Content creation, Nonfiction News

What is Content Creation?

what is content creation

As a freelance content developer, I create content for a wide variety of businesses, both B2B and B2C, on a fulltime basis. These have ranged from small mom and pop shops to a Fortune 500 company. I am HubSpot Certified for Inbound Marketing and a member of the prestigious, member-vetted American Society of Journalists and Authors. I am a lifelong learner with a passion for research and writing, and I love it when a piece of content works well for a client. Here are answers to FAQs.

What does a content developer do?

As a freelancer, I write for numerous companies — and so step one is always to learn more about the company for which I’ll be writing. What products and/or services do they sell? Who is their target audience (or audiences)? What are the company’s goals for the content being developed? Sometimes, the client can’t articulate what goals they have or the goals are not realistic. So, a content developer needs to work with the client to develop an effective strategy; analyze how effective the strategy actually is; and then adjust as needed. There are a number of disciplines connected to content development, including organic search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, social media marketing, email marketing, link building and more. Not all content developers offer all of these services, but those who can offer the spectrum are more in demand.

What are common challenges?

There are significant numbers of people offering content services, so it can be a challenge to break into the industry unless you obtain an internship or entry level job at a marketing agency. Then, some clients – as mentioned above – can have unrealistic expectations about what website content can do for their company, often wanting very fast results (higher rankings in the search engines, increased targeted traffic to the site and so forth). Because so many companies are competing for consumer attention through content development, there is plenty of online noise to break through to get your content noticed.

What are important skills to develop?

content creation plan

Content development is a hybrid of journalism and marketing, so it’s important that a content developer becomes skilled in both areas. Being good at writing but not marketing can mean your great content never gets noticed; being good at marketing but not at writing means you will fall short in presenting a client’s story well. People skills are also important because you’ll work with clients to develop strategies and content; researching skills are crucial to find quality information; discernment is necessary with so much inaccurate information available; and self-discipline and motivation are important, as well, since you need to stay on task and on time.

Would I be good at content creation?

If you enjoy writing, that’s great, because that’s at the core of content development. But many people discover that, yes, they enjoy writing – but only on topics that interest them. With content development, you need to brainstorm what types of content would appeal to a client’s customers and prospects, and that may include topics not typically considered glamorous.

Does this sound like you? You:

  • love to research and learn
  • are curious and willing to try new things
  • aren’t thrown off stride when Internet technologies change
  • enjoy writing and are good at it
  • understand marketing
  • are self-motivated and self-disciplined
  • are interested in a wide range of topics
  • can interview people effectively to get expert information
  • can discern what secondary sources are quality and which are suspect

What other questions do you have about content creation?

Nonfiction News

Research, Write and Review: the Biography

“Life is just one damned thing after another.”

—Elbert Hubbard, who died when the ship, Lusitania, sank in 1915

writing a biography
Writing a biography: research, write, review

Biographical material ranges from brief encyclopedic snippets to book-length tomes. Sometimes the material is groundbreaking, revealing information about a person for the very first time; in other instances, the biographer is adding his or her unique spin on a frequently debated public figure. Regardless of specifics, a biography should, at a minimum, provide precise facts about another person’s life; ideally, it should also supply a sense of that person’s essence, and place his or her life in the context of the era in question. To publish such a biography, you must research, write, and then review.



Nonfiction News

Nonfiction News

I’ve been busy blogging at Loconeal Publishing — and here are some snippets of recent posts:

ethics matter
You know which way to go!

Ethics Matter

“If the best journalists in the world lack credibility then they are nothing. All we have is our credibility. We aren’t granted ‘journalist’ status by earning a certain college degree or being issued a government license. We earn it by reporting responsibly.” (Society of Professional Journalists President David Cuillier, April 2014 issue of Quill)

Maybe you consider yourself a journalist – or a blogger or a magazine writer. No matter how you self label, when you write nonfiction, it’s crucial to report responsibly and to navigate ethical tightropes as carefully as possible.