Question: I’ve read a lot of prominent bloggers outsource their blog content. Is this really a viable method of generating content and should I try it?
Ever since Tim Ferriss told the world how he practically outsourced his life in his book The Four Hour Work Week, outsourcing content and design for blogs and websites has seen an incredible explosion popularity. It sounds great – pay someone else a low fee per article and receive content to put on your website or blog at regular intervals. Even better – pay a one-time fee and receive 10 or 20 articles so they can be scheduled on your blog while you take a vacation to the Bahamas.
Sounds almost too good to be true, doesn’t it?
There are two main reasons to outsource your content. First, your blog is insanely popular and you just can’t keep up with the amount of content being requested from your readers. Your reader’s contact you constantly about writing an article on this topic or that topic, and you simply don’t have the time to keep up with all of them. You need help and you need it now. The other reason is the opposite: You just don’t have any ideas for more content and you need someone fresh to come up with new ideas.
Both of these aren’t necessarily good reasons.
A Voice Is Unique
Many people enjoy a good impression. But no impression can fully copy the original. For a blog to be successful, it needs its own voice. That voice can only come from the blog’s regular writers. You can set as many guidelines for the article as you want, but chances are it will have a feel all its own. Your readers want to hear from you – not a paid article or blog post writer. While you can outsource your posts, you can’t outsource your voice.
You Win Some, You Lose Some
Even Tim Ferriss notes in his book how every virtual assistant he used wasn’t the best. If you outsource your content, you may get back articles that are completely worthless or need a lot of revision. Worse, you may google a couple sentences and find the article was lifted word-for-word from another website, blog, or published article. Since you prepay for the writer to supply the article, there is usually no recourse or way to not-approve the article. It’s money down the drain.
For A New Blog, It Isn’t Cost Effective
For new blogs starting out, outsourcing content seems like the perfect starting place. And if you have a healthy budget it may be just the thing to get your blog started. But article writing is not necessarily cheap, and you have to weight whether or not that blog post or article will make the return on investment you made in having it written. If a blog post cost $5, will that post actually make your blog $5? For new blogs, probably not. The posts may bring in traffic, however, and that traffic can eventually and indirectly make that return on investment you paid – but it isn’t 100% trackable.
Still Want To Outsource?
If you still want to outsource your blog’s content, make sure you subscribe to this site’s feed. We are planning another post to help you through the common pitfalls of outsourcing to improve your chances of receiving quality articles and blog posts from your writers.