image of tausif akram By: Amby
7 Apr 2014

How To Spot a Crappy Content Writer

As a business owner, there are some things you need to hire people for. There are some things that others specialize in, which you should not try to do yourself. The roles of accounting, graphic design, app development, and content writing are just a small handful of examples that come to mind.

Since these are fields where you are not an expert, it is also too easy to become a victim of an amateur-posing-as-a-professional. It’s almost worse than a scam because you are paying for services that are fulfilled, but very poorly. You are risking the credibility of your brand on something while the service provider in question could care less about your reputation as long as they get paid.

When it comes to content writers, it’s easy for somebody (who is not a writer) to overlook the obvious warning signs. Here are some of the things you should be looking for:

Communication Skills

In most cases, you should be communicating with a content writer via chat, text, or email rather than over the phone. It’s very important to see that the candidate actually has a good sense of your native language, including basic punctuation and grammar.

If an email is full of typos, it’s obvious that a content writer is not a qualified or skilled writer.

Flexibility

It’s always a plus when a content writer has experience or expertise in your industry but that’s a frosting on the cake situation. More commonly, a quality writer is adaptable to write about various topics with authority through research, interview, and simply asking the right questions to extract the right information

Now you may have to provide the substance—topics of value and base content—but if a writer seems intimidated or confused about your needs it would be best to keep looking for somebody who is more confident in their ability to write for your audience.

Responsive

If you are left waiting for a response, it is a clear warning sign that the candidate in question is not reliable. Project collaboration requires clear and effective communication in order to meet deadlines.

Sensitivity to Criticism

Bear in mind that there are two types of criticism. Constructive criticism is good because it gives a clear example and offers helpful guidance or advice for improvement. Other kinds of criticism can come across as generally insulting and they offer nothing useful.

During in the interview stage, offer some constructive criticism. If a candidate is defensive, see it as a major red flag.

Check for Plagiarism

Plagiarism tools should not be used to maintain originality for intentionally spun content. Ever. However, they are a great way to see if a writer is providing truly original work or simply ripping off somebody else.

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