Contently, a New York-based startup, is making its editorial management platform free. The site started out hoping to match freelancers looking to write, with media outlets looking for specific work. Since then, it has expanded its focus to brands looking for quality content. According to Ad Age, the startup found a bigger need from brands looking for content marketing than from traditional media outlets.
For journalists, Contently provides an online portfolio service. You can request an invite to their beta site here. Writers can add clips, write a bio, and specify areas of expertise. This part of the service is a personal branding tool for journalists and aims to connect them with relevant publishers. It also provides analytics, allowing writers to see which of their pieces make more of an impact.
For publishers, Contently provides a project management platform that includes detailed editorial calendars and CMS integration. The platform streamlines the editorial process by allowing publishers to request articles, accept pitches, and collaborate in its own document editor. Freelancers are paid directly through its service as soon as an assignment is approved, and Contently takes a cut. Editors can also manage and organize their writers into groups called “channels.”
Using the Contently platform is free, but its writers network is more exclusive. In order to keep editorial standards high, writers who apply to join the network have to make it through a screening process that ensures the writer has authentic bylines at a legitimate publication. Publications who use the platform can add writers who are not in this network. But if publishers want access, they have to subscribe to Platform Plus. PaidContent reported that only 8 percent of applicants have been accepted to the network, which raises the question of whether or not the platform will be useful to budding writers looking to gain more experience.