Are You Sure You Possess All The Skills A Content Writer Today Must? Perform A Skill Check With These 10 Steps To Learn Content Writing In India.
There are various steps and processes on how to learn content writing. Some of these may be directly related to your content like subject research, organization of information in a readable format, search engine optimization. But some require marketing and selling skills, like when a content writer is looking for new clients.
Content writing has become a highly sought-after career option in India. This is due to some recent successes of freelancers and a rise in the popularity of the work-from-home culture.
A career in content writing has great opportunities as well as perks. Most content writing jobs also do not require any hard skills, and only some writing flair and ability to organize ideas and express in words.
Learning content writing leads to a fulfilling career. Writers can work from anywhere in the world. They can also work for any number of hours in a day. Another major benefit is that they can charge their own rate from clients if they work as a freelancer.
It is a fairly easy career field to break into. Journalism, mass communication, or literature degree, is an added advantage but not a necessity.
A certificate course in content writing can be completed in some weeks, as opposed to degrees that take more than a year to finish.
A content writer can start earning from the first assignment they get. They can get a decent level of earnings in just a few months.
Overall, it does not take more than 6-7 months from the date of starting a content writing course to the date of sustainable earning from just content writing. Whereas mass communication and literature programs take years to finish.
Content writing is a great option for work for students who are in college. They need to set aside only 3-4 hours every day and they can earn enough to look after their own expenses. This is a reason content writing is so popular among students.
You might also be interested in our article on How good a career in content writing is.
The demand for content writers is increasing with the increase in the number of new businesses opening up and existing businesses building their online presence.
And the vocation has also seen a lot of interest from Indian writers. Fluency in English, and income in dollars, often makes this career quite attractive for many.
In fact, content writing term is most-popularly searched in the Indian subcontinent. Even clients from overseas and content agencies outsource their content creation to countries like India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh, where labor is cheap and medium of English exists.
Dynamic work hours
Content writers can work for any number of hours as they want. If they are a student or a working professional, they can write for 3-4 hours every day.
If they want to earn money fast, they can also take as much work as they can perform, and earn more.
They do not need to be tied to an institutional framework. They do need to follow a 9-5 work shift. As it can be limiting for some and too much for others.
Freelance content writing has become a viable option for students, stay-at-home parents, working professionals looking to earn extra, and so on.
A great benefit of freelancing is that a person can work while traveling. This income from content writing can be used to fund the travel.
Many veteran content writers have achieved financial independence by working in this freelance model and earning in foreign currency much stronger than INR.
Many working professionals across many fields of work, dream of quitting their jobs and becoming a writer someday. These fields they work in, may or may not be creative at all.
Content writing would give these people the opportunity to practice their writing skills and see if they have what it takes.
Content writing can give a beginner experience to writing and help a person learn how to organize thoughts, how to express opinions and thoughts in words, the effect of different writing styles and prose, and so on.
Producing creative content like short stories or humor pieces can really help those who are serious for a full-time writing career. These people can always write for various video production channels on YouTube or podcasts and eventually showcase their talent.
How to learn more about content writing
Even though content writing is just one aspect of digital marketing, it is still a fairly difficult skill to master. There are various lessons to learn and the writer undergoes constant improvement as they progress through their career.
If you are someone who is looking at content writing career prospects and confused about how to learn more about content writing, it would be best to join a content writing training program.
There are numerous benefits of joining a program than to learn on your own as you go.
Firstly, you learn various skills, tips, and tricks in a remarkably short period of time. Normally, these would take months or even years if you learn simply from experience.
With a content writing training program, you further learn about common wisdom prevalent in the content writing industry. There is no way to know these things if you start working alone and continue like that.
You shave off months and years from your learning curve. This helps you get ahead of the competition. And competition is steadily rising in the content writing world. The extensive demand for content writers is being closely followed by several new professionals entering the industry every year.
Now let’s start with the various steps to learn content writing or improve your content. We are going to classify these steps into different categories as mentioned.
Steps to writing better quality content
The first step to learning content writing is to learn how to write good quality content. The web is choked with sub-par content that no one likes to read and does not get any visibility.
These steps will help any new as well as existing writers on how to improve their quality, writing style, and write more compelling and engaging pieces of content.
1. Read more
The first step to learning and improving content writing is to read more content. The reading list for a content writer must include popular blogs, newspaper articles, editorials and opinion columns, journals, magazines, ad copies, promotional emails, and so on.
To make the list more diverse and include a wider range of topics, novels, encyclopedia, memoirs, and technical books.
The more a writer reads, the larger is their repository of ideas. More ideas often lead to richer content as they reflect knowledge and expertise.
Another advantage of reading more for content writers is that they can learn various writing styles pertaining to different niche and market. For example, the language of a food blog or travel blog will be very different from an accounting blog. Because both of these blogs are targeting a totally distinct audience who differ in interests, education level, occupation, etc.
There are also various structures and rules to be followed while writing news content or press releases. The sole purpose of these forms of content is to convey information. As a result, they often follow 5W-1H and inverted pyramid rule of article structure.
Here is an article on books for content writers that can help improve your skills.
2. Write more
Practice is the ultimate way to develop your skill. This is true for any skill in the world. The more someone plays cricket as a batsman, the better batsman they will become. The more someone sings, the better their voice will become. The more someone writes, the better they become as a writer.
Writing and reading go hand in hand if someone is looking to develop as a writer. The lessons learned from reading are applied in writing. And thus, they become etched in memory.
The more frequently those lessons are applied, the faster they become a part of the writing style.
The foundation of a great piece of content is research. The more the content writer spends time researching the topic, the more detailed and engaging the content is going to be.
Users like to read content that is backed by data and studies. The credibility of the content becomes much higher when it is supported by actual facts and citations.
Research also ensures that the content is free of errors and wrongful assumptions of the writer.
While researching, the writer can make a note of all the points that they will discuss in their content. This is a great way to get new ideas about the content.
Steps on how to grow as a professional content writer
There are many steps to learn to become a better writer but in order to grow professionally in content writing career, these are some of the steps one needs to consider.
4. Pick a niche
Working in a niche space has many benefits. The first being that a writer can keep learning and keep digging information as he works on assignments. He/she can also enrich the content with their own experiences. This way a writer can become highly knowledgeable in a few fields.
When clients look for content writers, they often are willing to pay more to a writer who is a subject matter expert rather than someone who just writes about anything and everything. This is because writers who do not have a niche have no specific knowledge, just general knowledge about various subjects. Jack of all.
Content writers with a specific niche also build various contacts inside an industry over time. This increases the possibility of them getting more work when their clients, who belong to the same industry, talk about them.
These writers get recognition over time and are likely to become thought leaders or spokespersons for the industry.
5. Content writing certification
Even though it is possible to become a content writer without a formal certification or relevant degree in communication or literature, there are ways to climb up the ladder quickly.
The easiest way to learn content writing in India is to get a content writing certification.
It has many benefits.
A content writing certification adds credibility to one’s skills and makes it easier for employers to trust their abilities. Certification ensures that aa content writer understands at least the basics of the work.
The most popular content writing certifications are from Google and Hubspot. There are other organizations that provide them too.
These certifications often conduct a test. Candidates cannot repeat the tests for a few months if they fail. And they need to score more than 80% in these tests.
This is why to learn content writing in India, the best option is to join a content writing training institute. These institutes teach everything there is to learn about content writing and digital marketing.
Candidates learn how to write effective, well-researched content, that is optimized for search and is relevant to the user. Here they can also learn how to find new clients and how much to charge for work.
Steps to increase the visibility of a content
Now that we have learned how to improve the quality of writing and how to progress in the content writing career, it is time to learn what can be done to increase the visibility of content and increase its ranking, right now.
6. Search Engine Optimization
SEO falls under the technical requirements for publishing content. It’s objective is to help search engines identify and index the webpages under specific search keywords and then list the webpages in results when a user makes that search.
Many brands invest a lot of money into SEO for their websites and webpages. This is because when a website or an article shows up in the search results, the traffic coming from there to the website is organic.
Organic traffic is free of cost. The other form of traffic is paid traffic, which is obtained through PPC ads.
So the cost of user acquisition for a user that comes through organic methods is negligible.
SEO involves various things. These are
- Keyword density
- Image attributes
- Responsive design
- Meta description
Finding the right focus keyword is the first step to creating content that ranks for the right search queries. There are various tools in order to do that.
As per an estimate, Google, the most popular search engine, looks over 200 webpage parameters to perform indexing of the webpage. Therefore, no one knows the comprehensive list of all the SEO parameters. And all search engines including Bing, Yahoo, and DuckDuckGo, keep their algorithms closely guarded.
But many organizations have found various techniques, by trial and error.
The most effective technique to rank an article is to just write helpful, detailed, and relevant content. Without worrying about keywords and other parameters.
7. Catchy headlines
Headlines are very important to gather attention. It is often used to sum up the benefits to the user, after reading the content. There are some guidelines for the perfect headline.
First and foremost, a headline should provide a summary of the content. It should not be misleading or overly sensational. Click-baity headlines are great at making users click, but when users find out that the content was not worth the hype, they feel cheated.
They might quickly quit the webpage. They may even leave a bad review or comment. This is especially dangerous in case of social media posts or YouTube videos that link to your content.
Headlines should, nevertheless, be catchy and capture attention. The user must feel compelled to click them. But also make sure that the content matches the hype.
It is a good practice for headlines to also contain the main SEO keyphrase or its synonyms. This helps search engines identify what the article is about.
8. Digital marketing tools
There is a plethora of digital marketing tools out there for content writers. Many of them are even free to use. The tools are simply indispensable in creating a great piece of content and to learn about content writing.
These tools can help us find popular search terms during a certain time period, in a certain niche, find out what are the keywords for which any piece of content is ranking, and so on.
We can even look at websites that are popular in a particular niche and find out which pages or articles are the most popular. This can help us understand what kind of content is popular in any niche or genre.
Ubersuggest is a great tool for this. With Ubersuggest, we can also check the ranking difficulty of any article based on its main keyphrase.
There are other paid tools like Moz, Buzzsumo, and Ahrefs. These are great tools with multiple benefits. We can find out domain authority or page authority, which is a measure of how much value it gets from search engines, for different pages and websites.
We can look up an article and find various keywords for which it ranks. We can look at its ranking history. We can also find which websites are linking to that article or page.
These websites also help us perform an SEO audit on our website. SEO audit is a process where we can identify shortcomings in our SEO plan. These shortcomings may include broken links, dead pages, under-optimized pages, and so on.
There are also many free tools like google keyword planner, google trends, keywordshitter, answerthepublic.com, Alexa, and many more.
Steps on how to increase the reach of any content
Content promotion helps to reach more users without changing or improving the content.
9. Content promotion
Writing content is one thing. But learning content writing also involves promoting the content. This becomes even more important when a piece of content is something that can not be optimized for SEO. For example, creative writing piece or news article.
Most popular content promotion channels are social media platforms. These include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, and others.
Many websites or publishers have their own social media accounts, either in their name or in the name of the website. They use those accounts to promote and link their content in their posts.
This way, these blogs get some traffic from social platforms.
Another way to promote content is through e-mail newsletters. Most websites like Quora, Reddit, Medium, use mail newsletters to promote selected pieces of content to bring users to the website.
This is done by creating a mailing list by asking users to create an account. Many blogs have also adopted this model to populate their mailing list.
Backlinks are like the street credits for a piece of content. Essentially, they endorse a piece of content for credibility and trust.
Backlinks are when other webpages link to a piece of content. This could be for reference. But search engines give much emphasis on backlinks.
The more the backlinks to a webpage or a website, the more it is trusted across the web. This increases the page’s page authority and the website’s domain authority.
This PA and DA are extremely important factors for search engines when they rank articles.
There are many websites that indulge in buying and selling of backlinks. There are also other unethical ways to gain them. But at the end, when the search engines find out, these websites are penalized heavily.
It is best to build the network over time.
The best way to get links from different websites is to just write great content. The content that is informative, helpful, relevant, and gives a totally new perspective, is sure to get attention.
So these were the 10 steps to learn content writing in India.
As we can see here, there are different ways to write great content and improve as a content writer. We saw how it is possible to improve the quality of content, learned basic knowledge on how to rank your articles, how to promote them in different media, etc.
If you are serious on how to learn content writing in India, the best and the simplest option is to join a content writing coaching.
That way you can be sure that you have learned all the skills a content writer must know, in detail. You will not only learn tips and tricks that only industry professionals know about, but also get months ahead in terms of career growth.
Content writing in India has seen a great surge in both demand and the number of writers. Seeing this, many content writing coaching have come up. So make sure to check the credentials and only go for renowned institutions.