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How Companies Approach Writing for Social Media

In today’s business landscape, social media is omnipresent. Love it or hate it. Whether it’s an international NGO, a reputable newspaper, or a local coffee shop, they all have a presence on various social media platforms.  Some businesses will have an Instagram QR code in their window, some will display a social media bar on their website, while others will launch an entire social media campaign using their products. 

This article explains how many companies approach social media from both an informational and marketing perspective. It outlines the things they do wrong or could improve on when hiring a qualified person to create content.

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Mistakes that Companies Make When Hiring Writers

Regardless of the industry, making the correct decision will help a company’s business grow. Making the wrong decision can tarnish a company’s reputation.

  •     Using a Company Employee

There are some advantages to hiring someone within an organization to create social media content. Not only does the individual understand the products or services sold, but they are also aware of how the company operates and its philosophy. However, using an internal source for social media content has drawbacks too.

For instance, a dedicated employee feels biased toward their employer. So, they’ll do everything possible to give the business a glowing review. While that’s not a bad thing, it could backfire. After all, readers don’t like content that comes off as pushy. Even though the person is doing their best to market the company, their favoritism could negatively affect how readers perceive the business.

  •     Taking Someone at Their Word

In a perfect world, companies could take people at their word. However, that’s not realistic, especially when it comes to someone who claims they’re a skilled writer. This is where due diligence is essential.

  •     Not Considering Areas of Specialty

All companies, even those within the same industry, do things differently. That’s why there’s no such thing as a “one size fits all” writer. Businesses that specialize in a specific field or product/service lineup need to hire someone with skills that match.

As an example, say doctors at a hospital perform specialized surgery. A writer with experience covering the medical sector will do a much better job than someone who typically writes about real estate. Qualified writers perform in-depth research on any given topic before they create social media content. However, depending on the situation, that’s not always enough.

Some companies don’t realize that there are many different types of writers. Take content writers and copywriters as a perfect example. Content writers focus on the company’s objective to increase traffic to the business website. In comparison, copywriters convert the traffic to paying clients and customers.

  •     Lowballing Prices

There’s nothing wrong with saving money. However, when it comes to quality social media content, sometimes, a company that pays a lowball figure will receive poorer quality work. Remember, seasoned writers do more than simply research a company and the products or services it provides. In almost every case, it’s worth paying more for a writer with expertise.

  •     Lack of Social Media Platform Knowledge

Again, every company is unique but so are social media platforms. A strong and experienced writer knows this. Rather than create the same content to post across several different social media sites, they use their knowledge to ensure they meet not just standards but also follow demographics. For example, it’s tricky to post the same content on Facebook and Instagram.

  •     No Vision of What a Company Wants to Achieve

Before looking for a writer, companies must first determine what they want the new content to achieve. Perhaps it’s to introduce a new product or maybe it’s to improve SEO to become more competitive. That’s why it’s so important for businesses to identify a specific goal before hiring a social media content writer.

This gives the writer a clear direction of what the company wants and needs. For that reason, it prevents unfortunate mistakes. If the company and writer aren’t on the same page, there’s a risk of consequences. For example, the writer could miss a critical deadline, which, in turn, could cost the business significant money.

Key Things to Look for in a Qualified Writer

  •     Choosing the Right Source

If hiring a writer directly, companies should always require both references and writing samples. Today, many companies prefer to go through reputable sources to find seasoned writers. Even then, it’s important to look at reviews and ask a lot of questions about its team of writers.

  •     Hiring a Foreign Writer

Although it’s possible to hire a great writer from another country for a low price, this can lead to some serious issues. For instance, the writer might not have full command of the English language. As a result, the content doesn’t flow or it’s grammatically incorrect, making it difficult to read.

Whether choosing a writer from the U.S. or a foreign country, companies should always have the writers complete a sample piece. In addition, companies should establish a firm timeline for when the writer delivers the content. That way, an individual would write about a random topic rather than provide a sample they’ve fine-tuned multiple times. It’s worth spending $10 to $15 to get a fresh sample before hiring a foreign writer.

  •     Strong SEO Experience

Along with understanding how to formulate content properly, seasoned writers know about Google’s current algorithms, keyword density, and more. In other words, they’re not only experts in creating excellent content but also in following SEO practices. So, not only do they consider the company’s goals but also everything required to increase traffic to its website.

Keep in mind that Google changes its algorithms relatively often. However, this isn’t the only search engine with specific criteria for social media content. Someone who’s experienced in writing for various platforms stays on top of these changes and applies them accordingly.

Let’s Sum Things Up

So, companies now have a better idea of what they should and should not do when hiring a writer for their social media platforms. However, it’s just as important to understand the role that an individual plays in creating content.

Remember, the writer’s role is far more than just putting words together. Those words and the meaning behind them are vital to a company’s success. They write everything with a purpose, specifically to help a business stand out.

The content that writers post on social media paints a picture of the company, what it offers, its philosophies, and more. In addition, writers must choose their words carefully. After all, they’re trying to capture and retain the attention of people who visit online businesses. At the same time, they avoid gushing over a company, which can produce negative results.

The bottom line is that a seasoned writer with some expertise on the subject matter is a critical part of a company’s marketing campaign. It’s through them and the content they write that can get people excited about a specific business.

One final thought, a good writer uses various tools to ensure they produce stellar content. Even if they excel in English, when it comes to a company reaching its intended target, that doesn’t suffice. Instead, they check for grammatical errors, poor or complex readability, and complex sentences that can confuse someone reading the content.

What it all comes down to is that to successfully market a business, product, or service, a company must hire a highly qualified writer. That person becomes an asset to the company.

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By Susan Barlow

Dr. Susan Barlow is retired from academia after teaching business administration, project management, and business writing courses for over 20 years.

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