Here’s a fun statistic:
The number of independent contractors that live in the US is 53 million, compared to 10.3 million 10 years ago. That makes freelancers an essential part of the American workforce.
Experts predict that that figure will continue to grow, and it is estimated that by 2027, there will be at least 86.5 million freelancers. As a result, there’s a massive number of freelance writers for hire.
But—how to ensure you recruit the cream of the crop, not someone who can’t tell the difference between a metaphor and a simile?
This article explains. However, let’s first look at the core benefits of hiring freelance content writers.
Why Hire Freelance Content Writers?
Below is a snappy review of some key reasons to hire freelancers.
Generally, freelance content writers are more efficient than full-time employees.
Unlike 9-5 staffers, independent contractors want to output as many pieces of content as they humanly can in the shortest time possible—the more they deliver, the more they earn.
Freelancers typically require little to no supervision.
They won’t slack off because they typically have lots of clients, and they want to finish projects most efficiently.
Unique Blend of Skills
If you need someone with a unique blend of experience and competencies (e.g., a killer guest-post writer), you are much more likely to find a freelancer than a full-time employee.
That’s mainly because you won’t be limited to talent in your local area.
You get to work with content creators from different countries who can bring some heterogeneity to your business and potentially show you a different way of doing things.
Hiring Freelance Content Writers
Map out Project Requirements
Before you head out to look for freelance writers, sit down and come up with the requirements for your project.
In other words, get an idea of the following:
- How much you’re willing to spend (decide whether you need to hire seasoned content writers or you could do just fine with someone having basic skills.)
- How long the project will run (short-term vs. long-term.)
- What skills and experience freelancers will need to have (e.g., guest posting, HARO writing, copyediting.)
Once you’ve cleared this out, things will get much easier moving forward.
Know Where to Look for A+ Talent
You want to find first-class freelance content writers that will launch your content strategy into the stratosphere.
There are a plethora of sites out there that promise you’ll find exceptional freelance writers in a heartbeat.
It might be hard to choose which one to use for maximum efficiency.
Don’t stress. Below is a list of three stellar platforms that will make hiring freelance writers a breeze:
- ProBlogger—one of the best sites for finding high-end content creators, but it’s pricey. You’ll have to pay $70 to post a job ad that will stick around for only 30 days.
- Upwork—a popular job board that gives you access to a massive candidate pool. Just keep in mind that to find the very best writers, you’ll have to sift through thousands of candidates.
- Guru—Ideal option for finding content creators if you’re on a bootstrapped budget.
Ask for Work Samples
Hiring mistakes are expensive.
In fact, 41 percent of companies report that a bad hiring decision cost them over $25,000. That’s why it’s important to spend every ounce of your time and resources on recruiting the right person for the job.
One of the surefire ways to ensure you’re dealing with a pro is to ask for work samples and check them for two simple, yet vital things.
First, ask yourself if the requested piece of writing provides any value to the reader and solves their problem. In other words, the article needs to have actionable tips, not something along the lines of, if you want to be a successful entrepreneur, you need to read a lot of books.
Second, throw under the microscope the writer’s style. Do you find it engaging and easy-to-read? If the article is as dull as a 3-hour Astrophysics documentary, consider looking for someone else.
Safeguard Your Intellectual Property
This one is relatively straightforward:
Once you’ve found a robust content writer that fits your project requirements like a plug in a socket, extend a formal offer.
Agree on the payment method, rates, and whatever is important to you. It’ll help you avoid legal issues and save plenty of trouble in the future.
Agree on Clear Collaboration Rules
Before you hire freelance writers, figure out how you’ll collaborate effectively.
Otherwise, you’ll have to deal with productivity losses and all those things that come with it.
Here are four collaboration tools you’ll find useful:
Google Hangouts—ideal for 1:1s. You can chat, broadcast your desktop screen, exchange docs, and invite other people to participate in conversations.
Google Drive—a fantastic collaboration tool that allows to keep important files handy no matter where you are.
Jira—popular project management tool that lets you plan, keep track, and manage big projects in a simple way. It’s ideal if you plan to hire and manage lots of writers.
Trello—another project management tool that allows you to manage tasks and projects, but unlike Jira, it is good for smaller projects.
So—What Do You Think?
There you have it.
A whopping five tips to hire freelance content writers that will supercharge your business.
What’s your experience with hiring gig workers? How do screen potential writers?
Share your thoughts in the comments. I’d love to chat!