In our time as a company – and like many startups – Brafton has seen a fair number of changes and shake-ups to improve working processes and enhance the content we create for our clients. As one of our most tenured writers, Ben Carder has experienced many of them first-hand. After seven years and counting as a member of Brafton’s editorial team, Ben, a senior writer specializing in real estate, relishes the task of creating new and engagement-driven content – in fact, it’s one of the things he really appreciates about the job.
“Brafton is a challenging job, and I think that’s what appeals to me the most,” Ben said.
Life before Brafton, and a spot-on Craigslist post
Before he found his place with Brafton, Ben studied Journalism and Political Science, earning a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree respectively. He worked toward a career in which he’d be able to combine these two studies, but economic circumstances hindered his search. Ben worked a number of freelance writing jobs, including one in which he ghost wrote for a natural health guru.
“When I finished graduate school in 2009, the economy had tanked,” Ben recalled. “It took me two solid years of applying (with the occasional interview) before I landed this job.”
During such a tumultuous time, Ben turned to every possible avenue to find a position that would enable him to leverage his writing skills and expertise. Like many employers, Brafton used Craigslist to publicize open positions, and it was this post – among the more than 1 million job listings posted on the site every month – that brought Ben to the company.
Ben’s early days at Brafton
One of our highest priorities here at Brafton is to create unique, SEO-driven content for our clients. Sometimes it takes an hour to pull an article together, but a more research-intensive, or longer piece can take several hours or even days to create. Quality is the name of the game, and everything from sources to punctuation is checked and double-checked before content reaches our clients.
In the early days, though, the ways in which businesses ran their content marketing strategies was very different. Many organizations were very focused on quantity – while quality was always a top focus, many Brafton clients requested the delivery of a new article on a daily basis.
“I can honestly say that when I started at Brafton, the work volume was a bit overwhelming,” Ben said. “I didn’t think my stay would be long. It took me a good year to really get a hang of it.”
Thankfully, by that time, best practices in the content marketing industry had changed, and as an agile organization, Brafton adjusted its internal processes to follow suit. As Content Marketing Institute founder Joe Pulizzi noted, “There was a time for more content, but that time has passed.”
“Brafton is a challenging job, and I think that’s what appeals to me the most.”
The days of creating a daily blog post for every client on a Brafton writer’s roster are long gone – now, Ben spends more time on fewer articles, making sure each receives the background research and attention to detail that it deserves.
An opportunity to expand his horizons
Brafton also enabled Ben to write about topics that were somewhat out of his comfort zone. Ben eventually found his niche creating content for organizations in the real estate industry, but writes about a wide variety of topics for other markets as well.
“I’m constantly busy and learning about new things that I probably would never have learned about were it not for my time spent at Brafton,” Ben said. “My chief motivation is wanting to be the best writer possible by working hard and constantly striving for improvement.”
At the same time, though, the job doesn’t come without its share of struggles.
“Some clients can be difficult to deal with, but most are a genuine pleasure,” Ben said. “Plus, the work from home element is pretty nice too.”
A flexible work schedule also enables Ben to pursue his other passions, namely sports fandom, his political interests and his family.
“I’m a HUGE sports fan,” Ben said. “A lot of my free time is spent listening to podcasts or reading/watching games on television. I’m a big family guy, too, so I enjoy visiting home (my folks live in New Hampshire) on the weekends.”
Overall, Ben considerably enjoys the work he does here at Brafton.
“There are a lot of very talented writers here, but I think if I contribute anything, it’s an ability to write well and in a manner that is eminently readable,” Ben said. “Seven years later, I’m still typing away.”