Looking to hire a freelance writer? There’s a lot to consider when choosing the right person for the job.
You’ll probably look at their writing samples, read reviews from previous clients and check out their background and education. However, there’s also a very important factor you should be considering:
Do they have a blog?
There are many reasons why you should look for a freelance writer who has their own blog – especially a blog in the niche that you are looking to hire them to write about. Here are a few of the advantages it brings:
(Writers – read the flip side of this: Why Every Freelance Writer Should Have a Blog.)
You’ll Get a Taste of Their Style and Skills
You will be able to read through the blog posts that the writer has published and get a better idea if you like their writing style. Of course, if they are a good writer they will be able to adjust their tone to your brand, but it is important that they are a good fit to begin with.
Also, it’s a good way to judge their writing skills. Samples published in other sources can be misleading, because you don’t know whether they were following an outline that was laid out for them or whether the editor made the article more polished. Looking at the writing on their own blog will show you whether or not the writer can conceive of an article idea on their own and execute it successfully.
You Can Verify They are an Expert in Their Niche
There is a difference between a writer who has a basic knowledge of your topic and someone who has been writing a blog about that topic for several months or years. When you are able to read through several blog posts that the writer has composed on the subject, you will be able to verify that they do actually know what they are talking about. This in depth knowledge will mean that they will be able to write a better quality article for you.
Let’s say that two writers are applying for a position writing a column about hiking and nature for an outdoor life magazine. They have the same education and qualifications, but one of the writers has had a blog for the past two years where they have shared photos and stories of their hiking trips throughout the region. Who do you think would do a better job?
For example, whenever I apply for a travel writing job I send a link to Global Goose, the travel blog that I have been writing for the last 7 years. A potential client can see instantly that I know quite a bit about travel and that I will be able to write about it with authority. They can also see that I am incredibly passionate about this topic, which makes for a better article.
They Already Know What Type of Content Performs Well
If the writer has been blogging for a while, they have probably already learned from trial and error what type of content performs best, ranks well on Google and gets more social shares. They know that helpful long form content with a lot of valuable information is going to be beneficial for your brand and they know how to create those blog posts from experience.
They Already Know How to Use WordPress
If you are hiring a freelance writer to create content for your blog, you might want to consider hiring them to complete all steps of the process, from writing the article to sourcing photos to uploading and publishing it in WordPress. Of course, this will take the writer more time and you will need to pay them accordingly, but it will save you a lot of time and hassle – especially if you are not very savvy with WordPress.
When a writer has their own blog this shows that they are already adept at WordPress so they will be able to upload the blogs they write for you. You can simply let the writer fill your blog with completed, published articles while you sit back and relax.
They Have Contacts in Their Niche
When a freelance writer has already been blogging in your niche for a while, they have likely already formed relationships with other bloggers who also write about the topic. This can be incredibly valuable, as they can reach out to these connections to create very powerful content for you.
Here’s an example: I was hired by Vietnam tour company Halong Hub to write a blog post for them. The post was called “7 Travel Bloggers Share the Southeast Asia Cruise Trips They Loved.” In order to write the post, I asked 7 other bloggers to contribute a short write-up and a photo about a cruise experience they enjoyed in Southeast Asia. This was not too difficult for me to achieve, as I have been blogging in the travel niche and I had several connections whom I could contact and ask to contribute to this post.
Not only did this strategy end up creating a high quality post, it also meant that each of these 7 bloggers were likely to share the post on their social media channels – further boosting traffic to Halong Hub. This is a smart strategy for a blog post because it takes advantage of the connections the blogger has already built.
They Have Social Media Influence
The writer will likely have established a social media following for their blog, which is also very valuable to you as the client. If they write an article for your website, you can pay them a little extra to also share it on their social media channels. Voila – your content will be exposed to an already established community of people who are interested in your niche.
This is a clever move, because it would take you an enormous amount of time and energy to build up this following on your own, but hiring a freelancer with a blog allows you to take advantage of one that is already established.
Plus, if the writer has already created a reputation for themselves as an expert in the niche, their author bio and byline on your website will lend authority to the content that they have written for you. Essentially, you’re not just hiring them for their writing skills but also for their sphere of influence and their reputation.
Many Advantages to Hiring a Freelancer With a Blog
These are just a few of the reasons to consider hiring a freelance writer who has their own blog in the niche you want to write about. Not only can you clearly see they are an expert on the topic, but they also already know how to craft effective online writing and they have their own established fan following.
Plus, if they have dedicated the time to building a blog you can be sure that they are passionate about the topic – which will always mean a better article for you.
Kelly is a Canadian freelance travel writer and blogger. She created Global-Goose.com, with her English boyfriend Lee to offer guides, stories and inspiration to those who dream of travel. They have been location independent and travelling the world since 2011, visiting more than 50 countries while working remotely.
Check out her PeoplePerHour profile to hire her travel writing services.
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