If you own a blog, particularly a popular one, then you know the importance of good writing and regular posting. However, this is not always possible. Regardless of whether it’s writer’s block or a lack of time, interruptions in the flow of fresh content to blogger can and will be detrimental to the popularity of your blog and its Google rating. An easy solution to the problem is hiring an article writer. However, finding a competent, talented article writer is not that easy as it sounds.
Ask for Referrals
The easiest way to find a good article writer is to simply ask for referrals. Ask your friends, family, acquaintances, and especially fellow bloggers for recommendations. There are many skilled writers that are just waiting to be discovered. Another advantage of this approach is that you can skip the screening process and proceed directly to article writing.
Look for Freelancers Online
If you search fails to turn up any candidate, it’s time to look for them on the Internet. Your best bet are dedicated freelancer web sites, such as Elance.com or oDesk. Created your job posting and publish it on the website. Make sure to explicitly specify your requirements. At a minimum, you should specify the desired length of the articles, genre, language, and other essential elements of posts on your blog. To weed out writers that just spam job applications, paste a sentence at the end of the job posting and ask candidates to paste it at the top of their applications.
Weed Out the Chaff
Chances are, within several hours you will have multiple candidates applying for the job. First, disqualify those that did not paste the sentence at the top of their applications. Second, select those candidates that appear to be promising. Ask for work samples, referrals, experience in the field your blog is targeting, and past experience in writing articles. Make sure to verify the statements of the freelancer independently. A cursory Google search can do wonders. This review should allow you to narrow down the list to two or three candidates.
Test the Freelancers
At this point, you can start testing the candidates. Apart from writing skills and meeting deadlines, a writer should be able to write content that is not only original and attractive, but also incorporates SEO and your desired keywords. They should be able to write independently and create articles that do not require much editing. The ability to work with your content management software without any particular training is a big advantage as well. Your best bet is to ask the candidates to produce example articles for your blog.
Forming a Working Relationship
If, upon reviewing the articles, you find them to be over adequate quality, hire the writer for a test period. Usually one or two weeks is enough to verify his qualifications and competence. If he keeps producing high quality content while keeping to his deadlines, hire him full time. Remember that a professional relationship requires nurturing. Reward effort, loyalty, and initiative. In general, treat the writer as a partner, rather than a subordinate employee. A loyal, talented writer is an indispensable asset.