Blogging is a popular activity, and it’s not hard to see why.
Blogs are the 5th most trusted source of accurate information online. There are a ton to dig through to find the right ones though.
Today’s consumers are savvier than ever before. For a content marketing initiative to be successful, it needs to provide valuable information to the blogosphere.
If you get it right, you’ll increase indexed webpages for your website, rise in the search engine rankings, build valuable backlinks, and greatly increase organic traffic and overall ROI.
Generating traffic, managing a website, and proving an ROI are among the top challenges for today’s businesses according to recent Hubspot research.
A blog resolves these issues and more.
It’s a difficult job, however, and most amazing blogs you read online have been written by teams of people. As a seasoned writer, journalist, and copywriter, I have experience throughout the business and operations of the writing business.
While I have a solid portfolio under my own name, ghostwriting is the bread and butter of my business.
This blog is meant to familiarize you with the concepts of ghostwriting and ghostblogging, how to find the write ghostwriter/ghostblogger, and how to achieve an ROI.
Let’s get started by introducing myself.
My name is Brian Penny, and I’m a professional ghostblogger.
I’ve been a professional writer since 2011.
That’s when I walked away from my position in corporate operations management to pursue a full-time freelance career.
At first, I only had my blog, and it took time to figure out how to get it running. Posting with any type of frequency is a challenge, especially when you want quality, but it’s necessary to post at least once a month to stay alive.
I started in the trenches of Elance (now known as Upwork) and other content mills before honing my skills and learning the business firsthand.
It took some time to learn how to monetize my blog, but I eventually figured it out.
During this phase of my career, I learned the ropes of pitching articles to publishers, working with editors, and formatting online writing while honing my skills.
That’s how I learned blogging is a sought-after skill in the modern business world.
Soon, I was offered my first ghostwriting contract and followed the money down that path.
Ghostwriting blogs and magazine articles is my specialty. By running my own blog and contributing to hundreds of others, I figured out what people are generally looking for.
Over the years I refined my process while working with clients in a wide variety of industries. While NDAs prevent me from showcasing this side of my portfolio, I can share my process with you, along with tips I learned along the way.
So why would you hire a ghostblogger like me?
Let’s dive into some of the specialized services I provide that some schmuck out of college doesn’t have the skill-set or experience for.
Important skills all ghostbloggers should have:
Being a successful ghostwriter is about much more than the mechanics of writing (although those have to be pretty solid as well).
The freelance writer you hire or contract needs to be well-versed in several key facets of the writing business:
I’m sure you’ve read the blogs and seen the videos saying content marketing is a big trend. Blogging is part of this, but it’s not enough to just have a blog.
You need engaging content that’s effective in entertaining and educating your audience.
Here’s a breakdown of the top priorities for B2C content creators according to a survey from the Content Marketing Institute.
The top two concerns are creating engaging content and understanding what content is effective and what isn’t.
Research is what separates effective from non-effective content.
You could hire an expert in the field, but they’re likely to charge exorbitant fees. On top of that, being an industry expert doesn’t make you a great writer.
Thankfully, what I’m an expert at is the business of blogging.
A great ghostwriter understands how to perform targeted research, source the right statistics, and write from the perspective of an expert.
We start with in-depth knowledge of business operations and technology. Then we perform keyword research to learn what topics are of interest to your audience.
From there, my team scours media, social media, academic and government sites, and whatever expert resources are available to find the most updated statistics and sources to draw from.
This process creates an outline that can easily be turned into an effective blog post.
2. Writing and Editing
Once the outline is completed, the real work begins.
Because I’ve written (and ghostwritten) for so many outlets, we have a database of what publishers are looking for. We can match any tone, word count, and content requirements.
This means you can blog beyond your owned media channels, which we’ll get into more detail about soon.
Each article goes through a vigorous writing, rewriting, and editing process in which multiple drafts are created. This ensures we’re left with a solid, meaty article that makes excellent points with some personality added for flavor.
Sentences are shortened, passive voice is removed, and all statements are backed by data.
Speaking of data, the average blog post length is increasing every year.
So we not only aim for 1500+ words in each article, we do our best to approach 3000 words per post.
Of course, the length is determined by how much meaty information is available. Publishing long-form blog posts is pointless if they’re all fluff.
The actual length of each individual blog post is determined by the amount of value it can provide.
Once the article is written and edited, it’s formatted for web publication.
Posting on the web is different than other mediums.
It requires visual, interactive content. That means we need to hyperlink back to all sources and include graphs, infographics, and other imagery.
Here’s some data from the CMO Council on the growing importance of visual data.
With these visual assets in place, we’re able to tell a more effective brand story, regardless of the channel.
Infographics and illustrations are typically better than simple photography, although that can tell a story as well.
Keep in mind, we’re talking about straight blog posts, not ecommerce pages, product descriptions or any of the sales bullshit.
We don’t sell in our blogs – they’re non-promotional and not spammy. It doesn’t work any other way.
4. Pitching and Publishing
Once the blog post is completed, we work on publishing. The pitch often happens prior to writing the actual article, although there’s typically a 7-day turnaround on high-quality blogs.
Publishing on owned media like your company blog, LinkedIn, etc. is great, but you’ll also gain traction with customers by guest posting on relevant media outlets.
It’s part of earned media, which is one of 3 media foundations of marketing.
Customers tend to ignore paid product placements, and owned media can be seen as too promotional.
With earned media, your blog posts can be featured in major media outlets like Forbes, Huffington Post, and Entrepreneur. It’s the holy grail of SEO if you can get a column and backlinks posted.
These outlets won’t take just anybody, however. You’ll need to prove you’re providing value to their readers, and that’s where professional ghostwriting services can be effective.
5. Social Promotion
The ghostwriting job doesn’t stop when the blog article is posted.
Each post needs to be promoted across social channels like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and StumbleUpon.
A large majority of people are on social media, and you’ll be doing your customers a disservice by not reaching them there.
In fact, 80% of people use platforms like Facebook daily.
Once a blog is ghostwritten and published, we’ll go back and promote it across our social channels. We can even help manage your social media accounts.
Blogging is what drives a successful social media campaign. It gives you content to share with your followers while increasing click throughs and conversions.
It’s also the cornerstone of a successful CRO and SEO campaign. By sharing your blogs across social, you’ll increase exposure and let Google’s search bots know there’s something worth reading on your site.
Getting Started with a Ghostblogger
If you’re looking to hire a ghostwriter, you’ve come to the right place. Start by sending me an email at email@example.com with the following information:
- Who you are, and your business URL
- Your blog content focus
- How many blogs per week you’d like
From there, we can discuss availability, pricing, and get a contract in place.
I never work without a written contract in place. It’s how freelancers and other general contractors guarantee we’ll be paid. If you’re afraid of a contract, it’s a red flag that you’re not someone who can afford to work with me.
Know that I don’t come cheap.
If you’re looking to save money, place a Craigslist ad for a college intern. And understand you get what you pay for.
Anyone seeking a professional ghostwriter who can afford to pay for quality, shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.