Today, guest blogger (and fellow Sacramento Blogger) Micah Abraham of the Great Leap Studio blog, is generously offering tips based on his experience as a professional content marketing dude. For those of you who are blogging for business (whether for your own or others), here are some honest and thoughtful tips to consider:
Hello Sacramento Bloggers. My name is Micah. I am new to the Sacramento area – originally from Seattle – and I wanted an opportunity to introduce myself to you through the magic of blogging.
Like you, I write blog posts. Unlike many of you, my blog posts do not showcase my personality and are not particularly fun to read for the average internet user. That is because the blog posts I write are not personal, funny, or cool. The blog posts I write are for businesses – businesses that pay me to write blog posts for them.
Content Writing as a Business
I am a content writer, and I have been a content writer for over 6 years. I own a company called Great Leap Studios, and we (mostly me) offer content writing services to businesses that are hoping to market their websites. I write static web pages, eBooks, guest posts, and several other forms of content, but in general the heart of my business is blogging. Businesses pay me to write their blog posts.
If you know anything about the corporate world, then you also know that the corporate world is boring. So, so boring. Very few businesses are brave enough to write blog posts with personality or humor. Most want dry, generic posts that cannot offend anyone and contain absolutely zero Phineas and Ferb references. It’s tragic.
But if you’re willing to write for someone else and their vision, then blog content writing is still a great way to make a living. Businesses need active blogs in order to rank well in search engines, and that means that businesses need active bloggers to help them with blog writing.
Blog Posts As A Living
If this is a career that interests you, and I hope that it doesn’t because that means you’re my competition, then the following are tips you can use to offer a quality blog writing service.
- Manage Writing, Not a Blog – First tip: Don’t manage blogs, manage writing. You know from experience how hard it is to make sure you do a post every day. It is even harder and more time consuming to do that for multiple blogs for multiple businesses. Logging in, creating a post, logging out – it’s madness. If you offer blog writing services, try to focus on the writing. Let the company post itself.
- Write in Bulk – Remember that most companies want dry content. Dry content doesn’t require the same mental gymnastics as humor content. Dry content thrives from “flow” – your ability to get into a zone and break out 5,000 words in a day. So if you have a blog writing client, request/require that the writing be completed in bulk. You’ll find that you write with far more speed AND quality when you write 10 posts a day instead of 1 per week, because you’re able to keep your mind focused on the topic and the words used in that industry.
- Be An Expert – When you offer blog writing services, you need to remember to be doubt free. When you write, you write as though you’re an expert. “Do this” instead of “You might want to do this.” You ARE an expert, at least as far as the internet is concerned, and so you need to make sure your writing is confident and knowledgeable.
- Remember the Format – Personal blogging is image rich and filled with block text. Professional blogging is very different. You’ll need short paragraphs, bullet points, subheadings, and sometimes even bold/header tag formatting. Formatting is arguably as important if not more important than quality writing, because many of the company’s visitors will not bother reading it – they’ll simply scan it quickly and use it to determine whether they trust a company.
- Pseudoscience Blogging – You’ll also have requests from clients that make little sense if you know about SEO and marketing. You’ll be asked to bold keywords, or provide meta keywords, or place keywords a specific number of words apart. According to Google, none of these matter, but you’ll probably be asked to do them anyway, and unless you have reason not to you should do it. Most businesses are not looking for SEO consultants. They’ve hired a scammy company to do that for them already. It’s easier to write the content they need than to explain all of the reasons that their requests won’t matter.
- Learn But Don’t Quote – Finally, you’ll often be asked to write about topics you know very little about. There is a tendency to look at another, identical article and rewrite it completely. That works, but that’s not the best way to do it. Instead, read more than one article on the topic, “learn” the topic and become what I like to call a “temporary expert.” For example, if I have to write about something about pest control, I’ll read several articles about that topic, become an “expert,” and write using my own memory as though I had years of experience. I may still use those articles as references to guide some of the facts I put in the writing, but I’m not writing directly from them. When you know the topic yourself, it can be seen in your writing quality.
To be honest, I could write an entire book on how to blog for businesses, but the above list will start scratching the surface. Blog writing services are a great way to earn some extra money, but the most important thing to keep in mind is that it is nothing like personal blogging. It’s a grind – a fun, interesting, flexible grind, but a grind nonetheless.
About the Author: Micah is owner and lead writer at Great Leap Studios, a content marketing company. He is currently writing about himself in the third person and looks forward to meeting you all at one of the future Sac Blogger events.
Got some helpful tips for your fellow bloggers on a particular topic that you would be willing to guest post about? Let us know!
(Image Source: dream designs/freedigitalphotos.net)