Tuesday, April 5, 2011

How to Hire a Business Writer or Copy Writer

OFF THE RECORD:  Hiring a writer is not as easy as it seems. 
Maybe you need help with web content, or brochure copy.  Perhaps you need a business proposal written, or a series of blog posts.  Recognizing that writing is not your forte is a great first step to getting clear, concise copy that meets your needs.  What else do you need to know?

  1. What tone of voice the writer should adopt
  2. What style of writing your piece needs
  3. Who will participate in the editing process
  4. Who gets final edit

If the writer was in on your branding process, you’re off to a great start.  The process will be easier, because the writer will already know what tone of voice and style to adopt.  She’s familiar with your business and the terms that are specific to it.
In this case, you’ll have minimal editing to do, and you can probably trust the writer to represent you and your concerns accurately and well, with minimal input from you.

If the writer was not in on your branding process, you need to bring her up to speed.  A savvy copywriter will know to ask the following questions, but if she doesn’t, then make sure to inform her:
  1. Who is your target audience
  2.    What you want them to know
  3.  Why they should care
  4.  What you want them to do
  5.  What misperceptions about your product, service or business you need to overcome with the material the writer will provide.

After that, simply present the assignment in clear terms.  

Communicating clearly with the writer from the outset will help each of you to give and get what you need from your collaboration. 

Later, I’ll share my tips for working with a writer.

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