2017 has seen the best performance of content marketing so far. Taking up the biggest chunk of over 20% from the total distribution of digital marketing techniques, content marketing done right is, no doubt, the hot sauce every business is trying to get their hands on. Brands and companies of all sizes and backgrounds are willing to invest tens of thousands of pounds to get their content marketing strategy right, because as statistics show, it is the best way to get new customers and retain them.
One everlasting dilemma the marketing department of almost any big or small organisation is whether to hire an in-house content writer or dive into the deep waters of freelancing and catch a really talented fish. Of course as every company brand is unique, there is no universal answer to the question "which one works best", however, weighing the pros and cons of both may help finding the right solution for your own business.
In-House Content Writer
If your organisation is big and prosperous enough, there's no reason why you can't afford to hire a full time employee in charge of creating and distributing your content marketing campaigns. However, you also need to take into consideration the fact that you may need to train your new employee, which will take some time and will increase your costs by little or a lot, depending on the kind of training you want/need to provide. In fact, having an in-house content writer does not come cheap to the employer as the average annual salary of a good content marketing professional is between £35,000 - £45,000. On top of that you will also have to provide employee benefits, such as holiday pay, sick pay, maternity or paternity pay, pension contributions and, of course, National Insurance contributions.
On the upside, though, once your employee has undergone the relevant training, he or she would be able to deliver consistency in your brand voice and message and target the right audience with the right type of content, which is key for success in content marketing. Another advantage is the fact that you can get a hold of an in-house content writer much easier and call them up in the executive office for a quick meeting to discuss additions and adjustments to the current strategy and campaigns.
Most small and medium-sized businesses prefer to hire freelancers for the obvious reason of being cost-efficient - no need to pay any extras apart from the fee you've agreed on. Also, due to the nature of their work, freelance content writers are generally more flexible with grasping concepts and can easily adjust their writing tone and style to the one your brand is aiming at. Creativity is a must and so is punctuality, so keeping to tight deadlines wouldn't be a problem for an experienced and reliable freelancer. In the case where the organisation doesn't have enough time to train staff or needs to execute a content marketing campaign quickly, hiring a freelancer seems to be the best option.
But it's not all rosy in the freelancing world. Some companies are so keen on minimising costs that they outsource the content writing jobs to people abroad, usually in countries where the standard of living is much lowers and so are the freelancer fees. Although this may not affect the quality of the produced content, it may cause a disruption of seamless communication due to big time differences. In addition, if you need to meet the freelancer face to face and have them sit at the office for a certain amount of time, you may also have to pay travel expenses and accommodation if they don't live locally.
To round up what we've said so far, the choice between an in-house content writer and a freelancer will hardly be a piece of cake, but unique organisational circumstances like money and time to invest, importance of quality and urgency of delivering a campaign will play the key role in taking the final decision.