Like it or not, content marketing has become an essential weapon in every online and offline businessman’s arsenal. If you have any desire to conquer a particular niche or industry, you have to add content marketing to your marketing mix. Without it, you’re as good as dead. It’s the no.1 solution for directly connecting to your desired audience and establishing trust in your products and services.
Contrary to popular opinion, a good piece of content won’t necessarily bring you on top of the search results, but a steady flow of good content pieces will, in fact, help you stay competitive and blow out your rivals in the long run.
A lot of people fail to see content marketing for what it is – the ultimate branding tool. When you keep writing solid stuff, eventually, people will notice your work and acknowledge you as an expert within your field.
Put yourself in this scenario: Let’s say you’re a European-based retailer, and you’re looking for a new and powerful web hosting solution. You already read online what you need to know in order to choose the ideal hosting package for your business, so you enter “EU best web hosting provider” or “European dedicated servers” in Search, and Google lists all the available results in front of your eyes.
You narrow the options and come down to ten companies that basically sell the exact same thing.
The only difference is that you read a few of my blog posts that actually helped you resolve a specific issues for your business.
Which one are you gonna go for?
Exactly. You’re gonna go with the company you’re most familiar with.
As I already wrote in one of the previous posts on this blog, although this all seems fine and dandy, and everyone knows the power of content marketing, creating high-quality content is not something that comes easy for most businesses. In fact, it has become their worst nightmare.
It doesn’t really matter how good you’re at your job or how well you can write, it’s always difficult to produce something interesting and original that has the potential to resonate well with your targeted audience.
Why? – Well, because almost everything about anything has already been written and shared millions of times online. To come up with something original and new that will take the entire Web by storm, you really have to revolutionize your field of work.
Most of us don’t have the necessary funds or skill set to do that.
The Rise and The Perils of Content Marketing
In the last couple of years, the number of companies that invest in content marketing has at least tripled. There’s a lot more competition in almost every niche.
Thanks to this, user expectations have exponentially increased. All of these forces combined have created a world in which people demand unique and high-quality content to be placed on their screens in a blink of an eye.
Most brands are not able to meet these needs.
Apart from all this, a lot of smaller businesses don’t have the time or the resources to really focus on their content marketing. They know it’s important, but they just don’t have the funds to take a solid shot at it.
Producing top quality content that has the slightest chances of being amplified by your desired audience drains a lot of time and capital. It stretches the sanity of your entire organization to such extent that your people start to resent everything that starts with the letter C.
Research has shown that nine out of ten of all companies on the Web have some sort of blog, but nearly 80% of them haven’t published more than 5 articles on it.
So, what do these numbers tell us exactly? – I think they paint a pretty clear picture that most companies have, at one point, tried and failed at content marketing.
Why? – Well, because they didn’t take it seriously. They wrote a few posts, failed to receive any real traffic and immediately hung their shoes out to dry.
So, how do businesses resolve these problems?
Easily. They hire people to ghostwrite their content for them.
3 Reasons Why Most Businesses Hire Freelance Writers or Ghostwriters
1. They’re cheap: If you ever practiced this type of marketing, you know that creating top-quality content can be a bit expensive. It all depends on who creates it for you. The cheapest and smartest way, of course, is to do it yourself. If you have the skills and the time, or someone on your team who knows how to do it, then it’s a no-brainer. It’s always best to keep everything “in-house”.
However, if you’re far too busy with other stuff or you have a shortage of people who are able to produce killer content, then you should consider hiring a professional freelancer who writes within your niche.
Freelancers vary in cost. Some charge as high as $50 per a 500-word article, while others tend to produce twice as big content pieces for no more than $15-20. Naturally, the quality is never the same. Before you go for the cheapest solution, you should always think about what you’re really getting for your money’s worth.
If you’re really low on cash, you can also purchase content from a content broker/provider, but keep in mind that the quality of the material those people sell is usually extremely low. Their blog posts and case studies usually sound like someone who isn’t a native English speaker wrote them in their own tongue and just roughly translated the whole thing via Google Translate.
The same goes for sites like Upwork that allow freelance writers and all sorts of other content producers to bid against each other for jobs. This kind of service is not something that you should really think about.
Naturally, your safest bet here is to hire a big and well-respected content marketing agency to do your content for you. The only problem is that this sort of services cost a lot of money. When I say a lot, I mean – it will peal the skin right off your back.
2. Lack of good writing or storytelling skills: A lot of times, business owners who don’t practice content marketing, are usually bad writers. Coming out with poorly written or poorly designed content will do nobody any good. In fact, it could seriously hurt your business.
Once people see you as someone who is not really that good at what he does, it’s basically game over for you and your business. This is where a ghostwriter can save your life. He or she could really help you build your brand. You wouldn’t believe how many bestselling books have been ghostwritten. Why? – Well, because form and tone are as important substances in this game of distributing your expertise to a wider public.
If you manage to get a really talented writer, who understands your niche and in what tone to address your audience, I guarantee you that you’ll see your business grow in no time.
3. An experienced ghostwriter can actually help you better design your content strategy: It doesn’t matter how well you know your business and how much you focus on your content strategy, the chances are, at some point, you’re gonna run out of ideas. It happens to everyone.
Who better to help you get back on track than a person who writes content for a living? An experienced professional certainly has some great ideas to offer you, if you let him or her know that you’re interested in adding their suggestions, thoughts, and ideas to your content marketing strategy.
So, How To Work With a Freelance Writer? Is There Something I Should Know Before I Even Talk to Someone?
As I already wrote above, when hiring a professional freelancer to create content for you, always look for someone who already writes within your niche. You don’t want just anyone who has killer writing skills. No. You need someone who will immediately understand what you’re trying to accomplish here, what are the do’s and don’ts within your industry, what kind of questions still haven’t been answered and what kind of people usually follow content that you’ll be producing.
You don’t want to spend days and nights teaching this person about the basics of your business. No. You need someone who can immediately dig in and start producing great and relevant stuff which you won’t have to review over and over again before you publish it.
Next to that, you don’t want to just assign your writer 20 blog posts ‘till the end of the month and just ignore him or her until the deadline comes. You could, but as my experiences have shown, it would be a lot better for you if you show some interest in your content and try to be part of the process.
It’s important to give good feedback to your writer at the right time, so that he doesn’t have to go back and edit things that were written ages ago.
Be sure to make reasonable suggestions and not just give out constant notes that are of no real value.
Don’t bug your writer with dumb questions and even dumber remarks. If you do so, he’ll walk away. Lord knows I have, at least 3 times in my career.
But What Happens If Can’t Find A Good Niche Writer?
If you somehow end up with a person who has some serious knowledge about your niche, but lacks the writing experience, or vice versa, as Neil Patel suggested in one of his posts for Content Marketing Institute, be sure to build your content strategy on actual queries that people search about your industry, with the user intent behind the horse that drags them.
Thankfully, user intent falls into three categories – they either want to do something, know something, or go somewhere.
1. 4 Ways On How Online Businesses Can Earn Trust From Their Customers (do something);
2. Importance Of Domain Hosting For Online Businesses (know something);
3. Top 6 Sites to Find Free Photos to Use on Your Blog (go somewhere).
So, Where Can I Find This Type of Person?
Basically, all across the Web. Just research the popular topics from your niche via Google, look at relevant blogs from your industry and check out if someone wrote killer blog posts for them. Once you find your writer, reach out to him or her.
That’s all it takes. Apart from acquiring new talent, this is a fantastic way to get familiar and introduced to people from your niche.
Before you go ahead and contact this particular person to create outstanding content for you, be sure that you have your content strategy and content calendar all setup.
As you probably already know, planning content is a major challenge for all types of business. There are just too many elements that come into play here. You need to focus on things that go beyond your expertise and figure out where and how to distribute your work so that it gets amplified by your desired crowd.
Luckily, Nathan Ellering, Content Marketing Lead at CoSchedule wrote an awesome step-by-step guide for Convience and Convert to help you design an outstanding editorial calendar for your content. In this post, Nathan selflessly gave us 105 different content ideas on how to fill our content calendar, so that it seems fresh and interesting to our audience.
I hope you enjoyed this blog post. If you have any questions about anything I wrote above, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below, and I’ll do everything in my power to answer as soon as possible.
That’s it for now,
See you soon again,
Goran @ AltusHost B.V.