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Hangfive

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We've been working on a new website on and off for some time now, but just can't seem to find the time to write all the content. Has anybody here sucessfully hired a contractor for copywriting or article writing using elance.com or someother means of finding a cost competitive writer?
 

Morticia

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Can I offer some words of advice? If you hire someone to write for you, the first thing they will do is ask you a bunch of questions. You may even have to fill out a form telling them what you want the content to say. What you're really paying for is the style.
SO, if you can write, and you're going to have to tell someone else what you want to say anyway, why not pretend you have a deadline to get the info to the copywriter and start making notes? You may surprise yourself if you keep a notebook nearby and jot down ideas as they come to you.
Study other sites you like and see how they made the content fit the place.
THEN, even if you do decide to hire someone, you're not wasting money on them not 'getting' your vision. You can have a few websites lined up and say, 'We like this. How can you make ours sound as good without copying?'
No matter how you slice it, you will have to provide the content.
 

EmptyNest

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Sorry but no one knows your place like you do. Your web site is your # 1 marketing tool YOU HAVE TO FIND THE TIME...and yes...I am yelling here :) You must put yourself into your site and then find a pro to complete the design and make it the best you can put out there. Your livlihood depends on it.
 

Don Draper

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As someone who just rewrote 80% of the text for our website there is just no substitute for you. You are the only one who knows what needs to be on your site, how you want to convey the info to your prospective guests.
By all means you can hire someone to edit the text and "pretty it up" for you once you have the main body done if you're not confident in the finished product...and many on this site are very good at that and would be happy to help.
 

seashanty

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not everyone is a good writer or can get those words down the way they want them. just like not everyone takes great (or good) photos. that's why there are people who are paid to write ad copy or who are paid to create websites using only basic info provided by the owner.
sorry i can't speak about elance.
would you be comfortable sharing some of your copy here and seeing if some of the innmates can help you tweak it and improve on it?
a lot of us have helped one another by critiquing photos and logos, and i was helped by jb who edited a photo of mine to hide unsightly wires. maybe you can be helped with the copy on your site.
 

Innkeeper To Go

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I agree wholeheartedly with Morticia and Catlady. You just have to do this yourself. There's no way that someone else is going to be writing the content for your site without a whole lot of help from you anyway.
Just take the plunge and write it. Make a list of things you want to include. Make each of those list items into a sentence or blurb. String them together to create a narrative. And voila you've got content.
 

Hangfive

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We've written the home page, room pages, about us and a few other important pages and are happy with the results. At this point I am trying to get motivated to write the pages about our area and what to do....you know extra content and a reason to stay on or come back to our site. I have a notebook full of good ideas and outlines for a number of pages, just can't seem to get it done.
 

JBloggs

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I recently had a guest from the midwest and a state I have never been to and learned so much about their area. It was very interesting to me. We don't have guests from there very often - only a handful I can recall. I can think of a half dozen or more things I would like to do if I ever get the chance to visit!
My only comment is that every person is different, so some of the things that might seem B&B appropriate might not be everyone's cup of tea, like mentioned on another forum - a local farm where I can see newborn lamb's and wander around and see the dairy production is something I personally would love to do. It is off the beaten track for typical tourists. Agritourism, heritage tourism, blueways, are all gaining popularity. So the more the merrier.
 

Morticia

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We've written the home page, room pages, about us and a few other important pages and are happy with the results. At this point I am trying to get motivated to write the pages about our area and what to do....you know extra content and a reason to stay on or come back to our site. I have a notebook full of good ideas and outlines for a number of pages, just can't seem to get it done..
I know exactly what you mean! My events page needs so much work and everytime I look at it I'm overwhelmed. Good, tho, that the other pages are done. It means you're at the last 'room' that needs painting! Always the hardest one to get motivated on.
Tell you what, toss out some ideas here and we'll try to toss some back as a way to get you motivated again.
 

MTLLodge

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I never went to a tractor pull till this year and I really enjoyed it. Loves the good country living. Is hoping to go to the county fair this year! Isn't life grand!
 

seashanty

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We've written the home page, room pages, about us and a few other important pages and are happy with the results. At this point I am trying to get motivated to write the pages about our area and what to do....you know extra content and a reason to stay on or come back to our site. I have a notebook full of good ideas and outlines for a number of pages, just can't seem to get it done..
Hangfive said:
We've written the home page, room pages, about us and a few other important pages and are happy with the results. At this point I am trying to get motivated to write the pages about our area and what to do....you know extra content and a reason to stay on or come back to our site. I have a notebook full of good ideas and outlines for a number of pages, just can't seem to get it done.
so it sounds like you just need to flesh out what you have.
rules of writing for websites ... who, what, when, where, why, how and how much
schedule your writing time ... put it right in there with paying the bills and doing laundry. every small business owner has to devote time to marketing.
pick your page title and your style ... take a look at what appeals to you on other websites. formal or folksy.
get your ideas OUT of your notebook and onto the computer screen. just seeing them onscreen will help you envision your page.
like ... while in boston, don't miss THIS. insert small description and link. just MAKE SURE that any links open in a new window so that prospective guests aren't taken away from your site.
you also want to keep your copy timely. if there's a folk music festival or groundhog day celebration coming up, get that on your website ahead of time and then remove it. unless it's the kind of EVENT that people look forward to year after year and reserve rooms for ahead of time.
keep checking any links that you post in your 'about boston' or whatever. if you link to something that disappears, it frustrates your readers.
i am not a fan of pages and pages of copy on websites. to me, that's what your BLOG is for. you can put anyting on there ... be sure to link to your blog.
websites are not carved in stone. you get it up and then you tweak it, refine it, change it. that's why it's great to be able to change your own content.
also, be sure to view your website in different browsers. sometimes what looks great in firefox doesn't look right in internet explorer or safari.
 

EmptyNest

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We've written the home page, room pages, about us and a few other important pages and are happy with the results. At this point I am trying to get motivated to write the pages about our area and what to do....you know extra content and a reason to stay on or come back to our site. I have a notebook full of good ideas and outlines for a number of pages, just can't seem to get it done..
Hangfive said:
We've written the home page, room pages, about us and a few other important pages and are happy with the results. At this point I am trying to get motivated to write the pages about our area and what to do....you know extra content and a reason to stay on or come back to our site. I have a notebook full of good ideas and outlines for a number of pages, just can't seem to get it done.
so it sounds like you just need to flesh out what you have.
rules of writing for websites ... who, what, when, where, why, how and how much
schedule your writing time ... put it right in there with paying the bills and doing laundry. every small business owner has to devote time to marketing.
pick your page title and your style ... take a look at what appeals to you on other websites. formal or folksy.
get your ideas OUT of your notebook and onto the computer screen. just seeing them onscreen will help you envision your page.
like ... while in boston, don't miss THIS. insert small description and link. just MAKE SURE that any links open in a new window so that prospective guests aren't taken away from your site.
you also want to keep your copy timely. if there's a folk music festival or groundhog day celebration coming up, get that on your website ahead of time and then remove it. unless it's the kind of EVENT that people look forward to year after year and reserve rooms for ahead of time.
keep checking any links that you post in your 'about boston' or whatever. if you link to something that disappears, it frustrates your readers.
i am not a fan of pages and pages of copy on websites. to me, that's what your BLOG is for. you can put anyting on there ... be sure to link to your blog.
websites are not carved in stone. you get it up and then you tweak it, refine it, change it. that's why it's great to be able to change your own content.
also, be sure to view your website in different browsers. sometimes what looks great in firefox doesn't look right in internet explorer or safari.
.
One more thing...remember PEOPLE DON'T READ. Do not wander aimlessly with your text. Bullet statements draw in the eye much better.
 

gillumhouse

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We've written the home page, room pages, about us and a few other important pages and are happy with the results. At this point I am trying to get motivated to write the pages about our area and what to do....you know extra content and a reason to stay on or come back to our site. I have a notebook full of good ideas and outlines for a number of pages, just can't seem to get it done..
Hangfive said:
We've written the home page, room pages, about us and a few other important pages and are happy with the results. At this point I am trying to get motivated to write the pages about our area and what to do....you know extra content and a reason to stay on or come back to our site. I have a notebook full of good ideas and outlines for a number of pages, just can't seem to get it done.
so it sounds like you just need to flesh out what you have.
rules of writing for websites ... who, what, when, where, why, how and how much
schedule your writing time ... put it right in there with paying the bills and doing laundry. every small business owner has to devote time to marketing.
pick your page title and your style ... take a look at what appeals to you on other websites. formal or folksy.
get your ideas OUT of your notebook and onto the computer screen. just seeing them onscreen will help you envision your page.
like ... while in boston, don't miss THIS. insert small description and link. just MAKE SURE that any links open in a new window so that prospective guests aren't taken away from your site.
you also want to keep your copy timely. if there's a folk music festival or groundhog day celebration coming up, get that on your website ahead of time and then remove it. unless it's the kind of EVENT that people look forward to year after year and reserve rooms for ahead of time.
keep checking any links that you post in your 'about boston' or whatever. if you link to something that disappears, it frustrates your readers.
i am not a fan of pages and pages of copy on websites. to me, that's what your BLOG is for. you can put anyting on there ... be sure to link to your blog.
websites are not carved in stone. you get it up and then you tweak it, refine it, change it. that's why it's great to be able to change your own content.
also, be sure to view your website in different browsers. sometimes what looks great in firefox doesn't look right in internet explorer or safari.
.
rules of writing for websites ... who, what, when, where, why, how and how much
And "what is in it for me" (the guest) - why they will like it, do it, go there... which is different from why others may go there or why it was built.
 

seashanty

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what does the tractor pull in a tractor pull? this would be all new to me!
 

gillumhouse

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what does the tractor pull in a tractor pull? this would be all new to me!.
Sleds that are kind of like pallets that are loaded with weight. Horse pulls and tractor pulls are the same principle - which team of horses or which tractor can pull the most weight. They have to pull the weight a minimum distance to win.
 

Penelope

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what does the tractor pull in a tractor pull? this would be all new to me!.
Sleds that are kind of like pallets that are loaded with weight. Horse pulls and tractor pulls are the same principle - which team of horses or which tractor can pull the most weight. They have to pull the weight a minimum distance to win.
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gillumhouse said:
Sleds that are kind of like pallets that are loaded with weight. Horse pulls and tractor pulls are the same principle - which team of horses or which tractor can pull the most weight. They have to pull the weight a minimum distance to win.
Sometimes, they pull each other, back to back. It's like a large horsepower, four wheel, tug-of-war, with chains and men in dirty ball caps. I say this with the utmost admiration: my brother loves doing these in the summer around here...
 

MTLLodge

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This one town close by us had a garden tractor pull, and GIRLS did it also! LOL Never knew there was so much fun down on the farm.
 

JBloggs

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This one town close by us had a garden tractor pull, and GIRLS did it also! LOL Never knew there was so much fun down on the farm..
MTLLodge said:
This one town close by us had a garden tractor pull, and GIRLS did it also! LOL Never knew there was so much fun down on the farm.
We have lots of farm girls in the tractor pulls as well. Your last line sounds like a country song. :) A number of country songs. :)
 

Penelope

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This one town close by us had a garden tractor pull, and GIRLS did it also! LOL Never knew there was so much fun down on the farm..
MTLLodge said:
This one town close by us had a garden tractor pull, and GIRLS did it also! LOL Never knew there was so much fun down on the farm.
We have lots of farm girls in the tractor pulls as well. Your last line sounds like a country song. :) A number of country songs. :)
.
Joey Bloggs said:
MTLLodge said:
This one town close by us had a garden tractor pull, and GIRLS did it also! LOL Never knew there was so much fun down on the farm.
We have lots of farm girls in the tractor pulls as well. Your last line sounds like a country song. :) A number of country songs. :)
I love living in the country. Our great "across the road" friends have practice tractor pulls in their driveway to get ready for the upcoming meets. It's great fun to watch them pull (not going anywhere); but just the closeness of the relationships, the purity of the laughter, and the ease of the life is what makes it for us! "Fun" is different to every person, but for us, that is FUN!
 
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