If you’re knee-deep in a content marketing strategy session and feeling overwhelmed with the task of building a creative team, I’ve got your back!
Over the years I’ve learned the best places to hang out online as a writer, get seen and get gigs. Now, reverse engineer that and you can use the same tips to spot the next wordsmith for your content creation needs.
Writers: Take note here too. These ideas will help YOU get in front of people who want to hire you for your magical way with words.
In this blog post I’ll highlight five ways to source talent, ASAP.
- Implement creative, targeted hashtags
- Browse content marketing platforms
- Use LinkedIn to find writers
- Search for writer websites
- Contact favorite bylines
Work With Hashtags on Social Media
Head to Twitter, LinkedIn or Instagram and search for hashtags that relate to your core content needs. Focus on the writing topic (pets, farming, advertising, etc.), content type (blog posts, ebooks, white papers, etc.) or simply the need for a freelancer.
For example, let’s say you’re searching for someone to write blog posts about parenting and lifestyle topics for a brand that caters to that audience. You might browse the following hashtags:
- #AmWriting, #FreelanceLife, #WritingCommunity – To connect with active writers and learn what they value, expect and want out of writing projects.
- #LifestyleWriter, #MomBlogger, #ParentingWriter – These hashtags combine both the need for a writer and your niche.
Also include #WritingOpp #WritingJob #WritingGig because those are a few of the hashtags we writers are searching for too!
More than once I’ve had marketing strategists and brands reach out to me based on my social media updates related to the type of writing work I do, want to do and am most skilled at creating. The same can work for you. Ask for writers, and get ready to vet the responses!
Explore Writer Profiles on Content Hubs
Over the past ten years, the number of content marketing platforms and digital marketing agencies online has exploded. Some are newer start-ups with a small roster of writers, while others are booming with thousands of creatives at your fingertips.
So, how does this work? These companies offer writers free profiles to showcase their writing clips and bios. You can search them to find the perfect writer for your project. Of course, this will likely come at a cost to use the content marketing platforms’ services. But, you might need extra help anyway, so why not hire it all in one place?
Let’s say you’re a marketing director for a small advertising firm. Your clients need creative assets, so you’re in charge of building a team to execute the content strategy that you’ve developed. You might go to a content marketing platform to assist with SEO, additional strategy, creating buyer personas, branding, writers’ guidelines, finding a photographer…. or a writer!
I land work via several content marketing platforms and agencies each month. A few of my favorites that offer free profiles for writers — that you can browse — include Skyword, Contently and ClearVoice.
Use LinkedIn For More Than Connections
You’ve worked hard to network and stay in touch with other professionals in your field. Guess what? Freelance writers do the same on LinkedIn with colleagues, publishers, editors and other writer friends.
Spend some time getting active with your connections and learning who they recommend when you need to hire a writer on contract. Browse hashtags on LinkedIn. See what your friends in the industry are chatting about.
Lately, I’ve been getting weekly writing job opportunities from the LinkedIn Profinder feature in my email inbox. These range from blog posts and ebooks, to memoirs and social media post writing. If you need to find a writer fast, consider posting it to this service and wait for the inquiries to roll in.
You can also establish yourself in writing-focused Groups to build connections with freelance writers, so when you need them, you’ve already created a baseline of trust and visibility.
Tip: Established freelance writers are also vetting you. We don’t work with just anyone who’s offering a project or a paycheck.
Go to Google Often and Search
This sounds so basic, but it works. Professional writers will have optimized websites that come up in search based on the services, skills or topics they write about.
Type “freelancer writer, blog posts” or “Freelancer writer, parenting topics” into the search box and you should get hits on websites that are maintained and relevant. And, that’s probably the type of writer you want to work with, right?
To be honest, when I play with this method, the first page is all writing opps for freelancers. Once you get to page two and three, you’ll start to find writers’ website for you to review. This approach also lets you learn more about a writer from their About and Contact pages.
Investigate the Best Bylines
If you have a favorite publication or article you admire (and hope to emulate), look at the bylines attached to the content, then find the writer! More than once I’ve had publishers reach out to me with an email that started like this:
“I just read your article about X on the XYZ website. My company is looking to do something similar and wondered if you would be available to discuss our project.”
Over the years I’ve discovered that even the most esteemed publications work with contract-based writers (sometimes in addition to staff), so there’s a good chance that the writer you admire is available to take on work beyond the publication where you first spotted them.
To find out, reach out!
You need writers and content creation as much as we need publishers and writing projects. With a little investigative work, you can find us pretty easily.
Do you need a reliable writer on your team? I collaborate with marketing and advertising agencies to create content for blog posts, web pages, social media and newsletters. Learn how I can help your clients HERE.