Why Do I Need a Writer?

As I sit here now and write my own website, it is easy for me to see why most businesses need a professional writer. It is HARD to write about yourself!

Look over your website, your brochures, your flyers, and any other written literature you may have had produced and ask yourself these questions:

  • Is the current written information rather brief and rhetorical but you are hoping the graphics & pictures will tell your story? If you are thinking (or someone told you) that people don't want to have to read a bunch of stuff — WRONG! People want to know as much as they can about something they are about to purchase, use, sign-up for, or join. If you do not make it sound interesting or user-friendly, or seem to be hiding something from them, they will move on to someone who reassures them. There are "tricks of the trade" that break up a lot of written information into segments pertinent to a reader, so they do not have to read an entire page to get answers to their questions.
  • Do you know what you want to say but can't seem to get your point across? That is NOT uncommon! It has nothing to do with how successful you are or how good you are at being a doctor, lawyer, or software developer. It does not mean you are illiterate, either. If you do not like to write, you will find it difficult to do!
  • Do you know how to tease an event or topic to the press/media in a way that makes them want to write more about you? There is an art and method for not only writing press releases targeted at provoking more coverage from a reporter, but also at getting it distributed to the right person. Knowing someone who lives next door to the brother of a news anchor at a local TV station, will not get you on the assignment board at ALL the local news outlets. There are proper avenues for approaching the media and I worked in one of the busiest newsrooms in the country while living in Miami.
  • Do you hate writing anything? Again, writing is not easy. If you do not like to write, you will find it drudgery and frustrating.
  • Do you feel you are bragging talking about yourself and the work you do? It is very hard to be objective when it comes to your own work. People who do not write for a living or write a lot in their job, usually assume the reader already knows things they do not. Your descriptions may make too many assumptions. This professional writer knows how to simplify and cover all bases!
  • Are you currently using, more or less, like-industry professionals or competitor's verbiage to create your own content? Another bad idea. You should find a unique voice for your business that is different from the crowd, in order to stand out.  
  • Do you not know where to start telling your story? If you aren't a writer, then you cannot get writer's block! Only writer's do that, and this one rarely finds that to be true when writing about OTHER people's loves, dreams, work, and philosophy.
  • Is what you do broadly-based, scientific, or complex and you are afraid no one will understand it? It's a lot like Occam's Razor — when something seems overwhelmingly difficult, the easiest answer is probably the right one. This writer knows how to dig down into the meat of the topic and feed the reader just enough to make them curious or to at least want to contact you for more information!
  • Are you an attorney or doctor trying to talk to a mass audience about something that affects them but it comes out too technical? I call it 'What they didn't teach you in medical (law) school'. Unless your audience is of like mind, you must talk to them in their language. If you are talking to like-minds, then you have to speak their language with all the industry buzz-words. This writer researches a topic before writing about it, and calls on sources and subject-matter experts (SMEs) when needed. 
  • Are you an industry professional who built something, invented something, or developed something new and are now trying to tell a complete newbie how to use it, put it together, or install it? BAD IDEA! 'How-to' instructions are very elementary my dear Watson! If you know it inside and out, chances are there is no way you can tell someone else how to work it. Oh, you can SHOW them, but what if you are selling it from a box and won't be there to show the end-user anything? You need an objective writer!

Here are some other things to consider when deciding to hire a writer.

  • Do you really have time to write it?
  • Do you know how to break up the wordflow with headings and questions that draw the reader to the sections that affect them or interest them?
  • Do you know when, where, and how to utilize "Calls to Action" (CTAs) that motivate a reader to "act" - whether that is to buy something, sign-up for something, join something, donate to something, get involved in something, or try something for free?
  • Your website and sales support material should be concise and compelling.
  • Your written materials should reflect you or your company's personality, attitudes, and atmosphere... your branding!
  • Your written material should not sound like everyone else in your industry. You should use words and language that sets you apart from the competition.
  • You cannot legally plagiarize or copy a competitors ideas. A professional writer guards against this at all costs!