Hiring writers

11 Things to consider before hiring your next content writer

Content writing can be hell of a task especially if you have a series of websites or blogs that need constant updates with new and fresh content. To satisfy this overwhelming demand, webmasters hire content writers either directly or through other online content writing sites.

Hiring content writers can be however tricky especially if don’t have a firm grasp of the bolts and nuts concerning the ‘what’, ‘how’ and ‘from whom’. The following 11 tips for hiring content writers should be on your fingertips searching for content writers.

1. Type of content: What type of content are you looking for? If you are a webmaster, either managing a blog(s) or a website(s), you will obviously need textual content to drive your agenda. Depending on the core business of your website, you may hire content writers to write reviews, Press release, academic papers, newsletters, product or service descriptions, video or animation transcriptions, short stories, news updates, e-books, and so on. At least have a rough idea of the end product that you expect before heading out to search for content writers.

2. Consider your content management plan/strategy:
This boils down to how often you need to update your website or blog with fresh web content. Depending on the type of content you are dealing with, a blog will generally need more frequent updating than a website. Find out how much content you will need in a set period of time and factor this in your time and budget.

3. Which type of content writer?
Do you intend to hire online or offline article writers? I will rather you go for online freelance writers. There are thousands of freelance writers offering content writing services online, but you don’t need thousands, do you? “Small” websites and blogs can be sufficiently serviced by one or two dedicated content writers. You may, however, need to hire a team of writers if you do run a series of large commercial or social websites or blogs. The cost and turnaround period will vary depending on the freelance content writers’ skills, experience, and flexibility.

4. Where to find content writers? Well, if you need a relatively small volume of content, you can contact individual freelance content writers that offer these services independently. Alternatively, you can submit your content request to a community of content writers on content/article writing sites such as iwriter.com, Odesk.com, Elance.com, Hirewriters.com and so on. You can still select your favorite individual writer(s) from these communities and assign them your tasks directly.

5. Watch out! Beware of fraudulent individuals or agencies who pose as genuine article writers, only to disappear with your hard earned dollars. You know them, don’t you? If dealing with relatively new players in the field, be sure to take your time and carry out some background check. You may also want to start by uploading a smaller amount of money and then submitting a test article, just to learn how things work.

6. Submit your content request:
After identifying your preferred content writer, submit your project making sure you specify the category, length, dateline, skill level and compensation.

7. Tone: How do you want your content to sound like? Experienced content writers are able to write articles across humorous, friendly, critical or professional tones depending on what you want to archive.

8. Article/content structure: For purposes of clarity, and in order to get the best out of your freelance writer, be sure to specify structural and stylistic preferences for your content. For example, most web content clients prefer articles with short sentences and paragraphs, and with bullets highlighting the main points where necessary.

9. Keyword: “Keyword” is the keyword (excuse the pun ) when it comes to content writing business. For purposes of Search Engine Optimization (SEO), most web articles are nested around specific words or phrases to enable them to rank high in search engines. It is highly recommended to specify the keyword(s) or phrase(s) that you need to be optimized in your article. Also, specify the keyword/key phrase density (number of times the word or phrase appears in an article), and how/where you want it placed in the article.

10. Consistency and clarity:
If you are consistently ordering a large amount of web content, you may want to formulate a simple format that lessens the time required for you to write instructions. If there is anything you need to be included in your content, feel free to mention it to the writer or better still, point the writer to some sought of reference through a link for inspiration.

11. Revision: My last and equally importance tip for hiring content writers concerns revision etiquette. In some cases, the delivered final and the envisioned product may just not tally. In such cases, it is always good professional courtesy to remind the content writer of your initial instructions and give them another chance to get it right. To avoid cases of revision, be sure to give concise and clear instruction the first time to minimize turnaround period and maximize results.

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