Hi. This is an old, unmaintained blog. You may find these sites more to your liking:

Carson Brackney: This is my primary site.

Ad Astra Traffic: Content production/article writing service.

Ad Astra Traffic Team: For those who'd like to get writing gigs with Ad Astra.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

The power of good directions and the importance of communication...

I have a great repeat client who has a mentoring program for people beginning their online careers. This person is highly regarded and does great work.

I was asked if I would be able to help some of the students by extending content writing services to them at a good price. I happily agreed and have already worked with three different "mentorees." All of them have been easy to work with and it's been going great.

Yesterday, I had another one of the students ask me about preparing some work for them. We exchanged a few emails and today he booked the job. In his confirming email, he went over the specifications in some detail--far more detail than the previous students had.

As I reviewed the email I suddenly realized that although I had provided the previous students with great work (if I do say so myself), I would have done things differently if they had told me a little more about the intended function for the materials and some of the details this new client mentioned. I think they would have been happier with the finished product (or, at least, the results it produced).

So, I am going to write an email to all of those previous purchasers and their mentor tonight explaining that no one had mentioned a few critical details about these packages until today and plan on trying to do something for them to get the material they purchased more "in line" with its apparent purchase.

I think this episode reveals a few important lessons about buying content and about being a freelance content writer.

These relatively new buyers either weren't sure of exactly what they wanted, failed to mention some of the details that would have triggered a "perfect" result, or wrongly assumed I had already been told more than I had. They all liked what they received, but things could have been better with slightly improved directions.

That underlines a point I raised a few weeks ago about how buyers can improve their experiences by making sure they clearly communicate their desires to writers and provide some context re: the content's eventual use.

It also reminds content writers that taking the time to send another email to pin down some context and intentions can really improve a final product. That's why I am getting ready to contact those other "mentorees" to see what we can do to make things a better fit with their apparent plans.

Admittedly, this was a somewhat anomolous situation, as I was working with new buyers who are embarking on some of their first online projects, etc. Nonetheless, I do think it is a great object lesson in the power of good directions and the importance of client/writer communication.