Instructions for Outsourced Articles

24 replies
Hi all,

I'm wanting to improve my outsourcing process with article writers - to ensure that the writers fully understand my wishes, as quickly as possible, so they can deliver the best written product possible. Here's my list so far. How can I make this even better?

(Naturally, I want to be able to do this quickly....otherwise, I should just be writing these articles myself.)

1) Number of words
2) Keyword
3) Where article will be used (EZA, website, blog post on particular kind of site)
4) Writing style - casual, business, authoritative
5) Purpose of article (to drive reader to a website, to drive reader to another article, backlinks only, etc.)

Cheers,
Kelly
#articles #instructions #outsourced
  • Profile picture of the author Shannon Tani
    I like to give titles. I think that gives a stronger idea of what you want. Also, if the title can go one of two ways, I also tell the conclusion that I want the writer to reach through the article.

    For example, if you're selling a product on natural acne cures and you give the writer the title "Are natural acne cures better than prescription ones?", you obviously want the article to conclude that they are.

    Love,
    Shannon
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  • Profile picture of the author iplusgold
    Yup, I second given the title mainly because it drives the direction of the article. By giving them a precise title they have a little more direction on the content that they need to research/write.
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  • Profile picture of the author DrewG
    Good points on the titles. Def. give a title if you'd like to control the flow/direction of the article.
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  • Profile picture of the author jhongren
    Originally Posted by teamind View Post

    Hi all,

    I'm wanting to improve my outsourcing process with article writers - to ensure that the writers fully understand my wishes, as quickly as possible, so they can deliver the best written product possible. Here's my list so far. How can I make this even better?

    (Naturally, I want to be able to do this quickly....otherwise, I should just be writing these articles myself.)

    1) Number of words
    2) Keyword
    3) Where article will be used (EZA, website, blog post on particular kind of site)
    4) Writing style - casual, business, authoritative
    5) Purpose of article (to drive reader to a website, to drive reader to another article, backlinks only, etc.)

    Cheers,
    Kelly
    Hi Kelly.

    Ask for a sample article before committing to this writer.
    And always test the writer...give batches of 3 to 5 articles
    and always set a dateline.

    Pay only when you receive the articles or you can go by 50-50.

    My experience taught me this.

    John
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    • Profile picture of the author rajuthan
      Originally Posted by jhongren View Post

      Hi Kelly.
      Pay only when you receive the articles
      ^^ Very Important
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    • Profile picture of the author teamind
      Originally Posted by jhongren View Post

      Hi Kelly.

      Ask for a sample article before committing to this writer.
      And always test the writer...give batches of 3 to 5 articles
      and always set a dateline.

      Pay only when you receive the articles or you can go by 50-50.

      My experience taught me this.

      John

      Thanks for this guidance. I have had some writers (unproven to me) wanting full payment up front. I'm not comfortable with that and had wondered if that was an industry standard. Thanks for clarifying.
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  • Profile picture of the author priyankeshu
    In my honest opinion giving single article is not a very good way. The article writing process should be done in BULK . Reason?

    - the team/writer will take more time to research the niche because he has to write so many articles on the same topic.
    - this will lead to better performance and that too in a very less time.

    So it will be a win win situation for both of you. As a article writer i always look for bulk projects and many of my clients think that i am doing this because i want more money. But i do this because i want stability and good results for my client.
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    • Profile picture of the author teamind
      Originally Posted by priyankeshu View Post

      In my honest opinion giving single article is not a very good way. The article writing process should be done in BULK . Reason?
      I do agree with this point...after I have tested a writer and they have proven themselves to be worthy of such an assignment.
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      • Profile picture of the author teamind
        Originally Posted by Shannon Tani View Post

        I like to give titles. I think that gives a stronger idea of what you want. Also, if the title can go one of two ways, I also tell the conclusion that I want the writer to reach through the article.
        Great idea. I will definitely experiment with this. Sometimes I do have ideas about how I want the article to go...and feel disappointed when the writer is not a "mind-reader".:p

        Thanks,
        Kelly
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        • Profile picture of the author sam12six
          Originally Posted by teamind View Post

          Great idea. I will definitely experiment with this. Sometimes I do have ideas about how I want the article to go...and feel disappointed when the writer is not a "mind-reader".:p

          Thanks,
          Kelly
          I've had clients who wanted me to write articles around their keywords:

          One just told me, "trade credit insurance". I pretty much sat in front of my monitor thinking, "Exactly what should I write about trade credit insurance?"

          Another wanted me to write about how Samurai swords are made. He ripped me because throughout the article I'd used the term "forged" instead of "made". First, he never specified that "samurai swords are made" was the specific keyword he was targeting. Second, he wanted a complete rewrite instead of just changing that one word throughout the article.

          After these situations, I started requesting that the client suggest the title. Since doing that, I've had no complaints at all.

          Trust me, suggesting titles goes a long way toward reducing frustration on both the client and provider side.

          *** As for payment-up-front, while your reluctance to give someone untested money for a product whose quality you can't predict is understandable, keep in mind that payment at the back end only puts the provider in the position of doing work for someone who might not deliver payment.

          Unless you're dealing with someone you know through referral, I'd go with either 50% up front or use Elance (or a similar go-between) that offers escrow to protect both parties. Obviously, we're just talking about a first-time situation. Once you've established a relationship, you can set up whatever arrangements work for the both of you. It's just in my experience, few good writers will put in their work and effort for a total stranger who might (or might not) compensate them for that work.
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          • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
            Originally Posted by sam12six View Post

            keep in mind that payment at the back end only puts the provider in the position of doing work for someone who might not deliver payment.
            But the provider still owns the work, and can sell it in another market. If you build a custom guitar for someone, and they don't pay, you turn around and sell it to someone else... usually (but not always) for a little less. If you write custom articles, and the client doesn't pay, you can always sell them on the PLR market.

            Payment on delivery really does protect both people's interests to the highest degree possible. The client keeps his money until he's happy with the content; the writer keeps the content until he's happy with the money.
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            • Profile picture of the author sam12six
              Originally Posted by CDarklock View Post

              But the provider still owns the work, and can sell it in another market. If you build a custom guitar for someone, and they don't pay, you turn around and sell it to someone else... usually (but not always) for a little less. If you write custom articles, and the client doesn't pay, you can always sell them on the PLR market.

              Payment on delivery really does protect both people's interests to the highest degree possible. The client keeps his money until he's happy with the content; the writer keeps the content until he's happy with the money.
              The difference is that in order for the client to be happy with content, he or she has to actually have the content. Don't get me wrong, I'm well aware that there are other ways to monetize the content, but the fact is that once someone else uses it, it's somewhat devalued.

              In addition to that, someone writing articles for a fee isn't planning to market them as PLR or use them for a personal site or the assignment wouldn't have been accepted in the first place. What I'm saying is that a default by the client forces the author to either eat the time cost of doing the work for nothing, or to put in additional work to try and make the initial effort worth something.

              Payment on delivery only protects the buyer because the buyer can choose not to pay. If that happens, the provider doesn't have the option of taking the content back (and I know the author would still legally hold rights, but if someone's unscrupulous enough to stiff someone on the bill, they won't hesitate to use the product).

              Service providers screw clients all the time. Clients also screw service providers all the time. The difference is that the provider screwing the client is almost a matter of delivering less quality than expected, while the client screwing the provider delivers nothing at all.

              Bottom line is that the service provider is risking more with a money-at-the-end situation than the client is risking with a money-up-front arrangement. The only way to virtually eliminate risk to either party is using a separate party (that will take a cut) to establish an escrow.
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              • Profile picture of the author Kay King
                Article Requirements:
                -be a minimum of 400 words, and optimized for SEO.
                -must meet all Ezinearticles editorial guidelines.
                -unique, original and fluidly written content
                -flawless grammar and spelling
                -sufficient research
                -catchy attention grabbing headline.
                -keyword phrase should be in the headline with creative keyword phrase derivatives in the sub-headline
                -keyword phrase should appear three times throughout the body of the article

                -must be interesting and provide useful information or useful tips to reader - NO FLUFF

                Deliverables:
                -must be original and unique
                -must pass Copyscape premium requirement
                s
                -must stick to delivery date
                -can not be plagiarism and violate any copyright.
                -all work delivered to us will be fully owned by us.


                Guidelines:
                -All of the keyword phrases are specific product names, they should be as specific to that product as your research allows, please no general information
                -Some suggestions for article angles are: How-to, Benefits of, Tips for, Comparative, Things to Avoid, Latest news on, FAQs
                -Keep the tone of the article impartial and not just selling the keyword phrase
                -Use the keyword phrase in the headline of the article and three times in the body of the article
                -Make the headline catchy, EXCITING, and attention grabbing
                -Subheads, bulleted lists, step-by-step lists, "7 Tips in buying..." are all great

                Not-necessary:
                -I will write the author box
                -I will submit the articles to ezinearticles

                - Cite your sources properly if quoting another source.
                ------------

                Above is a good list but repetitive - you can create problems with a writer by being too specific just as you can by not giving enough information. "specific to the product...no general phrases" and "impartial and not just selling the keyword" are two different instructions and confusing.

                Unfortunately, instructions like this are too often followed by the words "I'll pay $1 per 100 words." If you want quality, be prepared to pay for it.

                I saw a job yesterday where the buyer advertised they would expect to pay .05 per word. Top writers wasted time bidding on the job - the "buyer" meant 1/2 cent per word which would be .005 . And the list of "wants" from the buyer was about as long as the one above.

                It's true there are many calling themselves "writers" who can't write worth a hoot - but there are just as many "buyers" who want gold for slave prices. I just let those two groups work with each other:rolleyes:

                kay
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  • Profile picture of the author Odhinn
    You may also want to specify desired keyword density.
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  • Profile picture of the author anuj291
    @ Traffic-Bug -- said it all
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  • Profile picture of the author Anup Mahajan
    Traffic-Bug really summarized it well. I just want to add that you should look for a native English speaking writer.


    Cheers,
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  • Profile picture of the author Amenda Jessera
    Ya, Traffic-Bug, Summarized it. Great view buddy. I am sure these points will help to me in my article marketing process. Thxs for sharing it...
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  • Profile picture of the author teamind
    Originally Posted by Traffic-Bug View Post

    Here is something from my note taking app - instructions for article writers.
    Requirements:
    -expert article writer
    -completely familiar with Ezinearticles (If you are not an expert with Ezinearticles, then please don't bid)

    Article Requirements:
    -be a minimum of 400 words, and optimized for SEO.
    -must meet all Ezinearticles editorial guidelines.
    -unique, original and fluidly written content
    -flawless grammar and spelling
    -sufficient research
    -catchy attention grabbing headline.
    -keyword phrase should be in the headline with creative keyword phrase derivatives in the sub-headline
    -keyword phrase should appear three times throughout the body of the article
    -must be interesting and provide useful information or useful tips to reader - NO FLUFF

    Deliverables:
    -must be original and unique
    -must pass Copyscape premium requirements
    -must stick to delivery date
    -can not be plagiarism and violate any copyright.
    -all work delivered to us will be fully owned by us.


    Guidelines:
    -All of the keyword phrases are specific product names, they should be as specific to that product as your research allows, please no general information
    -Some suggestions for article angles are: How-to, Benefits of, Tips for, Comparative, Things to Avoid, Latest news on, FAQs
    -Keep the tone of the article impartial and not just selling the keyword phrase
    -Use the keyword phrase in the headline of the article and three times in the body of the article
    -Make the headline catchy, EXCITING, and attention grabbing
    -Subheads, bulleted lists, step-by-step lists, "7 Tips in buying..." are all great

    Not-necessary:
    -I will write the author box
    -I will submit the articles to ezinearticles

    - Cite your sources properly if quoting another source.

    Excellent, excellent outline. This is the kind of format that makes it easy to quickly copy & paste the instructions for the writer. Thanks you so kindly for sharing this super info.

    Kelly
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  • Profile picture of the author DAS_Matt
    Some very good responses here in the thread. Will help the OP quite a bit.
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  • Profile picture of the author M Thompson
    I create a video and post it online then direct the writers to it.

    In that video i show them exactly what i want them to do.
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    If you are serious about online marketing come and Join our free community The Foundation
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  • Profile picture of the author achivement84
    Originally Posted by Traffic-Bug View Post


    Deliverables:
    -must be original and unique
    -must pass Copyscape premium requirements
    -must stick to delivery date
    -can not be plagiarism and violate any copyright.
    -all work delivered to us will be fully owned by us.


    .

    In my opinion this tips are a must , should be in mind while evaluating writer , this can give additional advantage.

    B.Regards
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  • Profile picture of the author Karan Goel
    1 more thing:

    Who is writing article. Some low-profile writer would cause you drastic bad effects.
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