What to Expect When Hiring a Copywriter

So, you’re thinking of hiring someone to write for you. Maybe your website has gone off the boil, you don’t have time to write your own blog or you’ve got a big report or presentation looming and don’t even know where to begin.

There are lots of reasons why seeking professional help with the writing of your marketing communications is a great idea:

  • You’re busy and your time is better spent running your business than agonising over how to write what you want to say. If you’re not a natural when it comes to writing, it can be a painful and time consuming process.
  • Copywriting isn’t just about spelling and grammar (although those are vitally important). Good copywriters are experienced marketers and have the right skills to deliver a clear message, in a specific brand voice, which will motivate the reader to take action.
  • Sometimes, you’re too close to your own business and you just get stuck. The process of working with a copywriter is often similar to working with a marketing consultant. You’ll not only end up with great copy that makes your business look polished and professional, but an outsider’s perspective nearly always delivers fresh ideas or a new marketing angle.
  • Search engine optimisation (SEO) is a way of increasing traffic to your website by optimising your online content to give your business the best chance of ranking higher on search engine results. There are many factors involved - and it’s more of an art than a science - but badly written content can be very damaging to your ranking. Copywriters work hard to please Google-bots as well as your live audience.

So, if you think that you’re ready to reach out to this particular copywriter, here’s an overview of what to expect:

The Process:

  1. Initial meeting - ideally in person, but Skype/Slack works too.

  2. I’ll tell you a bit about what I do and you can fill me in on the project. It's important that you 'click' with your copywriter and feel that they're really listening to (and understanding) you.

  3. I’ll send you a proposal, outlining the scope of work, together with a timeline, quote, terms and conditions.

  4. If you’re happy with the proposal, I’ll send you an invoice for the deposit.

  5. I’ll provide you with a copy of my Content Strategy Questionnaire, which we will work through together. This is a simple - but key - step in making sure you end up with quality, bespoke content that’s exactly right for you and your brand. Businesses that don’t already have a marketing communications strategy in place will find that this process gives them the beginnings of one as a nice little bonus.

  6. We'll use the insights from the questionnaire to define your brand’s voice and objectives for the project. This creates a reference point for future marketing communications, ensuring the consistency needed to build your brand in a way that’s clear, accurate and focused.

  7. I’ll get on with the job of researching, brainstorming, writing, revising and editing to produce clear and engaging copy that conveys your message with credibility. 

  8. You’ll receive the first draft, usually together with a few questions to check on various details. 

  9. You can email answers and/or changes back to me, or we can have a quick chat or meeting to discuss any aspect of the copy. 

  10. I’ll make amendments and send you the second draft, which is usually the final copy.

Ultimately, you can think of a copywriter as a valuable member of your marketing team. They can make a significant contribution towards developing the reputation of your business while freeing up your time so you can concentrate on other things. Which makes me wonder: why wouldn't you hire a copywriter?