Creating a content team that fits perfectly with your company can be a tough task. Can they effectively boost your online visibility? Will their writing style match your brand? Are they reliable? Get all the answers you need by asking potential writers our top ten interview questions.
1. What types of content can you create?
Sure, they can write a great blog post, but can they pull off a press release too? Get your writers talking about the types of content they write to see what kind of range they can offer you.
2. What industries have you written about?
Are they a jack of all trades and master of none? A writer may be comfortable writing about a handful of industries, but you want the bulk of their knowledge to be in your industry.
3. Are you experienced in writing in different styles and tones?
You know the tone you want to achieve, but can your writers produce it? Making sure your creative team deliver the exact style of writing you need is a must, so look out for writers who are comfortable adapting their writing to match different guidelines.
4. Are you comfortable with SEO?
Having a writer with at least basic SEO skills is always handy. It’ll make the content they write easier to find online, meaning more traffic and higher visibility for your company. Who wouldn’t want that?
5. What is your research process?
Everyone should have a research process. Even if it’s for an informal blog, a writer needs to do some research to make sure they’re hitting the right mark. They also need to ensure that the websites and publications they mention or link to are credible sources.
6. How do you edit and proof your work?
Asking this question gives you a strong insight into how seriously they take their work. Not only does it help confirm that they do proof and edit their work, but it also indicates how willing they are to make changes at your request.
7. How do you handle criticism?
This one’s a big deal. You want a writer whose ego isn’t easily bruised, to save you a whole lot of headaches later on. If they sound like they won’t use your feedback (positive or negative) for future work, it could be a red flag.
8. How do you approach your boss / client if you disagree with feedback?
While you don’t want someone who’ll throw a fit and walk out over your feedback, you do want a writer who feels comfortable with telling you (respectfully!) when they feel you’re steering them in the wrong direction.
9. What do you need from me?
Don’t forget that writing is a two-way street. Your writers need a style guide and a coherent brief at the very least to do their job well, so double-check what they need to produce the content you’ll love.
10. Can I see examples of your work?
Even if a writer answers the other questions with flying colours, their previous work is the best way of seeing if they’re the right fit for your content team. Ask for a few different pieces – good writers love the opportunity to show off their work!
The answers to these questions will reveal a lot about the writer you’re thinking of hiring, but there’s always more to discover. Are there any other questions you’d ask when interviewing a writer? Let us know in the comments below.