These are my ten personal copywriting rules. If you are thinking of hiring me as your copywriter, then reading them would be a good way to spend two minutes.
I stay in my lane
I’ve been asked to get back in the PR game. No – because I don’t like pitching stories to journalists and my black book of contacts is empty. I’ve been asked to help develop a business concept ready for market. No – because I have never done that before. I have been asked to man an exhibition stand. No – because I prefer sitting down and I’m not the salesly type. I’ve been asked to run social media campaigns. No – because there are others who specialise in social media and can do it better than me.
I stay in my copywriting lane and that’s where I am most happy.
Why have a dog and bark yourself
This is my rule for clients. Don’t hire a copywriter and then write it all yourself. Which brings me to rule three.
Clients don’t write the brief
Why hire a copywriter and then start by writing your own brief? My policy is to make clients’ lives easier by taking care of the writing for them, including the brief.
I don’t hide behind a fake persona. Life is a juggle. I have three young children, I am a part time freelance copywriter. I don’t pretend to be a corporate suited and booted copywriter. Certainly, I am not everyone’s cup of tea. I try to show the real me.
Samples save lives
I always write a short sample of a few paragraphs to get the tone right. This helps clients refine what they really want. Saving lives may be a slight exaggeration. I was a publicist for a long time, sometimes the spin crops up.
My price is based on value
Sometimes, I write a quick blog, press release or about page. I say to myself: “That didn’t take me long, I shouldn’t charge much.” But I’ve realised that I’m fast because I’m experienced. I’ve been writing websites for five years. And before that I worked in PR and corporate comms for 15 years. So, now I base my price on value, not on time. I do have an hourly rate, but I almost never charge it. Flat project fees are the way to go for copywriting projects big and small.
My job is to find the stories in your business. You might think you don’t have any. But every business does, I promise. I’ve written websites for cannabis retailers, employment lawyers, retail brands and many others. I have found the interesting stories in every client. If we work together, I will ask you a lot of questions, because I am genuinely interested in your business.
Delete is my favourite key
Short and sweet is the way to write website copy. It can be hard to delete paragraphs I really like, and the client really likes. But, it’s important to be ruthless. I am without ruth.
Knowing nothing is a good thing
I have signed up several clients precisely because I know nothing. I don’t know about fitness supplements, trademark law or cloud based accounting. But it’s my ability to put your product or service into layman’s terms is why you should hire me! You’re an expert in your business, you don’t need me to be. I’m an expert at website copywriting.
Thou shalt respond to my proposal
Please, please, please if I take the time to prepare you a proposal, then do take the time to respond. I can handle the rejection. But I hate being ignored. Deal? Deal.
One more thing. I linked to a few clients in this post. Contact me if you’d like more details on the copywriting services I provided.