Content marketing

Five skills your content writer needs to deliver what you need

If you have been working with content writers for any length of time, you won’t need me to tell you that not all writers are created equal. Getting the right mix of writing experience, knowledge of your niche, reliability and value is tough. That’s especially true if you usually source your content from places like Upwork where quality varies massively.

I think there are five things a good writer needs to deliver great content.

  1. Writing experience
  2. Niche experience
  3. Passion
  4. The ability to deliver
  5. Reliability

Writing experience

Anyone can buy a copy of Microsoft Office, install Word, type a few lines and use spellcheck. But that doesn’t make one a writer. A writer has a passion for words, a knowledge of language and how it is used. A good writer knows how we read and how receptive we are to tone, voice and feel.

What about readability? SEO? Layout? Compelling headlines? Structure? Word use? Accessible language? There is more to writing than just putting words on a page. We need to tell a story, pluck at heart strings, make sound logical arguments and convince people that we know what we are talking about.

Niche experience

Even if you find an experienced content writer, will they be able to write with authority about your niche? A good content writer is an ‘instant expert’ and will work tirelessly to learn the niche, the language, colloquialisms and all those little things that build authority. Some can even fake it.

Publishing poorly researched content, or even incorrect content is worse than not publishing anything at all. A good content writer will be able to write about anything. A great content writer will just write about what they know well and can do justice to.


While I am a content provider, I have used content writers too. You can quickly tell when a writer is just going through the motions to deliver a word count to a deadline. You can also tell when a writer injects imagination, enthusiasm and passion into their writing. The reader can tell too.

Even if you don’t feel passion for the niche, you have to be able to convincingly fake it. Otherwise your content will read like a government white paper. Boring, unimaginative and dry. Very, very dry.

This is particularly true of corporate content marketing efforts. To create good content, you need to have imagination, passion, inspiration and creativity. All things the average corporation weeds out of its people. Which is where outsourcing your content comes in. J

The ability to deliver

When I first left school and went out into the world of work, one of the first lessons I was taught was to under-promise and over-deliver. Many content writers inhabiting the internet right now didn’t get that memo. Many will promise the earth and then spend more creativity coming up with excuses of why they missed the deadline than they actually put into the work.

A good writer will know how long it will take to finish a piece of work above and beyond the required standard. They will also know when a deadline is unrealistic and if a particular goal is achievable. Delivering on promises is something every successful business has to get right in order to survive.


Reliability is key in all aspects of business but is especially important when you know someone is depending on you. If you outsource your content writing, you need to be able to depend on the person you’re dealing with to deliver what they promised when they promised it. Anything less is a fail.

Any business of any shape or size has to be able to keep their promises and be there when and where required. Any business that wants to stay viable for any length of time needs to have the long game in mind. Annoy a customer by letting them down and you lose that customer. Deliver on time and keep them happy and that customer will keep coming back for more.

Some of my clients have been with me for six or seven years for just that reason so I can attest to the effectiveness of never letting anyone down!

If you’re looking for a content writer that delivers all five of these qualities to every single project, contact me here at Coastal Content today!

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