Working Effectively With Ghost Blog Writers
Working with a content writer is one thing, but partnering with a ghostwriter is quite another. In this context, a ghost blog writer is someone who creates a professional blog post without claiming any credit for it. Companies and executives love hiring ghostwriters for their fast, timely, and poignant writing, especially when it can be penned under their personal brand name.
Ghost blog writers can do a world of good for your business. By creating high-quality content with your brand name attached, you can reach customers in your vertical in a whole new way. If you don’t have the time or speed to develop consistent organic content, a ghost blog writer might be able to help.
But how do you set your expectations for ghost blog writers, and what’s it like to work with one?
In this article, we’re going to take a look at the process of working with ghost blog writers across industries, paying special attention to their actual workflow. We’re covering:
- Setting expectations for your ghost blog writer
- How much do ghost blog writers get paid?
- What it’s like to work with a ghost blog writer
- Where can you find ghost blog writers?
- Save time and spread the message with ghost blog writing
Setting Expectations For Your Ghost Blog Writer
If you’re still on the fence about hiring a ghostwriter, you should be aware of the massive benefits they can provide. According to research, a skilled writer producing work under your name could offer:
- 10 times the number of leads with longer-form content
- Up to 4.5 times more leads with consistent posting
- 300% blog post ROI just from ongoing consistency
If you don’t have the time to create your own written content, or if you find yourself struggling to maintain consistency, hiring a ghost blog writer could be the perfect solution.
Before we spend time talking about the expectations you should have for your ghostwriter, let’s talk about the expectations you shouldn’t have.
- Ghost blog writers aren’t ‘cheap’ labor. More on that later.
- Ghost blog writers need at least some direction from you to get started.
- Ghost blog writers are usually freelancers, which means you’re not their only client.
Remember: a ghost blog writer is just emulating your style; they’re not mind readers. If you aren’t willing to provide at least a little bit of help, it will be difficult for them to develop material that suits your needs.
There are a couple of different materials your ghost blog writer will need to get started, namely:
- The Brief: A short explanation of the project, the work, and the final outcome.
- The Outline: A document with headers, keywords, and any other information your ghostwriter should know about.
- The Notes: Side info or bullet points that your ghostwriter should incorporate into the final piece.
- The Editor: Someone, either yourself or another contractor, who will ensure the blog post reads as desired. Bear in mind that the editor isn’t necessarily a proofreader, but someone who checks the brand voice or tone of the piece.
A good ghost blog writer will create content quickly, accurately, and on-time. However, a great ghostwriter will go the extra mile to include SEO directives. You can expect to spend at least an hour getting to know your writer and their needs, as well as their writing style. If you don’t already have an editor on your team, you may need to spend some time editing or providing feedback yourself. Depending on the experience and camaraderie between yourself and your ghostwriter, you might only spend a half-hour per week polishing the final deliverable.
How Much Do Ghost Blog Writers Get Paid?
Any question about pricing in the freelance world is bound to leave you with more questions than answers.
The actual cost of a ghost blog writer varies significantly. Some high earners charge anywhere from $1 to $5 per word, or up to $20,000 per project. Others may prefer to work on an hourly basis, which ranges up to $50 to $100 depending on experience level.
Some writers will create a batch of blog posts to be disseminated throughout the year. Others prefer to work on a retainer basis (which costs additional fees). Still, others will create a consistent flow of content depending on your company’s needs.
It is possible to find ghost blog writers charging lower rates, sometimes down to $0.05 a word or less. You would do well, however, to remember that you get what you pay for. If you work in a very technical or research-heavy industry, paying extra for an experienced ghostwriter will always be in your best interests.
What It’s Like To Work With A Ghost Blog Writer
Once you’ve hired a ghost blog writer, you’ll need to create a work pipeline that suits all parties involved.
Choosing topics and titles is often the first step of the process. Create a spreadsheet or Airtable list with topics, briefs, and notes accessible from one location. Be sure the topics you choose are relevant to your industry, as well as your ghostwriter’s repertoire. Depending on the contract signed, your ghost blog writer may also be in charge of topic generation.
But first, a caveat: be mindful of your time (and the time of your ghostwriter). How much content do you want to produce? Now temper that number with the amount of high-quality content you can afford to create. Some writers prefer to work on a one-project-a-week scale, while others would rather pick up the pace to four or five blogs per week.
Your writer will complete the blog before the deadline, and send the finalized piece back for review. You can choose to edit it yourself or outsource the process to another freelancer or in-house employee. Depending on the pipeline you create, it may be easier to provide the edits yourself. Remember: all blog posts will be published under your name or handle. Ensuring the final product reflects your beliefs and opinions is perhaps the most important part of the editorial process.
After everything is approved, it’s ready to be scheduled for publication. It’s best to publicize your blog posts as much as possible, and use them as assets in newsletters, social media posts, and other collateral.
Working with a ghost blog writer can be incredibly rewarding, and an excellent method of streamlining content production. As long as you’re willing to provide some guidance and a little voice or tone direction, you may be able to create a wellspring of content that doubles your exposure in the marketplace.
Where Can You Find A Ghost Blog Writer?
There are thousands of ghost blog writers available for hire, many of them living right in your local community. Internet forums like Reddit, third-party platforms like Writer Access, and freelance job postings also have a chance of connecting you with a few good candidates.
The most effective way to find ghost blog writers is simply by asking around. Get in touch with coworkers, family members, or recent connections who may have some suggestions for you.
We actually did a piece a few months back all about where to find ghostwriters for hire. If you want a play-by-play description of where to find your next writing unicorn, this would be a great read.
Save Time And Spread The Message With Ghost Blog Writing
Creating new opportunities, generating consistent content, and regularly driving traffic to your website, ghost blog writing could be a lucrative opportunity for all parties involved. Partnering with a knowledgeable, experienced writer will give you plenty of flexibility, and decrease the amount of time you have to spend managing background processes.
When the time comes for you to track down a writer of your own, be sure to take all the time you need to uncover the perfect fit. While generalized ghostwriters could help you get the process started, they might not always have the technical expertise you need to develop a long-term pipeline. For this reason, relying on highly experienced, carefully vetted candidates will always be your best option.
At Draft.dev, we provide writing for technical audiences in many niches. By sourcing writers with actionable, hands-on experience in the field, we help brands generate content at a glance. We’ve helped hundreds of customers find sustainable solutions to content production, creating blog posts and technical tutorials designed to provide legitimate value to a technical audience.
Looking to get started ASAP? We’d love to chat. Book a call to discuss the content we create to reach software engineers, data managers, and more.
Build a Blog that Software Developers Will Read
The Technical Content Manager’s Playbook is a collection of resources you can use to manage a high-quality, technical blog:
- A template for creating content briefs
- An Airtable publishing calendar
- A technical blogging style guide