An interesting post from Hubspot author John Hall: “Why Ghostwriting Thought Leadership Content Doesn’t Work.” He contends that busy executives who outsource their thought leadership content are missing out on quality elements.
As a ghostwriter of leadership content, my first reaction was to tell him he’s all wrong. But his article was an excellent outline of what happens when thought leaders try to outsource blog writing and other leadership content to unqualified contract writers.
“Ghostwriting content is not inherently bad. The problem is that not all content should be ghostwritten.
“Consider your end goal of producing thought leadership content: brand awareness, reengagement, loyalty, credibility, conversions.
“Now ask yourself: Should this business-building tactic be delegated to someone who knows very little about you or your industry? If you lean toward the idea that it’s worth the time you save, then know that your content will lack these not-so-minor details.”
Hall lists five elements that end up being neglected in ghostwritten leadership content:
- Their unique personal experiences
- Their personality
- Their credibility
- Their passion
- Quality writing
So the question is, how can a busy leader create quality content that reflects his/her passion and unique voice? I maintain that ghostwriters can and should provide professional-level writing that showcases a leaders’ thoughts and ideas.
It also needs to be a collaborative effort. Unfortunately, often busy leaders don’t provide adequate input and participation with writers. Some content I see published appears to be canned, impersonal and dry. All contract writers should do their best to encourage the people they write for to add their own stories and perspectives.
As author John Hall says, “The best content comes from combining a thought leader’s experience and expertise with a writer’s ability to develop, edit, and polish content. This way, a leader’s expertise isn’t lost, nor is a writer’s pizzazz and polish.”
If you want to outsource your thought leadership content, make sure you work with a writer familiar with your industry who takes the time to make it a collaborative effort.