’ve provided them with a solid user experience before they’ve even filled out a contact form.
But not all business owners are equipped with the writing skills necessary to create a great blog. That’s where freelance writers come in. With the right pen behind your business, you can push your blog to the top of Google search engine results pages. Here’s what you need to know about working with them:
Give Them the Groundwork
Working with writers requires a small upfront time commitment. During these early stages, it’s important for you to help your writer understand everything there is to know about your business. What audience are they writing for? What voice and tone do you want to convey? Do you have multiple audience segments?
Creating an editorial style guide will provide them with a clear foundation for writing. Your style guide will detail your expectations for tone, style, voice, and grammar, and will help ensure consistency across your content efforts (and with multiple writers, too). It also helps to provide them with content samples of exemplary content—both relevant and non-relevant to your industry. Note aspects of your examples that you find particularly standout.
Define the Schedule
This goes hand in hand with providing the groundwork. Clear objectives and a defined schedule will help them manage expectations and determine whether they’re the right fit for the job. Both parties should understand what the objectives are. You should also use a project management platform to help keep schedule of all tasks and deliverables. For example, you might use Basecamp to set deadlines and receive notifications when work is completed.
Work With Niche Writers
Depending on your industry, it might be in your best interest to work with niche writers who have tailored expertise in your field. For example, let’s say you run a law firm and plan to start a legal blog. In this case, you might want to work with a niche writing agency like SuttonDigitalMarketing.com that would be able to offer you highly specific content expertise. Writers who have written topics in your field have a much lower learning curve and understand the proper jargon necessary to create an authoritative piece. Writers that specialize in certain topics are also better able to produce higher quality copy.
Solid writers will always want to know how they’re performing against your expectations, and providing them with thorough feedback is mutually beneficial. If they’re working on a large piece for the first time, you might want to offer feedback after they’ve created an outline or introduction. Feedback also ensures that they’re working on the right track and that they won’t re-make any mistakes in the future.
Remember to always offer feedback from a constructive point of view. One of the best ways to do this is by commenting on areas of the writing that you like best. Pointing out strong suits will help motivate them as they work on revisions.
Give Them Some Creative Freedom
You hired your freelancer or agency because you trusted their expertise. With that in mind, it’s important that you give them a little creative freedom. In the beginning, while it might be okay to offer them a few standard topics to start with, but over time, it could help to loosen the reins.
For starters, you could benefit from having someone on your team who can think outside the box. Running a business and a blog could easily dry up your own inspiration and creativity, and your writer might have some ideas of their own. This also helps them understand your that you trust their judgement. For writers, having a little autonomy goes a long way towards building a stronger working relationship.