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Hiring writers - Where's the best place to find people?

Commission based - eLance didn't like my project.

6:42 am on Sep 17, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I have an established site on computer repair. I've not really done much with it in some time because a) I work in finance now and don't run into new and interesting problems all that often, and b) I'm fairly busy.

The site still gets around 30k pageviews per month and is still pulling in some cash via good old fashioned Google AdSense.

Anyway, I'm hoping that I can find a writer for my site. What I'd like to do is for the gig to be commission-based so that I don't have to fork out a bunch of cash for articles that don't produce. I also want to find someone that's qualified to write for my site; which I imagine will be quite difficult without the aforementioned forking of cash. The basic idea is to have any article written by someone other than myself split the ad revenue generated by that page between me and them evenly. They get the advantage of writing for a site that's been around for a few years and is established, I get to finally start adding content to the site again and will also benefit. Theoretically, the writer could make substantially more via this method in the long run (continual recurring income), but it'd be sparse in the beginning.

What I don't know how to do is find a writer. Honestly I'd like someone in the Philippines because the conversion rate is good for them and their English tends to be excellent. (I work with several people in Manila on a daily basis) As mentioned in the subtitle, I've tried eLance but they booted the project because of its commission based structure. There are a couple of other similar sites out there, but I don't remember what they are called and I'm not sure how well they will work.

Any of you have experience finding good writers? If so, where did you come across them?

Perhaps I'll place a small ad on my site asking for them. There's always a possibility I could find something that way...

Thanks in advance,


12:48 am on Sept 18, 2008 (gmt 0)

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If eLance didn't produce try running a few ads on Monster.com for writers that will work on commission. I would also suggest networking with people that interact with writers on a regular basis, i.e. magazine editors and see if you can present your offer directly to some writers. Finally, I would suggest checking out your area to see if there are any writer's groups that meet. If so, you can go to a few meetings and meet some writers and throw out your proposal to them and see if you get any takers.

Unfortunately if eLance didn't work I am not sure there a fast or easy way to round up a group of writers. However it would seem to me that you only need a few writers to start with to make your plan work so hopefully doing it this way wouldn't be too much work.

1:16 pm on Oct 4, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Scriptlance offers commission structured projects for something like $20 but I don't recommend them because of their overall performance as a marketplace.
6:19 pm on Oct 4, 2008 (gmt 0)

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>>>What I'd like to do is for the gig to be commission-based so that I don't have to fork out a bunch of cash...

You'll be sorry you did that in the long run. Some content does really well and you'll regret forking out a grand or more a month every month to a parasite who's doing nothing for your site.

If you need high quality content that does not need rewriting or plagiarism reviews then post an ad at your local college/university. There are many bright native speakers with excellent writing skills who will write for you at a decent price. It doesn't even have to be a local college, many universities have programs where you can register online and start posting job opportunities right away. You can even indicate you are looking for a computer sciences major.

9:53 am on Oct 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

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There is a good site called Bizreef they post things like this global and it targets writers.
10:14 am on Oct 21, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I don't know if I am to recommend this but some of good manila writers lurk in Manila's Craigslist. Or you could hire me. LOL.
12:49 pm on Oct 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Honestly, you need to get the best writer for your site, period. Outsourcing to the Philippines, bless 'em but the level of English, knowledge of industry-specific and colloquial terms, grammar and spelling is just not up to scratch in 99% of cases. People are judging you and your product/service on the content on your site, and it needs to be 'top of the class'.

We have also used college students. OK, but not good enough. We needed someone with exemplary writing skills, which generally means 1] English as a first language; 2] a top college qualification; 3] at least two to three years working as a writer or journalist.

Otherwise, down the track, you may well be faced with decision whether to completely rewrite your site. Especially if your cheap writers have 'borrowed' tracts from other websites. We use a company called Newsvend, they have full-time writing staff in the US, England and New Zealand.
Not that cheap, but not too expensive either and the quality is excellent.

7:43 pm on Oct 24, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Word of mouth is always a good thing. I have been contributing effective web copy for some time now, and did not have any journalistic experience prior to this. I got into this because a friend of a friend needed someone and I happened to be available. Had I been no good at it, she could have dispensed with me at any time.

I would help you myself, but my expertise does not run to computer repairs!

Ask around, I am sure you will soon find that you know someone who knows someone who may be free to help. You usually get someone you can trust that way and, because you avoid agency fees, you can pay the writer a little more and keep him or her well-motivated.

6:42 pm on Nov 19, 2008 (gmt 0)

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rentacoder dot com would be the great place to find quality writers.
8:25 am on Dec 11, 2008 (gmt 0)

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As an alternative, ask in and around your customer base. You may find one or two people with the required level of experience and who, being existing and one presumes satisfied customers, will be naturally enthusiastic about what you do.

Some content does really well and you'll regret forking out a grand or more a month every month to a parasite who's doing nothing for your site.

@ Martinibuster: isn't that a contradiction? If the content does that well, how can its contributor be considered a parasite?


9:59 am on Dec 12, 2008 (gmt 0)

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At a previous employer I had five local Australian outsourced writers who wrote for 10 cents (US$0.06 give or take) a word. One had previously worked for an international magazine. I advertised in a local job portal and was surprised to get more quality applicants than I could hire.

Their profile seemed to be professional writers or editors who were now mothers who liked to work from home on small assignments. I never met any of them.

1:26 pm on Dec 15, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I have reviewed your post in this forum, and learnt that you are in seach of a content writer who will write for your site on computer repair. You said that you want your writer to work on commission-basis so that you I don't have to expend ash for articles that are not up-to-the-mark.

I think you should advertise in the job sites to get hold of a content writer who would work on commision-basis. You can also go to the blog sites, content writing sites and social networking sites to call attention to the content writers seeking jobs.