Sponsored Content is on the rise, but it’s still in its early stages, both as a marketing method and as a means of earning an income from writing.
What is Sponsored Content exactly?
It’s basically a blog post that a company pays a publication or blog owner to run. Often the blog owner writes the post and then gets approval from the sponsoring entity, but sometimes the sponsor will provide the content to be run in the blog.
In either case, the blogger gets paid.
Sponsored Content is a cousin to the advertorial. While an advertorial works to make a sale at the end, Sponsored Content seeks to inform, entertain, and build trust and credibility for a brand.
Here are a few things you need to know about Sponsored Content:
It should be clear that the content is paid for and by whom. So if you have a blog that provides information to new mothers and a baby product company approaches you with a Sponsored Content arrangement, the content would need to lead with “This content is sponsored by XYZ Company” or some equivalent.
Sponsored Content does not sell directly.
Sponsored Content often takes the form of a listicle or a case study.
At the end of the sponsored post, there is often (but not always) a link to the sponsoring company’s website or to a specific product page.
Sponsored Content should be written in a tone and voice that matches the blog or publication where it’s going to appear.
Sponsored Content, when positioned honestly, gives companies a chance to be seen in a helpful light. And since their content is appearing on a trusted third-party blog or publication, it builds credibility and gives them an opportunity to connect with a targeted audience.
Now, as I mentioned in some cases, the blog owner or publication supplies the writing. In other cases, the sponsoring company does the writing. But in many situations, companies hire a freelancer like you to write their Sponsored Content.
Which is why, in this month’s Practice Assignment, you’re going to write a Sponsored Content post.
So, let’s get to the brief for your purely fictional client.
Your Creative Brief
The Client: Safe and Simple
The Overview: Safe and Simple provides affordable, easy-to-install home security cameras that homeowners can monitor from their smartphones. They are a young company, looking for new ways to connect with homeowners.
The Audience: First-time homeowners with an annual income between $50,000 and $100,000. These are people who take pride in ownership and who are hoping to make a profit when they sell their home in 5-10 years.
The Project: Safe and Simple is reaching out to both home improvement blogs and to gadget blogs seeking a Sponsored Content arrangement. They need a 500-word Sponsored Content blog post that will fit nicely into a gadget blog. The voice is a little geeky and very knowledgeable, and also budget-conscious. They would like the focus of the post to be on ‘3 Ways to Use Home Security Cameras That Have Nothing to Do with Security.’ They want a fun post that showcases the versatility of their product. Include at least one quote from the Safe and Simple Company President.
Practice Makes You Better
The Practice Assignments on Wealthy Web Writer are designed to help you hone your skills by giving you real-world-like assignments to write… and by giving you the opportunity to receive feedback on your work.
Once you have a draft of your Sponsored Content, you can ask for feedback in a number of ways.
- You can share it with your network of fellow writers and ask them to give you an honest review.
- You can share your work with our Online Copywriters group to solicit feedback there.
- Or you can submit your assignment to me for a possible live review on Wealthy Web Writer.
Each month, we choose at random several submissions to review in a live webinar event. Now keep in mind, we can’t guarantee a review. We almost always receive too many submissions to be able to include them all. But by submitting your assignment, you are agreeing to have it reviewed in a public forum, if selected.
All right, now that we’ve refreshed the rules, it’s time to get to work.
Once you’ve completed your Sponsored Content blog, you can send it in as either a pdf file or a doc file. Send your submissions to me (by clicking that link) with Wealthy Web Writer Sponsored Content Practice Assignment in the subject line. Make sure you include your name as part of the file name and provide your name and email address inside the document as well.
The submission deadline for your assignment to be considered for review is November 26th.
And remember, don’t hesitate to ask questions in the comments below.
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