What, in your opinion, is good content?
For me, good content has value for the readers. It might make them laugh. It could educate them about a topic. It could share an important personal experience. Good content enriches the lives of the people who encounter it.
Do you know how to optimize content for search engines?
Yes, I am Inbound Marketing and Content Marketing certified through Hubspot. I like to use SEO titles to help drive traffic and make sure all blog elements are optimized to lead readers interested in the topic or industry straight to the blog. I also know how to avoid keyword stuffing and duplicate content (which isn’t as easy as not posting the same blog twice).
How do you do your research for a project?
I love doing research! I consider myself a lifelong learner and getting the chance to dive into some meaty content is wonderful. When I start researching, I use Google to show me what searches are trending (to help with title creation) and then start reading articles that pop up.
Depending on the amount of time I have, I like to read sources ranging from companies to bloggers who might have personal experience, but no professional experience. It helps me to get a big picture look at the topic so I can start writing.
I also like to incorporate YouTube videos, whether personal or instructional, about the topic and take a look at related images. Blogs should be multimedia, so it helps to know what kind of sources are available before starting.
How do you tell a credible source from a not-so-credible source?
On the internet, where anyone can post anything, there has been an explosion in sources that aren’t credible. It’s usually pretty easy to separate the good sites from the bad ones, just by searching for site reviews. Also, being entirely too familiar with the internet, there are some I would know based on site alone. For example, I would never link an article to The Onion and claim their content was factual.
As far as misinformation goes, I side with science and studies that have been done around the topic. Unfortunately, there is a lot of nonsense out there and some of it is being said by people in positions of power and authority. The best scientific evidence we have available is where we should always start to look for truth, not personal blogs using anecdotal evidence.
What style guides are you familiar with?
My first bachelor’s used entirely MLA style, my second used APA style. I find it generally easy to move between styles, as long as they’re specified. I realize that working with a style can be dynamic, but as long as basic rules are set and followed, I can adapt to any style.
How do you incorporate feedback and edits into your work?
I am always interested in feedback. Even if the feedback is that I’ve done everything wrong. The only way to improve and learn the style, tone, and format of a client is to keep working on it until you get it right. I always make sure to follow instructions to the best of my ability and when given feedback, to make changes quickly and accurately.
That said, I have in the past advised clients when I believed an element they requested was not appropriate for their piece. Ultimately, if the client decides to continue with it, that is their choice and I will follow it. But I will speak from my experience to help clients produce the best content possible.
How do you make sure work gets done on schedule?
I genuinely love writing. I find writing anything, even if it’s not my favorite topic, to be so enjoyable that I don’t put it off. I also have tremendous output for reasons I have never figured out.
One week for Scrapbook of Truth, I stuck to my usual writing schedule and then added all of the daily word counts to see what the total was. It was over 52,000 words. Occasionally something will come up during a project where I will have to put my energy elsewhere, but I pride myself on getting work finished and turned in ahead of time.
What content management systems (CMS) have you used?
I’m a WordPress girl at heart with over a decade of experience. I also have used Drupal for 3.5 years and Blogger for about 8 years. I enjoy learning new systems and generally pick up CMSs quickly. I also know some HTML and can work with some backend editors.