I know that many business owners want to write their own blog posts and online articles, which is something I’ve recommended in a previous blog post. I also know that some lack the confidence or just need the support to get their content to a standard they’re proud of. After discussing the idea with a number of colleagues at The Content Marketing Academy Master Class Group, I’ve decided to launch a Blog Editing Service.
I spoke with Pam Laird, owner of the fantastic Fin and Co. hair salon in Carnoustie about editing one of her first blog posts. As well as being a highly respected salon owner, she’s also a fellow believer in the benefits of Content Marketing – and a regularly updated blog will be a central component of her new website.
I offered the first edit for free, but it turned out to be hugely valuable for me. It helped me develop the process and put the theory to test. And of course, it gave me the opportunity to see if it was something I’d enjoy doing.
Pam sent an email with her first draft. It was 604 words in length and was about how to find your ideal hairstyle and stylist. As a first draft, it was really good. It was authentically Pam. Her personality and passion shone through.
So there were two challenges I needed to address – firstly I needed to make sure that I didn’t lose Pam’s voice during the editing process. Secondly – lacking hair that merits a stylist – I needed to familiarise myself with the World of hairdressing!
I read through the blog post three times to make sure I understood the meaning and establish a feel for Pam’s tone of voice.
I copied the content and pasted it into my writing software of choice. (iA Writer).
I reviewed the ordering of the paragraphs to check the flow of the piece. For Pam’s post, the structure worked well.
I rewrote each paragraph immediately underneath Pam’s version so that I could clearly illustrate the changes that I had made. (Pam’s original paragraphs were coloured BLUE with my edited version being written in plain text.)
I copied the final version without Pam’s paragraphs and created a new page in the document that had my completed version. This way Pam has two versions – one that showed the changes in relation to the original content she created and one that was easier to read on its own.
I re-read the final piece and made a couple of alterations before I put it through Grammarly (Online Proofreading App).
On reading it one last time, I had a moment of inspiration and added a ’Top Tip’ to the article that I thought would add value to the piece.
I saved as a Word document and a PDF and sent to Pam.
The process took me 41 minutes to complete. What surprised me, was just how much I enjoyed it. I love to write and had no idea if I’d feel the same way about editing. But I absolutely did.
My editing process isn’t about merely correcting spelling or grammar errors – it’s about adding value. I get a huge amount of pleasure taking a raw material and turning it into something better. Ironically a similar feeling I know Pam gets when she transforms someone’s hair.
So did Pam like the final edit? She can say it better than I can! (And no… I didn’t edit this!)
“My initial reaction was one of total relief. Relief that Kevin had taken what had been written and turned it into something of value to our clients keeping our own voice throughout.
Having the security that Kevin is editing our blogs before they go public gives me the confidence to write for our audience. The fear of people reading and thinking “what’s that all about” is now gone thanks to Kevin.”
And yes – Pam has become my first paying blog editing client as a result of this little experiment.
This blog is more about the process than promoting the service. A sales page will be worked on over the course of the week, but for now here is the pricing that I have set, again following discussions with my Content Marketing Academy colleagues. A one-off edit costs £35 while a prepaid voucher for 6 edited blog posts costs £150 or £25 per blog. The blogs can be up to 750 words. I’d be interested to know your thoughts on the pricing. Leave a comment or email Kevin at squaretreemarketing.co.uk
Although I wrote quite extensively about my experience at the Content Marketing Academy Conference, I’m delighted that I continue to benefit from the generous community that Chris has created. Thanks to everyone for your continued support.
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Why you should write it yourself
Travelling With Jamie
The Content Marketing Academy Conference 2015
Three Top Tips to Successfully Outsource Your Blog Writing
5 Steps to 500 Words - A Simple Blog Formula For Stress Free Writing
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Personally Speaking | Injecting your personality into your blog