Hiring a freelance editor can be the difference between low quality and high converting content. A freelance editor can make your content consistent, readable and compelling. They can make it flow with your readers to your call to action and boost your business.
Yet, not all editors are equal. How do you find one who knows the game inside and out? Here’s how to hire the best.
Figure Out Where to Find a Serious Freelance Editor
The decision to hire a freelance editor opens up a world of options because you’re hiring online. There are countless sources and platforms where you can find a range of editors. So, it can be a challenge to find the right candidate in the crowded market.
It’s wise first to find out the platforms or sources that give you high chances of finding the best editor. Using googled options can be risky. It can be challenging to count on unvetted editors.
Most freelance editor websites allow you to reach out to freelancers of your choice. You can select a few candidates and check if their profiles match your expectations. This gives you access to editors with proof of experience.
Even so, you can’t put all your trust in freelance platforms. You can never be sure whether an editor’s profile is genuine or fake. Cases of identity fraud are surging on most remote working websites. Average freelancers may hide behind high-rated accounts using VPNs.
Your best bet to hire an editor is to use a platform that vets freelancers and allows interviews. Apart from confirming credibility, you want to interact with an editor before hiring. Platforms like FreeUp are perfect examples of places that advance these benefits.
Another good hunting ground for quality editors is your local freelance editors association. There’s the Editorial Freelancers Association and the National Association for Independent Writers and Editors in the US.
Know Your Needs
Businesses have varying needs so a general freelance editor may not suit you. Some businesses need unique knowledge that calls for specialist editors.
You want to hire an editor who understands your niche and can meet your demands. They need to have in-depth knowledge and some experience in your industry.
Each project editing gig might be different and some are more demanding. Define your expectations about the level of edits, type of edits and word count. This means you also need to know the various types of editors.
Common editors you may find are freelance book editors and freelance copy editors. Freelance book editors usually do developmental editing. They look at the structure, formatting, character development, plot and more.
Establish Your Expectations
A book or developmental editor’s role is to recommend changes that can improve and enhance your copy. They’ll point out areas that need rewriting and give out suggestions on how to alter them. Developmental editing can be time-consuming and costlier than copy editing.
Copy editing involves reviewing and removing errors from given content. A copy editor checks your copy for grammar, spelling, and typo errors and corrects.
Knowing the type of editor you need allows you to set clear project expectations. If you want to improve the structure and make your copy readable then both types are necessary. If you have no idea what your content needs to be better, ask for a full editing service.
Check Social Proof
Knowing a freelance editor is an expert in your field may not be enough. You still have to look at their portfolio, references and testimonials before deciding.
Go through their profiles and look at their ratings if you’re hiring from a freelance platform. LinkedIn can give you further proof of an editor’s professionalism. Quality editors value their image so they’re likely to use the same names throughout.
Personal freelance editor websites can reveal a ton about an editor’s potential. Look at the presentation, quality of content, and testimonials. Find out what other businesses are saying about the freelancer’s work.
Ask the Right Questions
So you’ve checked out a few testimonials and found some qualified candidates. The next important thing is to create a set of questions and prepare for an interview. A video call is the best way of examining your editor’s professionalism and personality. Here are some questions you should consider asking:
- What is your most outstanding achievement as an editor?
- Why are you interested in my project?
- What is your favorite reading content?
- How do you handle deadlines when dealing with different types of customers? For example, how do you take a demanding and easy-going client?
- How do you approach a complex project?
- What is your worst failure?
- Are you a member of any freelance editors association?
- What is your editing approach and what editing systems do you use?
- How fast do you respond to inquiries?
A savvy editor is likely to be confident and open-minded during the interview. They may not check all the boxes but they’ll show commitment and desire to be part of your project. You may not vibe with the most qualified editor but the one who blends with your business interests.
Agree With Pricing and Pay Dates
One of the challenging parts of hiring a freelance editor is agreeing on a reasonable price. Most editors display their rates on their websites but the pricing isn’t always clear. This is because most of the time, the final rate depends on a project’s specifics.
Editors’ rates also vary based on their experience, speed and sometimes location. An experienced editor is likely to charge way higher. Factors like differing pricing approaches affect the final rate.
This is why it’s sometimes a challenge to compare editor rates unless you’re hiring on a dedicated website. At Freeup, you’re matched with a vetted editor based on your budget and editing needs. This saves you time by preventing the need to review many pricing terms.
While pricing is a challenge, you’re likely to find the right editor if you’re patient. The worst mistake you can make is to overfocus on cost instead of quality. Experienced editors usually value their time so they charge a premium price.
Hire the Best Freelance Editor Now
Finding a freelance editor who matches your interests, budget and goals can be tricky. You may have to make some budget or project compromises to find a fitting candidate. Consider a platform where they vet editors and still allow you to interview them.
Overall, take your time and find the best person for the job. For more tips and advice on business, check out the rest of our blog.