Outsourcing - First Lesson Learned

56 replies
Hired one of my first outsourcers. She had great reviews but her English is horrible.

Here's my first outsourcing lesson learned:

Don't go by just the ratings. People give good ratings because they don't have the stomach to tell the contractor that they suck.

Use your gut instinct and judge by the quality of the SAMPLE they send. Judge their English from your communications with them, not from what they say about themselves, or what others say about them.

Any other lessons learned by you folks would be much appreciated
#learned #lesson #outsourcing
  • Profile picture of the author Snow_Predator
    I'm gona take a stand by the way and tell her that she sucks (despite how nice she comes across as). I'll give her a low rating as a warning to others.
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  • Profile picture of the author Stuart S
    Yeah I tried outsourcing to some people who I didn't really know but that didn't end up well.

    My alternative, went through some blogs from people in America and other English speaking countries and creating a team of writers with people who I knew could write quality articles.
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    • Profile picture of the author Gail_Curran
      There's another thing to consider -- many buyers don't know what good writing looks like because their own English is spotty. They may honestly believe that they received good articles.
      .
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      • Profile picture of the author Snow_Predator
        Originally Posted by Gail_Curran View Post

        There's another thing to consider -- many buyers don't know what good writing looks like because their own English is spotty. They may honestly believe that they received good articles.
        .
        It's a good idea to be skilled at writing articles yourself before you go out and hire someone. A good businessman should know a little about everything.

        One's English is a very small part of the equation when it comes to writing an article. At least a basic level of English is a must, but beyond that it's all about the content - what you say, how you come across etc. The contractor I mention here both had very poor English and very poor content.
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  • Profile picture of the author JRemington
    Originally Posted by Snow_Predator View Post

    Hired one of my first outsourcers. She had great reviews but her English is horrible.

    Here's my first outsourcing lesson learned:

    Don't go buy just the ratings. People give good ratings because they don't have the stomach to tell the contractor that they suck.

    Use your gut instinct and judge by the quality of the SAMPLE they send. Judge their English from your communications with them, not from what they say about themselves, or what others say about them.

    Any other lessons learned by you folks would be much appreciated
    Appreciate you sharing that with us. I'm just looking for outsourcers and this is the kind of advice I need
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    • Profile picture of the author Snow_Predator
      Originally Posted by JRemington View Post

      Appreciate you sharing that with us. I'm just looking for outsourcers and this is the kind of advice I need
      I'm glad I could help JRemington. Outsourcing is definitely the way forward. I've been stuck in the realm of self-employment, doing everything myself for 1 year and my results have been minimal - working my butt off for a wage that's less than half of what I was earning as an employee.

      Best of luck in your endeavors and let me know how it goes. Feel free to PM me at any time.
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      • Profile picture of the author DamenRabat
        Just have had a different experience. Did my very first outsourcing for Social Bookmarks following a recommendation of a long term internet marketer who is well established in the field and who has tested a lot of services hiself.

        The service he recommended did exactly what was advertised in a convenient and reliable fashion. I did a test run on his bookmarks and all showed up correctly.

        In conclusion, it might be where your rec comes from. Going by thumbs up on a thread alone might be a different thing than relying on someone you´ve followed over a certain period of time and know to deliver good results.

        And, yes, it´s a jungle out there and you need to find the good ones among all the glorious self advertisment.
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  • Profile picture of the author Edie47
    Last year I outsourced a bunch of work with great results. Because the previous two women were no longer available, this last month I outsourced to someone new and ended up rewriting everything. Unfortunately, I didn't check into his or her qualifications as much as I did the first time around. Lesson learned!
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  • Profile picture of the author Rose Anderson
    Samples can be deceiving. It might be a sample of their best, not usual, work. Or may have been written by someone else.

    Only order one or two articles at first to test the service instead of paying for a bulk order.

    Rose
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    • Profile picture of the author Oggyoi
      You tend to get what you pay for, I have had a report done that was really badly researched then badly written.
      There are some great writers on here, have a chat with Andy.
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    • Profile picture of the author ecoverbox
      Originally Posted by Rose Anderson View Post

      Only order one or two articles at first to test the service instead of paying for a bulk order.
      I practice this myself, and only order additional stuff when I'm satisfied with what the writer submitted for the first couple of 'trial articles'.
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  • Profile picture of the author shuvo
    I agree with you.Specially when hiring a provider or contractor then ask him or her to provide some samples related with your job.
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  • Profile picture of the author Shazia Mirza
    Be warned. Some people get illegitimate ratings. They get their friends to purchase and rate ridiculously high, so yes analyzing samples is always best!
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  • Profile picture of the author Beatrice
    I have a different strategy. Recently I outsourced articles very cheaply and as expected the quality of some of them was not very good. What is important to me is to extract the ideas from the articles. I then re-write them in less than 30 minutes.
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  • Profile picture of the author LNSTRM
    I had to go through 10 to find 2 good ones.
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    • Profile picture of the author JaisonG
      This post is so true!!

      The first time I outsourced to the phillipines, I got stuck with one of the laziest coders I had ever seen in my life.... spent 300$ on a guy that took 2 weeks to do something that could have been done in 5 days easy....

      Trust me guys, see if you can get the freelancer to talk to you on either skype or aim and really see how good their English is!
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      • Profile picture of the author ecoverbox
        Originally Posted by JaisonG View Post

        This post is so true!!

        The first time I outsourced to the phillipines, I got stuck with one of the laziest coders I had ever seen in my life.... spent 300$ on a guy that took 2 weeks to do something that could have been done in 5 days easy....

        Trust me guys, see if you can get the freelancer to talk to you on either skype or aim and really see how good their English is!
        That's too bad! It's one of the risks of outsourcing, though - so you really need to be careful who you hire.
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        • Profile picture of the author Snow_Predator
          Originally Posted by Rose Anderson View Post

          Samples can be deceiving. It might be a sample of their best, not usual, work. Or may have been written by someone else.

          Only order one or two articles at first to test the service instead of paying for a bulk order.

          Rose
          Yes, I do wonder if the samples are even their own work. I suppose you could always ask to see a sample on a website or article directory with their name on it.

          Ordering one test article is just what I did. Easily doable on Odesk, but Elance seems to require a minimum project fee of $50 so you can't order just one article to begin with. Freelancer.com is the also has a high minimum fee.

          Originally Posted by Beatrice View Post

          I have a different strategy. Recently I outsourced articles very cheaply and as expected the quality of some of them was not very good. What is important to me is to extract the ideas from the articles. I then re-write them in less than 30 minutes.
          It's an idea, but I'd much rather pay a little extra and not have to do any work myself.
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    • Profile picture of the author conceptsti
      Originally Posted by LNSTRM View Post

      I had to go through 10 to find 2 good ones.
      yep same here except i have only found one good one so far.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rose Anderson
    Remember, if they're sloppy with their writing the may also be sloppy with their research. This means you can rewrite the article until it sounds great but the information is incorrect. A bad article rewritten might still be a bad article.

    I'm not saying this is always the case, but it is often the case.

    Rose
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  • Profile picture of the author Teacherman
    I'm personally trying to get the word out that it is worth it to try to hire and pay a decent rate for GOOD writers! Of course I have a vested interest being that I am a GOOD writer haha, but seriously, if you are looking for good original articles, and not just garbage you have to be willing to pay more than $2 an article!
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    • Profile picture of the author Lea Karana
      It's really hard finding a person from a non-speaking English to give you articles that would make you happy or even make some sense.
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  • Profile picture of the author DeborahDera
    I've had similar experiences. I once had a freelancer tell me that he had someone help him to write his job bid (probably his sample, too), which is why what he sent me was nothing like his bid.

    I also had a girl not disclose that she had a "team" (which I hate, always disclose). She farmed out the work and didn't even bother reading it before she sent it to me. She was offended when I told her that I could tell she hadn't written the articles.

    I am very careful about who I choose now. I look for writers with multiple samples, websites of their own, etc. I also give a one-article test (paid if it doesn't suck) to make sure I'm working with someone who has represented himself honestly.

    Originally Posted by Snow_Predator View Post

    Hired one of my first outsourcers. She had great reviews but her English is horrible.

    Here's my first outsourcing lesson learned:

    Don't go by just the ratings. People give good ratings because they don't have the stomach to tell the contractor that they suck.

    Use your gut instinct and judge by the quality of the SAMPLE they send. Judge their English from your communications with them, not from what they say about themselves, or what others say about them.

    Any other lessons learned by you folks would be much appreciated
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    • Profile picture of the author MarkPavic
      When outsourcing, I either get on the phone or skype with them. I have a full range of questions to ask before we talk about the project in full.

      My main goal is to interview them and make sure they speak english and understand what is needed. This does take some time, but you will end up with quality people who you can then use down the road, if needed.

      In conclusion, make sure to screen everyone before starting a project with them, it will save you time and money.
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  • Profile picture of the author Teacherman
    If any of the above commenters are still interested feel free to email me at prevost.kyle(at)gmail. I am a graduate of the University of Manitoba and teach English. I have a few websites I would be glad to show you. I would also be fine with a phone interview.
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  • Profile picture of the author Kym Robinson
    some lessons learned and some useful tips......

    outsourcing can totally suck or it can set you free
    - depends how you approach it!

    I have learnt the hard way!

    reviews can be total crap too - you need to get down to it and suss people out!

    if you want to be successful and find really great staff
    for your projects you need to have a business mindset and
    approach it as seeking a solution to your problem.

    work out what your needs are and what solution will work best

    make sure the solution is actually going to give you the most bang for your buck!

    before you look for outsourcers - get organized....

    define your needs and expectations, be really specific
    - it will help you work out what you are actually looking for

    once you know what you want
    - write an ad like you were going to put it in a newspaper

    this is where you get to cut your future workload!

    be specific - ask for what you want (and are prepared to pay for)
    and dont entertain the idea of accepting less!

    if you need tech stuff and want at least 3 years experience - say so
    if you want a certain level of expertise - say so
    specific experience - say so

    write stuff like....

    MUST have X amount of experience with....

    MUST be available X amount of hours per week during this time and that time

    MUST speak X level of english.....

    MUST provide examples of work

    MUST provide contactable references

    APPLICATIONS CLOSE on... a date and time

    MUST be able to communicate with me via voice on skype (biggie)

    and a real goodie.....

    to make sure they are answering YOUR call or needs.....

    put one line at the bottom of your ad such as....

    reply with 'chocolate' in your subject line

    why?

    because any reply that doesnt have 'chocolate' or any other
    unrelated word you choose in the subject line can be instantly ditched!

    surely you wouldnt want someone who either cant read?
    didnt pay attention to detail? or just submitted a mass reply
    to every ad there was that day!

    now read through the replies....

    only short list the ones that hit EVERY nail on the head
    ditch the rest!

    now pick the best 2 and check their references
    contact them with an interview time

    hook up on skype and you will be able to suss them out pretty quickly!

    next if they both seem good so far...I do this.....

    I give them both a trial task (paid) and deadline and I tell them there is also
    someone else taking the same trial task and ask for their best effort

    whoever completes the trial task to the highest standard gets given
    a further trial (usually a month) before being put on the payroll permanently

    this is how I have found all my current ful time and part time team members!

    yes! its a little bit of mucking around but the outcome is superb!

    I end up with highly qualified people who fit my requirements exactly,
    can speak, read, write and communicate in proper english and who are
    available for me to talk with on skype at the drop of the hat for
    the start of new projects or emergencies etc

    the best thing is - I have already determined that they are worth
    spending time training up on other tasks and will be of benefit to my business goals

    dont be afraid to be fussy!

    there are so many dedicated, highly qualified and experienced people out there
    - you WILL find what you need if you just focus and approach things professionally!

    biggest tip of all - once you find the right peeps - treat them like gold!

    have a great day!

    Kym Robinson
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  • Profile picture of the author JustinDupre
    I agree that talking on skype or msn for yourself before hiring is a great idea. Your judgement and gut is probably better than most reviews and ratings. The key for me is to keep track and start slow.
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  • Profile picture of the author AmandaT
    Well, the example provided was article writing. English is a very important skill when writing articles in English.

    I agree with the trial article thing. I know that when I am looking for someone to write for my sites I would never start by ordering more than one article to feel out their service.
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    • Profile picture of the author JamieSEO
      Originally Posted by AmandaT View Post

      Well, the example provided was article writing. English is a very important skill when writing articles in English.

      I agree with the trial article thing. I know that when I am looking for someone to write for my sites I would never start by ordering more than one article to feel out their service.
      I noticed that a few people mentioned the 'trial article'.

      This is something I feel rather passionate about since I have been in the shoes of:
      - a writer
      - an outsourcing business manager
      - a client outsourcing to a writer

      Firstly - as soon as you mention 'trial' to a writer their knee jerk reaction tends to be "omg this person is trying to get a free article". Their reason for that reaction is because it is often true

      As a client however, you are aware that existing samples a writer provides may not have even been their work, and really want a fresh 'trial article' from them to be confident in their abilities, however don't want to be locked into paying for an article that may be completely unusable.

      When I was running outsourcing businesses I came up with a solution that seemed to make both sides happy

      As a client - request a trial article, but make sure you write something like this in your request:
      "I require fresh writing so that I can be confident you will provide the quality required. You can write on any of the following topics [provide 5 popular topics] and your article will only be used for the purpose of assessing your skills. You retain ALL RIGHTS to the article and can therefore sell it through a site such as Constant-Content.com or submit it to sites such as Squidoo.com to earn revenue."

      Using that approach you can always purchase the article from them if you are happy with it, and if you are not happy with the article you don't have to pay a cent, but the writer still has a way to get money for the work they have done.

      Win/Win
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      • Profile picture of the author AmandaT
        Originally Posted by JamieSEO View Post

        As a client - request a trial article, but make sure you write something like this in your request:
        "I require fresh writing so that I can be confident you will provide the quality required. You can write on any of the following topics [provide 5 popular topics] and your article will only be used for the purpose of assessing your skills. You retain ALL RIGHTS to the article and can therefore sell it through a site such as Constant-Content.com or submit it to sites such as Squidoo.com to earn revenue."
        I have gotten a few requests like this... while some may take it, I normally do not have time to write articles for free between paying clients and writing for my own websites. Normally I respond by telling them that while I am not up for writing a fresh sample for them, I am more than willing to provide an article for say, half price so they can test out my service. I have only one one potential client turn down that offer.

        Some tips for hiring a writer from a writer as well as someone who hires writers from time to time:

        -Always look at samples. When looking for a writer I try and find people that have their own website or at least can link to work on EZA or Squidoo. If their articles do not feel like they were written by the same person I may pass them through Article Checker to see where else they are posted. I have found many writers with PLR posted as samples.

        -If you aren't sure if they are right for the job but want to try anyways, tell them that. Many writers will try and make you feel more comfortable by offering to let you pay after you read the article or offering you a discount for the first order. The chance of a potential repeat client is worth it to most writers.

        -Provide good keywords. If your keyword is no good and hard for you to fit into sentences, it is probably hard for your writer to fit into sentences as well. I understand that sometimes keywords have to be that way to get the best ranking, but there are some keywords that will feel awkward no matter how you fit them in.

        -Don't be afraid to be specific. If you have specific requests, let them know from the start. A quality writer will enjoy working with someone who knows what they want. I have several regulars that include a pdf with their orders that includes keywords, requested LSIs, and sometimes even an outline or list of specific facts they want included. Having this means I am much more likely to provide them with exactly what they want. This is also important if you have a specific subject or angle you need your article from. For instance, the keyword "children and pain killers". Are you looking for types of pain killers children can take and why they are safe? Do you need an article about why children shouldn't take pain killers? I get vague requests all of the time and end up having to ask for clarification, but that doesn't mean all writers will think to ask.

        -If you have a deadline, let them know. Most writers have an approximate turnaround time but if you need your article by a specific time, let them know. Give your writer a chance to tell you if they can't guarantee your article by that deadline.
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        • Profile picture of the author JamieSEO
          Originally Posted by AmandaT View Post

          -Provide good keywords. If your keyword is no good and hard for you to fit into sentences, it is probably hard for your writer to fit into sentences as well. I understand that sometimes keywords have to be that way to get the best ranking, but there are some keywords that will feel awkward no matter how you fit them in.
          Excellent advice

          Originally Posted by Francie View Post

          Being fairly new at this business, before you get people to write articles for you, wouldnt it be a good idea to write quite a few for yourself.
          In business before you pay somebody else to do something for you, you need to be able to do it yourself - Yes.
          Personally I think it is a good idea to at least learn the basics of anything you intend to outsource later. This lets you put yourself in their shoes so you can understand why certain keywords or requests may be difficult, but more importantly - if you have at least a vague idea of how it is meant to be done it prevents you from getting ripped off! :rolleyes:

          Originally Posted by Sandor Verebi View Post

          To avoid the disappointment the unsuitable work caused to you, use escrow - especially if it is a considerable amount. If you aren't satisfied with the work, you don't have to pay.
          Hmmm - for articles I would not recommend it since the value is usually lower, however for other outsourcing such as ebook writing, website design, etc escrow is definitely a good idea. For large projects you can easily split your payments into stages (eg. Elance - fund 1st step of project, when 1st step is complete and you are happy release payment, then fund 2nd step, etc).

          Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

          Good writers aren't going to go to great lengths to prove themselves to you. They would provide samples with their bid in the first place. Not "a sample article" but a variety of article samples on different topics in differing styles of writing.

          A writer who is not desperate for work is not going to answer a long list of questions so you are weeding out good writers along with the bad. A buyer who insists on something like that will be labeled a "problem buyer" and avoided by an experienced writer.

          A writer desperate enough to agree to write one article or jump through other hoops for a couple bucks isn't good enough to get much work.
          I both agree and disagree with this :p

          I agree that if you are an experienced writer that has already earned a strong reputation online for providing quality work then what you stated would certainly apply.

          However, we all have to start somewhere...

          Starting out writing online (even when skills have been proven offline) you need to break in to the field and build up a reputation before anyone is going to be comfortable just hearing "I'm good - just trust me"
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  • Profile picture of the author Marc Lindsay
    Rule of thumb I like to live by when doing outside work.

    Given we've had teams of up to 50 in India, and huge teams elsewhere, we've invested alot into getting this right.

    1. If you have to over explain every item, and keep asking yourself, maybe I'm just not explaining it right or need to be more detailed.

    You have the wrong person

    2. Be clear with your requirements and what a successful outcome looks like.

    Yes you should always give good instructions and clear definitions of what you want, and software development takes on a new level of this, at the same time you shouldn't have to hold hands to get it done.

    Pay more for A players and you'll make your life very easy.

    Marc
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    Consumer Wealth System - By the third time you read this you could already have started making an affiliate income...

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  • Profile picture of the author Claire Sharp
    When outsourcing, aside from asking them samples of articles, have with them. From there you will know how good their English and the way they create a simple sentence or a paragraph.
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  • Profile picture of the author JamieSEO
    Originally Posted by Snow_Predator View Post

    Hired one of my first outsourcers. She had great reviews but her English is horrible.

    Here's my first outsourcing lesson learned:

    Don't go by just the ratings. People give good ratings because they don't have the stomach to tell the contractor that they suck.

    Any other lessons learned by you folks would be much appreciated
    My tips are:

    1 - Pay attention to the details of feedback left about their work. Many writers have feedback about general writing, not specifically SEO. The skills required to understand how to properly write keyword optimized articles is different to standard writing.

    2 - Be extremely clear on exactly what you want. If possible grab an article that you believe to be a perfect example of how an article should be written and make sure you provide it to the writer for them to use as a template.

    3 - Give a clear deadline for delivery of the work.

    4 - The old adage "if you pay peanuts you end up with monkeys" is generally (although not always) true when it comes to getting good quality when outsourcing. If you are paying $1-$3 per article then you usually end up with something that sounds like "Engrish" rather than English, is a complete rip-off of someones work and will not pass Copyscape, or has keywords used incorrectly.
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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
    Banned
    I never send a whole project to a new writer. I send two articles to a new writer. If it doesn't fit my needs, they never get the whole project.

    I just chose one excellent writer on WF but the other one, clearly didn't pass the test.

    Poor English, but the worst of it was, it's been six days and no word on my article, so I email. No response. So I leave a note in their thread.

    Finally, get an email back (with no attachment) saying the work was sent to me on Sat. I have all the emails and checked spam. There was no email.

    They email back and say they can't send it until Wed (even though it is allegedly done and sent on Sat). I email back and say forget it, they didn't pass the test.

    They email back immediately with the two poorly written articles. lol.

    The thing is, this "writer" has a lot of great reviews in their thread, so don't pay too much attention to good reviews. Test them.
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  • Profile picture of the author david pauls
    Thanks for a great post.

    I have had some outsourcing work done in the past and stumbled over a few issues; probably related to miscommunication from my part Yours is a good framework and I will use it for future projects.
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  • Profile picture of the author 4Frankie
    Being fairly new at this business, before you get people to write articles for you, wouldnt it be a good idea to write quite a few for yourself.
    In business before you pay somebody else to do something for you, you need to be able to do it yourself - Yes.
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    • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Francie View Post

      Being fairly new at this business, before you get people to write articles for you, wouldnt it be a good idea to write quite a few for yourself.
      In business before you pay somebody else to do something for you, you need to be able to do it yourself - Yes.
      That's a fallacy. People outsource the things that they either do not know how to do or don't have the time to do.
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      • Profile picture of the author ellush
        I've had to go through many a writer before coming across a couple of very decent ones.

        My golden tip: IGNORE the lure of an impressive sample article! I've been bitten in the you-know-what a couple of times before with seemingly awesome writers, who quite obviously faked their samples.

        My advice (which has worked great for me): Get them to write a paragraph based on a news story from their choice of a news site, and get them to provide the URL they based the content on.

        First, it gets them to produce something on-the-spot, rather than market themselves via a patched up Word doc they've shipped out to 100s of potential employers (and which, from what I've experienced, is possibly not their original writing). Secondly, you can quite easily see the level of the writer, and whether they have the creativity and professionalism you require.

        Good luck!
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  • Profile picture of the author topnichekeyword
    Great article for thos who want to hire freelancer for the first time!! Thanks to all who discussed about this issue!!
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  • Profile picture of the author J R Salem
    The first time I outsourced I googled and found about 10 interview questions that proved helpful to ask.

    Sometimes after like 4 questions some of the canidates would say they were no longer interested lol.

    This helped to weed out the bad.
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    • Profile picture of the author nilius2
      I hired some guy from india to write some articles for me for a decent price...his advert was ok, no spellling or grammar mistakes....
      He delivered articles very quickly (15 of them) but...when i started to read them...it just didn't make any sense. After rewriting it was even worse...
      It is good that i got a refund (paypal)...
      This shows that there is no way to tell before you try....then keep the good ones for the job
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  • Profile picture of the author SiteSmarty
    This is for those who outsource their WordPress theme customization and are serious about building a website that is optimized for usage and SEO.

    I've been customizing themes since 2008 and haven't had an issue with a client yet. This how to select a designer:

    1. Use a designer who does a wireframe prototype of the website you want for free and interacts with you until it's right.
    2. Then the designer can give you an accurate price.
    3. Use a designer that does the work on their development site in the theme you want to use, such as Thesis or Genesis.
    4. When you approve the site, pay the designer and have the designer move the theme to your site and test.
    5. Use a designer that will support you when things go bad.

    If you're serious about creating a great website and you're willing to pay for the work, then the above steps work.

    If you're a "freetard" and want everything for nothing, then keep outsourcing the way that you have been and accept the hassles, because you deserve them.
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    • Profile picture of the author Sandor Verebi
      Hi,

      Many great contributions show above, that you need to be cautious.

      To avoid the disappointment the unsuitable work caused to you, use escrow - especially if it is a considerable amount. If you aren't satisfied with the work, you don't have to pay. I learned this on my own loss.

      This service also protects the productive and diligent writer, because the purchase amount must be deposited - so the writer knows that you are a serious customer.

      As we know, the long-term business is based on the satisfaction of both parties.

      All the best,

      Sandor
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    • Profile picture of the author Kay King
      Many of the suggestions in this thread come under "how to hire a bad writer".

      Good writers aren't going to go to great lengths to prove themselves to you. They would provide samples with their bid in the first place. Not "a sample article" but a variety of article samples on different topics in differing styles of writing.

      A writer who is not desperate for work is not going to answer a long list of questions so you are weeding out good writers along with the bad. A buyer who insists on something like that will be labeled a "problem buyer" and avoided by an experienced writer.

      A writer desperate enough to agree to write one article or jump through other hoops for a couple bucks isn't good enough to get much work.

      If you are on a tight budget set your sights on hiring the best quality you can for the price you can pay. If the price is low, expect to do some rewrites and adjustments.

      kay
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      Every child needs a pet because every family needs an optimist

      Saving one dog will not save the world....but will forever change the world for one dog.
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      • Profile picture of the author Snow_Predator
        Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post

        That's a fallacy. People outsource the things that they either do not know how to do or don't have the time to do.
        I think 'fallacy' is a bit harsh. I really believe a good businessperson knows a little about a lot. It certainly helps to know a little about article marketing yourself before you get it outsourced. If you are bad at writing yourself, you won't have the skillset required to judge whether your outsourced work is good or not.

        Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

        Many of the suggestions in this thread come under "how to hire a bad writer".

        Good writers aren't going to go to great lengths to prove themselves to you. They would provide samples with their bid in the first place. Not "a sample article" but a variety of article samples on different topics in differing styles of writing.

        A writer who is not desperate for work is not going to answer a long list of questions so you are weeding out good writers along with the bad. A buyer who insists on something like that will be labeled a "problem buyer" and avoided by an experienced writer.

        A writer desperate enough to agree to write one article or jump through other hoops for a couple bucks isn't good enough to get much work.

        If you are on a tight budget set your sights on hiring the best quality you can for the price you can pay. If the price is low, expect to do some rewrites and adjustments.

        kay
        Yes, I agree. I am reluctant to put too many requests and requirements as I will then only get the real desperate writers who can't get work anywhere else.
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  • Profile picture of the author FreeMeal
    With regards to Fiverr.. you get what you pay for
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    • Originally Posted by FreeMeal View Post

      With regards to Fiverr.. you get what you pay for
      Actually, there are a number of excellent writers on Fiverr. Check my blog and do a search on "freelance." I commission Fiverr writers to do articles, then post the completed work so you can see actual work product, not a sample.

      fLufF
      --
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      Fiverr is looking for freelance writers for its blog. Details here.
      Love microjobs? Work when you want and get paid in cash the same day!
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      • Profile picture of the author FreeMeal
        Originally Posted by fluffythewondercat View Post

        Actually, there are a number of excellent writers on Fiverr. Check my blog and do a search on "freelance." I commission Fiverr writers to do articles, then post the completed work so you can see actual work product, not a sample.

        fLufF
        --
        I'm sure there is... i'm just a little bitter, as i've got a few stinkers recently.

        I will check your blog out.
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    • Profile picture of the author straightupchat
      Originally Posted by FreeMeal View Post

      With regards to Fiverr.. you get what you pay for
      That's true for most of these services. Odesk is no different, nor is Elance, freelancer, etc.

      The problem is that these services aren't in the business of quality control. Their rating systems are easy to manipulate, and their workers may do a good job one day and a lousy job the next, for any number of reasons. You need a service that actually uses these people constantly and weeds out the losers.

      A google search may help. Think of a phrase that asks for real-life recommendations for freelance writer pools. You will get many great referrals.

      For example, try this: "I would recomend this service to someone wanting good quality yet inexpensive marketing" or something like that.

      The results include many referrals. You can use this technique to find tested, quality people to complete any number of online marketing tasks.
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      • Profile picture of the author FreeMeal
        Originally Posted by straightupchat View Post

        Think of a phrase that asks for real-life recommendations for freelance writer pools. You will get many great referrals.

        For example, try this: "I would recomend this service to someone wanting good quality yet inexpensive marketing" or something like that.

        The results include many referrals. You can use this technique to find tested, quality people to complete any number of online marketing tasks.
        that's a good idea. i will give it a go next time.
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        • Profile picture of the author straightupchat
          Originally Posted by FreeMeal View Post

          that's a good idea. i will give it a go next time.
          There is no such thing as a free lunch(meal). Hit the thanks button! I gotta grovel here?:p
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  • Profile picture of the author mrelosa
    I guess oDesk contractors are okay. You can just ask for sample articles first or just give a test article just to see if he/she is really qualified and can create a substantial, and at the same time, grammar-free article.
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  • Profile picture of the author dagaul101
    It's a great idea to get a sample if you can, but many shy away from giving out samples with the fear that the sample is all you really want, and they will never hear from you again
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    • Profile picture of the author JamieSEO
      Originally Posted by dagaul101 View Post

      It's a great idea to get a sample if you can, but many shy away from giving out samples with the fear that the sample is all you really want, and they will never hear from you again
      If providing samples of existing work I just refer them to a URL where I have published something under my own name.
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