How to write good instructions

In order to get a good text, you need to include good and clear instructions that explain what you want. Even if you have a clear vision of how you want your texts to look, our freelancers are not mind-readers, so they need some guidance. The instructions don’t need to be long, but there are some parts we always recommend that you include.

1. Tone of voice

The tone of voice will determine HOW the writer should convey the information. This can, for example, relate to the formality and enthusiasm of the content. This is especially important information in languages where it’s important to separate between Formal and Informal tone of voice (for example German).

Tone of Voice examples

  • Informal or formal
  • Objective or subjective
  • Selling/engaging or neutral
  • Positive, negative or neutral
  • Informative

2. Target audience and purpose of the text

You can help the writer know how to convey the information, and which information to include, by telling the writer who the target audience is. State clearly who is the reader and what is the purpose of the text. 

Target audience examples

  • Students looking for cheap hostels
  • Parents looking for clothing to their children
  • Casino players looking for game rules
  • Fashionistas trying to get inspiration
  • Beginners within the topic (will be described at a basic level)
  • Experts within the topic (can use industry terms and expect a certain level of knowledge)

Purpose examples

  • Educate the reader
  • Entertain the reader
  • Get the reader to sign up to a service
  • Get the reader to make a purchase

3. Where will the text be published?

You know where the text will be published. By giving this information to the writer you will get a better result. Add it in the "for site-field" and the writer can look at what is already published on that website (if anything) and get a feel for the tone and audience. 

4. Specific instructions

If you have any specific instructions to share with the writer, make sure they are easy to understand and not open to interpretation. Don’t write that the text should be “good” or anything else that is subjective. Define what makes a good text for you.

Specific instructions examples

  • Write in UK English for a UK audience
  • Make the text useful for the reader, include specific tips and tricks
  • Do not mention any other (competing) brands
  • Only mention positive things about travelling to Madrid
  • Avoid personal opinions, be objective
  • Feel free to write personal opinions, but state clearly when you do.

5. Be short and concise

Knowing what you want and expressing that is good, but too specific instructions can become restricting and discouraging. Therefore, please remember to be short and concise in your instructions. Only include information that is relevant to our writers that clearly states what you want (and not).

Example of good vs. bad instructions

Bad freelancer instructions

Source URL: -

For site: -

Keywords: -

Tone of voice: You are free to choose

Specific instructions: 

Write a review about the casino in the title. Make sure it is super good. Include good keywords so that we can rank high in Google.

Good freelancer instructions

Source URL: https://guides.topcontent.com/how-to-write-a-standard-casino-review/

For site: 

Keywords: casino review, casino review 2019

Tone of voice: Objective and informal. Informative and interesting. 

Specific instructions: 

Write a review of the casino in the title. Include information about the game selection, welcome bonus, customer service and payment options. Write a clear introduction and conclusion. Finish with a CTA to sign up to the casino. 

Be sure to be objective and not overly positive or selling. Although the review should not have a negative tone, you should be honest; if there are any not so flattering sides of the casino, you can mention that to balance out the review.

Read through the link under “see more instructions here” for more information about how to write a casino review.


If you need help with writing your instructions, let us know!

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