Discovering the right freelance writer for your startup could be a challenging task, especially now that there are so many millions of freelance gigs working tirelessly to get hired for online article writing jobs.
As a small business owner, hiring a freelance writing gig is a process you should not joke with. Your website needs to be refreshed with quality blog content and you need the right writing gig to handle it perfectly.
Well, here are five practical and effective methods to implement when you want to hire the ‘right’ online freelance writer.
Note: Hiring a wrong writer can reduce your business potency to a piece of bread. Be smart!
#1 Look into their past experience:
Looking into their past experience easily reveals their skill level in writing. As a startup gunning to grow your product or service through content, it is very important that you don’t just hire a writer, but a writer with the right skill set and experience.
Let’s say your startup is within the technology sector, and you’re in search of freelance gig who can perfectly grow your target audience with his writing skills; In this case, it’s wise to look out for freelance writer with not only deep experience within the tech sector but who also has the know-how skills to achieve your goal.
Reason is that a writer might be great in creating content within the fitness and health industry, but might not do well in business, loan sectors etc. therefore, be meticulous during your hiring process.
Furthermore, their past experience also enable you to understand who you’re dealing with — an experienced writer or a beginner.
There are so many inexperienced writer out there ready to claim what they are not. For example, you asked …. “how many years experience do you have on this?”.… because of the fear of losing you to another experience writer, he/ she might claim to have over 3 years, but in real sense they barely just started writing.
Every goal driven freelance writer will always have you (potential client) in mind. They’d not just enlighten you on their experience, they’ll be glad to share some helpful strategies with you. In fact, they’d ask questions related to the following; so, pay close attention to them.
! What’s your primary goal? Is it to drive sales, boost traffic and conversion rates etc… kindly specify, i’d love to be of great assistance.
!! How do you want me to be of great help?
!!! What time frame are we looking at to achieve this success? And many more.
Note: Smartly hire writers that have your small business interest in mind, and not the other way round.
#2 Ask for samples related or not farfetched from the job you need him or her to handle:
As a small business owner or a content marketer about the hire the right freelance writer for a project, this is another major practical factor to look out for.
Asking for work samples enables you to know more about the freelance writer. As the potential employer, you can ask for 2 or more samples. Meanwhile, it’s best you assume the state of the reader before you read through.
Now, find the writer’s weakness and strength by answering the following questions with all sincerity;
Does the title grab your attention?
Is the introduction engaging and interesting enough to drive readers to read the full piece?
Is the content typos free, easy to read and digest?
Does the content have a good break down?
Note: Don’t overlook these when reading the samples. Remember that you’re a small business owner and it’s not wise to waste your money on writer that are not instrumental and resourceful to you business.
#3 Run a test article before you completely hire:
My experience with this particular tip made me realise its important. Before i could successfully close my first online writing job deal which was about 5 years ago, i was asked to write a test article despite the fact that i’ve sent 3 unique work sample.
This didn’t just happen once, but it was more evident last year 2018. Almost every clients i worked with requested for a test article from me before we could finalize the deal. And surprisingly, they offered to pay for the test article; in other words if they like it they’ll pay and hire me for further project, if they don’t they’ll pay and pass on hiring me.
Below is a screenshot sample of one of the emails with a client i worked with last year;
I researched further and discovered why it is important to run a test article with a freelance writer before you completely hire him of her:
a. It enables you to discover if the writer is right for the job or not: This gives you the employer the opportunity to know the core strength and weakness of your potential employee writing style.
b. It saves you from wasting money: This test saves you from future content crisis. As a start ups, your budget on content marketing should product a great ROI at the end of the year. Not the other way round.
c. This process inspires the writer to put in his/her best, should any serious mistake be found, he/she might not be hired for the project.
d. It’s also an avenue for employers to check out writer(s) enthusiasm, reliability and so on towards the project.
e. It enables you to test for turn-around-time(TAT) and the writer’s willingness to work with your content correction policy.
#4 Look out for content writer that has contributed on authoritative sites aside his or her blog:
Writers that have written for other blogs or have contributed on authoritative sites are very well exposed and experienced in writing. They have passed through several critiques and reviews from well grounded editors.
Such writers understand the technical know-how of presenting content better than someone who only writes for his or her blog alone.
Personally, i’ve received several critiques on my writing style in my early days. But those tough critiques reformed my writing style, and today i’ve contributed on sites like Entrepreneur magazine, TNW, and many more.
#5 As a startup or small business owner, always reach a comfortable price rate.
One of the major difference between an in-house writer and a freelance writer is cost. Actually, for startup or small business, it’s expensive to keep an in-house writing team compared to a freelance writer.
Generally, high quality skilled copywriters charge more around $50-$250/hour and most other charge around $60-100/hour. Averagely, great quality blog posts are written for $50-$200 per blog post of word counts within 1000 words.
As a result driven startup owner or content marketer, it is advisable that you hire base on your content budget. You don’t necessarily have to hire a freelance writer whose rate is extremely above your budget.
Since there are many freelance writers with superb writing skills at affordable rates ( i don’t mean low rates ), i’d advise you hire them for the task.
Quality content is very crucial and has a strong and positive influence on your brand’s identity, so, make sure you don’t starved your blog of it.
( If you’re a small business, individual or seo agency that needs help with blog content writing service, this is up my alley!
I’d like to use my skills with you, so kindly get in touch via my hire me page to discuss further on this.)
Ejiofor Francis is the Founder and CEO of Effective Marketing Ideas, a content-driven inbound marketing agency that helps online businesses to gain exposure, increase search engine visibility, and boost their web rank through SEO and content writing services. Connect with him on LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/francis-ejiofor