5 Skills All Great Content Writers Possess

May 19, 2021

Content marketing is a job that looks easy at first glance — but there are many nuances to producing quality content.

A common misconception made by newbie writers is that you only need a good vocabulary to write well.

But the truth is: a bad message written articulately is still a bad message.

Leave verbosity in the classroom. Tiring your audience with meandering text won’t help, either.

Great content writers understand two truths:

  1. Businesses want their web pages and blogs to generate money. 
  2. Readers want quick and accessible information. 

As this is the case, content writers who wish to excel should strive to produce quality and impactful content through:

  • Maintaining accuracy
  • Applying appropriate voices
  • Hooking readers in
  • Driving conversions

Pretty straightforward content strategy, right? Well, you only have a few chances to attract your readers before they make a purchasing decision. Every word counts.

Let’s explore what elevates truly great content writers from the pack.

1) They Have Complete Language Mastery

No competent client would hire blog writers who frequently turn in typography errors or awkward sentence structures.

Whatever the language you’re writing in, your blog content must be conveyed articulately.

You also don’t have to live in western countries to provide content services or to be considered a professional content writer.

As long as you’re a disciplined SEO writer providing fast turnaround times and high quality content — you’re good to go.

So as long as you’re driven, you can make your mark in the wonderful world of content writing.

2) They Research Topics That Go Above and Beyond

Believe it or not, many content writing services write about topics they aren’t familiar with at the start.

But that doesn’t disqualify them from writing web content posts, even for the most obscure topics.

Needless to say, proper research is of utmost importance for any content writing service.

It invokes an air of credibility and authority — which is a huge asset to any business.

That said, there are two types of website content writers who approach the research process:

  • Average writers browse only one or two websites before getting down to business.
  • Great writers dig deeply into multiple sources to craft authoritative website content.

Great writers know how to navigate and research the web to create the best original content that caters to both clients and search engines.

Strive to produce truly valuable web content. Excellent writers aren’t afraid to roll up their sleeves and learn about a topic from every angle to deliver the best type of content, either.

Nothing hurts a writer’s pride more than having their website content questioned by clients and readers.

But the harsh truth is: if you fail to conform to content marketplace standards, you deserve every ounce of criticism. Misinformation is rampant enough.

Being a great content writer entails consistently accessing vetted research sources.

To avoid the catastrophe of hawking false or incomplete information — it all starts by researching SEO content properly.

3) They Have Flexible Content Creation Styles

Businesses want a brand voice that best represents them.

And a single voice doesn’t fit all.

For instance, a law firm would hire a writer who understands law jargon.

A non-profit charity would hire a writer who can compel readers to support a cause.

With such fierce competition, average writers with no distinct voice are often left without work. Especially those who are still wading through the first few months of their writing journey.

But it’s not impossible to get noticed. There are even stories of writers earning as much as $120,000 in their first year alone.

But in order to achieve great heights, you have to be prepared to apply a flexible writing style.

Let’s face it: if you stick to a single writing style, you are limiting your options. You’re giving your business to other writers who are open to adjusting to their clients’ needs.

Being flexible is an asset. If a writer is unable to follow the brief of their client, they might as well be writing their own resignation letter.

That said, content is a product of each writer’s unique, creative expression. But in the grand scheme of things, content serves to benefit the client and lead the reader to actionable results.

By being flexible, you get to take on a larger number of clients and improve your writing as a whole. It is a win-win situation.

4) They Write Clearly and Succinctly

Albert Einstein once said, “If you can’t explain it to a six-year-old, you don’t understand it yourself.”

That sentiment couldn’t hold more truth for content writing.

Short sentences pack a mighty punch. They are straightforward and flow smoothly.

If your sentence takes longer than 8 seconds to read, the average reader may not even bother finishing the sentence.

They could skip the article altogether, leaving your post’s call to action unread.

Not the desired result, right?

Great writers know how to write short but impactful content — without beating around the bush.

They write with the assumption that the reader will hop off at any time. That’s achieved by injecting regular hooks and guiding the audience along to the last sentence.

So if you want to become a great content writer, learn the art of using fewer words.

It works wonders.

5) They Write With Content Marketing in Mind

In commerce, writing should always serve a purpose.

A content writer is essentially an arm of the content marketing department: they bring warm leads through digital marketing by applying a comprehensive content marketing strategy.

Great content writers and content writing services have mastered the art of embedding their call to action in the articles they produce.

They do this by generating traffic in search engines through SEO (search engine optimization), crafting enticing titles, inserting transition words, and adding pictures that serve as breaks.

By fulfilling these requirements, the article not only serves as a source of information and blog content for a business — but it also acts as a passive touchpoint for prospective customers seeking their products or services.

Want to See What Good Content Writing Services Look Like?

Many factors separate a great blog writer from an average blog writer. To summarize the points above, a great writer must have a good grasp on the following:

  • Mastery over the language
  • Rigorous research practices
  • A flexible voice and style
  • Succinct and clear writing
  • A compelling CTA in mind 

Finding a writer who hits all five marks, believe it or not, does not come easy.

Many self-proclaimed writers haven’t even been trained to write commercially, either.

You and your company deserve better than average writing.

Katrina McKinnon


I'm Katrina McKinnon, founder of CopySmiths and Small Revolution. In my 20 years of experience, I have helped online businesses create high-performing content specifically on an eCommerce store's blog. Find me on LinkedIn and Twitter.