One of the top questions I get from developers is, “How do I find great content writers for my site?” My first answer is, don’t look for a content writer, look for a writer, and yes there is a big difference. I learned this lesson the hard way burning through thousands of dollars paying “content writers” to post articles across a number of different sites.
Here’s the problem, a content writer tends to be someone with little interest or passion for the topic they are talking about. Instead they are just looking to hit the word count quota so they can move-onto the next article. As with most things in life, the quality goes down the less money you pay so if you think you’re going to get great articles for $5/each, think again.
While you can increase your budget at get decent articles for $10-$15/each these will still read like an encyclopedia entry. If your goal is just to throw as much content up as you can this might fit the bill, but if you want to build an engaging site that keeps people coming back, then you need to hire real writers, not content writers.
Finding a good writer is actually a lot easier than you think, and you don’t need to use a service like oDesk or eLance to do it. In fact, I’d recommend not looking on sites like this because you’ll find lots of content writers but few passionate writers that care about your niche.
Instead, head over to Google and do a search for bloggers in your niche. Let’s suppose you are developing a site about magic tricks, do a Google search for something like “magic trick blogs” and take a look. Spend a few minutes going through three to five sites and you should be able to find one or two writers that love magic and already have an audience that they’ve built up over time.
Send them an email and see if you can hop on a call with them or a Skype chat at the very least. Tell them about your site and your vision and make sure they are just as passionate about the topic as you are. You can then setup a regular writing schedule and in many cases also get them to share the posts they write on your site with their fans on Twitter and Facebook.
In the end, not only will you get great content written by someone who loves the topic they are writing about, but you also have a great way to expand your audience. At the end of the day you want to build a site that you yourself would visit and find interesting because if you don’t, neither will your visitor.