The COVID-19 pandemic has altered the way people work permanently. Remote work is now more widely accepted by organizations, flexible work schedules are becoming more typical, and countless staff members are resigning from their jobs searching for something better.
For a great deal of people, that “something better” has indicated saying bye-bye to their life as a full-time 9-5 worker and hey there to life as a full-time freelancer.
It makes good sense– its a great time to be a freelancer. Companies appear hesitant to employ back full-time employees after experiencing pandemic-related layoffs. And supervisors seem stimulated by the rapidly growing swimming pool of freelancer talent available to them.
As a freelance copywriter, you may be reading this and believing to yourself, “Sounds fantastic … how do I leap on this train!?”.
Its something to quit your job and begin calling yourself a freelance copywriter, but how do you land gigs, specifically knowing that there are potentially more readily available authors than ever prior to gunning for the same tasks?
How do you stand out from the crowd and persuade a manager to employ you over everyone else?
Thats where I d like to help.
Over the past decade, Ive employed and handled dozens of freelance writers while working for different start-ups and marketing firms.
Experience has actually taught me how to recognize a good copywriter from a not-so-good copywriter.
You have to prove to the hiring manager that youre excellent from the outset if you desire more freelance copywriting gigs.
Eres how I choose out the excellent from the bad when Im employing a copywriter.
When Hiring a Copywriter, 14 Qualities a Manager Looks for.
1. Great Copywriters Are Passionate About Writing.
Every top quality author Ive ever known has been passionate about their craft. They didnt simply decide to become a freelancer, pull “copywriting” out of a hat, and get to it. Most of them have been writing for a long period of time, in either a professional or individual capacity.
Notice I didnt say good copywriters have to like writing. Their desire to produce good copy and the best result for the client comes prior to their desire to compose about topics they enjoy.
One question I like to ask prospects to evaluate their passion for composing is, “Do you read or compose for fun?”.
Im not looking for people who are composing (or perhaps checking out) several novels a year. I simply desire to get a better understanding of how important writing is to them as a person.
2. Great Copywriters Ask Questions.
A decent copywriter will take a project, craft the copy, and provide it back to the client on time. The best copywriters Ive dealt with all ask concerns before getting began.
They ask questions about editorial standards, company objectives, success metrics, audience demographics, brand name voice, competitors, and anything else that will assist make their job easier and their content better.
They also inquire about my expectations for them as a freelancer, which instantly puts them on a course toward success.
3. Excellent Copywriters Have Proven a Track Record of Success.
When I employ a copywriter, Im not just looking for somebody who can put words on paper– I want someone who has a tested track record with other individuals who have employed them before me.
Good copywriters need to have the ability to discuss and reveal examples of past successes and wins. What those past achievements are will depend upon the kind of composing they do. If Im working with an SEO writer, I anticipate that they will have the ability to show me examples of content theyve composed that ranks on page among Google for highly competitive keywords. If Im employing a writer to develop Facebook ad copy, I expect them to be able to show and talk about genuine, effective advertisements they helped customers launch.
An excellent copywriter will keep a file of their best-performing and most impactful material and make it offered for working with supervisors to review if the subject shows up.
4. Great Copywriters Can Provide Recent Writing Samples.
Thats generally a caution indication for me if a copywriter doesnt have recent composing samples easily available. Its definitely not a deal-breaker, however it will lead me to ask more questions.
To be a great copywriter, you have to practice your craft routinely and often. An accomplished concert violinist doesnt get to where they are by practicing once a year.
As a hiring supervisor, I need to know that you are not utilizing me as a chance to dust off the cobwebs.
In some cases copywriters cant share current work since of NDAs. If youre in this position, my recommendation is to handle a few tasks that you understand you can share publicly. Or find opportunities to contribute as a visitor author.
5. Great Copywriters Have References from Past Clients.
Good copywriters preserve excellent relationships with past customers. Whenever I am examining a copywriter, I constantly ask if they have referrals that I can talk to if I wish to discover more about them.
Part of the factor I ask this concern is that I truly wish to speak with others about what its like to deal with a copywriter Im thinking about working with, but the larger factor is just to simply discover out if an author has actually done an excellent enough task to have references in their back pocket if they need them.
Go back and ask some of your previous clients if you dont have any recommendations on hand. The majority of people are more than willing to be offered as a recommendation– but you have to make the ask.
6. Good Copywriters Have a Website.
If they have taken the time to produce and release their own website, I tend to rely on self-employed copywriters more. It doesnt have to be a fancy website. All I want to see is a little info about you and your company, some examples of your work, and maybe a few reviews from past customers.
A site is a quick way for me to decide if a copywriter is business-minded and professional.
Websites are also so simple to spin up with tools like Squarespace, Webflow, and WordPress, it seems odd to me when a freelancer I come across doesnt have one for their own service.
Just think: whats the first thing a hiring supervisor does when assessing a candidate? Probably enter their name into Google to see what appears.
When they go browsing, a website helps you control and manage what a potential client discovers and discovers about you.
7. Great Copywriters Are Organized.
Great copywriters understand how to manage assignments. They utilize tools like Trello, Asana, or Basecamp to keep tasks organized. If I ask a copywriter what they use to organize their assignments and they do not have a great response, thats usually a red flag for me.
I want to deal with copywriters who arent working exclusively off of post-it notes and scratch paper. Again, it comes down to professionalism. Youre either organized or youre not, there is no in-between.
8. Excellent Copywriters Are Proactive Communicators.
Proactive interaction is the key to any effective freelancer-client relationship, but its specifically important when you literally generate income assisting companies interact.
One question I like to ask copywriters when Im examining them for a task is, “How do you interact with clients if you know youre not going to have the ability to strike the due date?”.
The response will tell you a lot about the person youre considering hiring. Due dates get missed out on due to the fact that life takes place. As a client, its a lot simpler to swallow if my author tells me ahead of time that they arent going to fulfill my expectations, as opposed to telling me after the deadline has actually currently passed.
9. Great Copywriters Know How to Research.
Not every copywriter Ive worked with is proficient at researching. The very best ones are just as proficient at carrying out research as they are at writing copy, that makes them perfect partners for me to employ.
A great copywriter knows how to assess and utilize external sources. They know to keep away from competitor content, outdated material, and material from untrustworthy websites or blogs. They know how to associate sources and how to avoid unintentional plagiarism.
10. Great Copywriters Have Documented Processes.
For a copywriter to be good, they need to be process-driven. One of my favorite concerns to ask copywriters when Im thinking about employing them for a job is, “How do you create a new piece of content?”.
I ask to walk me through the whole procedure from start to end up. Good copywriters will have a basic process that they utilize, one that has been refined and improved gradually with each brand-new customer.
The best copywriters Ive met have put in the time to envision these processes in a branded deck utilizing a tool like Canva or Google Slides.
11. Good Copywriters Arent Afraid of Getting Feedback.
If you do not like getting critical feedback from individuals or having to revise material, youre going to have a difficult time being a successful copywriter.
Excellent copywriters dont take it personally when they get feedback from customers. They comprehend that their job is to either disagree and, as the specialist, discuss why or be prepared to rewrite the material how the client desires it to be written.
Its not personal– its business.
12. Excellent Copywriters Think About Content Performance.
I like dealing with copywriters who comprehend and believe about the performance of their content– even if its just at a base level. I do not anticipate the copywriters I employ to be analytics or conversion professionals, however I simulate to know that they are thinking about completion goal and the effect of the material Im employing them to produce.
If you want to show to a hiring manager that youre an excellent copywriter, ask questions about efficiency objectives prior to you begin composing a piece of content and follow up after it has been released to see how it in fact carried out.
13. Excellent Copywriters Are Consistent With Delivery.
The copywriters I work with over and over once again are the ones who are constant with delivery. Because I understand I can rely on them to get the job done precisely in the timeframe I set, I employ them.
Again, often due dates are not achievable for one reason or another, but as long as the reason has actually been communicated ahead of time, it doesnt impact the trust I have in the copywriter Ive worked with.
14. Excellent Copywriters Have Confidence in Themselves.
Good copywriters are confident. They are positive in their composing abilities, positive in their methods and concepts, confident in their processes, and confident working for and with other professionals.
No copywriter is perfect. When Im speaking with a possible prospect, I do not anticipate to see every identifier mentioned above. The more I do see, the more positive I will be that Im employing the ideal person.
Keep this list bookmarked. If you arent closing as numerous new deals with clients as you d like, see what from this list you still need to work on, and keep an eye on what you might be highlighting much better when speaking with hiring supervisors.
Best of luck out there!
Rob Wormley is the CEO and founder of Pitchstachio, a marketing agency that develops strategic messaging, positioning, stories, and go-to-market techniques for brand names, groups, items, and executives. For more content from Rob, follow him on LinkedIn..
Notice I didnt state good copywriters have to like writing. Great copywriters must be able to talk about and show examples of previous successes and wins. Great copywriters know how to handle projects. If I ask a copywriter what they use to arrange their assignments and they do not have an excellent response, thats normally a red flag for me.
A good copywriter knows how to evaluate and utilize external sources.