At the end of April, a reader contacted me to find out if it was worth studying multimedia writing. In other words: is it possible today to make a career in writing web content

It is clear that in 2014, the creation of content has the wind in its sails. Companies are investing more and more in the quality of their content. If you want to work in marketing and copywriting, which is now a priority on the web, here are some key questions you should be able to answer during a job interview.

More and more job offers “Content manager”

In recent years there has been a significant increase in the number ofjob offers in the creation and management of editorial content for the web. The positions can sometimes be significantly different. The most common are:

What questions should you be able to answer?

Whatever position you want to occupy in writing web content, there are questions you MUST be able to answer. You will notice that these questions are more tactical than strategic. They are therefore aimed more at a future web editor than at a publication manager.

However, I believe that to lead a team, you have to understand in depth what its job is. These questions would therefore also be addressed to a senior profile.

Q1. How to control that your web content hits the bull’s eye?

This is important since it allows you to see if you understand ‘how to get the reader’s attention and get them to do what is asked of them.

There are many possible answers:

  • Traffic generated to this content;
  • Loyalty visitors;
  • Visibility acquired keywords on Google;
  • Comments welcomed;
  • Retweets (Twiter), Likes (Facebook), shares on linkedin,…;
  • Sales generated;

The more points you cite, the better you will understand your knowledge.

Q2. How would you write a blog article?

This is interesting to understand your interest in regularly updated content. Do you copywriting or create your own content ? Do you just write on your blog or promote your articles on different media?

You should explain your entire creation process from start to finish:

  1. Idea research / production;
  2. Content creation;
  3. Publication;
  4. Promotion;
  5. Analysis of results (traffic generated and referencing).

The ideal answer will also include the tools you use.

Here are some sample responses:

Ideas production

  • I keep a history of research done on my subject and follow the evolution of his research trends (Http://www.google.fr/trends/). I then create articles related to these subjects.
  • I create alerts in Google News to monitor the latest news in my sector. Following these events and publishing articles on these “hot” subjects is really promising.
  • I meet people from my area, sales people for example. Their prospects’ questions are rich in information on what interests them. Then writing articles that answer these questions will appeal to many target readers.
  • I am publishing my blog article on WordPress, which I appreciate for its flexibility, the dynamism of its community and the help available when needed.

Content creation

  • I’m writing my article on a word processor, adding links to previous articles which will also interest the reader. I don’t hesitate to insert links to external sources.
  • I always add a image related to my article. The goal is to illustrate the subject and enhance the reading.
  • I always put a call to action at the end of the article. Even if it could just be asking for a comment.
  • I always get proofread before any publication. Or else, I let the article rest before going back to it one last time before publication.
  • Finally, I’moptimize my title to make my main keyword appear there, based on Google searches.

Promotion

  • I publish different summaries of my article on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+.
  • I send a news to my mailing list to make them understand that they should immediately go to my blog to find out the entire article.
  • I encourage at the end of the article that we sharing via their own social networks.

Analysis of results

Q3. What content do you read?

Are you really interested in your topic? Do you regularly browse the web on this subject? Do you do extensive research, or will your employer have to train you himself on an ongoing basis?

Mention the items you have read recently on the subject. Ideally, talk about news posted the same day. It will impress your employer. The ultimate, maybe you will teach him. Admit it would be a great way to show him that he found the right person.

Share blogs that you read regularly. Be specific in your examples to demonstrate your interest.

Q4. How does Google classify its results?

It is astonishing to find, even today, web agencies which do not understand how Google classifies its results. Even if you are not interviewed for a SEO job, you should understand that writing web content is linked to the positioning of a site on Google. It is interesting that you know the basics of SEO.

You are not interviewed to find out if you know the secret of Pagerank, but rather to see if you understand the basics of Google’s ranking algorithm.

Many web developers believe that Google classifies sites on the basis of meta tags “description” and “keyword”. In reality, it’s mainly on the content of your pages and the links that lead to them that Google ranked. The more a site with a link to yours has a good reputation, the more it will transmit its strong authority to you. Be aware that having keywords in your URL or in the anchor of your links is just a junk next to your own content.

Q5. How do you get links to your content?

You should understand that Google ranks results in particular on the basis of links received. But you also need to know how to acquire these links.

A good copywriter knows how to get links to their content, how to write content that makes you want to be shared. To get inbound links, you can respond:

  • I interview people of influence, not only because they have interesting things to tell but also because they will share my content to their large audience. Part of this audience will link to my content.
  • I include reusable content by the reader. I put for example an infographic which illustrates my subject. This encourages other bloggers to reuse it in their own article, often by including a link to mine.
  • I write substantial content who then usually have more authority over a particular subject. This makes you want to link to this content.

Q6. Concrete example of creating original content

You can come up with examples of very relevant writings. But what proves to your interlocutor that you wrote it yourself? Or that you were not assisted? And even if you wrote this content alone, it is not necessarily related to the recruiter’s activity.

You might be asked to read an ebook on a specific topic and then summarize it in a blog post. During a second interview, this example will be useful for:

  • Evaluate your grammar and pay attention to detail. Have you gone through the ebook in depth?
  • Title of your article. Is your title original? Is it optimized for natural referencing? Or did you just copy the title of the ebook?
  • Call to action. Did you link to the full ebook at the end of the article?
  • Paragraph and structure. Can your content be quickly browsed and understood?

Interview, and after

Just because you answer all of these questions correctly doesn’t mean you will be suitable for this job. You should be able to marry the culture of the company you have applied for.

Do not hesitate to ask the recruiter your own questions. Also be prepared to answer other questions like:

  • Why should you work with us?
  • How is your vision for content creation different from most of the other candidates we have met?

Take Action!

The job of “web content writer” is still relatively recent. I would really appreciate hearing any questions that you think are relevant or not. Let me know in the comments.