These days, it’s basically impossible to launch a company without some written content. Even if it’s just an entrepreneur launching a freelance enterprise from her basement, or a couple of guys starting a company in the garage, written collateral is a must: website content, a Facebook bio, a LinkedIn profile and on down the list.
Many entrepreneurs begin by developing this content on their own, and rightly so. The rub comes later on, when content needs escalate and you suddenly find yourself scraping together Facebook posts, tweets, blogs, whitepapers, SlideShare presentations, explainer video scripts and so forth. At some point in this escalation, entrepreneurs tend to come to this realization: You can’t write all that content on your own. Whether it’s a freelancer or a salaried staff member, you need to hire a content writer.
But where exactly is the breaking point? How do business owners know they have hit that place where it is in their best interest to hire a content writer?
A Dearth of Resources
One way to know you need to hire a content writer is that you find yourself short on the resources you need for content creation — whatever those resources may be.
The most obvious one is time. A real commitment to content requires everyday action, an investment that many business owners simply cannot afford. Content writing is important and value-adding, but it’s also the kind of repeatable task — like bookkeeping or vacuuming the floors of your office — that doesn’t have to be done by the business owner; perhaps your time would be better spent strategizing or growing the business in ways that only you can do.
Another potential resource loss is ideas. Writing about your company is easy in the beginning but can become a little bit harder over time. You may struggle to write daily social media posts or weekly blog entries without repeating yourself. A professional content writer can help.
And of course, another resource some small business owners lack is… talent. Sorry if that ruffles your feathers, but simply put, not all entrepreneurs happen to be gifted writers. And that’s all right; in fact, it’s why content writers exist.
A Second Set of Eyes
Sometimes, the need to hire a content writer may be precipitated not by a lack of any one resource but by the simple realization that you could benefit from a second set of eyes.
Maybe you are unsure whether your writing is even working, whether your content endeavors are resonating with consumers or fostering business growth in any meaningful way. What metrics should you look at, and what expectations should you set? Enlisting an outside writing consultant can provide answers, or at least fresh perspective.
Moreover: Content writers can help you tell your business’ story even better than you can. Yes, really. You know your business better than anyone, obviously, but content writers know writing better, and they are adept at taking the particulars of your company and making them universally resonant for customers and potential clients.
You may not need to take that step at the very beginning — but you will eventually. It’s good to be awake and alert for when that moment comes.
If you're a business owner, when did you realize you needed a content writer? If you're a content writer, when do business owners usually realize they need your talent? Tell us all about it in the comments!