Even for website developers who deal with content every day, it’s hard to know what to expect when reaching out to a new website content writer for help. These 5 tips should help.
It’s a familiar story.
You’ve got your design and development plan in place.
You’re under the gun to keep this project moving …
And your client is struggling to provide you with content.
You know you need outside help. But what should you do to make sure the experience working with a website content writer is a good one for you and your client?
1. Check Your Website Content Writer’s Resumé
When it comes to web content, not every good writer is the right kind of writer.
Journalists, for example, are good at delivering the news in a concise format that’s easy to read for the average person. Most of them are great writers.
But writing SEO-friendly web copy can be a whole different beast in search engine marketing (SEM). The skill set doesn’t always match with traditional journalism.
So when you reach out to a website content writer, make sure they have experience with the type of work you need: “website content writing,” “digital marketing copy,” etc.
2. Set Clear Expectations
I’m sure you have a big-picture idea of what you want to accomplish with your project, like boosting organic web traffic or spreading brand awareness.
But how is your website content writer going to help you get there?
You want to get everyone on the same page as early as possible by sorting out some key questions:
- Who’s the target audience?
- What other sites might provide inspiration for content?
- When are the initial deadlines?
- Who’s reviewing the work?
- Who is the writer’s main point of contact?
Also, if already have an idea of what you want the layout to look like, provide them with the appropriate templates, i.e. wireframes.
If you don’t have any in place yet, ask your writer to provide some basic structure in the content writing (headers, image placement suggestions, button text, etc.).
3. Connect Your Writer with the Client
Once you’ve found a writer who fits the bill for your needs, connect them with your client (or key stakeholder—whoever has editorial authority).
After a warm email introduction, suggest a video call. You can either host it or hand the baton to your writer to set up the meeting independently.
Do this to facilitate rapport-building, which in turn builds trust. This will help your writer create authentic content in your client’s voice.
4. Solicit Specific Feedback
So you’ve given your website content writer some guidelines, and they’ve submitted their first pieces.
Now’s the time to solicit feedback from the client. You can either take point on this or empower your writer to seek feedback independently.
Go beyond “What do you think?” Some key questions you want to explore include:
- Is the brand’s messaging accurate?
- Do the tone and style match the client’s voice?
- Is the content structure/wireframe clear?
Encourage your client to offer both constructive criticism and positive feedback. Writers need to know what they did right as much as what they got wrong!
5. Keep Collaborating Throughout the Project
Once the initial content review is complete, assign any necessary changes to your website content writer. You can expect those revisions to be done promptly.
But don’t stop there. Keep an open line of communication with your writer throughout design and development. A website content writer can help when:
- The text doesn’t quite fit into the final design.
- The header structure needs to be updated.
- A new accordion is added that needs expanding text.
In cases like these, your writer can help you solve problems without compromising the voice, tone, and overall message that the client has approved.
A Positive Experience with a Website Content Writer? Priceless.
If there was only one thing you took away from this piece, it should be that open communication is a big deal.
It’s key to keeping everyone on the same page and ensuring a positive experience with your website content writer.
Speaking of communication, I’d love to talk with you and discover how MCB Content Marketing can help you with your content needs. Hit me up!