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4 #PainPoints of writing the client’s Content & how to deal with them

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Without much ado about anything let us come to the point straightway – when companies outsource the task of copy-writing for their landing page, website or blog, the experience often becomes painful for both the firm as well as the writer. But we never get tired of saying,  the ultimate rewards for producing high quality content have never been greater.

It is important to mention here; in terms of Google algorithm and quality rater guidelines, the stress in content writing to a great extent nowadays lies in the authoritativeness of the piece than it was ever before.  In terms of human readers as well, cheesy, non-trustworthy or more precisely non authoritative content is less likely to convert, as readers nowadays look for more sophisticated and authoritative content.

Of course; copywriters can build effective site content on behalf of clients however there are ways to make the content sticky, relevant, effective and ‘Green.’

Here are four significant pain points to address when writing website copies and a number of suggestions for relieving them

#PAINPOINT 1: Client input is not enough

A pain indeed. From our experience we have seen that on the website development projects, clients typically focus their attention on design and other development details thus providing little or often no guidance or any background information to the writers.

The solution or relief: Typically; there are two clear ways to relieve this pain:

Educate the client and assign them with some work. Start educating the client right at the very beginning of the website project. Brief the client that both search engine bots as well as the human readers demand relevant, authoritative, useful and engaging content.

Once the rudimentary elements are established, the writers can task the client for help in a number of areas, such as –

Provide relevant source materials so that writers can refer to them

Provide audience information and key talking points

Critically review a small set of content to help the writers make creative adjustments before writing the whole site

#PAINPOINT 2: Too much input from the client

Yes, it’s a pain again. In fact some clients simply smother the entire creative process while being too involved or being too specific.

For instance; a client may cite 10 different websites with great content and ask the writer to incorporate all the elements in one copy.

Client may provide 20 critical talking points for each page

We’ve seen clients adding substantial detail to a creative piece during the editing process, which almost always kills the persuasive power of the piece

Yes; all these confuse the writer. All these make them doubt every word. The result is pretty known to all of us – the writer comes up with an overly detailed copy which has little or no impact on the readers.

The solution or relief: Client input is vital and useful no matter how confusing it may be input from the client’s side is extremely useful however inputs should also be filtered and repackaged before simply passing on to the writing team. This is the most important task of the agency’s content manager. The content piece has to communicate the client’s key ideas pretty clearly, very concisely and absolutely consistently and compellingly.

#PAINPOINT 3: Repetition Vs Uniqueness

Again from our experience we have seen that it often becomes difficult to balance repetition and uniqueness in terms of messaging. This problem tend to arise as the client often think their website as typically a book which people may read from start to finish. This means often clients don’t find much point in repeating messages. But in reality each and every page of the website stands as an entry page. Any page can act as a potential entry page through which visitors may move

The Relief and the solution: Agency can encourage a book perspective in the way it works for the client as well for the creative team. For instance; when revealing the design for a lead generation site, it is almost always a natural procedure to reveal the homepage first and then gradually move on to the interior product page.

Well; we recommend doing the opposite and starting with an interior product page (i.e., a strategic entry page). You can always say; “This particular page is something on which a visitor may land on when doing the Google search “ Then you can always go to the homepage and say “now that we have generated interest around your product/service the user will check you out here.”

This minor adjustment almost always helps to let the client think of the page content in terms of user interface and user experience, which is the most crucial factor for effective composition, reviewing as well as editing.

#PAINPOINT 4: Poorly managed editing process

When an agency handover the content drafts to the client and ask for his inputs then you can stay assured that edits are going to be a total assortment of grammatical fixes, deletions of the crucial SEO element, additions of counterproductive content, and the list simply goes on.

The result? We all know that choppy edits simply  destroy the flow of the content as well as disrupts the  cohesiveness of the page.

Let’s not deny; heavy edits may also cause tension between the client and the agency

The Relief and the solution:  When handing over a piece of content to the client tell the client clearly to  focus on the following issues:

Accuracy of the piece: are there any factual errors? Are facts stated correctly? Are the technical terms used in the copy describe what they intend to? Do any particular piece of text  need any further support?

Voice of the piece:  Is the style of the copy apt for the target audience? Is it enough businesslike. Also; clearly tell the clients what type of edits not to look for

Proofreading and copy-editing: Assign a proofreader to make proofreading edits as the last step before sending content to the client. Tell clients clearly that they need not to waste time looking for technical style points or grammatical issues and punctuation errors.

SEO elements: Gently remind clients why there are specific keyword phrases are in the copy.

Finally, communicate and communicate clearly with the client. Never force the client to write, instead ask clients to use Comments for providing an idea about what needs to be changed.

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