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How To Create a Year's Worth of Content With Freelance Writers

Posted by Kathleen O. Celmins

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March 2, 2015

freelance-writers-help-with-contentThe backbone of a strong inbound marketing program is the content. Good content posted several times a week. We gave you a list of 156 possible blog posts to help you get through the year, but let’s not mince words: that’s a lot of content to write by yourself.

But here’s the beautiful part: you don’t have to do it alone! In fact, unless you have someone dedicated to the blog (at least on a half-time basis), you shouldn’t be doing it yourself.

Outsourcing Content to Freelance Writers

If you're not going to be writing all the content yourself, you’ll need to outsource it. There are several options if you’d like to start outsourcing. You can outsource the entire process using content marketing agencies. But beware that we’ve worked with several agencies in the past, and we found the quality of writing to be inconsistent at best. 

So we looked at it a different way—finding freelance writers who could create strong content. First, we looked to see the price range of the articles we were buying directly from these agencies; the average price per article became the rate we paid freelance writers under our new system.

How to Find Freelance Writers

We have a large network of peers across our social media platforms. So we reached out and asked if people wanted to write for us. We were surprised by the response. Overwhelmed, even. But that turned out to be okay because not everyone ended up enjoying the writing process while some excelled. In fact, some people really found that ghostwriting was one of their talents, and they’ve since gone on to write hundreds of articles—not just for us, but for clients across the globe.

Expert tip: When you’re working with a new writer, make sure to spell out expectations from the beginning. And only assign one article at a time. It’s much easier to ask for one rewrite on one post than it is to recover from an entire month’s worth of content that turns out to be unusable.

How to Get What You Want from Writers

We write comprehensive outlines for each post we’d like written. Outlines include the following:

  • Title
  • Keywords
  • Description of post
  • Links to target persona and blog pledge
  • An outline for the post

That means the blog post is about 50% complete when it goes to the writers. It also means we’re more likely to get back what we originally asked for, which streamlines the process. The writers are happy because the expectations are clear. We are happy because we get back high-quality content that is geared toward our client’s target persona. It’s much more work than simply asking writers to write a post about a keyword, but giving a robust outline ensures that there are fewer rewrites.

If you’d like to start working with freelancers yourself, download our freelance writing outline. This is the outline we use internally, every time we want to get something written.

Freelance Writing outline -- free interactive PDF

Topics: content strategy, inbound marketing

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