10 Tips to Find a Freelance Blog Writer Who’s a Good Fit

find a freelance blog writer good fit

You know that content marketing is worth it. But boy do you find it hard to keep up with the constant, ongoing need to produce new content. And good content at that.

You’re not alone. In a survey of over 1,000 content marketers, Curata found that creating enough content on a regular basis was the second biggest challenge marketers named. Writing useful blog posts that are well researched, accurate, and substantial takes a lot of work. And internal marketing teams can quickly get overtaxed.

One possible solution is hiring a freelance blog writer. Freelance bloggers who know content marketing and SEO can deliver content that’s well written and crafted to meet your business goals. But finding a good freelance blog writer is hard. And what’s even harder—and just as important—is finding a good freelance blog writer that’s a fit for how you work.

Why Fit is So Important When Hiring a Freelance Blog Writer

In years of working as a freelancer, I’ve learned that finding and working with new clients is a bit like dating. The first few interactions, including early assignments, are often a test in compatibility. When a client and I aren’t compatible in our working styles—even if I like the business or my main contact there is really nice—it won’t be a good working experience.

Taking the time to find a content marketing writer that’s a good fit for your company’s preferences and goals, instead of just one that’s a good writer, will make your life easier in a number of ways:

  • The process of working with them will go more smoothly.
  • You’re far less likely to deal with multiple rounds of edits.
  • You won’t have as much stress from dealing with minor conflicts or misunderstandings.
  • And by getting it right from early on, you can save yourself the trouble of having to start the search all over again after a failed start.

How to Find a Good Freelance Blog Writer

Before you can find the right blogger for you, you need to figure out where to find a good freelance writer to begin with.

I get it, it’s hard. And if you’ve tried job boards like Upwork and Fiverr, you may be feeling hopeless after getting a flood of responses from writers that don’t look very good.

That’s because job sites like those are full of low-paying gigs, so experienced writers who are picky about finding good clients mostly don’t bother with them.

1. Start with referrals and recommendations.

Before you go to any online options, start asking around. Between networking events, conferences, or even past jobs, most marketers have plenty of other friends in the industry. One of them probably knows a good writer or two. Send out some emails or LinkedIn messages. If you’re in a good professional Facebook group or Slack, ask there.

If you already have a freelance blog writer you’re working with and have realized it’s time to find more, ask them as well. Freelancers often know other freelancers. And most of us like helping each other out when given the opportunity, especially if it also helps out a client.

2. Pay attention to bylines on blogs you like.

If recommendations didn’t do the trick, think about the blogs in your industry you like the most. Pull up some of the posts you like and scroll down to the bottom to see if there’s an author bio. If the writer is a freelancer, often it will say so right in the bio and it may even include a link back to their website. For example: this is what my bio looks like on one client’s site.

If there’s a name, but not a bio, do a few minutes of sleuthing to see if you can find the writer on Google or social media. Freelancers usually have both a website and a social presence, and provide information that makes getting in touch easy. And if the person you contact says they’re overbooked or isn’t interested in the type of project you offer, you can go back to #1 and ask them if they have any colleagues they can recommend.

3.  Search on LinkedIn.

This is one of the exact things the professional social media networking site is for. When you search the site for freelance bloggers, you’ll see writers who are connected to people you know first. That means you can vet them by seeing who you know in common and checking with your shared connection to see what they think of the writer.

Their LinkedIn profile will share some information about their qualifications and experience, and may even include some writing samples. I recommend also looking for a link to their website and reviewing the information there before contacting them.

4. Try good, ‘ol Google.

If those steps haven’t yielded the results you want, time to turn to the main place we all go to solve our problems. Here’s the thing to know about using Google to find a freelance blog writer: you may have to do some digging to find the websites of freelancers.

If you do a search for terms like “freelance copywriter” or “freelance blog writer,” you’ll find a lot of results that are either the aforementioned low-quality job boards, or resources on how to become a freelance writer. There are two main ways to get past this issue:

  • Be willing to do some scrolling and clicking to the next page to find the writers’ websites (they are there eventually).
  • Get more specific in your search terms. If you search by niche (“B2B tech freelance copywriter” or “ freelance finance blogger,” or narrow it to locals (“austin copywriter”)  sometimes you’ll get to writer pages faster.

One benefit of this method is that you can trust any writer that shows up in your search knows something about content marketing and SEO. Another is that it gets you straight to the writer website, where you can start checking out their samples and qualifications.

5. If all else fails, create a job ad on a high-quality site.

All the other tactics on this list will help you find writers that already have an established reputation, which is why I put this one last. This one puts you in the position of having writers come to you, which means you have to do more work in going through the applications you get and vetting each one.

But while I warned you away from a few job sites earlier, there are some that are a few notches above Upwork and Fiverr for finding qualified professionals. Most of these will charge either a one-time fee for the posting, or a subscription cost for joining the platform.

If you’re local to Austin, Freelance Austin has a job board to consider as well.

If you go this route, take some time to write a job ad that provides information about the type of work you need a writer to do and the budget you have in mind. Providing project details will save you time from fielding writers that specialize in a different type of work. And with so many freelance job ads that pay pennies, making it clear you have a real budget will affect the quality of applicants you get.

How to Vet Freelance Blog Writers for Compatibility

Hopefully, you now have a number of freelance content writers to consider. Now you need to figure out which of them is a good fit for your business needs.

1. Clarify your process first.

Before you can find out if they’re a good fit for how you work, you need to know how you work. If your team is new to hiring freelancers, then take some time to work out what your ideal working situation looks like. What are your typical processes for planning, creating, and publishing content now? What would be the most seamless, natural way for someone new to fit into them?

If you come to your search with a good idea of what you’re looking for, both in terms of skill and working style, you’ll know the right questions to ask to determine fit.

2. Review their samples.

Don’t skip this step! Before you hire a writer, confirm that you actually like the way they write. That seems obvious, but if you have a big list of names, it could get lost in the shuffle. Look at the writing samples on their website. Make sure you check samples from a couple different clients, so you can better see which aspects of their style and skill are theirs versus that of an editor they work with.

3. Pay attention to what their website says about how they work.

Freelance copywriters don’t want to spend a lot of time fielding clients that aren’t a great fit either, so often they’ll provide some information upfront about how they work and the kind of clients they’re looking for. See if there’s anything on their website that conflicts with the process and preferences you outlined in step one. If so, better to move on to the next person on your list.

4. Come to your first call with questions.

Once you know what you want in the relationship and have taken time to learn what you can about them, set up an interview call. Come prepared with a list of questions you have about how they work. Some of the questions in my list for copywriters will work just as well for those looking to hire writers.

Preparation will make your calls more efficient and make sure you cover all the bases you want to in the time you have. One thing to be aware of: it’s OK to ask about price on a call, but many freelancers will avoid answering straight away and instead send a proposal in writing after the fact. That’s normal, and helps us avoid misspeaking off the cuff before we have a chance to think through the details of the project. Don’t be put off by it.

5.  Treat the initial project as a trial.

Even if you do all this right, there still may be compatibility issues that come out during your first assignment or two. For that reason, it’s often best not to start with a long-term commitment, but instead to stick with a first assignment before deciding what the ongoing relationship will look like.

Be aware that the freelance content writer you hire will probably be doing the same thing though. Don’t treat it merely as a chance for them to to prove themselves to you. If you like their work, you need to prove yourself to them as well.  A good freelance relationship is a partnership with a fellow professional, and things will go better if you approach it that way.

If you need a freelance blog writer right now…

You just happen to be on the website of one. Take a look at my writing samples and some details on how I work, and get in touch if you think we might be a good fit.  

7 Good Reasons to Hire a Freelance Blog Writer

For almost any question you have or any product you decide to buy, you probably turn first to the internet. Google—and to a lesser degree Bing, Yahoo and social sites like Facebook—have become a huge part of how we learn new information and make purchasing decisions. For businesses, that means online visibility plays an important role in being the answer people find when they go looking for what you offer.

And business blogging is one of the best tools you have for achieving online visibility.

Business websites that have a blog add new pages to the site on a regular basis, and having more pages translates to more traffic. Sites with over 300 pages see up to 234% growth in website traffic. If you want people to find your website, a big part of the equation is giving them more pages to find. Blogging is how you do that.

Business Blogging Isn’t Easy

If business blogging makes such a big difference, why isn’t every business doing it? Because to do it well (and it’s only worth doing if you do it well) requires a large commitment in time and resources. Orbit Media’s annual blogging survey found that it takes over three hours on average to write a blog post.

And as someone who writes multiple blog posts every week, I can tell you time is only one part of what makes it hard. Writing requires mental energy and creativity. Most people can’t sit down and write all day long—at some point your brain gets tapped out.

Blogging is hard work and many businesses fail to realize just how hard it is until they get started. The dead blogs you see from time to time on business websites—ones that haven’t been updated in months or years—are typically the result of overly ambitious businesses that failed to account for how hard creating blog content on a regular basis really is.

But even though it’s hard, business blogging is worth it. The results are impressive and doing it well is absolutely within your reach, you just may need to bring in some extra talent to help. For businesses struggling to keep up with the endless work a blog requires, hiring a freelance blog writer may be the solution you need.  

You Should Hire a Freelance Blog Writer If…

Different businesses come to the decision to hire a freelance blog writer for different reasons. Here are some of the common challenges that hiring a freelance blog writer will solve.

1. Your team is struggling to meet your content creation goals.

As already discussed, consistently creating good content is hard. And trying to do more than you can reasonably manage is bad for overall productivity, and can potentially even be bad for your health. And if your team gets burned out trying to produce more content than you can handle, the quality of your content will suffer as well.

2. You want to scale up how much content you produce to get better results.

While content marketing professionals often talk about the importance of quality over quantity in content, the fact is that blogging more tends to get better results. HubSpot found that companies posting over 16 posts a month got over 3.5 times the results of those who post 4 or less.

16 posts a month comes to around four posts a week. Unless you have a large team of content creators at your business devoted primarily to blogging, meeting that goal will be extremely difficult to manage without outside help. The easiest way to scale up is to outsource some of your blog writing needs to freelancers.

3. You lost an employee and need some help picking up the slack.

Talented employees are in high demand and, even if your company works hard to make it a great place to work, some of your workers will inevitably be lured away to other opportunities. When you lose one of your best employees, you need to find someone to fill in fast. A freelance blog writer (or a few) can often help you manage your content needs while you work on replacing your employee.

4. You need help, but don’t have room in the budget to bring on a full-time employee.

For many businesses, talent is the biggest expense you have. The cost of a good employee goes far beyond the amount they get in their paycheck. You have to factor benefits into the budget, including the cost of paid time off, health insurance, retirement benefits, and unemployment and social security taxes. You’re also responsible for the cost of any supplies they need to do the job, and for additional office space if they’re expected to come to an office every day.

For freelancers, you only pay the amount they bill for the work you hire them for. If you don’t have full-time needs, you can only hire—and only pay—them for the work you actually need. The result is that marketing departments can generally save money by hiring a couple of good freelancers versus finding a full-time employee to do the work.

5. Your level of need isn’t high enough for a full-time position.

If you just need help producing a few extra blog posts a month, then it probably doesn’t make sense financially to bring on a new full-time employee. Freelancers work with a number of clients, so they don’t expect to be assigned or paid for 40 hours a week from you.

If you only need work that amounts to a few hours a week—say somewhere from one to ten blog posts a month—then finding a freelance blogger is more practical than going through the hiring process for an employee.

6. You worry you’re getting rusty and need help with fresh ideas.

When you spend your days mired in the same industry, at some point it becomes impossible to see it with fresh eyes. Freelancers are good for bringing new ideas to the table. And crucially, they can often help you see things the way consumers who don’t spend day in and day out working in the industry see things—a valuable insight for writing content that speaks to the people you most want to reach.   

7. You’ve got great ideas, but struggle with turning them into well written blog posts.

This is the opposite issue, but a common one many people face. If you’re just brimming with ideas, but find the process of turning them into strong blog posts that are organized well for readability and optimized for SEO insurmountable, that’s exactly the skill good freelance blog writers bring to the table.

The ability to create a good content marketing strategy that includes a list of blog topics is a valuable skill to have, but it only pays off if you can execute that strategy. If that’s the part you struggle with, outsource it to someone who excels at the execution side of things.

Hire a Freelance Blog Writer

If you’ve confirmed that it’s time to hire a freelancer to help out with your blog, the next step is finding one that meets your needs. Check back soon for a followup blog post that gets into how to find a good freelance blog writer.

Or alternately, since you’re on a freelance blogger’s website right now. you can check out my writing samples and learn a little about how I work to see if we might be a good fit. And often when I’m not a fit for a client, I try to help point them in the right direction to find another writer, so feel free to get in touch with the details of what you need.  

How to Actually Get a Link from a Blogger

If you’ve ever been tasked with building links for a website, you know it’s one of the hardest parts of SEO. Most SEO specialists spend a lot of time sending outreach emails to bloggers asking for a link, and most of those emails go unanswered. You can easily send over 100 emails without earning one link—or, in a campaign considered successful, get one or two for all that work.

Prospect.io shared the numbers of a couple of their campaigns. Their less successful campaign earned them one link per 60 sites they reached out to, and even their more successful one only netted them 13 links per 120 sites. Total that’s over 150 people that didn’t respond—or at least, didn’t respond positively.

link building results

So why don’t most link building campaigns work?

As a blogger that receives frequent link building emails, I can provide an explanation of the main reasons most link building emails I get don’t work, as well as a description of the rare times link building outreach did get results.

Link Building Pitches That Won’t Work

The most common type of link building email I get that never yields a positive response looks something like this:

Dear Kristen (or worse, Dear Austin-copywriter.com),

I came across your piece: <link to something I’ve written>. What a useful resource!

I thought you might like to know, we recently published a piece on <related topic> which provides a ton of information that would be valuable to your readers.

Maybe you can add our link to your great piece? <their link>

It’s a polite enough email and one I can tell is applying tips that are suggested in articles around the web. It tries to demonstrate that they did some research on me to make sure the email is relevant (although actual emails sometimes undercut that point by doing this part badly). It includes flattery. And it attempts to make a case that what they’re suggesting will be useful to my audience.

But none of that really matters for some key reasons. Here’s why this doesn’t work.

It’s asking me to do more work.

Going back and adding a link to a piece that’s already published takes time out of my busy day. And in order to make sure the link is added in a way that’s natural and relevant, I’d generally have to re-write some part of the piece to make it work.

The likelihood that putting that work in would actually result in a blog post that’s better for my audience or produces better results for me is low. In most cases, it’s frankly nonexistent. The only person that work would benefit is the person sending the email—a total stranger to me.

For pieces I wrote for clients, it’s even asking me to ask my client to do more work.

Many of these emails aren’t asking me to add links to pieces on my own blog, they’re wanting me to update blog posts I wrote for clients. When I submit a piece I wrote to a client, there’s a whole level of work in between my submission and the post going up on their site. Someone does editing work, loads it to the blog, adds images, and schedules it to be published.

Making an update to that piece isn’t as simple as me going in and changing it. At that point someone else working for that client who has the right access would have to do that work. So not only would I be doing work to figure out how to update the piece so the link would fit naturally, I’d be asking my client to do extra work to go in and make changes to the live post.

That would be an awkward ask for me at best, and something that’s just not really appropriate to ask of a client when there’s no benefit to them or me.

A decent portion of the time, the email is sloppy or the link isn’t relevant.

Even if you do everything right in a link building pitch like this, you won’t get that link because of the two points above. But the majority of these emails I get don’t do everything right.

In fact, the most common page I get people asking me to add a link to is this one:

http://austin-copywriter.com/writing-samples/

If you took two seconds to read that URL and figure out why that page is not a logical target for someone else’s link building campaign, then you just did more work than most of the people sending me these emails. You don’t even have to click through—the reason’s right there in the URL that these people include in their very email.

Sometimes the pages they ask me to add links to are tag or category pages on the blog—not quite as egregious as the Writing Samples page, but still not a piece of content I could even add your link to if I wanted to.

Sometimes the subject line of the email doesn’t match the contents, an obvious copy-and-paste error. Or sometimes they get my name wrong or say things that make it clear they don’t understand I’m a freelance writer (something that’s extremely obvious in the first few seconds you spend on my site).

In short, the attempts to show they did their research and made sure the email was relevant fail, in obvious and ridiculous ways.

Link Building Pitches that Do Work

In the eight years I’ve been blogging around the web, I’ve gotten just a couple of link building pitches that actually do lead to the source earning new links.

Here’s what they did differently.

They made my life easier.

That’s it. That’s the big secret.

Instead of asking me to do more work. A good link building email finds a way to make me do less.

Specifically, these pitches:

  •      Suggested topic ideas that hadn’t been written about yet.

For many of my clients, part of my job is coming up with blog topics. I have to do a certain amount of research and brainstorming on a regular basis, which takes work and time. If you take the time to look at the blog, find a gap in the current coverage (that in some way relates to your business or content), and send a suggestion, you’re helping me out.

If you include a few links in your email to resources you’ve created that will jump start my research process on the subject, even better! And when I start writing, I’ll include a link back to those helpful resources, both as a thanks for the help, and because they genuinely provide useful, relevant information to my audience.

  •      Made sure the topics they provided were relevant to my audience.

I mentioned how the email templates that don’t work often pay lip service to thinking about my audience, but you have to go beyond lip service here. Make sure you figure out who a particular blog is targeting and suggest topics that will matter to them.

If you’re link building for a security company and contact me about a piece for a client’s blog that has an audience of seniors, your pitch should have a senior-specific angle. Don’t suggest a post on “How to Make Your Home More Secure,” go for something like “How Seniors Living Alone Can Stay Safe.”

And often getting more specific is better, since broad topics have usually already been done. Think about how you can use your expertise (or your client’s expertise) to help suggest a unique angle.

  •      Tied the pitch into to a trending topic or date.

Many of my clients love it when a piece can be tied back to a specific holiday or trending topic coming up—even the kind of goofy ones, like National Ice Cream Day (July 21, if you’re curious). Look for something that makes your pitch more timely. HubSpot has a handy calendar with all the unofficial holidays you can use in your pitches.

Keep in mind here though that some businesses plan their schedules out far in advance. Pitching a topic relevant to National Popcorn Lover’s Day (March 14) in late February may work out for you, but often looking ahead a couple of months will work better.

Start Actually Earning Links

Does this sound like more work than copy-and-pasting the same template 100 times? You betcha.

Will it get you more than one link per every 100 or more emails? Almost certainly, if you do it well.

Take time to learn who you’re contacting, who their audience is, and what the blog regularly covers. Then suggest a new post that you can be a valuable resource to help them write. That’s much more likely to earn you a link than asking them to update an old post they’ve already published.

7 Good Business Blogging Examples

Blogging has become one of the most valuable marketing tools that businesses have for improving SEO, building an email list, and connecting more directly with customers and leads. When done well, blogging can do a lot of good for your business.

But blogging isn’t easy to do well. It requires a lot of ongoing work to produce regular content, and making sure the content you publish is useful and entertaining to your audience is a constant challenge on top of that.

If your company struggles with business blogging and could use some inspiration, I’ve brought together a few good examples of businesses* that consistently produce solid blog content for their audiences.

1.    Care/of

business blogging example care/of

Care/of is a vitamin subscription service that customizes the vitamins they send to each customer based on their particular lifestyle and needs. The company’s blog includes articles that directly discuss the benefits of the supplements they sell, summarizing and referencing research studies that back up their claims. But they also publish posts less directly related to their products that address health-related topics that their target audience is likely to care about.

Some good posts that demonstrate this are:

  • Spice of Life: A Closer Look at the Benefits of All-Powerful Turmeric

    Turmeric is one of the supplements they sell, so this post is directly touting the benefits of a product, but the post manages not to feel overly promotional. It gets into the history of how turmeric has been used as both as a spice and a medicinal aid and references a number of research studies that have found evidence of its health benefits.

  • 5 Ways to De-Stress Over the Holidays

    During the holiday season, people get overwhelmed and stress becomes a big part of many people’s lives. This post covers a number of strategies that can help people reduce stress, including (but not limited to) taking some of the supplements the company provides. It’s another good example of a post that provides value first, but mentions their products where it’s relevant.

  • 7 Healthy Living Blogs You Need to Follow Now

    I call this a sharing-the-love post. It can feel unnatural to write a blog post that sends your readers to other blogs similar to yours, but people have room in their lives for more than one blog about a topic!

    By highlighting other blogs that cover health-related topics (most of them more about recipes or exercise rather than supplements, so not direct competitors to Care/of), this post provides something valuable to readers while also potentially starting positive relationships with influencers in the space.

2.    Media Bistro

business blogging example mediabistro Media Bistro helps play matchmaker for hiring managers in the media industry and the talented professionals they hire. Since the company has two equally important audiences, they produce two blogs: one for employers and one that offers career advice to media professionals.

The blog for employers is a good mix of posts that cover news relevant to hiring managers, answers to questions their readers are likely to have and general advice. Some recent examples worth checking out include:

  • Congress Weighs Massive Changes to 401(k) Contributions

    Employee benefits are something every hiring manager has on their minds, the benefits they offer and how competitive they are can make a big difference in the caliber of talent they attract. So when the government considers legislative changes that could affect the value of a common employee benefit like the 401(k), it’s something the Media Bistro audience needs to hear about. This post explains the proposed changes and what it would mean for the blog’s readers

  • Can You Hire or Fire Based on Political Beliefs?

    In the divisive atmosphere that’s followed the last presidential election, this is a question probably on the mind of more than a few hiring managers. This blog post provides both the technical answer (legally, yes, at least in most states), while also getting into the bigger question of whether or not you should factor politics into your personnel decisions.

    The career advice blog regularly publishes roundups of top jobs available in different cities – something that’s definitely valuable to readers looking for a job – along with posts that offer general career advice and answers to common questions. A few good examples to look at are:

  • 6 Ways to Track Down a Magazine Editor

    For many professional writers, figuring out the right person to pitch is a big part of the job. This post provides specific steps writers can take to discover the editors at publications they want to pitch. It’s a useful piece that solves a common problem readers have.

  • How to Land Higher Paying Assignments

    No matter the industry, any blog about careers should address the issue of money. It’s one of the biggest topics readers are thinking about. Media Bistro tackles the topic in this post, which provides specific advice on how to start making more money and backs it up with anecdotes from expert sources.

3.    Priceonomics

business blogging example priceonomics

Priceonomics has a business model based on data: tracking it effectively and putting it to good use. And they use their blog to effectively demonstrate the kind of good use their clients can put it to. Their blog posts all use data to answer common questions – or at least as often, questions you didn’t even know you had, but find yourself really interested in learning the answer to.

A lot of the content on their own blog serves as an example of collaborations with their clients. By showing the ways their customers use data to create great content, they make a case for their products, while also entertaining their readers.

Their posts are a mix of fun, useful, and just interesting information. Here are a few good examples:

  • Is There a Connection Between Bad Grammar and Bad Reviews?

    This post is a good example of a collaboration with a client, Datafiniti, a company that has a large database of products and their reviews. Once you hear the question, you probably think back to the large number of badly written negative reviews you’ve read – many of them with lots of unnecessary capital letters or confusing typos. It’s a good example of the kind of question you didn’t know you had until you heard it, and now you kind of want to know the answer, don’t you?

    The post not only answers this question (the answer is yes, if you’re wondering), but also includes a lot of interesting insights on the average length of reviews (apparently one-word reviews are quite common) and how length and spelling errors both correlate to whether a review is positive or negative. It’s a thorough and interesting analysis that does a good job of demonstrating the value Priceonomics provides to customers.

  • Ranking the Most (and Least) Nutritious Meals for Your Dollar

    This is a good example of a really useful post. If you’re someone who cares about your health (most of us) and also cares about spending your money well (also most of us), then this is the kind of information you need to make better decisions when choosing your meals. This is another collaboration with a customer – this time a company with software that helps people plan and track healthy eating.

    It tests the common supposition that healthy eating costs more (spoiler: it does). But it follows up that depressing finding with a list of healthy foods and recipes people can eat that pack a lot of nutrition for the cost. In short, it’s super useful.

4.    Grammarly

business blogging example grammarly

Grammarly sells subscription software that automatically checks customers’ writing against a number of rules and best practices to help them improve. Obviously, their audience is anyone that writes often – from students, to professional writers, to professionals who want to write better emails. Their blog posts therefore often delve into common problems and questions writers have, but they also sometimes explore fun history or weird information that curious learners (something most writers are likely to be) will find interesting.

Some good examples to check out include:

  • Want to Stop Procrastinating at Work and Get Stuff Done? Here’s How

    If I wasn’t currently hard at work on this blog post as I type, I might feel personally called out by this post. Like a lot of creative professionals and well, probably everybody else, writers often deal with procrastination. Staring at a blank Word document has a way of reminding writers about other things we could be doing.

    This post therefore addresses an issue that Grammarly’s target audience definitely cares about. It provides actionable advice that can really make a difference for a common problem.

  • Mexican Novels to Help You Celebrate Cinco de Mayo

    You know something all good writers like to do? Read! In fact, I’ve long considered reading one of the most essential tips for being a good writer. This post makes use of a timely reference (it went up on May 5) to provide Grammarly’s audience with information they’re likely to care about: recommendations for good books.

    This post technically doesn’t have anything to do with the company’s product, but that doesn’t matter. It keeps their target audience interested in the blog and more likely to come back for more.

5.    Threadless

threadless

Threadless mostly sells t-shirts, along with home décor, art, and accessories. People can buy t-shirts anywhere, so what makes Threadless really stand out is the hip and artsy personality they pack into their products. The blog continues that branding with posts that are fun, interesting, and highlight original art (including the art they put on their t-shirts and other products).

Here are a few posts that will give you a good taste of the fun personality they present:

  • No Context Needed: Overheard at Threadless

    This is a funny post that says a lot about the brand as it mixes design (each of the quotes are displayed with original illustrations) and humor. The quotes from employees around the office show the kind of light and goofy atmosphere that defines the company’s work culture and make it easy for readers to feel a connection to the brand.

  • The Cute Meets Creepy Creations of Comic Artist, Maria Ahokoivu

    This post features one of the artists whose work shows up on Threadless products. It humanizes the artist behind the work – she talks about favorite movies and pizza toppings, along with her work as an artist. And the post includes examples of her work, along with some links to specific Threadless products readers can buy. With artist interviews like this, they’ve found a human, personal way to sell.

  • 6 Tips for Making it as an Artist (And Making Money)

    Some of the people most likely to love and buy the products Threadless sells are other struggling artists trying to figure out how to get their own designs out in the world. This post provides advice for how to start profiting off your art and includes quotes from artists that have actually pulled it off. It’s valuable advice that speaks to a common struggle of the kind of people who follow and buy from Threadless.

  1. Intercom

intercom2

Intercom sells customer management software that helps businesses better organize and improve their relationship with customers and leads. As a result, they have three main audiences: marketers, sales reps, and customer support professionals. Their blog addresses topics relevant to each audience, as well as tackling issues important to anyone helping run an SaaS company. They often use their own experiences working at Intercom to provide useful advice to readers likely to face similar challenges.

Here are a couple of good examples of how they do that:

  • Motivate Your Star Performers with Meaningful Career Conversations

    For all three of the main audiences Intercom targets – sales, marketing, and customer support – one of the most important parts of success is finding and keeping good employees. This post provides specific steps that companies can take to make sure good employees want to stick around and uses examples of how Intercom does things to illustrate how the recommended process works and why it’s valuable.

  • Why Your Privacy Ecosystem is Crucial in the Age of GDPR

    This post addresses head on the biggest issue many tech companies are worried about right now: GDPR legislation. It provides useful advice on how to approach your own product and those it integrates with in order to better protect your customers’ privacy and stay on the right side of GDPR.

  1. HelpScout

good business blogging example helpscout

To promote their customer support software, the HelpScout blog provides a lot of information on providing great customer service, along with posts that more generally address how to run a business well. They regularly publish fairly long posts that include helpful tips coupled with examples that help illustrate the tips.

For an idea of what their posts often look like, here are a couple of good ones to read:

  • 22 Customer Retention Strategies that Work

    One of the many good reasons to provide great customer service is that it convinces happy customers to keep coming back – which is good for your bottom line. This post provides a lengthy list of good ways to keep customers happy once you’ve earned that first sale and backs up the recommended strategies with research and statistics.

  • Writing Support Emails: A Style Guide

    Style guides are a valuable tool for businesses that want to be consistent in the way they communicate across different channels, but they’re not commonly associated with support emails. This post provides a corrective to that. It gives specific and useful advice on how to structure emails to better provide your customers with what they need and accomplish your support goals. And it uses specific examples to illustrate the suggestions throughout.

Hopefully spending some time with good examples of business blog posts will give you the inspiration you need to get fired up writing for your own blog. Even though blogging requires a lot of work, it really can be worth it if you keep up with it and make sure you provide great blog posts that are helpful to your audience.

If you’re struggling with staying on top of all the writing that a blog requires, it’s ok to ask for help. Writing blog posts for businesses is a big part of what I do. I can take some of the load off for you. Just contact me to see if we might be a good fit.

 

*While I think all the blogs I write for are pretty great examples of good business blogging as well, I left them off the list here to avoid personal bias. Lucky for you, that means you can see even more examples of good business blogging over on my writing samples page. Enjoy.

 

6 Great Content Writing Examples

Anyone who works in content marketing is used to encountering bad examples. You get better at noticing the stuff that doesn’t work when it’s your job to make stuff that does. Because we’re so used to seeing bad examples, it feels really good to encounter examples of content writing done right.

It can give is some inspiration in our work and, if we’re the target audience, be directly useful to us as well. To provide some of you with that feeling today, I’ve collected a few examples of great content writing I’ve encountered. Enjoy.

Great Business Blogging Examples

For most companies that do content marketing, blogging is the biggest part of the job. Blogs give you the opportunity to provide fresh, useful content to your audience on a regular basis and they’re one of the best tools you’ve got for SEO.

But they’re also hungry beasts that demand lots of work and never let you take a break. That’s caused far too many businesses to try to settle for lazy, cheap content on their blogs – or give up on them entirely within a few months of not seeing immediate results.

The brands that stick with it and provide consistently helpful and high-quality content are therefore in the minority.

HomeAdvisor

Homeowners tend to have a lot of ideas for projects they want to try and questions about how to handle everyday fixes. The Home Advisor blog HomeSource is packed full of answers and tips. The blog is a mix of practical tips like how to hire a good contractor or pack for a move, along with more fun topics like decorating your home and yard.

Probably the most common questions homeowners have are those about cost. Many people – especially new homeowners – simply don’t know what’s normal to expect a home repair or update to cost. In addition to the blog itself, HomeAdvisor therefore offers a True Cost guide to give you an idea of what your budget should be before you start a project, and help you rule out any contractors that charge outside of the norm. And since the company’s business model is based on matching homeowners with the people who do those sorts of projects, they of course offer a handy CTA on the same page to help you find relevant professionals in your area.

content marketing example

Rover

Rover’s got a bit of advantage over most businesses when it comes to their content. The company is all about pets (mostly dogs) – and we all know pet pictures are one of the most popular things on the internet. But in addition to taking advantage of the love people have for pictures of cute animals, the Rover blog Daily Treat also provides a lot of useful information on topics important to pet owners, such as training and safety tips and answers to pressing questions like “do dogs recognize us on a phone screen?” (if you have a dog, you’ve probably wondered).

blogging example
They’re one of the companies that can most successfully get me to click on a link in an email, because they do a great job of figuring out the things pet owners really do want to know.

Ehrlich

If you’re thinking “sure, their content’s good, but Rover has it so much easier than those of us doing marketing in areas less compelling than the cute dog industry,” here’s an example for you. The pest control company Ehrlich has a great blog, deBugged that provides lots of useful information about bugs and other creepy crawly-adjacent subjects.

Bugs aren’t a subject most of us go out of our way to do some reading on each day, but when you need to know how concerned you should really be about Zika virus or what to do about bed bugs, those posts will come in handy. And the rest of the time, you may find posts on topics like how long wasps live to be interesting as well. Like Home Advisor, they include CTAs at the end of their content where relevant so that person trying to figure out what to do about bed bugs knows who to call to help.

blogging example

 Great Examples of Longform Content

As content marketing is adopted by more and more businesses in all sorts of industries, finding a way to stand out is a challenge. One route many businesses are taking is creating content that goes more in depth. It takes more work, but if you can pack more of the information your prospects need into one longform piece rather than spreading it over a number of shorter pieces, many people will find that more helpful.

Freshbooks

Freshbooks’ target audience for their accounting software is small businesses and freelancers. That’s a group of people that thinks a lot about pricing – figuring out how to charge for your services in a way that works for you and your customers is a fraught subject.

In order to provide them information so useful it could stand out in the marketing crowd, they put together an ebook that tackled the subject of how to switch from charging hourly to project-based pricing. The 70-page book is structured like a conversation between two relatable professionals and lays out the case for a different approach to pricing that can help service-based small business owners make more.

The book got reviewed around the web and collected positive testimonials from a number of key influencers. Not bad in our world of content saturation.

longform content writing example

Moz

I mentioned content saturation before, but arguably the industry that has it the worst is marketing. Many of the earliest adopters of content marketing were marketing agencies and marketing software companies. Producing content about marketing that doesn’t repeat what’s been said before and manages to provide something truly useful is a huge challenge businesses face. But Moz is consistently good at it.

Any time I encounter someone looking to learn the basics of SEO, I send them over to the The Beginner’s Guide to SEO by Moz. It’s thorough, but manageable. It’s written in a way to be accessible to people new to the concept and it’s organized to make it easy to focus in on specific sections when you just need a refresher on, say, keyword research.

The guide was produced several years ago, but is updated regularly to make sure the information stays accurate. It’s been read over 3 million times and continues to generate new traffic for the site.

longform content writing example

Rodale’s

For people just getting started, gardening is both exciting and overwhelming. There’s a lot you need to know and figuring out both the answers to your questions and even what questions you should have can be challenging.

In addition to their usual helpful blog content, Rodale’s also provides some longform guides that help the people in their target audience – gardeners that care about the environment – learn all the most important basics to start out with.

Their Beginner’s Guide to Organic Gardening covers using seeds, using transplants, weeds, pest control, and basic gardening vocabulary. It ensures readers can go into their local nursery with all the 101-information covered.

longform content writing example

Content marketing is hard to do well, but seeing how other brands are pulling it off can help you to revisit your own strategy to consider ways to do better.

Hopefully these examples will provide some inspiration for your own content. And if you could use some extra help with content writing for your business, that’s what I do. Get in touch to see if we might be a good fit.

Want more examples of great content writing to check out? I collected 7 great examples of business blogs in a recent post and I’ve got a whole page of content writing links by me over on my writing samples page.