Freelance copywriting sucks

Word Tweak is a failed business where the sole trader has never recovered the costs associated with officially registering, purchasing the domain names, printing the cards, emailing the hack frauds or setting up the website. There have been some small wins here and there, but a lot of time has been squandered chasing leads and repeatedly asking legacy clients for overdue payment. So, fuck it. If you’re a freelance copywriter, just stop. Get a real job.

Was it all for naught? No. Through professional experience elsewhere and downright exploitation at the expense of this salty operator, there is a folio that is half-decent. At least the body of works, and the piffle to accompany it, was ok enough to open up more lucrative and sustainable full-time opportunities for an entrepreneur who was spinning words for virtual cents. So yeah, it padded out the good ol’ CV and helped this aspiring capitalist learn a thing or two about humanity.

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Online marketing, the horror.

But that’s not the point. It should never be acceptable for a professional freelance copywriter to work for free when payment via legal tender was agreed upon in writing. Fast food chains won’t wait a year for you to pay for that litre of cola that you quaffed. Myki doesn’t give a shit if you fare evade because you forgot to top up (well, from what I’ve seen, V/Line conductors are weak on the matter) but you get the point, right? Engage a professional for a service and then pay them promptly. If the job was terrible or needs fixing, it gets resolved.

There are a few problems when dealing with copywriting contracts.

  1. Trust. This word tweaker should’ve encrypted files and done all sorts of Mr Robot shenanigans to ensure payment for services rendered. In almost every situation where payment for copywriting is pending, it’s because the contact has established trust and their tardiness was never anticipated. It is difficult to withhold copy when it is being submitted via .docx or text format. Fuck people.
  2. Priorities. Businesses focus on core business. It’s what businesses do. When a business engages a copywriting business to do business, its business is more important than your business. So don’t be surprised when you do all the work and then wait an eternity for a response. By the time the other business get back to you, they’ll probably back out or have a change in priorities that will call for a complete re-write, with the expectation that you can do it for free. Cheap bastards.
  3. Protection. No, this isn’t a contraception spiel. wait, maybe it is … You see, freelancers are often at the mercy of their customers. There’s endless negotiation and compromise because freelancers want happy, paying customers. Sadly, people will play every dirty trick to squeeze all the value out of your juicy noggin. This means that the copywriter often completes the job but the other party will attempt to get away with paying only a fraction or zilch. When you’re just a small-town writer, livin in a lonely world, you’ll take the midnight train goin anywhere.

TL;DR: People exploit people. Get your shit together. If you freelance, fuckin don’t.

Let this video ram it home for ya.

 

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How To Use Pain Points Without Hurting Your Business

Any eCommerce website or business that sells products online can benefit from landing page copy that speaks to the reader’s needs. Simply listing your entire inventory is not enough to entice your prospects. Sure, you might score the odd sale here and there from regulars but if you want to significantly boost your conversion potential you should discuss pain points.

Do you know what pain points are? Let me give you a hint; in the context of content marketing they don’t refer to paper cuts or minor abrasions unless you are selling an adhesive bandage solution. Pain points are typically problems that advertising creatives rely on to sell compelling reasons to invest in a product or service.

Elaborate on a lame, ridiculous problem that your business can solve and consumers won’t take you seriously. Just think of all those terrible TV infomercials.

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Image via http://www.infomercial-hell.com

Yeah, don’t do that. Dump that idea.

Consider these fun ideas.

Identify Pain Points

How can your clients benefit from your products and services? You may already have a list. If so, that’s great. Refine that list and use those examples to tell a story that persuades your audience to invest in your solutions.

If you are struggling with brainstorming authentic pain points just think about the people that currently use your products and services and work backwards from there. Before washing machines, for example, people would clean their clothes by hand. Manual labour in this instance is a pain point. Innovative, automated technology is the opportunity.

Consider Product Applications

Depending on the industry, sometimes there isn’t much you can do with something as mundane as shelving. Or can you? Fortunately, there is one neat trick that can help you keep things interesting. Consider all of the industry applications for your products and services.

You should, at every opportunity, explain how your stuff can be used in various situations. Chances are a hotel owner or restaurateur won’t even consider the benefits of your long span shelving until they read your landing page that elaborates on cool room storage solutions.

Investigate Keyword Strings

What are your competitors doing? Have a look at their websites and use the MOZ toolbar, or whatever you use, to take a closer look at their mapped keywords. Generally, keyword strings can provide a little insight about the products and services that an organisation deems to be important.

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Read the keyword optimised content and you may see how content creators are using products and services to resolve real or perceived issues.

It is common to see lots of articles from different sources that cover the same ground. Google likes fresh, original content. That time that you spend researching and reviewing is worthwhile when you publish words that own a unique selling point that your competition is neglecting.

TL;DR

  • Pain points are problems that we use to sell solutions
  • Determine realistic, believable issues that your business can solve
  • Discuss all of the potential uses and benefits of your products/services
  • Review rival business websites to find your own unique selling points