So you’re thinking about hiring a ghostwriter. This can be a great investment to save you time as a busy entrepreneur, build your credibility and get expert support on something that might not be a strength or priority for you. Before you dive in, there are a few things you should consider. After all, your personal reputation is on the line. Here are some key points to reflect on before moving forward with a ghostwriter to grow your personal brand.
Decide on your goals
Chances are, there’s something driving your decision to consider a ghostwriter. Maybe you struggle with writing, have no idea what to write about, or recognize the importance of it but simply don’t have the time. Whether one or all of these resonate with you, that’s only one piece of your goal setting. You’ve identified the reason why you’re not going to write on your own. But why do you want the content out there in the first place? Maybe you’re looking to attract more clients or investors, get in front of potential employees, or pay it forward to the community. Whatever your goal is, make sure you and your ghostwriter align on it. Starting with “The Why” behind the work will help keep the writing pieces focused on creeping closer and closer to your goal.
Your personal brand goes hand-in-hand with your goal. What should come to mind when others hear your name? What do you want to be known for? This is something you should think through before meeting with a ghostwriter. It will be an important aspect of the ghostwriter’s content pillars and key themes that they write about. For example, if you’re a Personal Finance coach and want to be the go-to in that space, your content strategy might include stories from your own journey with personal finance, financial literacy tips, investing tips, life hacks for saving money, and side hustle ideas to make money.
Good ghostwriters will ask prompting questions and encourage you to dig deeper into some of your experiences. A series of you talking in 5-minute tangents could very well turn into a handful of blogs or months’ worth of social media posts. While these conversations lay a great framework, consider if there are resources you can share with the writer to give them a better insight into your mind. Maybe it’s some industry resources you frequently reference, an industry expert you look up to, or a list of random ideas and thoughts that have crossed your mind over the years. What might seem common knowledge to you may not be for someone without your industry expertise.
On the note of expertise, it can be advantageous to hire a writer who doesn’t have much familiarity or expertise in your field. This will give them an unbiased and unique perspective on the subject matter. Plus, it helps them strengthen copy to make content flow logically.
Consider different mediums and scope of work
You might hire a ghostwriter to write a book, blogs, social media posts, and more. Ideally, your ghostwriter will have experience in the mediums you’re interested in growing your voice in. If you’re hiring a ghostwriter to write for your blog, do they also have experience writing social media posts? It can save a lot of time for the same person to chop up your blog posts into shorter-form content for your social channels than it would for a different set of eyes to reread the blog from scratch.
If you’re getting support with LinkedIn and Twitter posts, do you want the ghostwriter to schedule and post the posts for you so you don’t have to worry about forgetting to post? Are you busy? Then this might be a good idea. If capacity isn’t an issue and you simply don’t know what to post about or aren’t a strong writer, maybe you just ask for a document with the posts so you can make the posts yourself.
Be mindful of the commitment
Sometimes you’ll come across a great writer who just doesn’t mesh well with you. They may not enjoy writing about topics you’re interested in. Or you may come to realize the tone of voice doesn’t align with your vision. This is why it’s always good to start off with a small time commitment (one month). Or start off with a small volume commitment (one or two blogs or five to ten social media posts). So this way you can ensure the work is being executed smoothly. And both parties are happy with the arrangement.
While it can be nerve-wracking to entrust someone to write on your behalf, you can take comfort in the fact that most writers love what they do and are very good at it. Keep these considerations in mind as you initiate conversations with potential ghostwriters and look for a good fit to help you grow your personal brand.