I have a wonderful guest post for everyone today. It is from Mary Anne Hahn and I’m sure you will love it. Mary Anne is the person behind the International Association of Ghost Writers and this article is all about what you should have on your ghostwriting services website. I hope you enjoy it.
Web Site “Must Haves” for Ghost Writers
© 2010 by Mary Anne Hahn
These days, it pretty much goes without saying: your Web site is by far one of the most important tools in your ghost writing business arsenal. When done well, your site serves as a combination business card/brochure/showcase/order form/relationship builder. It might be the first impression you make on potential clients, or the most lasting one, so you want to get it right.
First of all, unless you possess highly proficient site building skills, you should consider hiring someone to build it for you. I didn’t with my own ghost writing site, and regret that—so much so that I will be having that site entirely redone in the near future. While things like WordPress, site builders and site templates have become increasingly sophisticated and easier for amateurs to use, they don’t hold a candle to what an experienced Web designer can do for you. From choosing eye-catching colors and graphics to hooking up plugins and widgets, a professional site designer can handle everything from developing a logo to setting up an online payment processing account.
Besides, your main talent lies in writing not Web design, right? So you’ll want to focus your energies on developing outstanding content for your site, copy that instills confidence in visitors that you are the kind of ghost writer they would love to work with.
So what are the “must have” elements on your ghost writing Web site?
- A list and/or descriptions of what kinds of writing and editing services you offer.
- A list and/or description of the types of clients you write for, particularly if you specialize or have extensive experience in writing for certain client types.
- A list and/or description of what traits make you different from other writers. Do you offer speedy service? Technical expertise? Are you fun to work with, or particularly thorough, or versatile? In other words, let your personality (at least in a business sense) show in your web site content.
- Testimonials from past clients. Don’t be shy about asking for these! Offer to ghost write them for their approval if they prefer.
- Links or references to writing samples. One writer I know has Amazon.com links and graphics to books she has ghost written. Very impressive!
- Rate ranges. Yes, I come from the school of thought that there’s no sense wasting time with people who can’t or are unwilling to pay for professional ghost writing services; they will shop around for the best deal, and you will end up feeling frustrated. You can list your rate ranges per hour, per word, and/or by project type and length.
- A contact form and/or e-mail address.
- Information on how you handle the ghost writing process, e.g., whether or not you offer a free initial phone consultation, how you gather information from the client, whether or not you require a contract or service agreement (highly recommended), etc.
- A media page if applicable, with information on or links to press releases and articles about you, or interviews you’ve done.
- A way to collect site visitors’ e-mail addresses so that you can build relationships and follow up with them. This can be done by offering a free downloadable report, an online newsletter, a blog feed, or an autoresponder series of informative e-mails on a topic that would be of interest to your visitors.
Another tactic I’ve seen ghost writers use is to have PayPal buttons for writing “packages” (say, three 500-word articles for a certain price). Making it easy for new clients to test the waters with you in this manner can be a great way to begin ongoing and long-term working relationships with them.
Take a look at what other ghost writers are doing in order to get ideas for your own site, but at the same time strive to let your own originality shine through. Make your Web site something that truly reflects you and the services you offer.
Mary Anne Hahn is the founder and Executive Director of the International Association of Ghost Writers, an organization passionately dedicated to uniting, supporting, advocating for and educating professional and aspiring ghost writers worldwide. To learn more about IAPGW benefits and subscribe to its free newsletter “Invisible Ink,” visit http://iapgw.org .
Until next time,
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