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What are some good tips and things to look out for when hiring writers?

Discussion in 'Copywriting' started by murrayse, Feb 23, 2019.

  1. #1
    Firstly, thanks for creating and maintaining an epic forum on copywriting in this day and age. When trying to learn something, I'm generally weary of most of the shallow resources on the web and generally find forums to be gold mines for reliable information on topics.

    I was and might still be looking to learn copywriting myself, however I realize that the smart thing to do given my time constraints may be to hire a writer.

    I am completely new to the concept of hiring writers and I have no idea of where to begin especially good qualities to identify, warning signs to look out for, standards, etc. Also what would the standard structure of a writing engagement look like? Without this and other important information that I may not be aware of, I realize it would be easy to take advantage of a newbie entering the space.

    I did a quick forum search and wasn't able to any posts with information like this.

    Thanks for taking the time out to read this and looking forward to any responses.
    SEMrush
    Sean
     
    murrayse, Feb 23, 2019 IP
    SEMrush
  2. Spoiltdiva

    Spoiltdiva Prominent Member

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    #2
    I've hired a lot of writers in my time, a lot. While I am certainly no expert on the subject, I do have experience in which to draw some conclusions from.
    First off always remember that with writers in general, you get what you pay for. If a writer is willing to work for slave wages then you will be spending a great deal of time editing spelling, grammar and content mistakes. If you offer a decent wage then you will get a writer who will be willing to devote time for research, and will give you original content instead of a slave wager who will steal the content of others.

    Always try and hire someone who is living in your time zone or close to it. If you need editing done and they are fast asleep your article will just have to wait, not good. Also watch out for attitude issues. A cranky, self righteous writer is akin to dealing with the devil him/herself.;) There are some real prima donnas out there.

    Good luck to you with your hiring agenda.:)
     
    Spoiltdiva, Feb 23, 2019 IP
  3. Smyrl

    Smyrl Tomato Republic Staff

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    #3
    Sean, were I to hire a copywriter, I would want to hire a copywriter that was native to the country in which I live due to the fact that the idioms and words American English speakers use are sometime different from those of the British speakers. I would also want someone with good grammatical skills.

    One major worry about hiring a copywriter is whether the work submitted is original or plagiarized.

    Before hiring anyone, I would want to see samples of their work and a list of satisfied clients. I would want such a list to include email addresses and telephone numbers of such clients.
     
    Smyrl, Feb 23, 2019 IP
    JoeSpirit, allout and Spoiltdiva like this.
  4. allout

    allout Prominent Member

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    #4
    Agree with both above. It depends on what you are looking for. Some people are just looking to fill up a blog with any content they can get and others what quality content. As stated above you get what you pay for. Just because it passes a plagiarism checker, it does mean it is worth anything.

    If you want quality, stick with someone native to your country and someone who writes original content, not rewrites. If they can not provide examples, do not hire them.

    Only you can be the judge of what you are willing to accept as quality.
     
    allout, Feb 23, 2019 IP
  5. kjh-08

    kjh-08 Well-Known Member

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    #5
    I use Upwork for finding my freelance writers and have had nothing but success. You can create a job and post it for writers to apply and you can invite writers you find possibly suitable, to your listing. You can read writers reviews, ratings, related completed tasks, message back and forth before hiring.

    Payment goes into escrow, so you can ask for edits if need be before releasing payment(I don't hire by the hour, only by the task/project/article). Prices vary on the talent of the writer, whether they're new to freelancing and the writing project.

    Give detailed instructions on what you expect from the writer. Word count, article structure/layout, keywords to use, etc. The more detailed instructions/expectations given the better success you will have.

    As for checking that articles are unique, buy some credits at Copyscape ($5 or $10, can't remember). I'll check the first few articles from new writers. Then if they always come back unique, I know I can trust that writer going forward. If it comes back plagiarized then they're fired (never had this happen, as they know what my expectations are upfront). If you're not detailed/organized it can be a hassle hiring/finding the right people.
     
    kjh-08, Feb 24, 2019 IP
  6. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #6
    In addition to what Smyrl said let me point out that the real proof of the copywriter is who can create the best control. That's the one you want to search for.

    When you find a copywriter with samples that give you the urge to buy the product those samples promote give that copywriter the opportunity to write a control for you. Then, once you have your control invite others to beat it. The invitation should be a low payment offer or no payment at all unless the piece performs well. And if a writer does beat your control pay that writer well.

    AWAI uses its copywriting courses to find copywriters to hire. And those writers pay for the courses. But once they do weed out a writer who performs well, and hire that writer, AWAI pays handsomely.
     
    JoeSpirit, Feb 25, 2019 IP
  7. murrayse

    murrayse Peon

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    #7
    Some very very strong points. What would you consider\recommend as a decent wage? I am willing to provide them with the framework for some of the list articles, but definitely looking for them to put some flesh onto them. Most definitely noted on the same time zone. I don't work well with people who have attitude issues so I'm definitely on the look out for that.

    Thanks for your feedback!
     
    murrayse, Feb 26, 2019 IP
  8. murrayse

    murrayse Peon

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    #8
    I'd love to hire a copywriter from my country (Jamaica). The struggle is that I'm not sure where to find them but I can check Upwork or and share a job posting to my network of friends.

    With that being said you have some very strong points that I've made note of.

    Do you have your writers sign a contract as well?

    Thanks.
     
    murrayse, Feb 26, 2019 IP
  9. murrayse

    murrayse Peon

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    #9
    Thanks kjh08. Definitely noted on these points. Are there any examples of good instructions/expectations that you could recommend or share?

    I'm liking Copyscape the more I read about it.
     
    murrayse, Feb 26, 2019 IP
  10. murrayse

    murrayse Peon

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    #10
    This makes a LOT of sense to me. Thanks Joe!
     
    murrayse, Feb 26, 2019 IP
  11. murrayse

    murrayse Peon

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    #11
    I'm more leaning towards quality content so definitely looking for a good writer.
     
    murrayse, Feb 26, 2019 IP
  12. murrayse

    murrayse Peon

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    #12
    Do you guys hire editors as well to go over the work of these copywriters? If so how do you find your editors as well?
     
    murrayse, Feb 26, 2019 IP
  13. qwikad.com

    qwikad.com Illustrious Member Affiliate Manager

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    #13
    qwikad.com, Feb 26, 2019 IP
  14. Spoiltdiva

    Spoiltdiva Prominent Member

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    #14
    If you're going to hire an experienced copywriter who has earned a good reputation in the industry, expect to shell out $50 U.S. per every hour devoted to your project. If you can acquire the services of a freelance copywriter and it's a small project you might get away with $15-$20 an hour.
     
    Spoiltdiva, Feb 26, 2019 IP
  15. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #15
    I can't attest to the competence but a quick search brought up this page for copywriting agencies in Jamaica: https://www.sortlist.com/copywriting/jamaica-jm

    Freelancer also came up so you might go there and try a geo specific search.
     
    JoeSpirit, Feb 26, 2019 IP
  16. JoeSpirit

    JoeSpirit Active Member

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    #16
    I'm in the process of reviewing a book on how to create a book. One concept I noted was that most editors approach content with grammar and spelling in mind - not the actual value of the content. I don't know how true that is as I've never hired an editor, although some of my writing could probably use it...

    If that is true you need to keep in mind that copywriters often use bad grammar and misspelling as tactics in creating their copy. And those tactics are proven to work when used right. Someone editing those techniques out of a piece can hurt the effectiveness.

    If you do want to hire editors make sure you lay some ground rules as to your expectations. Questions like: How is the flow of the information? Do the words make you want to buy the product? go a long way to getting you edit recommendations that have value toward the work. And never incorporate the recommendations yourself. Give them back to your copywriter and get her/his comments and reasoning one way or other. Then make changes if you want.

    Or run a split test of the piece as provided by the copywriter and the piece with changes to see which one performs best.
     
    JoeSpirit, Feb 26, 2019 IP
  17. Orol

    Orol Greenhorn

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    #17
    The most important is a portfolio related to your niche, good quality of writing skills and proofreading.
     
    Orol, Feb 27, 2019 IP
  18. Miriam Guimel

    Miriam Guimel Greenhorn

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    #18
    If you're not looking for cheap, ask around to your network. You will usually find many in your network (ask through Linkedin) who know many freelance copywriters.
    If your budget is low, you can go to Upwork and search through a lot of freelancers that are willing to help you out. You can pay them per hour.
    Also, there is Fiverr - where you can find a lot of 5$ offers - which I do not recommend - and Fiverr Pro with higher rates, but there you can find the top freelancers in this domain.
     
    Miriam Guimel, Feb 28, 2019 IP
  19. murrayse

    murrayse Peon

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    #19
    Thanks much.
     
    murrayse, Mar 30, 2019 IP
  20. murrayse

    murrayse Peon

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    #20
    Fair enough. Thanks for the details!
     
    murrayse, Mar 30, 2019 IP