Jen Miller explains How to Hire a Blogger, in her recent podcast on Be Seen Blogging. Today we’re going to talk about something a little different. Every day I get calls from clients interested in starting up blogging service. Many of them don’t understand how to make the transition to hiring a blogger. Realizing you may be in the same boat, I decided we needed to discuss questions you should ask when hiring a writer for your blog.
First and foremost, you have to find someone who is the right fit and understands your tone and style. What voice will they use to engage your readers? Next, you need to explore whether the writer is informed on your topic. If all of this seems to mesh with your company and goals, then you’ll need to get into more serious questions.
Questions to Ask Before You Hire a Blogger
How were you trained to write and why are you interested in writing my blog posts? How do you do your research? Will you conduct interviews?
This question is easily answered by someone who has experience. Prior to blogging I was a journalist, so this is one of my favorite questions to answer. I love conducting interviews and researching new topics to find the untold story or take a topic deeper and have put together a team of writers who feel the same.
Do you write other types of content?
This question can be a double-edged sword. On one hand hiring a writer who is spreading themselves too thin with varied projects can be a real issue. However, a white-paper writer who can utilize graphs and statistics in a post or someone who has the vision to see how your posts could eventually create book material is invaluable.
Do you blog or write elsewhere and can you send published samples?
Post samples should always be requested and it’s best to see them when published so you have an idea of the finished product vs. stand-alone text. Our posts, for instance include stock images, headers and other formatting such as bullets or sections to break up the text. Plus, with published work, you’ll be able to see any engagement tools, from sign up forms to links, also known as calls to action.
Do you have an error-free guarantee or process for eliminating grammar issues and avoiding mistakes in spelling?
This is key to presenting a professional image on your blog and is especially important to watch for when you hire a blogger. We have a 3-part edit system in place that goes way beyond spell check to ensure that our blogs posts are error-free.
What blogging platforms do you use and will you upload the posts directly for me?
It’s always helpful when you can find a blogger that will post directly on your platform and alert you when a draft is ready for review. Otherwise your time savings is drastically reduced as you still need to login to the site and format each post yourself.
- Do you have copyright protections in place to protect yourself and your clients? What are they?
The answer to this should be yes and a specific strategy should be outlined. Options can include use of stock imagery and plagiarism scanners as well as professional liability insurance.
Do you use search engine optimization best practices in your writing?
Any experienced blogger has learned how to optimize posts for search and even beginners have tools that can teach them the necessities. If your blogger doesn’t answer this question well, it’s time to look elsewhere.
Will you promote the posts after writing and if so, where?
Some bloggers use their own byline and will promote your posts on their social media. We prefer to think of the content as yours, so write under your byline and share it under your social media. The most important thing, however, is that the promotion of each post occurs and is shared repeatedly over time, regardless of which accounts shares.
Will you post to my blog consistently? What are the emergency plans you have in place should become ill, vacation or lose power?
Consistent blogging is the reason why you hire someone. If your blogger doesn’t have a plan in place, such as scheduling, backup posts or a plan to get online when times are unique, you may want to reconsider.
What is the biggest improvement I will see in my blog by hiring you?
This answers depends on the blogger, but consistency, engagement, and website traffic should all be on the list.
Thank you for tuning in to Be Seen Blogging today. If you have more questions on how to hire a blogger or other website content topics, please reach out to me, Jen Miller, on Twitter @jenblogs4u or through my website at NeedSomeoneToBlog.com.