As a life coach, you have to be very careful about selecting someone to create content for your blog (or anything else, for that matter). You--and your clear vision, unique voice, and specific viewpoint--are your own brand, and all of the content created for your brand needs to sound like it's coming from you, even if someone else wrote it.
So many people have trouble writing on-brand, authentic, relevant, and resonant content for their own brand. That may make it seem like an almost impossible task to expect someone else to pull off. But the right word wizard can probably write for you better than you can for yourself. The key is to find that person and set up an engagement that is based on trust, transparency, and rapport.
Team Impressa has worked with quite a few life coaches and other people with personal brands. The overwhelming majority of our engagements with these coaches, consultants, authors, speakers, and other personalities have been smash hits. But it just so happens, a few of them haven't went over so well. There have been a few reasons why some of these gigs went off the rails, but the unifying theme is a closed-off client. It shouldn't be an uphill battle for a ghostwriter to find out who their subject is, what their opinions are, and whether or not they hate the word "moist."
If you are a life coach who wants to know how to outsource your blog, you should start by building a healthy relationship with your writer. Here are a few of our tips for doing just that:
Be an open book.
If you have written any books (or anything), share it with your writer. By reading your previous work, your writer can get better insight into your thoughts and feelings on many topics, see your writing style, and get tipped off to phrases you use often or obviously avoid.
If you want your ghostwriter to have a fair shot at writing as you, they need to spend some time with you. This may be over the phone or on a Skype call, but try to meet up in person if you are in the same area. Of course, this shouldn't be just social hour--discuss topics and subject matter pertinent to the posts your ghost blogger will be whipping up for you.
Spill the beans.
No, not everything you say needs to be in the blog--nor should it. In order for your blogger to get your full frame of mind around a subject, situation, or story, it may be necessary to say things you do not want posted or printed. Let your writer know when you are giving them confidential asides, but do give these, as this will help an experienced writer capture your thoughts and feelings more accurately, honestly, and authentically. Yes, an NDA may be recommended here.
Swear them to secrecy.
Remember what I just said about an NDA? I do recommend those.
Everyone who works for Impressa signs one of those, and many of the coaches we work with have NDAs in place with our key personnel--those who get all the dirt directly. Freelancers and agencies with experience ghostwriting, handling sensitive information, and working with coaches expect they need to keep a lid on most of what they are told. Agencies not used to these kind of engagements and most freelancers will need to be sworn to secrecy to know they need to keep their traps shut.
Regardless of how well your writer represents you, they aren't you, but they are trying as hard as they can to get close! Let them know when things aren't how you'd say them. Even if it's something small that might feel as if you are being picky, that kind of close feedback is welcome in ghostwriting.
Getting to know someone (and their thoughts, opinions, preferences, styles, and so on) takes time. Being spot on for the first few blog posts can be tough, and these can often take longer to produce that subsequent content. A quality, professional ghostwriter (or agency like ours) won't want to dive into a gig like this if we don't think it's going to be a long term relationship. (And wanting to wade in and start with a limited amount of posts is okay, but only if it's indeed a trial to see if we click.)
If you only want a handful of posts, we will still be getting warmed up by the time the engagement has ended. This stinks for you, as you will be getting less-than-awesome content, and it stinks for us because we probably put in much more work on the front end than we were paid for--usually the expenses for the time spent getting up to speed gets spread out across the engagement.
This is why we may turn down something like this, as will many of the others with experience in this area. You may find yourself left with less-than-ideal options when it comes to potential content creators.
Go with your gut.
Rapport and trust is so important here. If you like someone and have a good feeling about them, I suggest you lean in that direction. If you have a bad feeling--don't go there!
Don't only follow feelings.
Your instincts shouldn't be your only considerations. Lots of abysmal writers and awful agencies are pretty dang likable. Take a moment to check out this post about outsourcing your blog writing duties as a life coach: http://blog.impressasolutions.com/10-tips-for-life-coaches-to-outsource-blog-posts-successfully. And make yourself a latte or pour a glass of wine to settle in with our e-book on blog outsourcing: http://howdy.impressasolutions.com/blog-outsourcing. Between the two of them, you should have a full arsenal of awesome information to help you make a solid decision about how to outsourcing your blog posts will work best for you.
Outsourcing your blog posts to a ghost blogger and having the same person manage your blog operation can not only save a lot of your precious time but also help you sit back and relax when it comes to blogging without worrying. Read the following masterpiece on ghost blogging which is full of tested best practices.