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Writing for big brands is a bit different than creating content for local businesses. When you write for well-known companies, you have to follow stricter content guidelines and more rules. Adopting an overly relaxed demeanor while creating content for such firms won’t get you anywhere.
If you are a writer and want to start offering your copywriting services to big-name brands, here are some important things you have to know before making the big leap:
You have to do plenty of research
When a well-known company hires you for a writing gig, the first thing you have to do is to read up on their existing guidelines and be familiar with their tone.
Asking them for their brand and content guidelines will help you avoid a lot of guesswork and misinformation. You should ask your client for sample posts which you can use as a rough guide as well.
Of course, you have to do your own research regarding the types of topics and content your client regularly publishes. You will have to spend hours online poring over their published materials to get a feel for their brand.
To be sure you will create relevant content, you need to know your client’s target audience as well. You can also ask your client about this and do additional research on your own.
You need to understand the brand’s different markets
Even the most uniform big brands communicate slightly differently based on the geography the copy is going to. As such, you have to look up local examples of your client’s brand speak especially if your content will only be published in a certain country or city.
You can also learn more about your client’s brand voice by checking their:
- Social media accounts
- Call to actions (CTAs) on their posts
- Visual content
You have to focus on precision
When writing for big-name brands, you will have to be precise in message and tone. It is vital that you keep it within the brand’s lexicon. More importantly, you have to ensure that you get the point across to your client’s target audience.
Some of the important tips you have to keep in mind to be concise when writing for well-known brands are:
- Writing with your audience in mind
- Avoiding clichés, technical jargon and hackneyed expressions
- Using the active voice
- Avoiding vague and string nouns
- Eliminating prepositional phrases
- Editing your article to ensure it is free from grammatical errors
If you are used to creating content for local SEO for small businesses, you will need to up the ante a bit and be more concise in writing and meticulous with editing your work.
You have to master the art of storytelling
Coke, Nike, and Airbnb are three of the biggest brands that leverage storytelling in their marketing campaigns. If you will be writing for a well-known company, it is highly likely that you will have to use this strategy in one or more of your content.
If you are still not comfortable with integrating storytelling into your content, it’s time you do so. Keep in mind that this using this technique in content writing will help you build a connection with your audience. This, in turn, will enable your audience to connect effectively with your client.
When you are able to achieve this goal, you will further prove the point that you are a good fit for your client’s content marketing campaign.
You have to go through a rigorous procurement process
Big brands have big procurement departments. So be ready to spend man-hours filling out forms, getting registered, and submitting your bank account details and so on.
This is often a far cry to writing for small businesses. Most of the time, you simply talk to the owner or manager and iron out all the details. Within a few hours or days, you will come up with an arrangement favorable for you and your client.
You have to go through various stages of approvals as well
The bigger the brand, the more layers you have to get through. Approved prices, for instance, can change easily because chances are, getting the green light will take more time than writing the copy in the first place.
The topics you want to write about and requested timeframe will have to go through various departments and persons as well. As such, you need to be a bit more patient when you start writing for a big-name brand. You will also have to be flexible and be ready with backup plans as well.
Writing for a big-name brand is certainly a hallmark of success that you can be proud of. But it is definitely a step up from writing for local businesses and SMEs.
When you get this chance, be ready to put in a lot of hard work. Your efforts will be well-rewarded in the end anyway.
Hisham Wyne is an award-winning copywriter, brand consultant and content creator based in Dubai. He has over a decade’s experience in helping brands get their messages right. From crisp web copy and zippy brochures to in-depth company profiles and analytical annual reports, Hisham makes words work for you – so you can sell better, gain visibility, and give your brand a unique voice.