21 Content Writing Samples Examples & How to Create Yours
Check these content writing examples and create yours with the help of our free templates!
Can you show us some samples of your writing? If that’s something you keep hearing but cannot say a confident yes to, you’re at the right place. We’ll show you 21 examples of how others write and present their content writing samples and answer some of the most frequently asked questions.
So the next time a potential client wants to see your samples or HR requests them for your job application, you won’t have to worry about it anymore. You can just send your writing portfolio over with all of your best projects included.
Read until the end, because we added free content writing sample templates for you!
- 19 content writing sample examples
- Why do you need to have content writing samples?
- What kind of jobs do you need content writing samples for?
- Types of writing pieces to include in your content writing samples
- How long should your content writing samples be?
- How should you format your content writing samples?
- Free content writing sample presentation template
Content writing sample examples
Allana did two things to present her content work for Hilton Supply Management: she wrote a short summary of the project, which includes her task and the performance of her writing; and she also included large images of the final piece.
She has three images on the page overall, which are big enough that the text on them is readable, giving you the chance to read through it all. It’s an easy and effective way to present your content writing samples.
Allana featured these writing samples on her portfolio website, built with Copyfolio.
Halle is a copywriter and content marketer, who often works on long-form content such as blog posts, ebooks, or cheat sheets. Similarly to Shanice, she features multiple samples on one page, including screenshots and summaries, linking out to the full pieces,
Halle created her content sample page using Copyfolio and the “Letterpress” template.
8. Nidhi Pathak
9. Kelsey Ray
10. Monica Mizzi
11. Angela Rodgers
12. Hannah Smith
14. Leah Presser
15. Paul Maplesden
16. Marijana Kay
18. Yvonne Reilly
21. Shoaib Marfatiya
Why do you need to have content writing samples?
Okay, yes, these are great… But why do we need to have the content writing samples again? Isn’t it enough to just list all the previous clients and work experiences?
Even if you worked with some big brands, it doesn’t mean that your next client or employer will like your writing style. Or that they’ll think you can adjust your tone of writing to their brand’s.
Getting to see multiple samples of your work in your writing portfolio, even if they’re not very long, will help them decide if you’re going to be a good fit or not. It’s kind of like trying an exotic new dish. You like how it sounds, but you’d still want to try it first before you can say that you actually do like it.
And that’s all the more true with clients working in complex industries. When it comes to highly technical topics, people like to see that you not only thoroughly understand it but can explain it in an interesting, easy-to-understand way.
What kind of jobs do you need content writing samples for?
First of all, you’ll need them if you’re a freelance writer, offering copywriting, or content writing services. Your prospective clients will want to check out your writing style before they hire you, that’s for sure.
But if you’re applying for an in-house or agency position that involves content writing, you will also be asked for it. It can be called a copywriter, content writer, SEO writer/specialist, or even a digital marketing position. So make sure you check the job description carefully and get your samples ready before you hit apply.
Types of writing pieces to include in your content writing samples
Now that you’re pretty sure you indeed need to collect your content writing samples, the next step is to decide what type of writing pieces you want to collect. If you’re an experienced writer, this will be a given.
But if you’re just getting started, choosing certain types of writing for your samples could help guide your projects later on. Because logically, for example, if you have a lot of podcast script samples, you’ll feel like a great candidate for the podcast writing gig. Just as a client would happily hire a writer to write for their blog if the said writer has loads of amazingly written article samples.
Blog posts and articles
One of the most common and popular types of content to write nowadays are blog posts and articles. As content marketing is becoming more well-known amongst companies, the need for writers who can write highly converting content is on the rise as well. So you’ll find that most content writers have blog posts or articles as samples in their writing portfolios.
Long-form webpage copy
Another type of written content all businesses need is copy for their website. With everyone trying to get their pages to rank on Google, if you can write SEO-optimized content for websites, you can get yourself ahead of the competition. Knowing at least the basics of SEO is a valuable skill for writers, so if you have it, don’t be afraid to show it off.
Content for social media
Do we even need to get into why businesses need to have an active social media presence? We all know that by now. But what many people often don’t think about is that writing content for social media is not something that just about anyone can do.
Yes, many social media platforms focus on the visuals – but without outstanding copy to go with it, even the best visuals will fail to convert. You need to know how to reflect on the consumers’ pain points and how to lead them to take the action you want them to take with the right CTAs.
So if you know the popular social media platforms and their requirements like the back of your hand –and can write content for them that will convert… Consider social media specific getting content writing samples and creating a social media portfolio.
Scripts for podcasts or videos
Blogs and websites have been around for ages, but it was in the last couple of years that the popularity of podcasts took off. So much so that now many podcasts are looking for writers to help out with their scripts. And the same goes for video content too.
It’s an exciting new genre, but also one that requires lots of time and effort. Podcasts tend to be quite long –and in most cases, you’ll have to do some research to be able to write a whole podcast script on a topic.
But if that’s something you’re interested in, add podcast or video script pieces to your writing samples to establish yourself as a promising candidate for these types of projects.
If you don’t mind ghostwriting (meaning that your name won’t be displayed as the author), writing eBooks for businesses that sell them is a great way to earn money as a writer. Similarly to podcasts, they’re lengthy and require lots of research –but the compensation usually matches the effort.
So if you’ve written eBooks –or want to get into writing them–, then samples or case studies to show your expertise will come in handy for your writing portfolio website.
How long should your content writing samples be?
The length of your samples will depend on a few things. Let’s start with the easiest.
If you’re adding a piece that was a previous project, the length is what it is. Although, for your portfolio, you can choose whether you want to showcase and publish the whole thing, or just an excerpt of it.
And that’s the second factor. Whether it’s a finished project or you’re just writing it now for your portfolio, you can always include just an excerpt of it. If it’s good enough that it shows your writing style, and your expertise in that specific type of writing, your sample doesn’t have to be thousands of words long.
Of course, if reading the whole piece is needed to assess your skills, write and publish it all. But showcasing only an excerpt can make reading it less overwhelming for the viewer. And as we all know, HR managers and potential clients often don’t have much time to review each content writing and copywriting portfolio. So making it easier for them by keeping the reading material shorter is a great idea.
How to format your content writing samples – a guide for freelancers and in-house content writers
This is another “it depends” kind of situation. Why?
Because if you’re applying for an in-house or agency position, the writing sample requirements might be very specific. They might ask you to send a certain number of samples that have specified length and format too. Or might even ask you to write something replying to a prompt or topic they gave you.
But if there are no such requirements, or you’re just putting your content writing portfolio together, you have more freedom in choosing the format. Our recommendation? A portfolio website, with each sample a separate project page.
Having your personal website with all of your content writing samples on there won’t only make you feel instantly more professional, but will also make it super easy for anyone to review your samples.
When each of your writing samples has its own project page, you have space to not only showcase the finished product but to also talk about how it came to be. Oftentimes the background information such as
- what the initial brief or your task description was,
- how you researched the topic and went around writing it up, and
- the impact it made, the conversions it drove,
…are just as important – and this format will enable you to write about all that.
Free content writing sample presentation templates
To make it even easier for you, we put together two free content writing sample templates. These templates will show you the ideal structure that a content writing sample project page should have.
If you follow one of these templates, your projects will be easier to review, will give insights into and background information on the project, and will convert better.
This first template is for previous projects that are already published. Start out with your project title and follow up with a screenshot. It doesn’t have to show the whole piece, just that it exists and it’s out there.
People often simply link to the blogs and websites where their writing was published, but they forget one thing. It’s not guaranteed to stay there forever, unchanged. It happens that a company goes out of business, unpublishes some blog posts, or decides to change things in the copy you originally wrote. See how just linking to it becomes problematic?
But by providing a screenshot you can prove that it’s a real project that was published online.
Following the screenshot, write a few sentences about the project background. What was the task you were given? The brief or prompt you got? Who was the client you wrote for? Then, if you can, go into the creative process too.
In the end, show the final result. You can add large-enough images containing the content you wrote so that people can read it there – or even type it out. Additionally, you can link out to the live version of it online.
To maximize your conversions, always end with a clear CTA and your contact information. For example: “If you liked my writing and would like to work with me, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org”
This template is for you if you’re writing samples just to go in your portfolio. Because if you do that, you won’t be able to start out with a screenshot of your writing published online. You can still add a photo to make the whole page less overwhelming and easier on the eyes.
Next to the image, write a few sentences about its background and your process. Even if it’s a project you made up, you can still write about why you chose that topic and format, and how you got around to working on it.
For the final result, feel free to just type it out, or attach a screenshot of the document you wrote it in.
Collect your samples and add them to your portfolio with Copyfolio
The easiest way to create an online writing portfolio where you can add your content writing samples is using a website builder like Copyfolio.
Copyfolio was designed specifically for writers and will not only let you create a stunning website with just a few clicks but will help you with prompts and questions to write your case studies.
Just choose a template, write the copy, add your projects and you’re ready to go! Start building your professional writer website with Copyfolio, sign up today!