Tag Archives: Professional Writing

How to get quality content written on a tight budget?

How to get quality content written on a tight budget

How to get quality content written on a tight budget.

Many clients approach me with a tight budget. Even yesterday someone called me who wanted content for a single page website. When I told him how much I would charge, he was taken aback. To be frank, even I was taken aback at the way he was taken aback. After all, I needed to charge for the time I was going to spend writing his content. I hadn’t even quoted a very high rate.

When people think of getting content written for their websites, they think in terms of long-term writing requirements. Something like, “If I’m paying this much for one web page, over a period how much am I going to have to pay for 25 pages?”

This is a valid question. Everyone needs to plan. One must know what is the cost of writing content for the complete website and then plan accordingly.

The written content on your website is one of your biggest assets, or in fact, THE biggest asset. Does your website have a meaning without the text? Are you going to have empty boxes? Or are you going to fill those boxes with content full of spelling and grammar mistakes or uninspiring sentences and paragraphs? Don’t you want to motivate your visitors into becoming your customers and clients? It is the written text that is going to achieve that for you.

Although I believe in most of the cases clients talk about having a budget constraint simply because they don’t want to pay enough to a content writer (the only service they want to save the maximum on), some cases a genuine. How do you get quality content written for your website if you don’t have enough budget? You can do the following…

Get content written for a selected few pages

Some pages are important, for example your homepage, the services page and the about us page. These pages are business getters. Although other pages matter too, these are the pages that must look professionally written. If you don’t have enough money to pay for content for all the pages, just get your content written for a selected few pages.

Get the content written incrementally

There is no need to get the entire thing done in one go. You can get your content written incrementally. In the beginning, get the barebones content. Have enough content that your visitors get the needed information, and you can launch the website. It is far better than launching a website with inferior or unprofessional content. Then, next month, you can pay some more money to your content writer to expand upon the existing content.

Repurpose existing content

If you already have some content on your blog or website, perhaps you can consider repurposing it.  For example, if I wanted to repurpose some content from this blog post, I could write a quick blog post on “How to write quality content incrementally”. This way your content writer won’t have to spend lots of time searching for new ideas and he or she can simply build upon your existing content, costing you less in the process.

Write the content yourself and then get it revised by a professional content writer

This may seem daunting, but if you really want to save some money, prepare the draft yourself. A content writer spends a lot of time preparing the first draft because most of the clients don’t give enough information pertaining to their businesses. Since you yourself will be writing the content, you will be sharing the information first-hand. Then, afterwards, your content writer can make it look professional.

Go for shorter blog posts

Thin content – blog posts and web pages less than 400 words – is often discouraged by Google, but there is no hard and fast rule. My philosophy in this regard is, having some content is better than having no content. There is no need to publish blog posts that are more than 1000 words. Just publish something around 300-400 words. The idea is to convey to Google that you are constantly updating your blog and the Google crawler should crawl and index the updated content from your website. I myself publish small blog posts when I don’t have enough time to work on comprehensive content pieces.

This may not help you improve your SEO compared to other businesses that are publishing bigger blog posts, at least the Google crawler will start crawling your website with greater frequency and once you can afford to publish bigger blog posts, they will be crawled and indexed faster.

There are many websites with less content. Although most of the business owners want as much content as possible to improve their search engine rankings and cover all the necessary keywords, your customers and clients don’t know that. So, even if you have less content, they may think that it is just your approach or design need. But make sure that whatever content you have, it is professionally written, looks well, and communicates to your visitors convincingly. That’s what that matters the most.


20 benefits of hiring professional content writing services

20 benefits of hiring professional content writing services

What are the benefits of hiring professional content writing services? This is a serious question because it is going to be a long-term commitment and if you’re thinking of hiring professional content writing services, both in terms of money as well as time (although in terms of time the service you hire is going to take care of most of the stuff).

As a busy professional you recognize the importance of content for your business website but either you’re not comfortable writing it yourself, or you don’t have enough time. Writing content for the purpose of content marketing is often a full-time commitment. Content writers like yours truly can do that because well, since I’m already creating content for my clients, it’s easier for me to quickly open another document and create a blog post for myself. This might not be the case with you. You may be working in altogether a different field and it is often difficult to sit quietly on a daily basis and create high-quality and valuable articles and blog posts. This is why you need to hire a professional content writing service.

Below I have listed 20 benefits of hiring professional content writing services.

  1. Publish content on a regular basis: Whenever one wants to implement a solid content marketing strategy the biggest hurdle is the content that needs to be written and published on a regular basis. When you have assigned this task to the professionals, you can rest assured that you will be getting reliable, engaging, compelling content on a regular basis.
  2. Get high-quality content on an ongoing basis: This goes without saying. Any professional service that you hire deserves to be called professional only if it provides you high-quality content without errors – grammatical as well as spelling.
  3. Enjoy better search engine rankings: One of the benefits of hiring professional content writing services is that they can provide you keyword-centric content without going overboard. This is very important. Your content writer should be able to use your keywords contextually without overusing them and at the same time sound trustworthy and compelling. This is not as easy as you may think. Simply using your keywords doesn’t mean your content is going to give you a good conversion rate even if it gets you better search engine rankings.
  4. Avail greater accountability: Professional content writing services are bound to provide greater accountability and this is a big benefit of hiring them. People should be able to trust them and rely on them. If many businesses are already relying on the content writing service that you have chosen for your business, then you can rest assured they’re going to be accountable to you.
  5. Get a dedicated content writer who is not influenced by your business: In order to influence your customers and clients you need to speak their language. This is often not possible for someone working in your organization. You need someone who is an outsider and hence, can empathise with your customers and clients, and then write accordingly.
  6. Have a greater choice of content writers: A good benefit of hiring professional content writing services is that you are not bound to a particular service or a particular content writer. Don’t like someone? You can ask the content writing service to change the writer for you, or you can change the service itself. It’s all up to you and you are in total control. This is not the case if you have hired someone in-house. Hiring and firing employees can be an expensive affair, but this is not the case if you hire professional content writing services.
  7. Update your existing content regularly: It’s very important to regularly update your existing content to keep it fresh and relevant. By hiring professional content writing services you make sure that your content assets that are already there are not neglected because due to lack of time this is something that gets ignored while you try to create as much new content as possible.
  8. Stop worrying about new content writing ideas: This is also one of the major challenges when you want to create new, fresh content for your website or blog, or even when you are contemplating getting your content published on other websites and blogs – how to get new content writing ideas? Although there is tons of stuff you can write about just when you are about to write, nothing comes up in your mind. People working in professional content writing services are used to coming up with new content writing ideas; for them it is a habit (of course, also a professional compulsions). So you don’t have to constantly worry about what to write – it is done, most often, behind your back, without bothering you.
  9. Easily scale your content writing requirements: As your business expands so will your content writing requirements. You don’t need to hire new people for that. Professional content writing services are well equipped to meet your demands. They will automatically be able to provide you more writers or more time from an existing writer. Inversely, you don’t have to fire an employee in case you need to cut down on content publishing. You simply have to let it be known to your service provider and that’s it.
  10. Save more money: One of the greatest benefits of hiring professional content writing services is that you don’t have to spend money on getting new employees and give them all the employment benefits that businesses often have to give. There is no extra money involved while hiring a professional content writing service. You pay just for the content you get and nothing more. You don’t need to dedicate computers and software to the writer. He or she doesn’t need your office space. He or she doesn’t use your electricity and your furniture. Remotely he or she can quietly work and get paid for just the content he or she gives you.
  11. Establish yourself as an authority: As a professional who depends a lot on personal branding you need to establish yourself as an authority and you do this by constantly sharing your expertise and wisdom with your target audience. If you don’t have much time you can hire a professional content writing service and it will provide you all the needed content in a well-written format. All you need to do is provide them some insightful input and accordingly they can create high-quality content for you on an ongoing basis that will help you establish yourself as an authority among your peers as well as audience.
  12. Make your brand more recognizable: Recognition, familiarity (unless you’re really screwing things up) builds trust and when people trust you, they are more eager to do business with you. By publishing authoritative content on a regular basis you make it easier for people to find you, come across your content and then remember you. By hiring professional content writing services you can rest assured that quality, authoritative content is always being written for your business.
  13. Create a reliable content stream: Reliability is very crucial when you want to continue a successful content marketing campaign. Even small gaps can lead to a totally wrong direction.
  14. Exploit all the promotional channels available to you: Since you never lack content you can exploit all the channels like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Blogging, Guest Blogging and Tumblr (just to name a few) to promote your brand and get more traffic to your main website or blog.
  15. Engage the right audience on social networking websites: You can engage your audience on social networking websites like Facebook and Twitter by consistently posting authoritative content that links back to your own website or blog. People will respect you more if the content comes from you rather than from other websites. When you link to your main content, encourage people to interact with you, ask questions and seek answers.
  16. Get published on reputed websites and blogs: This is a great way to get back links from authoritative websites. By hiring professional content writing services high-quality content is easy to come and since it is easy to come, you don’t have to just focus on your own website or blog. You can also share your valuable content on other websites and blogs, exposing your brand in front of a new audience as well as getting links from those websites and blogs.
  17. Engage customers on your website or blog: As I have already mentioned above, engagement doesn’t just happen with a few blog posts and articles. You constantly need to publish new content and then gradually people begin to respond. As they respond, according to their response, you create new content and then according to your new content, they respond again, and the cycle goes on.
  18. Enjoy higher conversion rate: Compelling content gives you a higher conversion rate. It doesn’t matter how good your search engine rankings are and how well you can engage people on social networking websites, unless you have compelling content on your own website, created by a professional content writing service, you’re not going to enjoy a higher conversion rate.
  19. Get more subscribers to your email updates: Building your own mailing list still is one of the best ways of building targeted traffic to your website because people willingly subscribe to your mailing list. If they like your content, if the content they like is regularly published on your website, it gives them a reason to visit your website repeatedly and if they really find your content valuable, they won’t like to miss it. This is the time when they will subscribe to your email updates.
  20. Broadcast your email marketing campaigns regularly: Email marketing content is as important as website or blog content and in many cases, even more important. When people open their emails, go through its contents and then click the links included in the message, they come to your website with a purpose. They are already inclined towards dealing with you. By hiring professional content writing services you can ensure a continued supply of high-quality content for your email marketing campaigns.

Is it true that an online copywriter shouldn’t charge according to the time he or she spends on the project?

I recently read on another blog post (by a relatively well-known copywriter) that online copywriters commit a fraud by charging or quoting their clients according to the time they are going to spend on the projects. I think it depends on the situation and the kind of project you are working on. I mean you cannot impose your own way of working on other people and if they refuse to toe the line you label them as frauds.

Of course a well-established copywriter charges less for the amount of writing he or she does and more for the value he or she brings to the table. But not every copywriter or content writer is in that position and neither does every client understand this concept. They simply want their writing jobs done. This is not an ideal situation but then we don’t live in an ideal world.

Clients come to you either through reference or directly. If they know you and if they are aware of your reputation (and your rates) they consciously make a decision whether they want to work with you or not. In such a situation when they are paying you they are actually paying for your work. They want you to deliver them what you’re known to deliver to other clients. They are not paying you for the time you’re spending on their projects, they are paying you for your experience and reputation. In such a case it doesn’t make sense to talk in terms of an hourly rate.

On the other hand if your clients come to you by simply looking for a copywriter or a content writer you both have to quantify the work in terms of number of pages and number of hours and there is nothing wrong in that. The clients aren’t bothered what a big shot copywriter you are; they just want a couple of pages written and if you don’t write them they can easily get them written by that guy in China or Pakistan, all said and done.

Does it mean in terms of your career you put yourself in a vulnerable position? Certainly and I don’t advise you to get in a position where you can be easily replaced. But hey, even if you are currently in such a position the main point is getting as much work as you can and delivering quality to your clients even if you have to work on a single page.

Then gradually you build your brand and people begin to recognize you. Once they know what value you can deliver you can charge for the value instead of the effort you’re putting in.

Does your content writing solve your reader’s problem?

Problem solving through content writing
Image source: arkworld

What makes your content writing effective? When it addresses exactly the issue faced by your reader. Whether you are writing a product description, a corporate profile, a blog entry, a tourist destination description, your whole agenda should be solving a problem, because once you solve a problem, you have delivered a solution, and everybody is looking for a solution.

But how does your content solve a problem if all you’re concerned about is help yourself or your client sell more? When you’re writing content for a website that needs to sell a product or a service, you need to take into consideration the following facts:

  1. Does your reader really need that product or service and is simply exploring various options by visiting multiple websites?
  2. Is your reader looking for a solution that can be provided by your product or service? (better anti-virus protection, or better search engine ranking)
  3. Is your reader there just to read some interesting trivia and has no intention of ever buying your product or service?
  4. Does your reader has no clue why or she is here and plans to go somewhere else within half a second?
  5. What sort of readers do you actually want to attract, and if possible, convert?

The first thing to do is, forget about trying to provide a solution to all the categories…it’s simply not possible through a single page and on the very first visit. Your most important readers is of the second category, and then the first category? Why second category?

Primarily we’re solution-oriented people. Even if we’re buying something just for a fad, we need to believe that that product or service actually achieves that. The reader of the second category has a problem. He or she may not be bothered about what product or service he or she is going to buy, provided his or her problem is solved. So you have a good chance of selling to that reader.

Take for instance your reader’s need to rank higher on various search engines on a long-term basis without having to spend lots of money. An SEO company can improve his or her search engine rankings, but so can a trained content writer. So how can you sell your solution (higher search engine rankings) by offering your content writing services? Explain to your reader as clearly as possible how good content helps improve search engine rankings. You can use client testimonials, you can refer to other authoritative articles, and you can use your own skill as a communicator: the basic idea is providing a solution to your reader, a solution he or she can afford, and believe in convincingly.

That is why you’re repeatedly told that don’t highlight features, highlight benefits. Of course some people do find features appealing (explaining the features of a RAID drive to a nerd) but basically we want to know eventually what a particular product or service is going to achieve for us.

Here’s another post on empowering your visitors by publishing solution-oriented content.