Part 2: What Attributes to Look for in a Writer
This is Part 2 of a 3 part series to assist you in finding help in the content writing aspect of your business. Part 1 defined what a content writer is and where they work out of. Part 3 of the blog series will get into more detail about where to look to hire a great content writer.
6 Key Attributes and Business Practices for Successful Hiring
Writers, like any professional, can vary widely in skill sets and quality of work. These tips will help you find one that will meet your copy and budget needs.
Tip – Keep in mind more experienced, specialized writers who add optimized value in marketing, copywriting and research will charge more than someone who with less experience and who does little research for the blogs.
1. Specialize In Industries They Have Knowledge, Interest and Experience In
We all have unique experiences, education, interests, relationships, opinions, and cultures and have lived in different global locations. These in turn influence our writing style, content, language (formal and informal), and perceptions. Often people write about what they know and learn. Would you want to hire a writer with little to no interest or knowledge in a topic area that your company specializes in?
No amount of short-term term reasonable research would develop good content for a writer unfamiliar with the content or industry. If you have targeted the right audience for your business, your audience is looking for value – learning something new about the topic, connecting with an expert and wanting to feel understood.
Readers don’t want the superficial, they want value for the time they spend reading.
This will translate into their staying on your website, and spending more time exploring your content. These actions then lead to Discovery Calls and Email signup for newsletters and opting in for lead magnets. Over time this builds trust and familiarity with your brand.
2. Understand the Different Forms and Functions of Content Writing
Writing blogs is different from preparing an email or a newsletter. Yes, writing is writing, but there are nuances that a knowledgeable writer will be aware of. A product description, technical document, research article, or ebook have very different structures and formality of language. Additionally, if more copywriting is involved, sequencing, and marketing messaging, the writing becomes more specialized to make it convert your customer journey into sales.
Finally, the audience the content is written for will further influence the delivery. For example, a blog for a preschool children’s program will ultimately be serving the parent audience, compared to a blog for a management consulting firm will use a different tone and vocabulary.
3. Working Style and Attributes to Identify
4. Operate as a business
This demonstrates the writer is committed to their work as a business and has invested the time and resources into their profession.
5. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Ability
Hiring a writer who is knowledgeable and experienced in SEO helps get your content seen in online searches. There are writers who can create beautiful work, but if it is not optimized for online searches, it will not be seen by your target audience.
If you’ve found a great writer, but they don’t deal with SEO, you would need to hire an SEO specialist to obtain keywords and phrases content (or provide them yourself). Solid market research about your audience and content topics, using audience-centric optimized keywords and phrases, and monitoring analytics will get your business found online by your audience.
6. Ongoing Professional Skill Development
Great writers attend ongoing professional development opportunities and have memberships with industry trade associations, or professional communities that provide skill improvement training. The digital world changes so rapidly and an organization such as Freelance U is a great resource for freelance training, community and job postings.
Just being a good writer is not enough anymore, unless you have a team of specialists that will edit, upload, and perform SEO and backlink content. If you want to reach your clients after investing time, energy and money in your business, having a writer who is up to date on the market trends and delivery mechanisms matters.
The written content you share with your audience provides solutions to your customer’s pain points and frustrations and needs to be consistent with your brand. There are no guarantees when you hire someone new to your business that they will be the perfect fit, but following the above list will make the odds in your favour.
Next: In Part 3 of the blog series
All ready to hire a writer? Want to do some more research? Check out the next blog to find out where the writers are at.
Have you gotten behind in your business blogs, emails and newsletters?
Click the button below for a Discovery Call and we can discuss how I can help get you back on track with your content creation!