The most important ingredient of great content is dependent on a clear, easy-to-understand brief. Content creators love working with clients that define the intended piece and its desired impact for them. It just makes the job so much easier, and you get what you want without the never-ending and frustrating rounds of iterations.
Possibly the most significant advantage of a well-defined brief is to you and not to the writer or content developer/creator. It helps you formalize the piece’s details and address any doubts and ambiguity that you may have in your mind. With a well-written brief, you can be sure that the content will be in line with the approach you had in mind.
A brief is like a go-to-guide for a content creator, which he/she can refer and revisit any time while developing the content. Writing without a brief is like sitting on a bus and traveling but without a destination in mind. So, you will eventually reach but after several mind-numbing and totally avoidable iterations.
So, what comprises a good brief? Essentially it should have the following elements:
Who is it for? The target audience for the content piece should be well-defined. It enables the content creator to write keeping that audience in mind. For instance, an explainer video script’s language and tone will be very different from the corporate introductory video. It needs to be defined even if it is more than one segment of the audience you are looking to address.
What is the purpose of the content piece? This is essentially the angle of the piece. Just giving the topic is not enough. You can also include the relevant background material that you may have. Sometimes you might have got the idea from some other content piece. In this case, it is a good idea to share this content piece as well.
What is the key message and takeaway of the content piece? Define the top two-to-three messages that the content piece should have. Try to limit to not more than three main messages because otherwise, the writer will get confused. This really helps the content creator in structuring and drafting content in line with key messaging.
Here, it is good to remember that sharing too much information can also be counterproductive, and your message is likely to get lost in the clutter.
Brand Guidelines and style: Any brand specifications and other details like style, tone. It is a good practice to communicate the overall brand values and message to the content agency before you start working with them. This ensures that all the content pieces are in line with the overall brand tone and message.
Essential Details: Every content creator needs some details or specifications, like the deadline and word count, to plan accordingly and ensure that you get a stellar piece on time.
Fees: While details about the fees are not typically included in the brief unless and until it is the first time you are working with that freelance writer or content agency.
Compelling content demands that the writer is absolutely clear of what is expected from the content piece and brief is what gives him/her clarity. It is possible that the agency will raise several questions if they feel that some details are lacking in the brief.
At Deepworkz, we make it a point to get the article/content piece outline approved by you before we start working on it. This practice ensures that the client and the writer are on the same page.
Creating an effective brief before drafting the content piece ensures that you will end up saving time and effort and will get compelling content without getting stressed.
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