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    20 lessons from my first year running a copywriting business

    How to apply

    1. Read through the job description below carefully and ask yourself:
      1. Do you have relevant experience?
      2. Can you meet the deadline or feel confident negotiating it?
      3. Can you meet the budget or feel confident negotiating it?
        If the answers are all ‘YES’ move to step 2.
    2. Send your best possible pitch to the email address included in the job description below. Introduce yourself, sell yourself!
    3. There’s no need to cc us, but of course we’d love to know if you win the job, please tell us in the TCCS Facebook group

    Job application rules and guidelines

    1. Jobs will be posted on this page as they come in.
    2. The TCCS rules still apply:
      1. Please only apply for jobs you’ve had experience in.
      2. Do not apply for every single job – you will ruin the quality of the replies for the job poster and as a consequence, we’re likely to get few jobs posted.
      3. We will be monitoring responses by following up with job posters to assess quality.  If we find that members have been applying for jobs for which they’re not a good fit, their access to the job board will be limited. 

         

    3. Jobs will be open for a maximum of 48 hours, fewer if the enquirer has advised they’ve received enough responses.

      Suggested format for emails:

      Hi Bob.
      I saw your job post on The Clever Copywriting School Job board.

      Reason for applying:
      Name:
      TCCS Directory link: (Annual members only)
      Website:
      Email:

      Phone:

      Thanks
      Your name

       

    Happy pitching and as always, if you have any questions or technical difficulty, please email admin@clevercopywritingschool.com

    JOB DETAILS

    Job status: Open

    Job posted: 10/02/21

    Industry:

    Type:

    Deadline:

    Budget:

    Location:

    Brief:

    This post was written by TCCS member, Sara Tiefenbrun


     

    In the beginning, mindset matters most

     

     

    You’re not supposed to have everything figured out

     

    1. Stop shadowboxing

    At some point, I stopped thinking, “Thank God the client didn’t think I was a fraud” and switched to, “This is really happening”.

    After I made that shift, things felt much better.

    Your clients want you to be capable.
    You are capable.

    Stop undercutting yourself.

     

    2. Bite the bullet

    Looking back, I spent several years wondering who would want me if I started a business.

    What services would I offer?
    How would I deal with tricky clients?

    I now realise those were avoidance tactics.

    The negative voices got quieter once I started to act.

     

    3. Your brain will hurt

    Each time I did something new, such as creating a product, it made my brain hurt.

    Looking back, they weren’t perfect. But the act of doing them was a big step forward.

    I’ve become more forgiving. If I charge people a reasonable rate and give reasonable value, that’s enough.

     

    4. There are no monsters under the bed (probably just old socks)

    Most scary stuff isn’t as scary as you think.

    I thought I was hopeless at money stuff, but it turns out it’s quite fun.

    I love Rounded as a tool, and my dashboard makes me feel professional.

    This week I’m even delving into SEO, which I’ve been avoiding.

     

    5. Freak out with friends

    Having a network like The Clever Copywriting Community is amazing for asking questions.

    You can raise everything from estimating how long a job will take, to working out when to push something or let it go.

    At first, it didn’t feel like I belonged. But when a big contract was coming up, I thought I’m going to need some support and jumped in.

    It’s a place where it’s okay to admit you don’t know what you’re doing and freak out a bit.

    Once you find clarity, you can handle clients with the kind of self-assurance that gives them comfort.

     

    6. There’s no right answer

    You’ll hear different advice on some things, such as “Post first on your own website”, or “Publish first in LinkedIn where you’ll get more views”.

    They’re both right.

    Work out what feels right to you and move on.

     

    7. You learn a lot when you’re being generous

    During the lockdown, I joined two Akimbo workshops to build my creative confidence and distract myself from impending doom.

    Giving advice to strangers helps you articulate what you know.

     

    8. You’re not supposed to have everything figured out

    A marketing business responds to the market.

    You can spend forever on your vision board, but you’ll never really know what problems you solve or how you solve them until you find some real customers and start solving their problems.

     

    9. Work it baby

    Even if you’ve only done a handful of jobs all year, make the most of them.

    Write blogs about the job, get a testimonial.

    Leverage what you have.

     

    10. Agencies sound intimidating, but they don’t have to be

    I’ve worked with two small agencies and they’ve both been delightful.

    It’s quite nice having someone to shield you from the client.

     

     

    11. What’s for you will not go by you (as my grandpa used to say)

    My highest earning job came from a small agency I’d known for years.

    A couple of years before that, I’d hoped they’d give me a contract to help me leave my day job.

    It didn’t play out like that.

    It was better that I found my feet on my own and then worked with them when I was more established.

     

    12. It doesn’t take that long

    When I look at people I admire, often they’re only four years into running their business.

    It doesn’t take that long to build up your business once you hit your stride.

     

    13. You don’t have to be the best

    I don’t doubt there are better writers than me.

    But I love researching, solving problems, and chatting with clients.
    I also don’t mind a bit of self-promotion.

    Those skills help me build my business.

    We all have our strengths.

    Some people might know all the grammar rules, follow neatly automated processes, or be able to easily locate their car keys.

     

    14. When possible, pay a proofreader

    I felt so professional when I paid another Copybeast Matt Smith to proof my work.

    It was well worth it. He not only made tweaks but also asked questions that improved the work.

    In this case, the client gave zero edits, so I felt secure in the quality of my work has had it verified with someone who knew their stuff.

     

    15. Things that made me feel gooood

    It took a few months but having a website (that I built), a logo, and some professional photos (that bore no relation to what I really looked like in lockdown) made me feel more like the real deal.

     

    16. It’s nice to be paid properly

    I did a few jobs at a low rate because I’d just started running my own practice.

    But when you’re being paid properly it makes a difference to the attitude you bring to the job.

    Small jobs are never as quick as you think.

     

    17. Stop tinkering with your website

    Quick website updates before bed are never quick.

    Two hours later your site will probably be worse than when you began.

     

    18. It won’t hurt to ask

    When something isn’t clear, pick up the phone to the client (or the web developer).

    You won’t be sorry you got clarification.

     

    19. You don’t know if you don’t try

    During the first Melbourne lockdown, I did a Facebook Live in a retail group about how to communicate during a crisis.

    I had to research it that week, but by the time I delivered it, I felt expert enough.

    That content became a blog post that performed really well.

    Sharing it in a group won me a client.

     

    20. Be your own loudhailer

    I’ve been guilty of creating content for my business and not sharing it enough.

    If you’ve done the work, make sure you maximise its reach.

     

    Conclusion

    To mark the end of one year in business, and to thank those who have supported me, I’ve created a free e-book called Deepwell: How creative women reset, refresh and carry on. I’m really proud of it. You can read more about the project or get your copy.

    Thanks to Copybeast Annie Reid who proofread this piece and the entire Deepwell book for me.

     

    Bio

     

    Sara Tiefenbrun is a TV documentary maker who fell in love with startups and became a copywriter.

    She creates story-driven copy and content for clients who want to hook customers, keep them engaged, and make a sale.

     

     

    Over to you

    If you liked this article, please share.

     

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    How a ‘homemade’ writer’s retreat made me a stronger writer

    How to apply

    1. Read through the job description below carefully and ask yourself:
      1. Do you have relevant experience?
      2. Can you meet the deadline or feel confident negotiating it?
      3. Can you meet the budget or feel confident negotiating it?
        If the answers are all ‘YES’ move to step 2.
    2. Send your best possible pitch to the email address included in the job description below. Introduce yourself, sell yourself!
    3. There’s no need to cc us, but of course we’d love to know if you win the job, please tell us in the TCCS Facebook group

    Job application rules and guidelines

    1. Jobs will be posted on this page as they come in.
    2. The TCCS rules still apply:
      1. Please only apply for jobs you’ve had experience in.
      2. Do not apply for every single job – you will ruin the quality of the replies for the job poster and as a consequence, we’re likely to get few jobs posted.
      3. We will be monitoring responses by following up with job posters to assess quality.  If we find that members have been applying for jobs for which they’re not a good fit, their access to the job board will be limited. 

         

    3. Jobs will be open for a maximum of 48 hours, fewer if the enquirer has advised they’ve received enough responses.

      Suggested format for emails:

      Hi Bob.
      I saw your job post on The Clever Copywriting School Job board.

      Reason for applying:
      Name:
      TCCS Directory link: (Annual members only)
      Website:
      Email:

      Phone:

      Thanks
      Your name

       

    Happy pitching and as always, if you have any questions or technical difficulty, please email admin@clevercopywritingschool.com

    JOB DETAILS

    Job status: Open

    Job posted: 13/01/21

    Industry:

    Type:

    Deadline:

    Budget:

    Location:

    Brief:

    This post was written by TCCS member, Sue-Ellen Horton


     

    (or how four mojoless copywriters turned an idea into an actual thing)

     

     

    Let’s face it: 2020 has been a bit shit, hasn’t it?

    But this isn’t going to be one of those blogs waxing lyrical about pivoting during these unprecedented times. I’m so over it.

    Instead, you’re going to read a tale of how four copywriters rediscovered their mojo and founded something rather fabulous.

    A homemade writer’s retreat that actually worked.

    Actually inspired.

    Actually helped people get stuff done.

    Want to know more?

    Let’s start at the beginning

     

    Once upon a time…

    Once upon a time, there were four copywriters.

    These four copywriters purchased a great big (and yes, expensive) copywriting/SEO course called The Recipe for SEO Success.

    It’s a great course, and much-lauded in the copywriting world.

    The title says it all: It’s a recipe for success.

    And what did our four intrepid copywriters do with the course?

    Nothing. Zilch. Nada. Not a damn thing.
    (If you’re muttering about procrastination, you would be correct)

    So when the world closed down in March these four writers, who kinda knew each other from a Facebook group, decided to band together and finish the course.

    We set up a private little chat group and started making our way through the lessons.

     

    And then a funny thing happened

    The four of us got along. Like, really got along.

    We all connected straight away and started building solid, genuine friendships. As 2020 progressed, our little copy crew became a safe haven to not only work through the course but also retreat from the world that often seemed overwhelming.

    We talked every day, started Facetiming as a group every week and we’re all keen to meet each other in real life.

     

    Then inspiration struck

    The problem was we lived at Tamworth, Port Stephens, Sydney, and Canberra, which are all quite a distance from each other. And with COVID restrictions an ongoing concern, it wasn’t at all conducive to a face-to-face catch-up.

    Then Doug, our resident Scot, generously offered the use of his own private sanctuary (his holiday home) as a gathering place. All we had to do was agree on dates.

    Of course, we all loved the idea.

    At some point someone suggested calling it a writer’s retreat because a) we might actually get real work done if we gave it a working title and b) we were all devastated our beloved CopyCon was postponed till at least the end of 2021.

    Read my review of the 2019 CopyCon held in Melbourne

    And so, in the last week of August, four strangers met at a holiday house on the south coast of NSW.
    (Oh wow. I just realised that would be the perfect opening line for a horror novel! Don’t nick it, anyone!)

    A lot happened during our stay. Here are just a few of the many things I learned during that week away from my real life.

     

    Escaping reality with like-minded people is good for the soul

    There’s no denying that it’s intoxicating to escape the real world with like-minded souls. Even for a week, which is what we did.

    For the four of us, it was a world of reading, writing, and words.

    Once we realised our online connections were even stronger in real life, we relaxed and spent that first evening sharing a meal, some good wine, and lots of talks.

    Lots and lots of talk. We were still talking well into the night.

    Writers, wine, and words are a perfect match.

    Eat your heart out, Hemingway!

     

     

    We needed a daily plan

    As we parted ways on the first night, the only plan we had for the next day was to show up at the dining room table at 9 am.

    We were so naïve.

    Fortunately, we had an experienced event planner in our midst. Within moments Karen, our resident Hawaiian, had written up a daily plan, taped it to the window, and informed us it was how our day would pan out.

    She was cracking her proverbial whip.

    Okay, so I’ll admit to an initial surge of displeasure. But as the day progressed, and we began slaying our morning goals (with time to spare), it was soon replaced with genuine admiration.

    Karen, like it or not, was our official daily planner.

    If you’re thinking of running any kind of retreat, you need a Karen with her human-sized Post-its (and yes, they are a thing) and texta pens to take control. Otherwise, you’ll be tempted to laze around all day and do nothing.

     

    But it wasn’t all work

    We made sure to take time out for play and adventure.

    We frolicked along the pristine sands of a local beach.

    Drank some more wine.

    Supported local cafés by dining out daily.

    Indulged in croissants and doughnuts for breakfast one morning.

    Watched some Netflix movies.

    And took time to share, read, and take deep, healing breaths.

    As the week progressed, we were fired up and ready to rock and roll. We were also relaxed and chilled, the sea air obviously weaving its magic.

    Being fired up and relaxed at the same time was an interesting juxtaposition.

    But it worked.

     

    Have a good mix of people and personalities

    There were four of us at our retreat. Three women and a man. An American, a Scot, a Brit, and an Aussie. And yes, there’s a joke in there somewhere 😉

    We also had two spouses join us throughout our time away, but it was the four writers who… um… ‘retreated’.

    We each have very different personalities, as demonstrated by the nicknames we gave one another in our online chat. We’re also all from different countries and cultures.

    And I believe this was key to the success of our time together.

    As writers, and even as human beings, we value those with opinions and life experiences different from our own. We understand the value they bring to our lives, and how they can show you a different way of looking at the world.

     

    Our daily writing ritual

    In hindsight, I realise this was an intrinsic part of the retreat experience.

    Each day began with a guided writing exercise from the ah-mazing book Wild Mind by Natalie Goldberg.

    Some of these exercises were silly and fun, while others were deeply moving and personal. Laughter and tears were shed in equal measure.

    It’s also important to establish that this was a safe space.

    If you’re going to dig deep, sometimes you have to visit unexpected places in your mind. And not all of them will be pleasant. Sharing can be traumatic and cathartic.

    But very necessary.

     

    Size matters

     

     

    A small group in a place with large living and writing spaces.

    We were lucky.

    The home we were sharing had four separate living areas and four bedrooms. We could gather together and move apart as the mood or task at hand dictated.

    We had room to move and to separate. We each had our own bedroom for naps or alone time.
    (As an introvert, I need an escape route during the day and a place to decompress if I’m spending all day with other humans. If not, I start to malfunction.)

    We all just kinda understood that the living room with the fire was for sitting, drinking, and talking and that the lovely garden room at the back was for working and sharing ideas.

    There was also the tacit agreement (the most important of all), that mornings were for coffee and no speaking.

    It was acceptable to barely acknowledge each other until we sat down at 9 am to begin our day.

    Yes indeedy.

    It was bliss.

     

    And we got shit done

    By day three, we’d fallen into this lovely work, rest, and play routine.

    And we actually got shit done.

    I rewrote the home page of my website.
    Updated my TCCS copywriter directory listing.
    Realised what I needed to do if I wanted my business to thrive.

    We all listened to a nervous Cal run through the first draft of her TCCS Masterclass.

    We discussed and supported major decisions about how businesses would grow … or not.

    We made lists and set goals.

    We wrote them down in big black texta and taped them to windows. We read each other’s goals and refined our own.

    For each fun photo we shared on social media, we worked our arses off and made the most of every moment we spent together.

     

    Stepping out of my real life

     

     

    I can’t speak for the others, but stepping out of and away from my real life was a huge deal for me.

    Huge.

    The impact this writer’s retreat had on me was significant and far-reaching.

    I achieved more than I ever thought I could. I came back more confident and more relaxed. I started putting plans into action that I’d only ever wished I could.

    And to my great surprise, it all worked beautifully.

    Just as my friends have assured me it would. I just had to be brave.

    Those five days changed my life.

    Those three wonderful human beings changed my life.

    They became, and still are, my safe space.

    For a bunch of writers who came together because we threw money at a course, we didn’t quite complete, it was a surprisingly good outcome.

    So good in fact that we’re doing it all again in February 2021.

     

    Over to you

    If you have a story to tell, whether it’s business-related or otherwise, get out there and find somewhere to tell it. You’ll reap the rewards in the long run, even if it’s just proving to yourself that you can do it.

     

    About Sue-Ellen

     

    Sue-Ellen Horton is the brains behind snappily named Write Here Copywriting.

    Writer, copywriter, and movie buff (not always in that order), she loves writing for brands who want their words to have more charisma, more magic…. more personality. But they also don’t want the drama of having to write it themselves.

     

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    How To Land (And Rock) Your Next Conference Speaking Gig

    How to apply

    1. Read through the job description below carefully and ask yourself:
      1. Do you have relevant experience?
      2. Can you meet the deadline or feel confident negotiating it?
      3. Can you meet the budget or feel confident negotiating it?
        If the answers are all ‘YES’ move to step 2.
    2. Send your best possible pitch to the email address included in the job description below. Introduce yourself, sell yourself!
    3. There’s no need to cc us, but of course we’d love to know if you win the job, please tell us in the TCCS Facebook group

    Job application rules and guidelines

    1. Jobs will be posted on this page as they come in.
    2. The TCCS rules still apply:
      1. Please only apply for jobs you’ve had experience in.
      2. Do not apply for every single job – you will ruin the quality of the replies for the job poster and as a consequence, we’re likely to get few jobs posted.
      3. We will be monitoring responses by following up with job posters to assess quality.  If we find that members have been applying for jobs for which they’re not a good fit, their access to the job board will be limited. 

         

    3. Jobs will be open for a maximum of 48 hours, fewer if the enquirer has advised they’ve received enough responses.

      Suggested format for emails:

      Hi Bob.
      I saw your job post on The Clever Copywriting School Job board.

      Reason for applying:
      Name:
      TCCS Directory link: (Annual members only)
      Website:
      Email:

      Phone:

      Thanks
      Your name

       

    Happy pitching and as always, if you have any questions or technical difficulty, please email admin@clevercopywritingschool.com

    JOB DETAILS

    Job status: Open

    Job posted: 27/10/20

    Industry:

    Type:

    Deadline:

    Budget:

    Location:

    Brief:

     

    This post was written by TCCS member, Clare Hastings


     

    Dry mouth. Wobbly knees. A thousand frogs doing a mad breakdancing routine in my stomach.

    Speaking in front of people is literally the stuff of my nightmares.

    I’ve worked with a conference company for many years, and I’ve seen hundreds of people rock the stage with some kind of magical confidence to share their stories of innovation and ingenuity.

    But would I ever brave it? Hell no!

    Like many copywriters, my crippling imposter syndrome (coupled with a fear of seizing up on stage and my general laziness) means I’d never even considered speaking in front of people.

    But for those who can overcome these barriers, speaking at events and conferences has clear benefits. It can win you respect, recognition, and sometimes even revenue.

     

    Now is a great time to be speaking at conferences and events

    While COVID-19 put a big fat full stop to big face-to-face conferences, it also opened up alternative platforms such as virtual conferences and webinars. And with restrictions easing in some states, many conferences are starting to call for speakers. Such as CopyCon, the world’s greatest conference for copywriters.

    But where to start?

    I spoke to people in the know to get the lowdown on how to get found, how to overcome imposter syndrome, and where to find your next conference speaking gig.

     

    Squash the imposter

    Imposter syndrome is one of the biggest factors holding people back from speaking at conferences.

    For some of us, a client call is terrifying enough. But standing on stage in front of hundreds of people, just waiting for that curly question to shine a light on how much of an imposter you really are? It’s enough to send even the most confident people running for the hills.

    TCCS member Angela Denly spoke at CopyCon 2018. And she admits she was terrified of standing on stage and being judged.

    “I thought no-one would be interested in what I had to say. But honestly, it was such a positive experience” she says.

    Angela said speaking at CopyCon increased her visibility among other copywriters, which led to more referrals and more engagement on social media.

    Here are her top conference speaking tips:

    • Think about what unique insights you can give and share your personal experience. People want to hear it.
    • Spend some time practising and refining your message.
    • Just try to relax and enjoy it. Your time on stage passes really fast, especially once you get through those first couple of sentences.

    “If you’re given the opportunity to speak at a conference, just put your fears to the side and go for it Angela says.

     

    Get on LinkedIn and get found

    Kyle Tate, Conference Producer at The Eventful Group says LinkedIn is where he goes to source speakers. So establishing yourself as a subject matter expert with a strong personal brand is key to being found.

    Finding speakers is a two-fold project for Kyle:

    • The first, and most important, is finding the right story that fits the narrative and shows innovation in the area.
    • The second is finding the right person to tell the story.

    “We look for confident speakers who can articulate their successes through great storytelling,” Kyle says. “Being able to tell a great story is the hardest quality to find, but can make the biggest difference to a presentation.

    Ultimately, people attend conferences to hear how others have overcome a challenge they might be facing. So highlighting how you’ve approached things in an innovative way is another key aspect of a good speaker.

    Sharing an alternative approach to doing things empowers people to return to their organisations to achieve the same,” he says. “Without the story being innovative it’s just repetition of the norms that already exist.”

     

    Don’t ask, don’t get

    TCCS member Leanne Shelton has led workshops for City of Parramatta Council and Macquarie Community College. She’s also spoken at networking events and even runs her own.

    Her advice for landing a speaking gig is simple: Just ask.

    “When it comes to speaking at networking events or running workshops, I simply asked the organiser. I either approach them in person or send them an email saying I’d be interested in speaking on x topic at an upcoming event. Seems simple, but it works.”

    She says it helps if they know you. So make sure you’re attending the events you want to speak at.

    Once you’ve presented, her top tips are:

    • Collect email addresses and phone numbers from attendees and send them your slides. It’s a great way to generate warm leads and start building connections.
    • Do a follow up call about two weeks later. Ask them if they have any follow-up questions or want to book a free discovery call. People often say they appreciate the call as it’s personal and not part of a bulk email.

     

    How to find conferences and events to speak at

    If you’ve successfully smooshed down your imposter syndrome and want to start speaking at events and conferences, here are some ideas to get you started.

    Note: This list was compiled in the “before times”, when we were allowed to gather en masse and shaking hands wasn’t a deviant act. Many larger conferences have “pivoted” to a virtual format, with some planning to run in 2021 and beyond (fingers crossed).

    Copywriting and marketing events are a good place to start because it’s in our zone of genius: Think of events such as Copycon, Mumbrella, and B2B Marketing Forum.

    Industry events: If you niche by industry, speaking at industry events means getting in front of potential clients. Have a poke around your industry bodies, associations, and local industry groups to see if they run events. Think about how you can help your audience do business better. For example, if you’re speaking to accountants tell them how to make accounting sexy on social media. Or for a real estate audience, how to write punchy listings.

    Business events:

    • General Assembly runs free and paid seminars on a range of topics including digital marketing, social media, and copywriting.
    • Co-working spaces such as We Work often run free lunch-and-learn sessions, which is a good way to connect to local business owners.
    • Bio events hold monthly member events specially curated to make sure people get maximum value from attending. They run mixers, industry meetups, and panel discussions.

    Women’s events: Love ‘em or hate ‘em, there are a lot of them around. And more are springing up by the day. If you have the necessary bits and a great story to tell, this could be for you.

    Wellness events: Wellness in the workplace is a hot topic for many businesses. And freelancers face their own challenges when it comes to wellness. Do you have an interesting way to balance your work and life? Are you passionate about mental health? Are you a carbon-neutral workplace? Are you powering your laptop with a bicycle?

    Organise it yourself: Platforms such as Meetup have made it easier than ever to host your own event. It can be a lot of work finding a space, setting up tickets, and marketing the event, but running your own meeting means you can fill it with ideal clients.

    Start local
    If big conferences are just too terrifying, look into smaller local events or speaking opportunities:

    • Speak at local networking events. Your local Chamber of Commerce is a good place to start.
    • Run a workshop. Local councils are often looking for expert speakers on small business marketing, etc.
    • Speak at regional events. In my area, there’s a Wollongong digital marketing conference.

     

    Over to you

    If you have a story to tell, whether it’s business-related or otherwise, get out there and find somewhere to tell it. You’ll reap the rewards in the long run, even if it’s just proving to yourself that you can do it.

     

    About Clare

     

    Clare Hastings is a content writer for B2B brands who have insights to share. A journalist-slash-marketer, she liberates your leaders’ expertise and writes articles, eBooks, whitepapers, and case studies to position your brand as a trusted authority.

    You can find her at Write My Content (or guzzling endless cups of coffee at the local café to keep up with her two little kids).

     

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    An Interview with Copywriter Donna Webeck

    How to apply

    1. Read through the job description below carefully and ask yourself:
      1. Do you have relevant experience?
      2. Can you meet the deadline or feel confident negotiating it?
      3. Can you meet the budget or feel confident negotiating it?
        If the answers are all ‘YES’ move to step 2.
    2. Send your best possible pitch to the email address included in the job description below. Introduce yourself, sell yourself!
    3. There’s no need to cc us, but of course we’d love to know if you win the job, please tell us in the TCCS Facebook group

    Job application rules and guidelines

    1. Jobs will be posted on this page as they come in.
    2. The TCCS rules still apply:
      1. Please only apply for jobs you’ve had experience in.
      2. Do not apply for every single job – you will ruin the quality of the replies for the job poster and as a consequence, we’re likely to get few jobs posted.
      3. We will be monitoring responses by following up with job posters to assess quality.  If we find that members have been applying for jobs for which they’re not a good fit, their access to the job board will be limited. 

         

    3. Jobs will be open for a maximum of 48 hours, fewer if the enquirer has advised they’ve received enough responses.

      Suggested format for emails:

      Hi Bob.
      I saw your job post on The Clever Copywriting School Job board.

      Reason for applying:
      Name:
      TCCS Directory link: (Annual members only)
      Website:
      Email:

      Phone:

      Thanks
      Your name

       

    Happy pitching and as always, if you have any questions or technical difficulty, please email admin@clevercopywritingschool.com

    JOB DETAILS

    Job status: Open

    Job posted: 19/10/20

    Industry:

    Type:

    Deadline:

    Budget:

    Location:

    Brief:

    Donna Webeck from Prestige Property Copy


     

    Who are you Donna Webeck?

    I am a specialist real estate writer, I launched Prestige Property Copy in 2015. Based in Australia but with clients worldwide, I craft compelling copy, designed to emotionally connect and convert into sales.

    Best of all, I love having a legitimate excuse to spend my days looking at humble abodes and ultra-luxury homes – all in the name of work!

     

    What did you do before you became a copywriter?

    I dabbled in freelance feature-writing for a few years before switching to copywriting. Prior to that, I was a PA at Channel Nine and PBL.

     

    How long have you been copywriting?

    Writing professionally since 2011, copywriting since 2015.

     

    What has been your biggest copywriting career win?

    Last financial year I cracked the magical six-figures with my billing. That was HUGE because I have always been someone who undercharges and over-delivers.

    It was also an incredible validation for all my hard work, that I had created a thriving business doing something I loved.

     

    What was your worst copywriting career fail?

    Something I regretted for a long time was taking a shortcut to get a cheap (and therefore VERY clunky) website built when I first started taking my niche seriously.

    Yes, it gave me a presence online, but it also ended up costing me so much more to get fixed over time.

     

    What are your number one fave copywriting tools?

    I’m so old-school (hello, pen and paper, my dear friends!) that I don’t have one, in particular, to swear by. But I am quite partial to WordHippo as I have a heavy amount of descriptive writing to do in a day. This site ensures each piece sounds fresh and unique.

     

    How do you deal with self-doubt?

    It’s still ever-present, no matter the fact I’ve been in my real estate niche for 5 years! I try to listen to podcasts to get advice on how to manage this – one little nugget of gold I heard this week was “emotions are choices and choices can be changed”.

    Self-doubt is an emotion, so recognise it when it rears its ugly head and make the conscious decision to change how you’re feeling. (Failing that, read through the testimonials on your site – that works just as well 😆)

     

    What work/life balance or mental health tips do you have?

    For far too long I was super guilty of living to work, instead of working to live. All it takes it a harsh reality to wake you up to the fact that you have your priorities completely the wrong way around.

    Losing a dear friend a few months ago made me realise what I was sacrificing for my business – my health (physical, mental and emotional) was really suffering, my family and friends weren’t getting the best of me, and I was so damn tired all the time.

    Truly, you cannot operate that way without it harming you – stress kills. Balance is now far more present – no more 10-12 hour workdays, scheduling in time to relax and do things which bring joy and remembering what is most important – family.

     

    What tip would you pass onto any newbie copywriters?

    Understand you are in business – you’re not just writing and getting paid. I made so many mistakes because I failed to realise I was actually running a business.

    Treat it with the respect it deserves, nurture it, invest in it and it will grow.

     

     

    What’s next for you?

    I’m excited to be working on a real estate copywriting course, which is due to launch later this year.

     

    Why do you love TCCS?

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – this Toonism sums it up perfectly, “Your community will save you on your darkest days”.

    TCCS is a soft place to fall and sounding board of brilliant minds. I would not be where I am today without it.

     

    Long description :

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    Contact Name:

    Contact Phone:

    Contact Email:

    Contact Website:

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    An interview with Copywriter Phyllis Stylianou

    How to apply

    1. Read through the job description below carefully and ask yourself:
      1. Do you have relevant experience?
      2. Can you meet the deadline or feel confident negotiating it?
      3. Can you meet the budget or feel confident negotiating it?
        If the answers are all ‘YES’ move to step 2.
    2. Send your best possible pitch to the email address included in the job description below. Introduce yourself, sell yourself!
    3. There’s no need to cc us, but of course we’d love to know if you win the job, please tell us in the TCCS Facebook group

    Job application rules and guidelines

    1. Jobs will be posted on this page as they come in.
    2. The TCCS rules still apply:
      1. Please only apply for jobs you’ve had experience in.
      2. Do not apply for every single job – you will ruin the quality of the replies for the job poster and as a consequence, we’re likely to get few jobs posted.
      3. We will be monitoring responses by following up with job posters to assess quality.  If we find that members have been applying for jobs for which they’re not a good fit, their access to the job board will be limited. 

         

    3. Jobs will be open for a maximum of 48 hours, fewer if the enquirer has advised they’ve received enough responses.

      Suggested format for emails:

      Hi Bob.
      I saw your job post on The Clever Copywriting School Job board.

      Reason for applying:
      Name:
      TCCS Directory link: (Annual members only)
      Website:
      Email:

      Phone:

      Thanks
      Your name

       

    Happy pitching and as always, if you have any questions or technical difficulty, please email admin@clevercopywritingschool.com

    JOB DETAILS

    Job status: Open

    Job posted: 15/09/20

    Industry:

    Type:

    Deadline:

    Budget:

    Location:

    Brief:

    Phyllis Stylianou from Write Stuff Media


     

    Who are you Phyllis Stylianou?

    I’m a freelance journalist and copywriter, mum of three teenagers and two cats, Harry Potter aficionado and I’ve recently discovered The Hunger Games. I’ll write anything for anyone, but have found myself specialising in engineering and construction copywriting. I’ve written two books, carried the Olympic torch in 2000 and wish I had some sort of talent, but unfortunately I don’t.

     

    What did you do before you became a copywriter?

    I’ve been a journalist unofficially since I was 15 and officially since I was 18. I used to go to the local newspaper every afternoon after school to work. (They invited me back after I did work experience.)

    I worked at Cumberland Newspapers (the Murdoch local papers in Sydney), then went to Readers Digest where I was a sub-editor of Handyman magazine, then returned to local papers (Fairfax). I love local media. It’s a shame they’re dying out. I always had Write Stuff Media as a bit of a side hustle but didn’t get serious about it until I was made redundant five years ago.

     

    How long have you been copywriting?

    Five years full time.

     

    What has been your copywriting career win?

    Securing a fairly regular client that is a large engineering company – Calibre.

     

    What was your worst copywriting fail?

    Getting conned into writing 30 x 1000-word webpages and not getting paid.

     

    What are your number one fave copywriting tools?

    Kate’s email templates, Grammarly, Tiny URL, Voice Recorder, and Rev transcription service.

     

    How do you deal with self-doubt?

    Curl up in a ball and fall apart. Tell my husband I’m hopeless. My eldest daughter slaps me around (figuratively), I have a cry, think of a plan and write it down, dust myself off and keep going. Cuddle my kids.

     

    What work/life balance or mental health tips do you have?

    Set regular business hours and stick to them, go for a walk, and remember how bad things seem, good things can be just around the corner and nothing ever stays the same forever.

    Try to keep regular business hours so you don’t spent the evening or weekend thinking about the jobs that need to be done. Try to eat well and exercise. Above all, talk to other people if you feel unsure, upset or worried.

    Talk to people in the TCCS FB group, talk to family or friends. You can even chat with your doctor. I’ve found that people in the TCCS FB group are always there to give you a boost, and will even offer advice or to lend a hand. Don’t be afraid to reach out.

     

    What tip would you pass onto any newbie copywriters?

    Join this group, do some courses (they’re great), get Kate to do a Member Makeover or, if she still does them, a one-on-one consultation (best money I’ve ever spent). Get Tony Cosentino to build your website or, if you can’t afford it, get him to give your website a health check (another great investment).

    Get some part-time work if you can to keep you going financially and build your confidence. Don’t overprice yourself – start small (not too cheap though) and gradually increase prices. Learn about SEO through Kate’s course so people will find your website.

     

     

    What’s next for you?

    I’ve been getting some contract work as a comms officer which is building my skills and experience. I hope to keep doing that but really need to get back into making a big effort with my business. I’d love for my business to take off enough that I never have to worry about money again.

     

    Why do you love TCCS?

    I love Kate and she is the heart of the group. It’s a great place to come for reassurance when feeling down, for information and advice, and for company – because working at home can be a bit lonely sometimes. I love that Kate doesn’t allow any nastiness, and anyone who makes cutting remarks soon leaves. (Happened to me a couple of times so I stopped posting.) It’s a place of friendship.

     

    Long description :

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    Contact details:

    Contact Name:

    Contact Phone:

    Contact Email:

    Contact Website:

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    How to get more clients on LinkedIn

    How to apply

    1. Read through the job description below carefully and ask yourself:
      1. Do you have relevant experience?
      2. Can you meet the deadline or feel confident negotiating it?
      3. Can you meet the budget or feel confident negotiating it?
        If the answers are all ‘YES’ move to step 2.
    2. Send your best possible pitch to the email address included in the job description below. Introduce yourself, sell yourself!
    3. There’s no need to cc us, but of course we’d love to know if you win the job, please tell us in the TCCS Facebook group

    Job application rules and guidelines

    1. Jobs will be posted on this page as they come in.
    2. The TCCS rules still apply:
      1. Please only apply for jobs you’ve had experience in.
      2. Do not apply for every single job – you will ruin the quality of the replies for the job poster and as a consequence, we’re likely to get few jobs posted.
      3. We will be monitoring responses by following up with job posters to assess quality.  If we find that members have been applying for jobs for which they’re not a good fit, their access to the job board will be limited. 

         

    3. Jobs will be open for a maximum of 48 hours, fewer if the enquirer has advised they’ve received enough responses.

      Suggested format for emails:

      Hi Bob.
      I saw your job post on The Clever Copywriting School Job board.

      Reason for applying:
      Name:
      TCCS Directory link: (Annual members only)
      Website:
      Email:

      Phone:

      Thanks
      Your name

       

    Happy pitching and as always, if you have any questions or technical difficulty, please email admin@clevercopywritingschool.com

    JOB DETAILS

    Job status: Open

    Job posted: 08/09/20

    Industry:

    Type:

    Deadline:

    Budget:

    Location:

    Brief:

    A guide for freelance copywriters

     

    This post was written by TCCS member, Beck Cofrancesco


     

    Everyone’s talking about LinkedIn right now. And for good reason.

    It’s a golden window of opportunity.

    Of the near 700 million people on LinkedIn, only 1% post weekly content.

    Which means it’s less crowded than other social channels, and your content is more likely to be seen.

    And best of all it’s what’s known as long-tail content. It will keep performing for weeks.

    Wouldn’t it feel great to be an in-demand copywriter with clients chasing you to work with them?

    It’s time to up your LinkedIn game and get visible.

    LinkedIn is a client goldmine waiting to be tapped, especially if you work in the B2B space.

    I’m sharing what’s worked for me, and why I love it so much. (Yep, I’m a total LinkedIn geek.)

    “People on LinkedIn have money.
    A budget ready to spend.
    If that’s not a qualified lead, I don’t know what is.”

     

    First, work out your goals for LinkedIn

    To get more clients on LinkedIn you need to be clear on three things:

    1. What you want to be known for
    2. Who you want to connect with
    3. The results you want

     

    Second, nail the LinkedIn profile

    Think of your LinkedIn profile as a sales page for your business.

    Include everything you need to dazzle potential customers, including a great banner with your unique selling proposition.

    You want as many people to check out your profile as possible. So, you need to set it up so they can find it. Keywords help you do that.

    Tip: Write a list of keywords people would search for to find you and include them in your headline and profile description.

     

    Build a search-friendly LinkedIn header

    When you’re active on the LinkedIn feed, the words under your name may be the only thing people see. Use keywords to call out the value you bring.

    There are two trains of thoughts on best practice:

    1. Lead with a statement on how you can help (e.g. “I help financial services businesses communicate”)
    2. Signal what you do (e.g. “Freelance Financial Services Marketer I Sydney”)

    I’ve tried both and didn’t see a difference in visibility. So, it comes down to preference and the keywords you use.

     

    Refresh your summary description

    LinkedIn doesn’t have to be a snooze fest. You can let your personality shine.
    Make it all about your potential customer, how you’re the answer to what they need, and why they should choose you.

    Tip: Remember to turn off notifications while you’re fiddling about. Turn it back on when you’ve made your final change and your network will be notified.

    Note: Kate has a great LinkedIn course inside the membership and profile template. If you’re serious about growing your copywriting business on LinkedIn you should definitely get it.

     

    Third, jump in and get social

    To be good at social, you need to be social. So never lead with the sell. Always lead with value.

    A great way to get your feel for LinkedIn is to join conversations on your feed.

    Pick posts that align with your area of expertise and what you want to be known for. It’s a simple way to build your confidence, and you’ll also start showing up on your connection’s newsfeeds.

     

    Start conversations (outreach program)

    If you really want to build traction and get those leads happening, you need to be intentional about it.

    The real gold in LinkedIn isn’t the newsfeed. It’s in the conversations you have in private (or ‘in-mail’ to be technically correct).

    Make yourself a target list of:

    • People you admire
    • Companies who have values similar to yours
    • People you’ve worked with in the past (and want to work with again)
    • Decision-makers (i.e. people with the authority to hire you for freelance work)

    Then systematically start conversations with those people. And when the time is right, you can introduce the idea of working together.

    Tip: NEVER lead with a sales request. It’s annoying. And spammy.
    Lead with connection, show value, and then let the conversation happen naturally.

     

    Post your own content

    Even though we’re copywriters, we’re not immune to getting stuck with what to write about.

    But what better way to get more clients on LinkedIn than to showcase what you’re good at – writing.

    It’s a good idea to create content themes (known as pillars) and stick to them.

    The themes should support what you want to be known for.

    Tip: Always include an engaging call to action. The LinkedIn algorithm is just like other platforms, where engagement on your post triggers it to show it to more people.

     

     

    Conclusion

    If your ideal clients hang out on LinkedIn it’s time you did too. It’s not the snoozefest you think it is. And there is a real opportunity right now.

    It would be a shame to waste it, no?

    Feel free to hang out on LinkedIn with me.

     

    Over to you

    If you liked this article please share it.

     

    About Beck

     

    Rebecca Cofrancesco is the founder of Marketing Goodness.

    Beck is a copywriter and marketing strategist who loves working with service-based businesses.

    Helping them get found, create great content, start conversations, and make more sales.

     

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    Contact Name:

    Contact Phone:

    Contact Email:

    Contact Website:

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