How do you get paid by blogging about your business? Copify blog

How do you get paid by blogging about your business?

There are many reasons businesses, start-ups, freelancers and individuals can benefit from having a blog, from increased traffic to attracting and converting more customers. While the main focus of your blog will be to build your brand and gain attention for your business, did you know you can actually bring in more revenue by blogging, too?

We’re not saying it’s easy or that it doesn’t take work, but done right, your business blog can actually become another solid income stream for your company.

Here’s a statistic from HubSpot that’s an eye-opener on what having a blog can do for you: “Companies that published 16+ blog posts per month got about 4.5X more leads and 3.5X more traffic than companies that published 0-4 monthly posts.”

So, how do you get paid by blogging?

1. Plan out what you want to achieve

If you’re already blogging and it’s not working for you, then it’s time to take stock and set out a plan for what you want to do with your blog.

If you’re new to blogging, you’re in a good position, as you can make a plan before you start and decide how you want to move forward.

Carol Tice from Make a Living Writing has some straightforward and practical advice on planning your blog, getting started and being realistic about it.

Basically, you need to know why you are blogging, who your target audience is and be able to plan out an interesting and eyeball-grabbing editorial calendar that will bring in the audience you want to attract. Good, targeted traffic is essential if you want to earn money from your blog.

How do you get paid by blogging?
Perzon SEO (www.perzonseo.com)

2. Write fabulous content and be consistent

So much of the blogosphere is taken up by people writing boring, uninteresting blogs or people who blog madly every day for weeks and then don’t blog again for months.

Neither of those things will get you noticed, get you clients or bring in any earnings from your blog.

Your content needs to be highly attractive to your target market, beautifully written, engaging and with a clear call to action at the end. If you want your audience to do something, such as signing up for your newsletter or clicking an affiliate link, a clear call to action is essential.

Many people start off blogging with every intention to blog daily, but discover that it’s more work than they think and let their efforts tail off. A blog which hasn’t been posted on for months can make your business look like it’s inactive, so it’s important that you do blog consistently. Not only that, but adding fresh content regularly is brilliant for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), and will help your site rise in the search engine rankings where it will gain more traffic.

3. Direct ways to make money from your blog

Here’s the nitty gritty on the ways you can bring in income streams from your blog. Most bloggers work a combination of all of these to keep money coming in consistently, and the great thing about this is that you can do what appeals to you, and change things up until you find what works.

• Affiliate marketing

As an affiliate, you sign up to affiliate programmes for other people’s products and services, and then you promote them on your blog and in your newsletter.

The way you make money is that when one of your visitors clicks your affiliate link (a link that is unique to you), the owner of the product you are recommending can track any purchases through your link and will send you a commission on an agreed basis.

It’s simple, straightforward, and easy to set up.

However, it does take work in choosing the right products and services for your blog. They must fit in with your aims for the blog and appeal to your audience, and you’ll also want what you are promoting to be of high quality, because if it’s not, it will reflect badly on you.

• Ad revenue/Pay Per Click

You can place suitable ads (also known as banner ads) onto your blog, in the header, footer or sidebar, or through your content.

Again, you need to carefully select the right ads that suit your audience. If you write about cake decorating, for example, any ads that promote sugar flowers or decorating equipment are likely to get clicks from your readers.

What is SEO copywriting? Copify blog
Perzon SEO (www.perzonseo.com)

You can take paid banner ads direct from companies you want to work with or sign up through an ad network, such as Google AdSense, BlogHer or Federated Media.

This works better for high-traffic sites, and you can certainly charge more for ads placed directly on your site if you have good traffic and an engaged community, but even a small site can earn some money from paid ads. It might start off as a trickle of small change, but as your site grows, it can add up.

• Selling physical products and services

Unless blogging is your business model, your blog’s main focus is to get attention for your business, and here’s where your blog can start making money for you by directing people to look at your product or service offerings.

You can also develop new products, based on what your audience wants, that fit in with your main business.

You might sell digital products, such as e-books, courses, audio books, or images; physical products such as paperbacks, gifts or clothing; or services like copywriting, web design or graphics.

Having an active and attractive blog is an excellent way to bring attention to what your business does, and to point people to your sales page.

And if you think it can’t be done, if your blog seems way too small and insignificant, read this interview with highly successful blogger Tsh Oxenreider on Entrepreneur who has some excellent advice: “Don’t compare your Chapter 1 to someone else’s Chapter 20.” Tsh also offers good advice on how to start and keep blogging here.

Blogging can be hard work. If you’re not naturally a writer, it can be an increasing struggle to continually put out excellent quality content in line with your editorial schedule.

But you don’t have to do everything yourself. When you need to get writers for your blog, you could reach out to other non-competing but complementary businesses in your field and see if they’d like to do guest posts for your blog. That way, you get regular, fresh content that you didn’t have to write. Guest blogs are an excellent way to keep your blog relevant and up to date, as well as offer a different viewpoint and perspective.

If you’re not a writer but you know your business would benefit from a blog, and that extra income stream from blogging wouldn’t hurt either, then all is not lost. You can hire a writer to blog for you, while you concentrate on the aspects of running your business that you love. And, if done well, over time, the money you make from your blog will more than cover the costs of hiring a writer.

Whichever way you choose to blog, whether you do it yourself or hire someone to write for you, the benefits of regular blogging, both in extra income and increased awareness of your business and your brand, are clear to see.

 

Image credit: Tax Credits, ‘Money Plant’

Read More

What is SEO copywriting? Copify blog

What is SEO copywriting?

Have you sat through many a meeting listening to the head of marketing drone on about search engine optimisation? Perhaps you’re confused about long-tail and short-tail keywords? Or you just don’t know your PPC from your SERP?

In fact, just what is SEO copywriting anyway?

Well, fear no more: we provide the ultimate introduction to SEO copywriting.

In a nutshell: SEO copywriting definition

SEO is the means of helping a website appear as high up as possible in the search engine results page (otherwise known as SERP), whether that’s Google, Bing, Yahoo or any other.  There are a number of web design and development factors which influence this. However, SEO copywriting involves weaving keywords and phrases that your target audience would use to find you into your website’s content.

SEO copywriting fits into the larger field of search engine optimisation which utilises a range of tactics, including link building, mobile optimisation, load speeds, and content strategy techniques to ensure your site is device and user-friendly, promotes unique and insightful content and provides essential details.

Take a look at this great SEO explainer video from Start Copywriting:

(Courtesy of YouTube/Start Copywriting)

Why is SEO important?

Whether you’re an ecommerce site or an online magazine, SEO is a pretty important piece of digital marketing you should be conducting.

Here’s why: “most people who use search engines only look at the first page or two of the search results, so for a page to get high traffic from a search engine, it has to be listed in those first two pages. If your business is selling products or services over the internet, you want your website to be listed before your competitor’s websites.” (The Balance)

One benefit of SEO is that in and of itself it’s free. Unfortunately, it’s also time consuming. You’ll either need to have a member of your team looking after your SEO, which includes optimising your web and blog content, or you’ll need to hire a freelancer content marketer or outsource your content marketing to an agency. That means there will be an unavoidable cost to you in the long run.

It also doesn’t work over night and can take months to be effective. According to Josh Steimle, “many SEO firms will tell you that it takes 4 to 6 months to start seeing results. That’s generally accurate, but bear in mind this is when you start seeing results, and SEO results grow over time. Whatever results you’re getting at 6 months should be considerably less than what you’re getting at 12 months. At some point, you may see your results taper off, and then it may be a matter of maintaining results rather than growing them.”

Where should I include SEO?

There are a few places you should aim to use SEO. Here are some:

  • Header title/page title
  • Subheadings
  • URL address for that specific page
  • Meta description
  • Alt text on images
  • Content body of your landing pages, product descriptions & blog posts

If you publish content through a platform like WordPress, you will find there are plenty of tools to help you optimise your content. Yoast is one such plugin which operates like a traffic-light system from red to green, telling you when you’ve included your focus keyword in enough places.

What is SEO copywriting? Copify blog
Danard Vincente (Flickr)

However, we recommend not going OTT. So long as you get your keyword into your content at least once and in the meta descriptions/URL/heading, you should be covered.

What makes good SEO copywriting?

You shouldn’t be able to tell the difference between good copywriting and good SEO copywriting. That’s because both should be error-free, benefits-led and appeal to the audience. The only difference is that SEO content is optimised with the use of keywords – but this should read natural, not stuffed and artificial.

According to The Balance, “Current search engine optimization focuses on techniques such as making sure that each web page has appropriate title tags and that the content is not ‘thin’ or low-quality. High-quality content is original, authoritative, factual, grammatically correct, and engaging to users.”

We’ve also mentioned that SEO copywriting goes hand in hand with quality link building with reputable sites. WordStream says that, when it comes to getting SEO, “The most important concept to understand is that, as Google says, you’re more likely to have your content rank higher for keywords you’re targeting if you can get external websites to link to you.”

Therefore, your wider content strategy needs to think about interacting with other influencers on the net and through social media, whether through networking or guest blogging.

You can also use a PPC (pay-per-click) strategy to complement your organic (non-paid-for) SEO, which means you feature an ad to a specific keyword on search engines and pay a fee each time it’s clicked. This enables you to rank on the first page of a set of results easily but is quite costly and is only effective for as long as the ad is there. Therefore, it doesn’t have the same longevity as organic SEO that is incorporated throughout your online presence.

Examples of bad SEO

The Balance notes how “Search engine optimization has evolved greatly over the years. In the early days of SEO web designers would ‘stuff’ keywords into web page keyword meta tags to improve search engine rankings”.

 

What is SEO copywriting? Copify blog
Jerry Bunkers (Flickr)

 

Thankfully, smart copywriters and business owners know how to stay ahead of the Google curve and are aware that keyword stuffing just won’t make the grade. In fact, you’re more likely to be penalised with a lower ranking or being blacklisted altogether.

What’s more, “Poorly edited articles with spelling and grammatical errors will be demoted by search engines.” And you’ll want to avoid simply buying links to back up your SEO – these are usually offered in return for payment but can come from poor-quality, spammy sites which only devalues your rating. Find out what other SEO ‘sins’ to avoid from Smart Blogger.

How do I know what keywords to use?

Starting broad, your keywords will be related to your USPs, industry field, service/product, and location. You’ll need to conduct research to see the kinds of things your customers are searching for. However, there are a number of great SEO keyword tools available to use. To get you started, here are some of the best free ones:

Short-tail vs long-tail keywords?

SEO Pressor defines short-tail keywords as comprising three words and under (e.g. ‘content creation’). By contrast, long-tail keywords are over three words (e.g. ‘SEO content creation agency). The difference? “As keywords get longer, search volume becomes lower. However, all other metrics such as conversion rates go in favor of long tail keywords.”

What is SEO copywriting? Copify blog
Traffic & Conversion Rate by Keyword Length: SEO Pressor

That’s because long-tail keywords are more specific, so you’re more likely to strike gold in the form of being matched with a customer who is looking for exactly what you have to sell. They’re particularly useful as you narrow down the focus of your website.

While a short-tail keyword is great for driving lots of traffic, it can also see a higher bounce rate, lower conversion rate, and make it less likely you’ll score a place on the first page since you’ll face stiffer competition. However, these ‘head terms’ are good for category pages. On the other hand, long-tail keywords would be better used for individual product pages to better describe what you stock/offer.

Long-tail keywords are increasingly being recommended for use by the likes of Yoast and WordStream since they’re more focused and because they’re more likely to be successful when using voice search – a popular method in the age of voice assist devices.

How can you track your SEO copywriting?

You can track the success of your SEO efforts through the usual content analytics routes. A great starting point is Google Analytics, which provides comprehensive data, including which search terms are most used. The multi-channel report also helps you to compare organic SEO and PPC to check they’re working together.

Learn how to write SEO copy

Considering taking up the challenge of writing your own SEO content? There are some great tools to help you. Medium has an easy to comprehend SEO tutorial for beginners, or there’s a more in-depth tutorial at Hobo. You can even get a handy 4-step SEO checklist from Entrepreneur to help you optimise your website.

If you’re looking to send your staff on an intensive course, or want to learn SEO from a pro, consider signing up for an online course, such as that from Success Works.

Get SEO copy

Want to get SEO content for your website or blog the easy, cost-effective way? Just create a brief with Copify and get access to thousands of copywriters.

 

Image credit: Perzon SEO, ‘Entrepreneur working on his Macbook 2’

Read More

How to get writers for your blog - Copify

How to get writers for your blog

Blogging was once a way for an individual to document their personal life in an online journal. Nowadays, running a blog is a viable content marketing strategy for many businesses.

Blogging and business: a match made in heaven

There are many benefits to owning a blog if you have a business website, such as engaging and connecting with consumers and boosting SEO so that your business can rank highly in search engines and generate leads. However, as well as having a blog for your brand, it is just as important to have fantastic writers who can create and deliver great content for your business blog in order to generate and increase consumer engagement, brand loyalty, SEO and lead generation. Many business owners don’t have the time to run a blog and that’s where the option to hire a writer (or outsource writing duties) comes in.

In addition to this, blog-writing skills are becoming much more in-demand and increasingly lucrative: Inc 5000 reported that a study found that 73.4% of employers want a candidate with strong written communication skills, and 75% of employers want a stronger focus on written communication skills at degree level. Job seekers know this, and an increasing number of them are starting blogs and looking for ways to hone their writing skills – all of which means there are many available opportunities if you are looking at how to get writers for your blog.

The ability to write to a high standard has become such a desired quality amongst many business owners because of the marketing benefits it can bring to a brand. According to the Content Marketing Institute, 76% of B2B marketers planned on creating more content this year in comparison to last year. All in all, blog writing is one of the best and most powerful marketing tools available for the promotion of your business.

As a business owner, it’s important to find the right person for your blog. But if you’re wondering how to get writers for your blog, don’t worry. We’re here are some of the best tips on how to go about it…

1. Look internally

Take a good look at the skills and talents of your team. You might have an employee who’s extremely talented at writing. Also, since many people now enjoy blogging as a pastime, you might have a worker who runs his or her own blog and is looking to take their blogging skills up a notch. The best aspect of hiring internally is that the person is much more familiar with all areas of the business and they are more likely to understand the target audience, meaning they are able to write posts that reflect that knowledge and in your company’s brand voice. Alternatively, if you can’t find anyone on your team who’ll be able to write content for your blog, then it’s best to outsource rather than risk publishing content that is either off-brand or potentially damaging to your reputation.

How to get writers for your blog - Copify
James Baker (https://bestreviewsbase.com/)

2. Hire externally

Another option to consider when searching for a fantastic blog writer is to hire externally. You may need to recruit from outside your company and create a copywriting role for potential applicants and candidates. Recruiting a full-time content writer could be beneficial as you’ll have someone in your team who is completely committed and devoted to working on the blog, meaning that you and the rest of your employees can focus on other aspects of the business. However, recruitment and training are time-consuming and costly processes. It is much cheaper to outsource tasks to a freelance blogger or copywriting agency in the long term, saving you money which would be better invested in running your business or other marketing efforts.

3. Find blog writers on freelance websites

There are a plethora of freelancer websites on the internet where you can find a wide variety of freelance writers available for hire. You can even find niche content writers and SEO experts for your blog. By hiring a writer via a freelance website, you won’t have to spend time and money training them as they are likely to be an expert in their field and you can hire a freelance writer that fits well within your budget. However, recruiting via a freelance website has a few downsides, such as the fact that you will have to deal with a lot of administrative duties, and you’ll have to spend time vetting potential candidates before hiring the right one.

4. Find blog writers on social media

Social media is a powerful marketing tool, but it’s also a great resource for finding prospective blog writers. It’s easy to find copywriters on social media and it’s a great way to try to gain an increase in engagement, especially if the prospective blogger has a high number of followers, impressions and engagement on their channels. However, finding blog writers yourself again means implementing a process to find the right candidate, and that takes up a lot of time.

How to get writers for your blog - Copify
Esther Vargas (Flickr)

5. Invite guest contributors to blog for your website

Getting guest posters on board to write for your blog is a great way to get fresh content, and it’s also a way to gain content for free! This technique is recommended since it rewards upcoming writers with experience, can attract a new audience to your site, and you can usually exchange content in return for a reciprocal link (and gaining backlinks is an excellent way to boost your search engine ranking). However, bear in mind that using guest bloggers means time will have to be spent on managing content: approving pitches, suggesting blog post ideas, implementing deadlines, editing and proofreading, providing feedback, etc. Also, guest posting doesn’t guarantee regular content, which is something your blog needs to keep it consistent and boost SEO.

6. Use content creation agencies

Outsourcing blog content to a copywriting and content creation agency is one of the most effective ways to get expert writers for your blog, and it comes with so many benefits. First of all, copywriting agencies take full responsibility for the entire content creation process, from hiring and assigning work to paying writers. Copywriting agencies recruit and hire professional writers – the best of the best – so by outsourcing your blog to an agency, you will be sure to receive high-quality content in a short amount of time as there is usually a quick turnaround and tight deadlines that all writers must adhere to.

Outsourcing to an agency gives you flexible options too: you can order as little or as much content as you want, from one-off posts to regular packages – which is great as it keeps your blog active and consistent. You can also provide your own feedback and reject content if it’s not up to your requirements.

How to get writers for your blog- Copify blog
James Baker (https://bestreviewsbase.com/)

Best of all, it saves you time and money in the long run, which makes it all worthwhile. By using a content writing agency like Copify, everything is taken care of on your behalf so you don’t have to worry about the writing processes. This means that you can have peace of mind and you can focus entirely on running your own business while content is delivered for your blog. It’s a win-win situation and a winning solution for you and your business!

 

Image credit: WOCinTech Chat, ‘wocintech (microsoft) – 177’

Read More

How to write the perfect copywriting brief

How to create the perfect copywriting brief template

Do you have a blog post, homepage content or a series of product descriptions you need writing? Before your freelance writer can put pen to paper – or finger to keyboard – you’re going to need to create a brief. Thankfully, we’ve put together some simple tips on how to write the perfect copywriting brief.

What is a good copywriting brief?

In a nutshell, a good brief tells your writer everything they need to know about:

• Your company
• Your product or service
• Your audience and how you talk to them
• What you need producing

Signs of a good copywriting brief are:

• Lots of detail
• Examples, such as links to your website or product photos
• The agreement of certain contractual aspects

The benefits of a good copywriting brief

Some freelance writers charge by the hour, others by each round of amends, so it saves you money (and time) if you can get your finished piece spot on the first time around. That’s where the perfect copywriting brief comes in.

As copywriter Emma Cownley states, “Even if not all the information ends up in the final piece, the more we know, the better our creative response will be.”

How to write the perfect copywriting brief template
Ken Teegardin (www.seniorliving.org)

In essence: when your writer knows exactly what you want to communicate to your reader, they’re well equipped to provide you with the content that engages, informs and above all converts.

Ultimately, according to Forbes, “the test of a good creative brief: if the editor, client, or company leader looks at the finished piece and says, ‘This is exactly what we wanted!’ the creative brief is a smashing success.”

Tips and template for a perfect copywriting brief

If you came here looking for a copywriting brief template, you’re in luck. Below we speed through what to include in your freelance writing brief:

Project detail

Type of content

First things first, tell the writer what you want to be written. Is it an article, a blog post, a piece of web content, or a bunch of product or category page descriptions for your e-commerce site?

Length

You may have a strict 500-word limit or be willing to let a copywriter run with it. Always state whether this will impact payment.

Subject

Now, what is it about? Perhaps the subject is fashion if you need to promote your new range of womenswear, or health if you want to add insight to a medical surgery blog. If you need a piece of content to pitch higher than general readership, mention if you’d prefer a copywriter with industry-specific knowledge.

Project context

Is this part of a larger project – have you already produced similar content in-house or using other writers? Your writer won’t know, so state how this copywriting job fits into your overall content marketing campaign and provide examples where necessary. Also, don’t forget to tell them where this piece of content will appear.

Company information

Getting your company ethos and tone of voice right comes down to the writer understanding as much as they can about you. Let them know if you’re a start-up, if you’re rebranding in a particular area or if you have a niche. How do you communicate with your customers? Are you humorous, personal and friendly, or professional and formal?

Audience

Any information you can supply about your customer demographic will help. This includes data you’ve pulled or customer profiles you might have produced as part of your business or marketing plan.

Call to action

Don’t forget the reason you want a piece of content written! Should the call to action be to link to your contact page, push customers towards taking advantage of an offer, or sign up to your newsletter?

Keywords

In the age of Google, search engine optimisation (SEO) can be the difference between making it onto page one and being lost to the recesses of the internet. Let the writer know what search terms (including any localisation or variables) you want to be included, such as ‘plumbers in Croydon’.

How to write the perfect copywriting brief template
Global Panorama (Flickr)

Images

Be aware, not all freelance copywriters offer a service for providing images of other multimedia content. Include details about what kind of image as well as quality, size and orientation you’re looking for.

The task

Here you can flesh out your concept. If you want a writer to plug a certain event, you need to provide them with the information or links to sources that can help them. Got a specific layout you want? Provide a style guide for them to follow.

Additional information

This is where you can get really specific. Any phrases you think sound awful and really don’t want your copywriter to use? Mention them here. You could also detail required formatting such as HTML, or the number of words or characters in a section (relevant if you need a meta description writing or have limited space). What about where you wish keywords to appear and keyword density? Should they include any external links?

Contractual agreements

Fee

This is the bit most copywriters are interested in: how much does this project pay? They will also want to know how they will be paid and when.

Deadline

State the time frame you need the work to be delivered by. You also need to agree with the copywriter what the situation will be regarding amends. Will you be entitled to any ‘free’ edits? Will you pay more per amend?

Signing off

All contracts need to be signed off. Include the following at the end of your brief:

• Date of writing the brief
• Name and signature of hiring company/client
• Name and signature of copywriter
• Date of agreement

How to write the perfect copywriting brief template
Perzon SEO (https://perzonseo.com/)

Who will supply the brief?

If you’re approaching a freelance copywriter, you may find they already have a copywriting brief template on their website for you to download and fill in. However, not all copywriters are prepared for this and you may need to produce your own. That’s not to say you should jump in at the deep end with a super detailed brief. Start with a speculative email and see if the writer is interested in your project before you commit to getting the details down on paper.

Doesn’t writing a copywriting brief take too much time?

When you need some content writing, you’re always going to need to provide a writer with a copywriting brief. It’s the only way to ensure you receive the end product you need while safeguarding both yourself and the writer in the process.

Australian marketing analytics company Digital Balance states that you should “make it your goal to put as much effort into writing your brief as you expect to get back from your writer.”

At the same time, use your judgement. Copywriter Liz Ernst writes about the fine line between providing enough detail to help your copywriter and writing so much that you overburden your writer – and yourself in the process. Your brief should be comprehensive but streamlined; remember, you’re hiring a writer to make your life easier, so don’t fall into the trap of practically creating the content yourself!

Of course, one way to get around the pitfalls of sourcing a freelance copywriter and having to remember all of the above is to use a copywriting agency with a set copywriting brief that you can customise. This can save you time, money and a lot of hassle.

 

Image credit: Perzon SEO ‘business office morning coffee’

Read More