Sandbagging the Marketing Communications Writer

This post was written by John White on Thu, 07 Apr 2011 19:25:08 +0000
Posted Under: marketing communications writer,marketing manager,technology marketing writing

When it rains, it pours. Freelance writers have peaks and troughs in their workloads, just like you.

There’s something about spring that prompts marketing managers in technology companies to generate as much content as possible in as little time as possible. The marcomm writer’s workload spikes wildly.

It might have to do with abruptly awaking from the content doldrums of winter, or perhaps with late spring-early summer trade shows, but “these go to eleven” at this time of year. White papers, case studies, blog posts, newsletter articles…marketing managers suddenly want it all.

I’ve posted before about not having much use for writer’s block, and it’s more of a luxury than ever in seasons like this. In fact, posting to a blog becomes a luxury at times like this.

Mind you, there are plenty of lessons to relate with this much volume (just not much time in which to write them all up):

  • Always provide an outline for anything longer than 2000 words.
  • Write out the summary in your white paper outlines so the reviewers can see that you understand the message they’re trying to convey.
  • Funnel all reviews through a single client-side contact.
  • Everything takes longer than it takes. And then some.

I once had a former cook as a roommate, and he told me that waitresses sometimes conspire to “sandbag” the cook, by buffering their orders and then suddenly posting large amounts of work at once. Marketing managers aren’t that mischievous, but at this time of year, if feels as though the consumers of their content might be.

Marketing communications writers have reason to wonder.

How’s your spring going?

John White of venTAJA Marketing is a marketing communications writer for technology companies. He posts about technology writing from the perspective of the marketing manager. It’s dirty work, but somebody has to do it. Download his eBook, “10 Questions to Ask When Hiring Your Marketing Communications Writer.”

photo credit: U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

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