Benefits of Hiring a Professional Writer
Why do you ever hire a professional to do a job? Simply put, because they do it better than you. But for some reason there seems to be a resistance to outsource certain jobs such as writing the important copy that goes on your website, in your newsletter, that gets sent out in press releases, and is seen by your customers. Why is that?
Writing Isn’t that Simple
It is a common misconception made by a lot of people that, ‘anyone can write’. But the simple truth is that writing is a skill just like any other than requires practice and a certain level of knowledge and expertise to produce something that has the proper level of quality that most people are looking for. While most people in the business world have mastered the basics of the English language and can ‘write’, when you are looking for people to write various things that are going to be seen by current customers and are meant to attract new customers you should be looking to get an edge over what everyone else is doing.
Good writing includes a certain level of creativity that is adaptable to the message you are trying to send out. This includes understanding the target audience, using the proper tone, keeping readers engaged, and incorporating any other needs into a particular assignment. Let’s face it, if writing truly was that easy then Stephen King and John Grisham wouldn’t make seven figures each year from their books.
Writing and Technology
If you think about it, writing should be in much higher demand today than five years ago. While more traditional forms of print such as magazines and newspapers have dwindled, the internet has continued to explode. With tablets and smart phones increasing the ways people can access the all-powerful-net there should be a huge need for quality writing to make products stand out. For that very reason most good web design companies either have their own in-house writer or have one on a contractor basis.
Yet, plenty of businesses don’t take the time to hire good writers and instead look at the cheapest options. The result is as you would expect; cheap writing. That concept is just mind boggling as everything you put out these days is not only a form of marketing but also a reflection of your company. Think about the different areas you utilize writing to try and attract or retain customers:
- Press Releases
Why would you want to skimp in any of these areas? Aside from hiring cut rate talent, other companies are more than happy to ask employees to generate what they need with the assumption that anyone should be able to do the work. Again, this is not the always the best idea because aside from a lack of experience in the writing field it can also be stressful to employees since they are put on the spot to do something they may not feel comfortable and confident doing. Sure, I know how to change my oil, but 9 times out of 10 I am going to an oil stop to let them do it and save me the headache of it.
The nice thing about writers is they are actually fairly easy to find these days. You don’t need to have one as a full-time employee but can just as easily hire them out for a contracted period or by-assignment. Overall the cost can be kept reasonable as you hire them when you need them.
Luckily the internet can be one-stop shopping for freelance workers these days. Established sites like Guru and Elance provide an outlet to find talent in all sorts of fields including writing and editing. You can post jobs and have people bid on them and then select a contractor after you review their portfolio and feedback. The sites have built in rating and reviews from past employers so you can get a good idea about the level of professionalism you will get from a contractor.
Some people have been known to just browse active profiles of people and then send an email to a person that seems to best match what they are looking for based on experience and background. It is like finding a room full of available workers that are ready and able to get you what you need.
Another nice thing about hiring talent online in this manner (or posting ads on Craigslist) is that typically you get your work done right away. The system is more of a pay-to-play environment where as soon as the contractor finishes the assignment and you approve it, they bill you. The onus is often on the contractor to provide a quick turn-around to be paid swiftly. That is often a huge bonus for employers.
The Bottom Line
Everyone can write, but not everyone can do it well. Understanding markets, having knowledge of proper SEO and key word usage, inject the proper tone for web copy or even a newsletter are things that writers develop with practice along with study. People who aren’t familiar with the niche might be amazed to learn about the wide variety of manuals and books written about how to write for certain markets and how to capture an audiences’ attention.
But the bottom line is that while your admin assistant might be great at sending out office e-mails it isn’t always fair to ask him or her to also send out the monthly newsletter to potential customers or shareholders. If you want to make sure your business has an edge, then take the time to hire someone who has a better understanding of the field.