In the media landscape, there are many different mediums to use to get your story out there. Whether it be an earned article or podcast, owned blog post, or TV show, the possibilities seem endless. One lucrative way to establish yourself or your client as a thought leader is through guest articles. However, many of our clients at our boutique PR firm have great ideas and stories to share, but not enough time to share them. That’s where ghostwriting comes into play.
Through ghostwriting, the writer creates articles in the voice, tone and rhetoric of their clients to share their stories. These stories are then published under the authorship of the client. It is a great way to establish credibility and share expertise, and is a great tactic used by many successful PR professionals to help their clients build their brand. However, it is a tricky skill to master. That’s why we compiled a list of tips to help you up your ghostwriting game to help your clients succeed.
Interview Your Clients — Thoroughly
While you probably already know your client inside and out, you’re not the actual expert on the topic. When you have the opportunity to interview the person you are ghostwriting for, you get to understand their view and how they present themselves, themes, tone, and pick up on signature words and phrases they use. You can also get a sense of who they are from their website, social media accounts, and personal blogs if they have one.
If you pick up on signature words and phrases, it is imperative to use them. It will make your ghostwriting come off as personal, and readers will really get to understand the client and their message.
It’s Their Perspective — Not Yours
As a ghostwriter, you have to remember it’s not your opinion that matters. You are writing for someone else. You need to let their opinions be expressed. Even if you disagree with your client’s beliefs, you have to be ready to put that aside and write on their behalf. Even if you disagree with your client, that is not a completely bad thing. You are already on top of the opposite thought of your client, and readers may have that opinion too. With being ahead of the game, you can think out and even discuss what others may think about the topic with your client. You can have a plan of action and commentary waiting if it is needed.
Do Your Own Research
Trends are constantly evolving, and you may be working on a ghostwriting assignment for a client for several months. If this happens, it is important to be on top of the industry as your client would be. No matter the industry or client, you need to make sure you know what is going on and changing. Putting in time to research the topic and become an expert yourself will help you put the best foot forward for your client.
Throughout your PR career, you are most likely going to have to ghostwrite on behalf of various clients. That means being familiar with multiple industries, voices, views and opinions. To stay adaptable and understand where your clients’ thoughts and beliefs are coming from, you can read articles and watch documentaries on the topic. The more you dive into the world of your client, the more adaptable you will be to writing for them.
Lastly, it is always important to get the approval of who you are ghostwriting for. You never want to release anything your client has not approved, especially something that will have their name as the author. You want to make sure it is fact-checked, edited and approved by your client before hitting ‘publish.’
Whether you’re at a boutique PR firm or in-house, you will most likely be ghostwriting for a brand at some point in your career for press. To learn more about different kinds of press for your clients, click here.