For expertise-based firms — creative agencies, digital shops, consultancies, and the like — quality content is central to effective marketing. If organic search, email marketing, and paid media are the vehicles for digital agencies, thought leadership is the fuel. And just as you have to top off your car’s gas tank at regular intervals, you also need to regularly inject your marketing efforts with fresh content to achieve the business-driving results you desire.
The critical role of content is widely acknowledged among marketers. And so is another, less palatable truth: Content production may be essential, but it ain’t easy.
Firms like yours already have the expertise necessary to fill dozens of insight articles, white papers, and ebooks. That part’s simple. But actually capturing that knowledge in the form of strategically sharp, educational, and empathetic written content? That’s another story.
In fact, I’m willing to make a bold prediction: You and your team have either a) struggled to get your ideal marketing strategy off the ground because you can’t seem to get content production up and running or b) tried — and ultimately failed — to keep pace with your own ambitious content goals.
The reality is that your team simply doesn’t have the time or energy to consistently spin your expertise into pure content gold. The solution is so simple it may seem outrageous: Outsource it to a professional writer who does.
Before you balk, stop to consider why (and how) a ghostwriting service can work for your expertise-based firm.
The Benefits of Partnering with a Ghostwriter to Produce Thought Leadership Content
When it comes to working with a ghostwriter, time savings represent the most obvious benefit. But partnering with the right professional writing service can be incredibly valuable in other ways, too.
Specifically, doing so allows you to:
- Refine your team’s thinking. Partnering with an external writer to produce content will force your team to sharpen their expertise and hone their perspective as they convey their ideas. With the right approach, a talented writer can push your team to dig deeper and uncover the most compelling angles and insights hidden within each topic you ideate.
- Communicate more effectively with your prospects. A ghostwriter is almost never an expert in your field. You may be tempted to file that in the “cons” column, but it’s actually a good thing. It means your writer is far less likely to make assumptions about your prospects’ level of sophistication or fall back on opaque industry jargon. A ghostwriter can’t help but view your expertise from an outside-in perspective. Because of that, they are naturally equipped to translate your expertise for an external audience.
- Regularly publish polished, SEO-optimized content. With a professional writer dedicated to your content, you’ll publish on a predictable schedule. One that finally allows you to plan and execute a sophisticated digital marketing strategy.
These benefits are very real. But before you can accept them, you’ll need to contend with the also-very-real skepticism you might be experiencing as I describe them.
No need to be shy. Let’s have at it.
A Perfectly Understandable Litany of Concerns About Working with a Ghostwriter
Perhaps you’ve already considered partnering with an external writer. If so, you may have decided that putting your thought leadership in the hands of a third party is yet another untenable proposition. After all, your unique expertise is the very thing that sets you apart. Why wouldn’t you question a ghostwriter’s ability to inhabit it?
And it’s true. A lot can go wrong.
For one thing, a ghostwriter may not really get you — who you are, what you do, and why it matters. They might also fail to understand your target audience or the strategic parameters underpinning your articles, white papers, and ebooks.
And then there’s the question of your own time and energy. Even if an external writer could get the hang of it, how much effort might it take on your part to bring them up to speed? How much time will you need to spend explaining your expertise before they’ll be able to channel it? And how much work will you need to do to transform their submissions from rough-hewn drafts to polished copy worthy of publishing on your website and promoting to your discerning prospects?
Finally, there’s the issue of fit. As with any creative collaboration, a great ghostwriting relationship includes a liberal sprinkling of the alchemical — an ineffable something that, if not present, yields content that’s more leaden than luminescent.
Your concerns are valid. Ghostwriting doesn’t come with a guarantee of success. And when it goes wrong, it can result in content that doesn’t capture the nuances of your industry, the particulars of your perspective, or the singular sound of your voice.
The good news? Each of these risks can be mitigated with the right process to guide you.
With Ghostwriting, Success is in the Structure
It goes without saying that any successful ghostwriting experience starts with a seriously talented writer. That’s true, but it’s also not the only thing you need.
You see, when it comes to partnering with a ghostwriter, success is in the structure.
We know this from experience. We’ve developed a highly structured, interview-based approach to creating thought leadership content for our clients.
Of course, our content marketing writers are all seasoned experts in their own right. But we’ve found that our process is every bit as critical to the success of our content creation service as our writers’ native talents. It’s what allows each writer on our team to craft compelling thought leadership content for a diverse roster of clients representing a broad range of industries, niches, perspectives, and voices.
Ghostwriting the Newfangled Way
The first thing you need to know is that our writers are embedded within a larger digital marketing team at Newfangled. This means they don’t act alone. In fact, the first step in the process is for your team to meet with a content marketing coach to ideate strategically rich topics complete with a target persona, messaging area of focus, and buy cycle stage in mind.
Next, your team completes an intake form for each topic your writer will cover. This brief questionnaire allows your team members to collect their thoughts before heading into an interview with your writer. It also gives your writer the opportunity to familiarize themselves with each topic, prepare questions, and ensure you make the best use of your time in the interviews.
Our writers come to interviews prepared to do a deep dive on each topic. They don’t just use the time to ensure they understand the topic from your point of view. They can actually help you refine your perspective and elevate the most interesting angle. In addition, as trained marketers, our writers are capable of stewarding the strategic parameters you’ve agreed upon with your content marketing coach.
As they interview you, our writers pay attention not only to what you say but also how you say it. Those conversations are crucial for building rapport, learning your voice, and developing the chemistry necessary to make content magic happen.
After the interview, it’s time to get writing. As craftspeople, our writers do much more than simply parrot back the things you say in your interview. They structure each piece of content thoughtfully, so that it is engaging, informationally accurate, empathetic to your target prospects, on-brand, and strategically sophisticated. By the time you receive your content, it should be something you are proud to publish on your website under your own name.
We know it works because we see it happen every day for dozens of clients.
Want to learn more about how our content marketing writers can help your team express their expert perspectives? Let’s talk.