I am usually the one doing all the typing when it comes to content creation, both as a freelance writer and in my day job as a marketing guy in the recruitment industry. I am usually the one in charge of creating those carefully crafted quotes or that smart interview. But every now and again, I get to sit on the other side of the table and be the interview subject instead.
I have recently been interviewed by a content agency on behalf of a large, well known company for my day job. The interview was for a blog/newsletter piece and the experience the content agency as well as the company offered was nothing short of top notch, so I thought I’d share. Here’s a glimpse into a three-way cooperation that resulted in a smooth, pleasant experience for everyone involved and a kick ass interview piece for the company’s readers. This is what I would like to call ‘A great content trifecta’.
The company – The content agency – The interviewee
The company reached out to me a few weeks back to ask if my company and I wanted to participate in their b2c blog and newsletter where they’d include an interview with me on a specific topic. What they did great in their first contact was that they picked up on a current topic that we were promoting quite heavily ourselves in our own channels; which of course sparked my interest immediately as the timing was perfect. They also made sure to highlight what they’d offer in return for our participation – and their offer was spot on in relation to our own goals.
The content agency then got in touch and scheduled a time for the interview. On the day of the interview; the content writer was prepared, informed and on the ball with relevant subject matter specific probing questions, which helped him extract useful quotes and information from me. I could tell that he was experienced and comfortable with leading interview calls like these.
My feeling after our call was that I simply had had a very pleasant and quite casual conversation with someone who was interested in my work and expertise but the writer had taken extensive notes and he did not waste any time putting together a draft of the interview for my review.
The draft he had composed was flawless and all I could do was to congratulate the writer on a job well done and nitpickingly suggest a couple of minor word changes that might work better with the target audience (as well as our company’s SEO work.) So he did.
This experience with an external copywriter was by far the best one I’ve had so far. But believe me, I’ve had bad ones as well. So bad in fact, that I’ve rewritten entire interviews because the quality was so poor.
The interviewee – me – contributed to the trifecta by being on point and prepared with a list of topics and expert advice for the readers that I wanted to make sure made the interview. By also being open to the interviewer’s probing questions and suggestions, we managed to find a great format for the final interview and in the end – my interview got a lot more lines than I expected it would and therefore also more prime marketing and branding real estate in front of new readers.
To round off this great experience; the company’s marketing team reviewed the final copy, put their touch on it and also invited me for a photo shoot with an awesome photographer that made taking corporate photos quick, fun and easy-breezy.
To sum up:
Great content comes from knowledge, experience and great collaborations, however long or short, where everyone involved work to their own strengths.
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