Attention: Birds of a Feather, No Need to Flock Together!
Are you a marketing content writer pursuing a new client only to be stopped by the dreaded, “But you haven’t written for my industry before so I’m not sure you are the ideal fit for this freelance job?” Or are you a company, agency or recruiter who is asking this question? Personally, I have been asked this question several times throughout my career and find it interesting that the need to stay within the confines of a certain industry even comes up in conversation.
“Every child is an artist, the problem is staying an artist when you grow up” – Pablo Picasso
When you look at other creative industries, this “you must have experience writing within my industry to receive a job, is never a factor.” Let’s take movie directors for example. Look at Steven Spielberg: Jaws, Schindler’s List and Raiders of the Lost Arc. Do you see a common subject matter? Or take Timothy Hogan, a famed photographer winning three Awards of Excellence in the 2016 Communication Arts Photo Annual. On his website he lists photos with categories as diverse as jewelry, liquids and electronics. Finally, on a personal note, my dad who is a sculptor has created pieces from horses to mermaids to hair waving in the wind. While we are on the subject of my dad, I remember him helping me on an elementary school project and asking me the question, “why are you making all the trees green? Why not color them blue”?
What’s my point? My point is marketing content writers are in a shared creative field just like the above examples and given different subject matter, will inject creativity and new life into any brand or industry with their words. Being different is not always a negative in marketing. In fact, it’s beneficial and innovative.
5 Reasons to Hire Freelance Web Content Writers Outside Your Industry
- Company Rebranding: If your company or client is looking to take a new direction or is in the process of a rebrand, hiring a web content writer with a fresh perspective is a great idea. This person can offer a new look and creativity that may have worked in another industry or with another client to now be used on your new brand. Basically the writer can breathe new life into your brand identity and add fresh content.
- Stand Out From Competition: There is something to be said at closely monitoring your competitors and seeing where their content marketing is heading. If your competitors are successful, what they are implementing for content marketing is obviously working. But although change is scary and unknown, some of the best and brightest minds of our time have challenged the status quo and created successful companies despite being different. By hiring someone not in your field, this freelance content writer’s approach will most likely be different than your own. They may challenge what you have done up to this point and see something you may have missed along the way.
The average reading level of American adults is about 7th to 8th grade level. – Clear Language Group
- Company Lingo Becomes Too Technical: Putting aside certain industries like science journals geared toward other scientists or medical journals communicating to fellow physicians, content over time becomes more and more technical and this may not be a good thing. While there is company jargon in any industry, someone who has first-hand experience in an industry will start to use more and more of this. While your long standing customers will understand this language, you may be excluding other audiences based on the words you are using. By hiring a content writer outside your industry, they will be able to do the necessary research and write in a way that communicates to all your audiences at every product or service lifecycle. Plus, this gives a business a chance to explain in their own words what they think they provide to an outsider (the freelance content creator.) This exercise in itself may be helpful for a company to have to explain what they do to a stranger. Sometimes having to explain your product or service from scratch will uncover this, “I am being too technical language.” issue.
- Fresh Out of Content: If a business has been in an industry for a long time, chances are the owners or clients are not new to marketing. Hiring a freelance content writer who may have minimal or no experience in your industry can bring new ideas, words and concepts not explored previously. In today’s world of blog posts daily, email newsletters and Google searches yielding several results, companies are marketing more than ever. Getting a freelance content marketer on board can not only bring new ideas, but add a fresh or different voice to a company product or service.
- Match Freelance Style and Portfolio Not Industry: While I understand we are inundated with information and if you are a business or recruiter sifting through countless resumes, you need keywords to select your top candidates A lot of times these keywords are matching your specific industry to industries worked by a freelance web content writer. For example, Kristy has experience in real estate so she would be a good fit for our marketing content writer position. Instead, why not search resumes for what type of marketing collateral or content you need? So Kristy has written several blogs, web copy and press releases so she would be an ideal fit for the writing needs we have within our company.
Content Writers Wanted: Where do we go from here?
Hiring freelance copywriters can be a daunting task especially since content marketing is not going away anytime soon. As a result, there are several choices out there for businesses and recruiters to make. Looking at what a company needs and how to be creative, are great ways to stand out from the competition. Remember, birds of a feather don’t necessarily need to flock together. Sometimes given option A or B, it’s better to be creative and pick neither.Why not go with option C, it may lead somewhere great, new and unexpected!
Are you a freelance content marketer or a company looking to hire one? What are your thoughts and perspectives on the subject of hiring based upon industries worked?