Today, lets look at three simple and basic ways to becoming an in-demand freelance copywriter.
1. Be realistic at the outset
Everyone thinks of the dream freelance copywriter lifestyle where you are either:
rolling out of bed at 10am, ambling down to the closest hipster coffee haunt with laptop in hand, sipping on lattes while churning out a few hours work before a late lunch, then relaxing for the rest of the day; or
sitting on sun lounge or a hammock next to a beach/pool, catching some sun in between tapping out some work on the laptop.
For the majority, thats a LONG way away; for some, its just a pipe dream. At the beginning, you need to be willing to dig in and do the hard yards because the other end doesnt happen without a lot of toil at the start.
Be prepared to not get paid regularly (or sometimes, at all) while you build your freelance business from the bottom up.
2. Start small
Unless you have years of experience as an agency or corporate copywriter in a previous life, most freelance copywriters dont have a wealth of work and/or experience in copywriting behind them. This means prospective employers are less likely to come a-knocking for your (undoubtedly) amazing services.
However, there are plenty of others who may also be starting out. Or some entrepreneur who has a limited budget but is willing to give a fresh newbie a go (because they themselves want their start-up to be given a go!). Sites like www.fiverr.com can be a great starting point, although it can feel horrible writing plenty of words for not a lot of money (on this, refer back to point 1).
You must be patient, and build up, if you dont have that prior experience to call on. Be realistic!
3. Get a niche
One of the best ways to start standing out sooner rather than later, even as an inexperienced copywriter, is to have a niche that you are specialised in. It seems like common sense but inevitably, you will produce a better product when you are writing about something you are passionate about and you have worked almost exclusively in for a long time.
It makes a lot of sense when you look at it this way. Lets say Frank is a budding freelance copywriter, who has a lot of personal experience and knowledge in boats. He knows boats, loves them to bits. So when he visits a boating show, and meets people in the business of profiting from boats in some way (whether by selling boats, servicing boats, selling boat accessories, etc.) then it helps when he knows what hes talking about. It also then becomes very handy when he lets them know that he is also a freelance copywriter who specialises in boats.
Simple but effective. Give it a go!
I'd be interested to hear other people's feedback on my post above!