6 Ways Freelance Writers Can Improve Their Content Marketing Skills

6 Ways Freelance Writers Can Improve Their Content Marketing Skills
Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters / Unsplash

Content marketing for freelance writers is a great way to earn a reputation online and attract new clients. However, many writers make the mistake of thinking this means they need to blog about content marketing.

While effective personal branding is an important part of any writer's strategy, you can't always rely on your ability to write successful blog posts. Hiring a professional blogger will help you avoid burnout and keep results coming in month after month.

But while some writers are successfully outsourcing their blogging tasks, others are opening themselves up to more risks than they realize. Here are 6 ways freelance writers can improve their content marketing skills while avoiding common pitfalls along the way.

1. Be Strategic About Your Approach

Some writers think the only way to be a success is to make sure everything on their blog appeals to everyone. However, this is a surefire way to lose your voice and turn off the very people you want to attract.

As a result, if you republish content from these blogs on your own site or include it in an e-mail or print marketing campaign, you could be infringing on intellectual property rights without realizing it. That means you could find yourself with a legal battle on your hands - even if all you wanted was blog content for hire.

Instead of trying to be all things to all potential clients, think about the types of content that will attract the type of client you're looking for. For instance, if you primarily work in retail and food service, writing an inspirational blog post about how to get through the holiday season will appeal to your ideal client.

While it's important to make sure that every piece of content you produce on your brand is consistent, don't be afraid to carve out some room for your personality in between posts that directly help your potential clients. Remember, they're looking for an expert here, not another writer trying to move the product.

2. Don't Assume Your Content Will Be Free To Use

Although many bloggers offer their content up for free, this isn't the case with every blog post you might hire a professional blogger to write for you. The unfortunate reality is that some blogs retain full rights to any content they publish on their sites.

Check with your blogger before you assume the content they've written for you is free of restrictions. You want to be 100% certain that you can use whatever content they create on whatever platform you choose. Be cautious about paying a premium just to get blog content from a writer who doesn't have full rights to their own work.

3. Remember that Reputation is Everything

Outsourcing your blog posts can be a great way to gain new clients and establish yourself as an expert in your industry. But you need to put safeguards in place to protect both your own brand and the reputation of any professional blogger you might hire.

The best way to do this is by maintaining constant communication throughout the process. While the writing portion of the job is usually pretty straightforward, you'll want to provide detailed instructions about your preferences for images and social media sharing before you hire a professional blogger.

You also want to stay involved in the editing phase if possible - especially if this is something new or unfamiliar to you. This way, you can make sure the best possible version of your message is getting into the hands of your audience. You don't want to hire a professional blogger only to find that their work doesn't really reflect you or your brand when it's done.

4. Give Yourself Plenty Of Time

Even if you've found an amazing writer who can sync with the style and voice of your brand, you still need to give yourself plenty of time for revisions and collaboration.

While hiring a professional blogger can save you an enormous amount of time in the long run, that only works if what they send back is polished and ready to go out into cyberspace as soon as it's written. That means getting your content marketing strategy together before you start searching for a blogger.

Also, remember that there's no rush - even if you're behind on your social media game now. There's nothing wrong with planning things out and taking the time to create unique content that reflects your brand without worrying about deadlines or client schedules.

5. Choose Your Blog Posts Wisely

If you have a new business or you're looking for ways to update your site with fresh content, blog posts are a great way to go.

Content marketers have gotten a lot of mileage out of this type of writing because it helps search engines rank websites more effectively and makes customers feel as if they're learning about the product or service being offered on a regular basis.

That said, if you're just looking to hire a professional blogger and republish their content on your site without adding much commentary or value, think twice about using blog posts as your primary source of content marketing material.

There's nothing wrong with this approach from time to time - especially if you have an existing library of articles that you want to update. But your blog posts will be more successful if they offer a more polished perspective on a subject that's more original and unique than anything you can produce on your own.

6. Make Sure Every Blog Post Is Well-Researched

If you're working with professional bloggers, chances are you know what you need them to write about - but make sure to give them as much information as possible about the writing goals you have in mind. Focus on keywords, SEO-friendly phrases, and other specific details that will help drive traffic back to your site after the article is shared.

Don't be afraid to write out a response or outline for any blogger you hire. You want to make sure they understand your thinking before they begin writing anything on their own. Give them all the research you have on hand, any feedback or suggestions that might be useful for making this blog post better, and tell them how you want it to fit into your overall content marketing strategy.

This will help professional bloggers craft high-quality articles that are more likely to connect with readers and drive the right kind of traffic.