Many people erroneously believe that freelance writers sit alone in dark rooms, churning out copy and speaking to nobody. But this simply isn’t true. Teamwork plays a significant role in the success of a freelance writer, and isn’t something that is exclusive to employees in salaried, 9-5 jobs.
Yesterday I met up with a contact of mine whom I consider to be a client, a colleague and a mentor. We discussed the various projects we have ongoing at the moment from the balcony of a popular café overlooking the harbour side. We agreed various actions and identified the actions our wider team members needed to do for us to complete certain tasks.
It reminded me of how sociable a freelance writing job is, and how vital teamwork is to complete projects effectively.
So who exactly do freelance writers tend to work with on larger projects?
Here’s a few!
- Graphic / web designers – If you’ve been asked to produce copy for a business’s website, brochure or advertising campaign, you might be introduced to the web designer or graphic designer working on the imagery and layout. It is often helpful to see how your words will look on a page before you write them.
- Marketers – Content writers are regularly asked to write newsletters, copy for ad campaigns and other marketing materials. The marketing team will often be in charge of sending out this material and measuring its success among other tasks. It is useful to have regular contact with the marketing team to ensure you’re producing the best copy for the desired outcome.
- On-Staff Writers – Sometimes, freelance writers are given overflow work when the regular on-staff content writer is overloaded. Therefore, it’s important you work well with the current writer to ensure continuity in the messaging.
- Senior Management – Owners, CEOs and Directors are busy people, but a weekly call with them can make all the difference to the quality of your work.
- SEO Specialists – Websites want to rank as high as possible in search engines, and SEO specialists can help with this. Writers can adopt SEO writing techniques to help make this possible, and will often work alongside the SEO specialist to make the website stand out from the rest.
- Industry experts – Sometimes, freelance writers are asked to work alongside industry experts to produce more technical pieces. For example, if you were producing a manual for an electronics business, you might be hooked up with an expert in this space to ensure accuracy.
- Customers – Many businesses like their freelance writers to obtain testimonials and case studies, meaning you need to work alongside customers to get the right information.
And there are many more…
But one difference between the average freelance writer and full-time employee is that freelance writers are often remote! Working from home can make attending meetings difficult, especially if your clients are a long way away.
But that shouldn’t stop effective teamwork!
Try these techniques to ensure all members of the team work together well:
- Use a collaborative tool like Basecamp to share ideas, files and pictures.
- Have regular ‘Zoom’ meetings. Zoom is a virtual conferencing call service allowing multiple team members to join in the discussion.
- Use Skype or FaceTime
- Schedule weekly meetings with all team members
- Communicate by email regularly and ensure all emails are followed up
- Use a common content plan so that everyone is confident about their actions
Freelance writing is NOT an anti-social job and there are always plenty of opportunities to work in teams. While you might work from home, modern software has allowed remote workers to become part of the discussion in a real-time way. Communicating well will enhance your skills and improve your overall performance as a freelance content writer.