Businesses with a successful content marketing strategy are not great by accident. Their success is attributed to a few practices that they implement in a way that works for their business. One of these practices involves working with the right content marketing professionals.
If you decided to step up your content marketing game and work with a freelance content team, you should be aware that this process isn’t without its potential hurdles. Ensuring that you find and hire the right content team and figure out how to manage your content needs is critical.
In this article, we’re going to share some insights into how you can successfully work with freelance content teams:
1. Establish a Single Point of Contact
When working with a freelance content team, there are various stages of the content delivery process, from planning, coordinating, writing, editing, and approving content. No matter the number of people involved in the overall process, not all of them need to be giving you feedback. You need to establish a single point of contact to avoid confusion and mistakes.
The most successful businesses do this to ensure smooth engagement with freelance content teams. Your primary contact is in charge of coordinating and synthesizing the feedback from all the stakeholders on the content project.
They work closely with freelance content teams to strategize on the type of content needed and collaborate to ensure they provide creative content that engages the reader and work towards meeting your content marketing goals.
With a single point of contact for your business, you can effectively provide clear, linear feedback to the freelance content team. That helps avoid conflicting information on the steps to take, content delivery requirements, edits, and who to contact in your company for what. Having solid internal communication practices is the first crucial step in ensuring a successful relationship.
2. Provide Clear Brand Guidelines and Style Guides
The next step is providing clear brand guidelines and style guides to the freelance content team. These documents outline who your brand is, your tone, voice, audience, and how you want your story to be told. If you’re new to this, an experienced freelance content team can help you do that. Defining these guidelines helps determine the direction in which you need to move.
The best freelance content teams work closely with you to create brand guidelines that will help them deliver better content for your business faster. Freelance writers want clear instructions, and editors want brand-specific guidelines. Unless you have clear parameters to guide your content creation process, you’ll spend more time editing or reshaping content pieces.
3. Provide a Content Outline
This is another critical step that you may not always do on your own, as it can be challenging to put into words what you want to achieve exactly. A freelance content team will help interpret your brand guidelines and style guides. But you need to provide a clear content outline to fine-tune the type of content delivered so you can get the intended results.
Providing key takeaways is also vital. Why do you need a specific type of content, to begin with? What do you want to convey to readers? What’s your ultimate goal? Is it to improve engagement or SEO rankings? Take your time to answer the question, “Why?”. Understanding why you need content is the cornerstone of your entire content approach.
4. Set Up Regular Meetings
You’re busy. You have countless meetings to attend, hundreds of emails, and other tasks to do every day. Nobody wants to be involved in other meetings. We get it, but content requires attention. Most businesses want to work with freelance content teams, so they don’t have to write content, review the content, and get them to understand what exactly is needed.
Freelance content teams are there to take the stress out of sourcing, onboarding, and managing freelancers yourself. But you still have to be involved in a feedback process to ensure that deliverables and next steps are always on track. Content work is deadline-driven, so it’s easy to fall behind when you can’t attend regular meetings.
If you need quality content for your business, then it has to be one of your priorities. You have to set up regular meetings to get up to speed with your content plan, set up new projects, provide guidelines and clear expectations, and communicate schedules. That ensures the entire content process is effective and efficient, so your content strategy and business can be successful.
5. Add a Fresh Perspective Into Your Content Process
You’re working with a freelance content team to fill a talent gap for your content needs and strategy, right? So, you should treat them as full participants in your content delivery and decision-making process. Business owners can gain a lot by working hand-in-hand with content professionals who understand their brand and what they want to achieve.
Instead of telling the freelance content team how you want them to deliver content, tell them where you want to go or what you want to achieve. There’s a wealth of experience in a freelance content team - from freelancers to copy strategists, and editors who can easily provide fresh perspectives into your decision-making process and content strategy.
6. Provide Feedback and Motivation
From the moment you start outsourcing content to freelance content teams, they become an integral part of your company. Feedback and motivation are essential for successful collaboration. If they’re delivering results, let them know and appreciate their work. Don’t hesitate to provide constructive feedback, too, when your requirements are not met.
By being honest, you’re helping the team meet your expectations, finish current projects successfully, and produce better results in the future. An analysis of content delivery and the results achieved over specific periods is also critical. With a sense of belonging to your company, freelance content teams can be more dedicated.
Freelance content teams can bring numerous benefits to your business. Through their input in your content strategy, you can build trust with your audience, connect with your customers, improve conversions, and generate more leads. Follow the insights mentioned above to work successfully with them and make your business grow faster.
Sam Makad is a business consultant. He helps small & medium enterprises to grow their businesses and overall ROI. You can follow Sam on Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin.