Your content is the key to engaging with your audience, so it needs to grab attention – and keep it. It should get your message across effectively and stamp you as an authority. But producing high-quality content on a consistent basis is time-consuming. So, it could be a smart move for you to hire a content writer, so you can get on with the business of running your business! Here are 7 things to look for when hiring a content writer, so that you can rest assured your content is in good hands.
1 A portfolio of relevant content and testimonials.
Look for content that is well written, creative, lively and informative. You will also want to know what the writer’s previous clients or employers thought of their work. A good writer will have a website of their own, with examples of their work and testimonials.
2 An interest in your area of business.
I say an interest, rather than a knowledge, because a good content writer can research and write about many topics. Having said that, it certainly doesn’t hurt if they do have a background in your industry! Look for someone who shows a genuine interest in your product or service. Make sure you choose someone who asks lots of questions and is willing to immerse themselves in the topic. After all, you’re more likely to get great content from someone who cares about what they are writing about.
3 An ability to meet deadlines.
You need a content writer who can meet your deadlines – someone you can rely on. Your deadlines need to be reasonable, of course… but once a schedule is agreed upon, it should be met, unless the circumstances are unavoidable.
4 A good grasp on grammar.
A good content writer should be able to write clearly and concisely, with no errors. Ok, next to no errors. It’s a fact that even the best editors miss something once in a while. This should be the exception though. If you need help evaluating a piece of writing, you can run content through the Hemingway App to get a readability score and a grammar evaluation.
5 Good research skills and ability to back up writing with facts and references.
An experienced copywriter will have some journalistic nous. They will know that the best blogs and articles include reliable data to back up the points they are making. They will know how to research a topic, and where to go to do that. Wikipedia won’t cut it – it’s compiled by anonymous writers and it can be altered at any time. More reputable sources are needed. They will also know how to reference their work, citing the original source.
6 Fair and reasonable fees.
By fair and reasonable, I mean, if you are hiring a highly experienced copywriter, you can expect to pay more. After all, you get what you pay for. For a senior content writer, you can expect to pay $120-$200 per hour. You can also expect a premium product with minimal fuss. Most mid-range writers will charge $75-$120 per hour. Low range, well, how low can you afford to go?
Remember, with a lower price tag, you risk lower content quality and experience. Is that going to be good for your business?
7 A certain ‘Je ne sais quoi’.
Or, as we say in Australia, ‘It’s the vibe, your honour’. What I’m talking about here is, do you like the person? Do you get a good feeling about them? Your intuitive voice will tell you whether a person is going to be a fit for your business. You are going to be working closely with this person – either remotely or in person – so make sure you like them.
If you are struggling to create great content for your business, contact me today.