How to hire writers without paying a penny

There are good reasons to have somebody else write your blog posts for you. The “free” ways actually have benefits you won’t get by just paying a writer.

Many people write their own blogs.  But sometimes they don’t.  Sometimes they get other people to write some of their posts.  And sometimes they pay the writer to do that…but sometimes they don’t.

In fact, there are three ways to get other people to write your blog posts for you without paying a penny.  OK, so I cheated a bit in the title when I used the word “hire”.  If you want someone else to take care of the writing, and you can’t seem to find a spare hundred dollars in your pockets, here are three strategies to get others to write your blog posts for free.

3 ways to get free writing for your blog

Network – invite a guest blogger

Perhaps the most obvious way to get free content is by publishing guest posts.  There are many good reasons why you might want to invite a guest blogger, and laziness is just one of them.

  • You want to offer your readers expertise from someone who knows about a specific point better than you do.
  • You want to bring in some variety, a fresh voice, a new perspective.
  • You want somebody to recount their experiences.
  • You want to suck up to an influencer.
  • You get a partner in promotion, which should mean twice as much social media activity around the post.
  • Your brain hurts (but that’s a bit like the laziness thing).

To say this is “free” would be inaccurate.  It is true that you don’t have to pay a penny, but you do have to give them credit and link to their website and social media profiles.  This means that you not only share the glory, but you also share the traffic, so some readers will wander off to the guest blogger’s website or Twitter profile.

Curation – curate content.

Another simple way to create blog content without  paying a writer is to curate content.  The most obvious way to do this is by taking the week’s top stories in your niche from major news sites, and dropping the first couple paragraphs of the articles into a post called “Top 5 News Stories in Plumbing/Massage/Sanitation/Whatever this Week”.  As long as you copy less than ten percent of the article, and give a credit link people can follow to “read full story here”, you should be on the right side of copyright law (but this should not be construed as legal advice, standard disclaimer, etc.).

Especially in a sector-specific business-to-business blog, this is usually considered quite useful. It makes your blog the go-to place to keep up on the latest developments in your niche.

It also makes your blog pretty dull.  Ideally, you would put your own spin on the stories, making your blog not only a source of the most up-to-date information, but an authority on the latest developments in your sector and what might lie ahead.

The problem with putting your own spin or analysis on the news is that it is no longer someone else writing for you.  You cannot be lazy and just cut-and-paste if you want to be seen as an authority.  However, if you really do not want to commit a lot of resources to blogging, straight curation can indeed be a way to get something for nothing.

Collaboration – expert round-ups.

Collaborative blog posts are all the rage for several reasons.  A collaborative post is when you gather the views of several people on a specific topic, such as I did with writing habits not long ago.  Collaboration brings numerous benefits, several of them similar to guest blogging.

  • You want to include expertise from many people who know about a specific point better than you do.
  • You want to bring lots of variety, fresh voices, and new perspective.
  • You want people to recount their experiences; the more experiences, the more of your readers will relate to them.
  • You want people to provide ideas; the more ideas, the more likely readers will find one or two useful.
  • You want to suck up to lots of influencers all at once.
  • You get a built-in team to promote the blog post.

As with the other methods listed above, you don’t pay a penny with collaboration.  But you do give lots of credit and share the traffic with lots of people.  It is worth noting that this is not the approach to take if laziness is your motivation for not writing the post yourself; coordinating several people and formatting the post takes effort.  You can connect with participants through your own networking, or if you don’t have people in mind, you can use MyBlogU to connect with new friends who can offer their input.

Most importantly, you should feel comfortable knowing that you have options. It’s OK to write your own blog posts; ideally that is what you do most of the time. It is also OK to hire a professional blog writer; ideally you will hire us.

But it is also OK to reach out to others and get the best of what they offer by giving them exposure and traffic, rather than paying with money. As much as we would love you to hire us every time, we would love you to pick the ideal set of options for your blog to best engage your fans and draw in more readers through social media. At least one of the options above is right for you.

About David Leonhardt

is President of The Happy Guy Marketing, published author, a "Distinguished Toastmaster", a former consumer advocate, a social media addict and experienced with media relations and government reports.

Read more about David Leonhardt


  1. Hi David,

    Excellent post, indeed!

    I still haven’t opened up my blog to guest posts, and am considering doing so. I’ve also thought about how to add news stories to the blog and what you wrote about curation makes a lot of sense. Thank you.

  2. I haven’t had my guitar shop running for super long yet, but I’ve already had a ton of success with this idea of having guest writers. An added benefit of having guest writers for me is that the info is better received by readers. They don’t come across like I’m just trying to sell something.

  3. Hello David, I am first time on your blog and came from another blog-post. I am not a blogger neither I love writing but I am into this field of internet marketing and SEO since a long time and just started by startup. I know how content is important for marketing but as a startup, you know, we always fight with our budget and available resources.
    I thought of opening guest posting option for our blog but rest of the aforementioned options were never been thought before. I am seeing these as real good opportunities to make a calendar for publishing different types of posts which will help my readers and target audiences, and at the same time will expand my reach and visibility.
    Thanks for sharing the tips and your experience.

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