As an assistant editor for an online women’s magazine, I read through contributed articles regularly. This week, I received a submission that I was looking forward to publishing- the expert is well-known in her field, and the topic was fresh and highly relevant to our audience.
But then I opened the article.
It read like a dry white paper or PR pitch. No way could we publish that for our audience, who expects to not only be informed but also entertained and engaged. The article was sent back for a rewrite.
During the email exchange, I was reminded of my recent experience on a large health digital platform, where many experts contribute articles. In the comments of a well-known and highly regarded integrative doctor’s post, a reader expressed surprise that the writing was lackluster. Other commenters agreed.
It got me thinking about expert knowledge and our new digital age of contributed content.
It made me want to scream “Hire a ghostwriter! We can make you look good!”
Journalists know that yes, it’s important to understand the topic you’re covering thoroughly, but it’s equally imperative to understand the audience and tone of the digital platform or magazine you’re on. You need to read through past articles on that particular platform to learn how to structure your story. If you’re writing for an online publication, you need lots of white space and bolded sections with actionable steps, if you’re writing a service piece (and most health experts are).
All of these things take time, and journalists know how to read a publication they’re intent on writing for- experts may not have the time to do this.
Time isn’t the only limiting factor though- many experts are simply too close to their topic. They understand the information, stats, recently published studies, and cases, yes, but do they know how to break the science down and provide clear, engaging content that inspires a general audience?
Most often, as my inbox of submissions will tell you, the answer is no.
So, experts, please consider hiring a ghostwriter who can help you write stellar contributed articles that position you as an expert in your field. Our job is to make you look good.
I promise you- we’re worth every penny.