Diana Kelly Levey

Tips for Creating Good Content

A woman writing in a notebook with a laptop

March 28, 2022

You know that you need to write good content as a freelance writer. But what is “good content” and what goes into writing content that will be viewed as “good” by your freelance clients and their audiences?

This question of what makes content “good” was asked by a student in the FreelanceAMA discussion I hosted a last year. I thought it would make a great freelance writing blog post to learn what makes content “good” and what makes content shareable. (These article pitch examples will help you land a job in the first place.)

What Makes Good Content?

This is a great freelance writer question and it’s one everyone is asking these days.

What makes content great is different for every client, editorial site, and brand that I write for and work with. Some clients might find that video content does well for them and need to focus their efforts on those initiatives. (This freelancer FAQ will answer your other burning questions.)

For other brands, an infographic gets a lot of shares and ‘pins’ on Pinterest and drives traffic and sales to their website. Another client might know that “what makes great content” for them are engaging slideshows that drive page views.

When creating great content, it should

  • align with the client’s core values,
  • be something the ideal audience wants to ‘like’ and share on social
  • be easy to find (like having a prominent link to a blog on the  website),
  • be original and fresh,
  • and it could be a thought-provoking piece, like a thought leadership article on LinkedIn or an op-ed.

Here are some ways to see if the content your wrote did well and how to create more articles and material that qualify as “good content.” (Pro tip: keep these pointers in mind when you’re writing magazine article pitches.)

How Do You Know If a Blog Post or Article Is Doing Well?

See How It Performed on Social.

One of the things I enjoy most about digital writing and freelance writing for online clients is that I can see how often a piece of content has been liked on Facebook, favorited on Twitter and retweeted, and pinned on Pinterest sometimes. Usually on the back end of a digital website,  the editors are monitoring Google Analytics and looking at how a certain piece of content is trending. Some of my editors have said to me in the past, “XX piece of content you wrote for us is doing very well. Do you have any ideas similar to that to pitch?” (When a piece of great content is performing well and getting a lot of clicks, usually a homepage editor will see that through analytics and make sure it’s positioned “above the fold” of their homepage as long as it keeps performing well.) Those “immediate results” that I learned while working on staff as a digital editor at websites can be quite gratifying in a way that a print magazine doesn’t necessarily deliver. (That’s just one way you can come up with article ideas.)

Ask for Feedback.

If you want to make sure you’re turning in good content–or even better, great content–I think it’s wise to ask your editor how you can improve your writing to deliver work that will help them maximize audience engagement and traffic goals. (Here’s how freelancers should use social media to get more assignments.)

The editor might suggest using more SEO keywords, using bullet points or subheds to break up the article copy, or offer up another idea that will help the article be qualified as “great content.”  As a former assigning editor, I would be thrilled if a writer I worked with asked me, “What can I do to make sure this piece of content performs well for you?” (Learn how to find the right editor to pitch your article idea to.)

What else do you do to ensure you’re writing good content? (Check out these freelance writing tips for other career-boosting tidbits of advice.)

Want to become a great freelance writer? Enroll in my e-courses on Teachable today and snag freelance writing assignments in no time.

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Work With Me

Diana can help with:

  • Writing content
  • Content marketing writing
  • Content strategy
  • Editing
  • Reporting
  • Magazine writing and editing
  • Website writing
  • e-Course copy and online learning writing
  • SEO writing and strategy
  • Branded content writing and editing
  • Thought leadership content
  • Copywriting
  • Whitepapers
  • SEO writing
  • Launching editorial websites
  • Audience development
  • Blogging
  • Ghostwriting
  • Social media strategy
  • Development of voice and tone
  • Book projects

Email Diana about opportunities: Diana(at)DianaKelly.com.