It’s true, bad grapes make poor wine; BUT good vintners only use the very best grapes. The same concept applies to your web content. The quality of copywriting is directly affected by the quality of the brief that directs the content. When savvy content marketers provide a brief, they are trying to figure out the best strategy for their writers. They are finding the best grapes to make the best possible wine.
No one wants to spend hours designing and writing content that’s rejected. Content writing or copywriting and digital marketing are all based on strategy and value. When copywriters don’t receive enough information about a company’s goals, audience, and purpose, they are left trying to fill in the blanks. This leaves both the client and the writer frustrated and losing time and money.
A Brief that’s too Brief Can Hurt Your Content
Every good copywriter or content marketing agency has a system in place to ferret out the information they need to create great content. Some business owners believe that providing a complete brief is a bit excessive. Think about it though; you wouldn’t invite a decorator into your home, give them two words about what you want, and expect to be happy with the outcome. The same can be said when hiring a content writer.
If your content agency sends a brief back because it doesn’t contain enough information—they are doing you a favour. It means that they care about the quality of your content and are willing to ask the questions they need to get it right. Far too many writers struggle to pull information out of the air without understanding the purpose of the content. This has resulted in millions of web pages full of empty words that are just there to hold space. Value is essential, and good writing simply cannot make up for a bad brief.
How to Craft a Good Content Brief
Of course, there is definitely such a thing as too much information. Go through the brief and genuinely think about what you want to accomplish with that content. Make the purpose, tone, target audience, writing style, and other key factors absolutely clear. This doesn’t mean you have to write a brief that’s longer than the finished content; but be as clear and concise as possible.
A 10-Point Checklist for an Effective, Actionable Content Brief
An actionable content brief should:
- Identify the problem that the content is supposed to solve
- Specify the target audience
- Convey the intention or purpose of the content
- Clearly state the desired outcome of the content
- Clarify the brand and voice that need to be included in the writing
- State the essential points that need to be conveyed to the audience
- Specify the preferred format and delivery method
- Establish a timeline for content development
- Provide the writer with any specific reference sources necessary
- Provide any other pertinent information about the legality, sequence, or campaign applicable to the content
Ask our SEO copywriting team at MintCopy to explain the process of developing a meaningful content brief. We provide quality content for a variety of digital media, including websites, blogs, newsletters, press releases, article directories, social channels, and more. If you want great wine, give us the best grapes!