You don’t really like writing.
You realize you don’t have a lot of talent in something your don’t like.
And you realize that trying to do it yourself is taking too much of your time from more productive activities.
You have reached that point in time where you need something more than what you have – a real copywriter.
Now, let me share with you some pointers that will help you get the right person, at the right price, to generate the right results.
Let’s start off with terminology so you can talk the talk as well as walk the walk.
You may hear a lot of “copywriter” and “content marketing writer” out there in the world.
Don’t let the different names bother you – what you want is a professional that can achieve your goals and objectives. If you need to generate high-quality leads, a good writer will write copy/create content that motivates high-quality leads to take notice and take action.
Same for a project you might have for building more profitable, loyal repeat customers and clients.
So, bottom line – cut past the titles and get to know what the person has done and can do for your needs.
Know Where You Are Going
What do you want to be accomplished? Is this a one-off project or the start of a long-term relationship?
Remember that anyone you speak with is going to ask you for details so you need to have thought through what you want.
Click the button below and check out the post on the questions I ask clients regarding a new project. I included some insight into why I ask the questions for those of you that might not have worked with a freelancer before – and for those of you that might be wondering ‘I wonder what this guy asks?’
Don’t have all the answers? That’s fine. Some writers will help you put together your project plan with goals, objectives, budgets, and timelines.
But expect to pay for that service.
Typically, this type of project planning session should require anywhere for 1 to 4 hours. And for this service, you can expect to pay in the $100 to $400 range, unless your project in extremely complicated.
If you want a content marketing strategy or a full marketing plan – you should talk with a strategist and be prepared to spend more money because these types of plans are significantly more complex.
Just for your reference, content marketing plans typically start at $5,000 and go up from there. Full marketing plans start at around $10,000 and can go much higher.
Some writers will specialize in just writing website copy or direct mail or scripts for broadcast ads. Others may specialize in certain industries.
And then you have your generalists that have written a broad array of material for a broad array of industries.
Lastly, there’s the skill level – from beginners to experts. All of these factors can impact their fee – so let’s talk about money
Understand the Costs, Have a Budget
One of the questions every potential writer will ask is “What’s your budget?” And typically the answer is “no idea.”
The AWAI produces an annual pricing guide – click the button below and get a copy so you know what to expect.
Also, it’s important to remember that this is an investment in your business – so keep in mind your goals and objectives when creating your budget.
If your objective is to generate 10 new high-quality leads, and you typically convert 1 of the 10 into a new client that spends $100,000 with your business in the first 12-months, a $100 budget might not be the key to hiring the right person to do the right work.
Review Their Portfolio & Check References
Visit their websites, review their portfolios and read the testimonials. If you can’t find their site, portfolio or testimonials – ask for them.
Keep in mind that when you are looking at someone’s portfolio, their work was performed for someone else and you might not like their tone, manner, or style, I strongly suggest you ask the writer about the projects in their portfolio and understand why they did what they did. This should give you some valuable insight into what it would be like working with them,
Ask For A Proposal
When you are feeling comfortable with a writer or two, and you want to take the next step, ask for a proposal. In that document, you will see their project process, terms and conditions as well as their rates.
Some may charge by the word. Others by the hour or a not-to-exceed project rate.
Be sure that you understand the process – tasks, milestones, owners and the possible impact on the project if something happens and a due date is missed.
Also, ask about revisions because it’s extremely rare for a first draft to be the final draft. Typically, you should need a first with minor revisions.
And if you need revisions, be specific when it comes to providing feedback. “I don’t like it” isn’t directional. Telling the writer that “This isn’t the tone we agreed to for this project” is directional.