One of the best things you can do for your blog is to keep your freelance writer happy. If you have regular freelance writers working for you, it's a good idea to consider how you can build a good working relationship with them.
Pay Them What They're Worth
Nothing says “appreciation” like fair pay. In some cases, freelancers are happy to give you a break if they can get something extra out of it. They might receive a portion of revenue or traffic bonuses. Sometimes, freelance writers are willing to take a little bit less if they like working with you, if you pay on time, or if your blog topic is something that they are interested in building a reputation in.
While you can negotiate with your freelance writer, check in to make sure that your writers remain relatively happy with the situation. Additionally, if your blog starts making more money, or if your freelancer has been with you for awhile, you can consider giving him or her a raise. Freelancers like to feel as though you notice their hard work. If you don't, then good freelancers will only see you as a stopping point on the way to better clients.
And, of course, pay on time. It can be difficult for freelancers who are always waiting for payment, and always struggling because late clients are creating cash flow problems.
Find Out How They Like to Work
Freelance writers work in different ways. Some prefer to have you give them topics, or at least have a discussion of future topics. Additionally, many freelancers also like to work a certain way when it comes to turning in blog posts and other materials. Find out whether your freelance writer prefers to use tools like Google Docs, or whether the writer would prefer to have credentials and just go in to your blogging platform to write the post.
It also makes sense to provide some flexibility for your freelance writer. Many writers like to be able to post on their own schedule, as well as have the freedom to work at odd hours. As long your writer is fulfilling the terms of your agreement, don't pester him or her too much. Sometimes things come up for freelance writers, and many writers like a little flexibility to take care of problems when they arise.
Use Constructive Criticism
Most freelance writers are fine with receiving constructive criticism. They are open to suggestions on how to improve the tone of voice for the site, or direction if you have something specific in mind for a particular project or post. However, you do need to make sure you are offering constructive criticism that is legitimately helpful. I have worked with clients and editors that don't feel as though they are “doing their jobs” unless they send back some sort of pointless revision, or make some comment. In some cases, the edits I've even received back are actually wrong. Before you begin editing, or providing feedback, stop and consider whether or not it is really necessary.
Also, when your freelance writer does a good job, make sure you praise him or her. You don't have to gush over everything he or she turns in, but most freelancers like to occasionally hear that you like their work.