Constructing a profitable content material advertising program usually requires hiring communicative, environment friendly freelance writers. However it may be powerful to search out devoted freelancers who produce high-quality work and wish to spend time investing in your model. So how will you inform up-front if somebody is an effective match? What info is required to make sure you don’t dump time into coaching a brand new author, solely to search out that they don’t meet your requirements?
Listed here are 5 questions managing editors can ask themselves earlier than and through that preliminary dialog with a brand new author:
1. Does the freelancer have a portfolio and high quality work samples?
Earlier than you converse with a possible freelancer, don’t neglect to confirm they've an internet site or portfolio of labor samples. You’ll additionally wish to see in the event that they’ve accomplished comparable work prior to now. Studying a couple of of their earlier tales or getting a way of their model might help you identify whether or not or not they’ll be a very good match to your model. Typically, freelance writers also can offer you references or a listing of earlier purchasers that can assist you get a way of their experience.
Jennifer Dienst, a author and editor with over a decade of expertise, has employed dozens of freelancers. She at all times seems at their social media channels to get to know them higher earlier than scheduling an preliminary dialog.
2. Is the freelancer open to a transparent and concise dialog up-front about expectations?
After reviewing the author’s portfolio, an up-front dialogue with a freelancer can reveal what it’s prefer to work with them and the way they’ll reply to boundaries and suggestions. Emily Wolfe, a journalist and model guide who has managed a number of publications, says one of the best freelancers she’s managed have requested questions prematurely to make clear what she needed. “[They] weren’t afraid to speak on the cellphone to verify we’re on the identical web page,” she says. The preliminary communication boded nicely for the remainder of the connection—she discovered the freelancers who initially accepted suggestions have been a lot simpler to work with throughout the drafting and enhancing processes.
Nonetheless, because the managing editor, you should come to the desk with readability on the work the freelancer shall be doing. Which may imply pulling collectively a challenge abstract, phrase depend, due date, and fee info earlier than that preliminary dialog.
3. Does this freelancer have concepts that align with my model’s wants?
For those who want a freelancer to pitch concepts, take into account whether or not their preliminary submissions are a very good match. Is the voice proper? Does the experience land? Once more, this preliminary info can prevent effort and time down the street.
“[When looking for freelancers, I] thought-about whether or not their pitches have been a match for our publication and whether or not they have been prepared to be versatile with tailoring [the idea] or working with the thought I had in thoughts or that the group wanted to prioritize,” Wolfe recollects. “There’s a push and pull of huge image and getting the nuance proper.”
Hiring a freelancer who understands your model’s voice, tips, and wishes can simplify your job and save valuable enhancing time.
4. Does this freelancer perceive my viewers?
Discovering the reply to this query generally is a delicate balancing act: It’s important to rent writers who've experience that may assist your model, however you additionally wish to work with individuals who carry new voices to the desk. Nonetheless, to maintain together with your group’s high-level technique, a freelancer ought to have the ability to perceive a model’s viewers and orient content material towards the wants of that group simply.
5. Does this freelancer have the bandwidth to work with my model?
Even probably the most excellent freelancer can fall brief in the event that they’re working at overcapacity. Dienst suggests asking about availability earlier than making any last hiring choices.
“I perceive that juggling a number of tasks and purchasers will be difficult,” she says. “Relying on the scope and size of the challenge, I feel it’s truthful to ask these questions [about time, availability, and schedule] to verify the freelancer has sufficient bandwidth to take it on.”
Be sure that the freelancer can accommodate your inside deadlines on an preliminary challenge with time to spare, and take into account asking about long-term availability as nicely.
The underside line
Hopefully, working by means of these questions will lead you to a contract author who creates high quality work, hits deadlines, and communicates effectively. After all, that doesn’t imply that each challenge will go completely. Dienst says you want a communicative freelancer, particularly when issues don’t go based on plan. After they want clarification or additional leeway on a deadline, a very good freelancer isn’t afraid to ask. “I’d quite a freelancer maintain me up-to-date in the event that they hit a roadblock that's going to affect the deadline or finish end result,” she says. “I'm nearly at all times glad to accommodate.”