Using Freelance Writers: Hirer, Beware!

Using Freelance Writers: Hirer, Beware!

Do you expect to write all your marketing copy yourself? Probably not.

You should be careful of companies that offer to set up your website, content and all. That’s because they may use a template that includes the same wording as dozens or even hundreds of other dentists. THAT will not get you noticed by search engines.

So how do you get unique and informative content onto your web pages? Don’t plan to write all of your website copy yourself. That is not a good use or your time, no matter how good a writer you are or how much time you have.

Building your website is kind of like building a house. You can do it yourself with whatever skill you have or can gain. This is a risky proposition, especially if you don’t know what you’re doing.

At the opposite end, you can hire a project manager. This is the point person who hires and manages the various subcontractors, leaving you to make only the highest-level decisions.

Or you can act as the project manager and hire individual contractors to build the various elements. This can be problematic on two fronts:

  1. You have to have the knowledge to the know the good contractors from the bad.
  2. You have to take time away from the rest of your life to coordinate your contractors.

If you decide to go with the last option and hire contractors to build the various parts of your website, make sure you are knowledgeable about hiring freelance writers.

The most important knowledge is to be careful. Everybody who has ever gotten an A in college English thinks he or she is a good writer.

Before we started our in-house writing staff, we supplemented our work with the work of freelancers. We quickly learned to be careful about hiring freelancers who work for cents per word. If you decide to go this route, you’d better hire four or five for the same job.

That’s because one or two will flake on you and you’ll never hear from them again, another one or two will turn in crap, and maybe you’ll get something usable from one.

Look for an individual who has experience in content marketing. If you can find one with experience writing about dentistry, that’s certainly a plus.

If you find a writer you like, negotiate a deal based on the volume of content you expect and when you expect it to be completed. Agree to a set number of revisions, as you likely will want changes from the first version you see. And never, EVER pay up front.

Finally, reconsider this course of action. Sure, you may be able to save some money by hiring the various contractors to build your website. But the time you spend managing those contractors is time you could be doing something else, like seeing patients or spending time with your friends and family.

And you are not an expert in code, photography, design, videography, writing and search engine optimization. How much time and money will you waste trying to find the right people for the job – or on hiring the wrong people? Find a company, whether that is us or someone else, who will manage all that for you.




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About the author
Colin Receveur is a nationally recognized speaker, author, and dental web marketing expert who has pioneered the way dentists market themselves online for the past decade. Since incorporating in 2001, Colin has established a rock solid track record with his dentist clients and turned SmartBox into a stalwart of proven results for hundreds of dental practices.