I was at a conference a couple months ago and met a fellow who was investing in online resources. His day job was in real estate and, as is the case with many real estate investors, the next big frontier was online. When I told him some of what I do, he was incredulous.
People hire you to run their blogs?
A blog is a deeply personal endeavor. It is essentially an online journal or newsletter written by a single (or composite) persona for a specific audience. So a lot of people are surprised when I tell them that myself and my company run blogs for some of our clients.
But it’s a good service and one that a lot of companies need. A well run blog can be immensely important to the development and presentation of a brand, and to the search engine visibility of a website. We make sure it’s done right. So for all the writers and webmasters out there, I want to share a few tips on how to successfully ghostwrite and manage a blog for your clients.
Who Needs a Ghostwriter?
First consider who needs a ghostwriter in the first place.
Lots of people may hire them, but the people who actually NEED ghostwriters for their blogs are those that have a purpose in running such a blog: business owners, brand managers, webmasters, and agencies.
When you start promoting your ghostwriting services, the first thing you should do is look at the age of the blog, how prominent it is on that company’s website, and what the prospective client asks you to do.
How in-depth the services they request are will affect the likelihood that the gig lasts for longer than few days.
Creating a System and Calendar
Once you land a gig or two, you need a system to ensure you stay on top of the needs of your clients.
What makes full management of another person’s blog different than a straight freelance gig is that most of the time you’re in charge of timing and uploading the posts. If your client is truly hands off, this means a lot of responsibility falls to you.
So create a content calendar on day one, a schedule for when to write and upload content, and a followup schedule to check for comments. The more systematic you can make it, the easier it will be to keep up with your commitments.
Almost every blog runs in the WordPress environment. There are some exceptions such as Tumblr or Blogger, but most business or brand sites are built on some kind of CMS, and that CMS is usually WordPress.
So if you don’t know your way around the backend of a WordPress site, start practicing. It’s relatively easy, but you need to know it inside and out – if your client asks for a custom header, you’d better be able to get it up fast.
Proper blog management requires a keen eye for what works best in a particular niche and for a particular audience. If you’re not already an expert in a given field, it’s in your best interest to become one. If you are an expert, show that you have the organizational skills needed to take over the daily management of one of the most important components of someone’s site.
Do this and you can start building a strong ghostwriting business.