How can you help a total stranger who’s new to your business write a post you’ll love? It might be easier than you think—if you’re willing to invest some time up front providing accurate and authoritative information as a guide. Here’s how:
Be a Brand Ambassador
Think of each blog post as an idea infusion. A good blogger can take a topic and let it steep in your brand until a fragrant extract emerges. The result is something heady, something your readers want to discuss with friends after a night of karaoke bingo or food porn. But blog writers for hire are comparatively green when it comes to understanding your brand. They’re not immersed in it daily the way you are. They don’t live it.
That’s why you should always clearly communicate the soul of your brand. What are the ideas that give your brand a connection with customers? Be sure you pass them along. Put them in writing so your blogger has something to refer to if questions arise.
Help by knowing that your writer cares about getting it right. Every word has a unique flavor, and defining and documenting your brand will ensure that your writer knows which flavors should be included in your post and which should be left out.
“Language is often abstract, but life is not abstract.” So say Chip and Dan Heath in their 2007 bestseller, “Made to Stick.” Writers understand that concrete details are the connecting points to a reader’s memory and emotion. Consider having “a drink” versus having “a shot of bourbon.” Which do you find more striking? Which will stick?
Unfortunately, hired writers are often faced with a blank page and virtually no information from the client. It might seem like a time saver to let your writer take a stab at the post and then provide feedback on the draft, but it often doesn’t work out that way. Making significant revisions to a post can be much more work than writing a first draft, and a heavily edited piece often lacks the brilliance of a piece that hits close to the mark the on the first pass.
Help your blogger by knowing what you want when you make the assignment. Provide detailed information and instructions up front. If your writer delivers, it will be clear to everyone—and that kind of clarity should make both of you happy.
Your blog is a powerful communication platform. It’s a place to talk less formally about your business than you typically do on your website. It’s a vehicle for frequent and ongoing conversations with your customers. The last thing you want it to be is wishy-washy.
Know that great blog posts stand out. Give your hired blog writer latitude to insert some personality into each post. Provide your brand info and describe your reader. Then let your wordsmith shine.
Norene G is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.