Once you have decided to create quality content for your website or blog it is very important that you find a killer content writer for the job. I know I’m using a clichéd phrase, but what I mean is, you need a person who understands your business, understands your audience, knows what language to use, and then communicates your message convincingly, preferably, repeatedly, using the appropriate language, to your audience. I know, a long sentence, but you get the point, right?
So how do you find such a content writer?
You first have to decide whether you want to hire someone full-time, part-time or you would rather outsource the content writing job. Since I am a content writer, I’m going to write this from the perspective of someone who is looking to outsource the job. So with this settled, how do you find a content writer who can really deliver with a punch and build you a formidable business asset? Here are a few things you can do
Recognize, acknowledge and accept the importance of content writing for your business
What the heck does that mean? you must be wondering. Aren’t you looking for a content writer because you know that your website needs content writing? Many business owners think that way but still they don’t understand content writing and therefore, they expect their content writer to charge as low as $ 5 (just a ballpark figure to explain the trend) for “quality” webpage content or blog post. Just as you have to pay a premium for a quality computer, quality smart phone, quality software, quality web design, quality food in a quality restaurant, and a quality four-wheeler, you also have to pay good money for a quality content writer. If you don’t think that, you’re either not serious about getting content written for your website, or you have a different perception of the real world.
Acknowledge that the content writer you’re planning to hire is running a serious business just like you
Considering the amount of money some people want to pay to their content writer (for example, $ 5) they think that the content writer is just a good-for-nothing, out-of-job fellow who has somehow gotten hold of a computer and an Internet connection and is now trying to make a living off the Internet without having spent any money. I’m not saying such people don’t exist, but if you want to hobnob with such people, then maybe you also have the same sort of attitude and running the same sort of business in your basement, mostly surviving on freebies abundantly available on the Internet.
If you’re doing serious business, then you have to collaborate with a serious person. If you need business class services, then you need to get a person who is running a business. If you want professional content for your website or blog, you need a professional content writer who provides his or her services as a business rather than as a hobby or an in-between-jobs activity.
But how do you know that the content writer you’re contemplating working with is a serious business owner or at least a professional content provider? Here are a few things to consider:
- He (or she) has a website with all relevant sections (homepage, services, about section, FAQs, contact form, etc.)
- His website shouldn’t look as if it was designed back in 2003
- He has clearly and convincingly described how he works and what procedures he follows in order to deliver effective content
- He has good command over the language (the language in which the content is to be written)
- He has a visible presence on the web – since there is a great possibility that you will be looking for a content writer on the Internet, you should be easily able to find him.
- He should have a blog that is regularly updated. Being a content writer he should have lots of content on his own website so that you can get a fair idea of how he communicates
- His fees and rates should be there on the website
- He shouldn’t be one of those “professionals” who would go to any length vis-à-vis the pricing in order to get your work. If he is too eager to please you it’s an indication that he is not very confident and if he is not confident he won’t be able to apply his skills with confidence to your writing too.
- He should reply to your email messages or phone calls or Skype messages within a decent time span. It doesn’t mean his replies should reach you within minutes because he is supposed to be working and not constantly monitoring the messages people send him, but a time gap of, let us say if it is not very urgent, should be at least eight hours.
Remember that these are basic traits and there might be many more characteristics that you may look for in order to find the right content writer for your business.
Have a clearly laid out plan for your content marketing campaign
There is a reason it is called “content marketing”. Hiring a content writer doesn’t mean your job is done and now it is up to him to do your content marketing. Have a plan. You should know what you’re trying to achieve by getting content written for your website or blog. You should know what topics need to be covered and why and what sort of effect they should have on your traffic as well as the people who decide to stick around your website for awhile. Remember that you are the one running your business. You know it’s nitty-gritty. You know more about your customers and clients than the content writer. You know there are various triggers (if you don’t, you need to do your research you need to hire someone who can do it for you) that motivate your customers and clients.
Once you have a plan you will know exactly what your content writer needs to do.
Decide what you want: a content writer, a content marketer, or both
A perfect solution would be a content writer who knows a bit or two about marketing too. This is because effective content writing has less to do with impeccable writing and more to do with convincing writing. How do you convince people? If you can market your idea in a compelling language. Remember that it shouldn’t be perfect language. It should be able to persuade people into doing business with you. A knack for marketing makes your content writer confident and lucid. He knows how to communicate the strengths of what you’re offering in an effective manner (to streamline your sales funnel).
Be ready to let your content writer do what he does best
In order to let the killer content writer create killer content for your website or blog, you will have to let him do his job the way he likes to do it (as long as he is delivering something that helps you grow your business). Once you’re convinced that he understands your audience and he is able to create content accordingly, don’t meddle too much. Don’t force him into writing something he is uncomfortable with. Don’t impose your ideas about how to write because it’s he who is in the business of writing content and not you. You might be a legal eagle but writing is not your calling (unless you are John Grisham, of course), so stick to your expertise and let the content writer do his job.