Content is incredibly important for any business, whether this is web copy that tells customers who you are and what you do or blog content that enables you to show your expertise and drum up interest. Even the content you produce for social media is vital to get right. For anybody who has decided that they need a wordsmith to bring some pizazz to their company’s copy, the management tips below should ensure your freelancers are well-briefed, feel like a proper part of your team, and are more likely to stick around.
1. Constant communication
Nothing alienates a freelancer like poor communication. If your company has a high-quality business culture that revolves around comprehensive communications where staff members are all well informed of their briefs, goals, deadlines, and responsibilities, why shouldn’t your freelancers? Leaving a freelancer in the dark about a changed deadline or a change to your style guide will only cause you problems and frustrate the copywriter.
It only takes an email or a quick phone call to keep a freelancer in the loop and reduce the chances of wires getting crossed.
2. Integrate into your workforce
This will, of course, depend on how your company operates. If your company hires freelance copywriters with a view to hiring them on a full-time basis or inviting them into the office from time to time, it can help to begin integrating them into your workforce while they are still a freelancer. This will give them a positive impression of your company and make HR processes easier once they are a more permanent member of the team.
To help you do this, consider the benefits of HR analytics, which can contribute to improved employee engagement and positive employment experience, both of which will make copywriters feel like a truly integral cog in your team’s machine. Having an HR department that considers copywriters to be worthy of the same processes that apply to full-time employees will encourage them to stick around and improve the relationship and trust you have with them.
3. Give clear and concise briefs
One of the most important aspects of working with a freelancer is how you word your briefs. Depending on what industry your company operates in, the precision and depth of your briefs may differ. For instance, a company running online reviews for restaurants and hotels may allow their freelancers a little more freedom than an agency that needs intricate reports written into press releases. Either way, clarity and conciseness will always be key.
Imposing a longwinded and wordy brief on a freelancer will risk confusing them and prolonging the process. This is because it may lead to multiple drafts before they hit the mark. It may help to have a long-form style guide freelancers can refer to where you go into much more detail, saving you putting that information in the brief itself.
4. Hire for the right specialism
Across Europe, the Netherlands has one of the fastest-growing shares of ‘self-starters’, alongside the United Kingdom, Greece, Italy, and Portugal. Looking for freelancers in any trade from these countries is bound to be obscured by a certain amount of saturation, with millions of people looking to work without a permanent employer. Therefore, narrowing your search and hiring for a more precise specialism will quicken your recruitment process and improve results.
Those new to hiring freelance copywriters may make the common mistake of presuming all writers can write in-depth and accurately about any topic. As part of your job advert and subsequent briefs, ensure you clearly state the specialism needed. Don’t forget to request examples of freelancers’ previous work for quality assurance.
5. Use target language copywriters
If your company is based in a country that has multiple foreign-language speakers, such as the United States, you’re in luck. With businesses operating on a global scale in increasing numbers, making sure your copy is spot-on in a number of languages has become essential.
Running your English copy through Google Translate simply won’t cut it. Especially if your business operates using technical or legal language that would cause serious problems when mistranslated. The easiest way to get good quality foreign language copy is to use target language copywriters. Professional translation and interpretation services almost exclusively use native speakers to translate official documents and facilitate official meetings. Therefore, there is no reason why you should not strive for the same standard
6. Always pay on time
Delayed payment for freelancers is a hot topic among the self-employed. This could give your business bad press if a copywriter chooses to air their grievances with you via social media. Do not assume that you are the only company your copywriter is working for. Freelancers almost always have to combine multiple jobs to add up to a full salary. Or they may pick up shift work in a shop or restaurant. Their time is just as precious as yours, and having to wait weeks for payment will be very frustrating for them.
Explain a clear and fair payment system to all of your freelancers so that they know what to expect. Try to meet those payment deadlines every single time. Pushing back on a project for improvements or telling a freelancer their work was not adequate is a different matter. If they have completed your assignment correctly, pay them straight away.
It isn’t easy to manage a worker who does not come into your office each week. Who doesn’t know the whole team and who perhaps isn’t technically on your payroll? Constant communication is the number one method for making this process easier. However, setting strict rules like payment deadlines and brief lengths can help you stay disciplined. Particularly when you may naturally want to focus on your permanent members of staff.
Overall, the objective is to get brilliant pieces of copy as and when you need them. Keeping a copywriter coming back for more is the easiest way to do this. That’s because it reduces the need for recruitment processes, trial shifts, and training. So consider how best to keep your finest freelancers on your books. Proper treatment and fast, fair pay is certainly a good place to start.
Continue Reading: The 10 advantages of a specialised freelance copywriter
About the Author
James Daniels is a freelance writer, business enthusiast, a bit of a tech buff, and an overall geek. He is also an avid reader, who can while away hours reading and knowing about the latest gadgets and tech, whilst offering views and opinions on these topics.