New writer Victoria Squirlock sat down with staff writer Georgina Torbet to ask her what it’s like working for Content Viking.
Victoria: So, Georgina, how long have you been writing for Content Viking?
Georgina: I’ve been working for Content Viking for 3 years now.
Victoria: That’s great! So, you must be enjoying it having been working here for so long.
Georgina: Yep, it’s pretty cool!
Victoria: Tell me a bit about the workload.
Georgina: Every month companies needing content for their websites or blogs will reach out to Content Viking. They’ll give us a certain number of blog posts, and sometimes they’ll provide titles and instruction as well. All of this discussion happens behind the scenes between the business development team and the client. Once the scope of the project is determined, the editor will send out emails to the staff writers with the topics of articles and their corresponding due dates.
Victoria: How many writers are usually assigned to a client?
Georgina: It depends on the amount of articles the client needs. For bigger projects, there will be 3-4 writers assigned, and for smaller projects you’ll probably be the only staff writer on the project.
Victoria: How many articles are you usually assigned a month?
Georgina: Again, it depends on how big the project is. But for one of the bigger clients I am assigned to, I would typically write 10 articles every two weeks.
Victoria: So essentially you would have at least one article due every day?
Victoria: Sounds like a lot. Was there any time when writing every day became overwhelming?
Georgina: No. To be honest, I love to write and I welcome the workload. And the way Content Viking works is very efficient. Remember that monthly scheduling email from the editor I talked about earlier? Seeing an email with all the articles you’ll have to produce for a given client might seem a bit overwhelming, but when you have all the due dates and topics at the beginning of the month, it’s fairly easy to manage your time.
Victoria: So are you saying that you need to be able to manage your time well in order to succeed at Content Viking?
Georgina: Absolutely. Geoff and our editor are always a phone call or email away to help, but at the end of the day, as a writer, it is my responsibility to get the articles submitted on time. Unless you have a major personal issue, there is no excuse for not producing on time, since you have all the topics and due dates in advance.
Victoria: Yep, that makes sense. So you wouldn’t recommend this job to someone who needs to be micro-managed?
Georgina: Definitely not. I’d say one of the best aspects about the culture is that all my work is done at my own discretion. I can do my writing from anywhere at any time. As long as I produce quality writing and submit it on time, then I have done my job. That’s not for everyone though.
Victoria: It’s nice that Content Viking trusts its writers enough to offer them so much freedom. It seems like the culture at Content Viking is pretty intense in the sense that you all write masses of articles for clients, but also lets you work at your own pace.
Georgina: Yes! The culture is an aspect that has kept me here for 3 years and counting.
Victoria: That’s great to hear. Going back to your workload and submitting articles, what do you do when you have questions on an article or a topic? And in a broader sense, how do you communicate with each other at Content Viking?
Georgina: All the staff at Content Viking communicate by email, Skype and phone. Questions are always encouraged. Asking questions leads to a greater understanding of the project at hand, which in turn leads to fewer mistakes and better writing.
Victoria: You mentioned you communicate a lot through email. Do you ever have any issues with that? For example, not being able to completely articulate a thought? Or maybe not understanding a person’s tone of voice through text? Or not understanding what is being ask of you for a project?
Georgina: Oh yes. There have been times that I thought I understood what was being asked of me for a project and after submitting it, I receive an email from my editor or Geoff that’s like “hmm… not quite.”
Victoria: Isn’t that discouraging?
Georgina: I wouldn’t say discouraging. But it is tough when you worked several hours on an article, only to realize that you made some mistakes. That can sometimes be hard on your schedule, because you’ll have to redo the article – which might set you back a day or two. Then again, mistakes are inevitable, and at Content Viking we always try and learn from them and see them as a stepping stone to success.
Victoria: Agreed, learning from your mistakes is very important. Have you ever been assigned a client you didn’t know much about? What do you do in that situation?
Georgina: Sure. We get lots of different types of clients at Content Viking. I enjoy writing about business and science topics, but in the past I’ve also been assigned work about the food industry and cybersecurity. If I ever feel unsure, I consult the onboarding document sent to us by the editor at the start of the project. That will tell me lots of valuable information about the client, their industry and preferred writing style.
Failing that, help from the editor is a simple email or call away. And if the Content Viking staff can’t solve a client-specific problem, we also sometimes receive the client’s email address so we can contact them directly.
Victoria: It’s always good to have help. My last question for you is: have you ever been in a situation where you did not agree with or like the content you were writing?
Georgina: Yes, one instance comes to mind. My background is in psychology, so I have strong opinions about most psychological topics. I was assigned a client who wanted articles written that advocated an opinion that ran counter to my own. I felt uncomfortable writing that content and had a meeting with Geoff where I expressed my concerns and thoughts. It was a simple matter to switch my assignment with another writer. The fact that I can speak my mind is another thing that has kept me working at Content Viking for the past three years.
Victoria: That’s amazing. So many times, companies think “I’m paying you, so you will write the articles you are assigned.” The culture at Content Viking seems to place a strong emphasis on respect.