How do I find existing copy to improve?

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Hello WarriorForum!

I just hopped on board about 10 minutes ago, and I'm glad to be here.

The reason why I joined is actually two reasons:

1) It's an awesome community of people with the shared goal of making a dime online.
2) There's this burning question I have and I decided to go straight for the jugular with a new thread.

A little background:

I'm a self-taught sales copywriter who has learned his craft through the usual route prescribed by most online copywriting congregations. Reading & taking notes on classic and modern copy books, hand-copying ads by hand, the works.

I started working mainly through Upwork and I've earned mostly peanuts so far. But that doesn't bother me -- it's all healthy practice.

What bothers me is... I have no results to show for it! Nothing. Nada.

All those gigs I've done were one-off sort of deals and the clients went AWOL after I handed in my work. (Even when I asked nicely for the results.)

The problem with this is... I have no idea if I'm getting any better or not!

So I decided to put my client-hunting efforts elsewhere.

My goal is to specialize in a certain niche and track down under-performing offers in it to improve. Something along the lines of what Brian McLeod advises in this thread:
https://www.warriorforum.com/copywri...iting-job.html

Which leads me to my question...

How EXACTLY do I find them? What methods can I use to find sales letters/offers/email sequences where I can directly 'beat the control' and make a case study out of it?

Kinda feeling stuck here, so I appreciate your answers in advance.

-davidoffsky
#client acquisition #client getting #copy #copywriting #copywriting advice needed #existing #find #improve
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Hancox
    Hi davidoffsky, welcome to the forum!

    (The Brian McLeod link isn't working. It's probably because you're new to the forum so I'm guessing the software automatically breaks the link.)

    First off, congratulations for taking action, both to teach yourself copywriting and to be willing to find clients.

    Permit me to rephrase your question, "How do I find existing copy to improve?"

    That's the easy part. Google is full of copy that needs improving, especially when you drill down, i.e. not just "pet grooming" but "pet grooming" + Kentucky, or + a specific breed of dog, or any number of variations.

    The real question is, "How do I find people who are willing to let me change their copy, and are willing to pay me for the results?"

    That's the tricky part. Here's how I'd perhaps do it, if I were you.

    - In my chosen niche, for now I'd look for fairly small businesses, small stores, sole-traders.

    For each one, I'd then ask myself...

    - Do they appear to advertise? (This indicates they have a marketing budget.)
    - Do they have existing copy I'm certain I could improve?
    - Can I find out who owns the company, and their address?
    - Would I like them as a client?

    If the answer is YES to each of these, I'd add them to my list of prospects.

    I'd aim to get twenty of these to begin with, and then I'd WRITE to them individually, with my offer.

    Now, from the prospect's point of view, the problem here is trust. They don't know you. Also, if your offer is essentially, "don't pay me unless I increase your sales" then they have to be comfortable enough to show you their sales, which requires trust.

    The first step to building trust is to have a website of your own, where prospects can get to know you. Nowadays you can get a domain name and web hosting for under $50, and it's probably one of the best investments you could make, because it's a trust builder (among many other things).

    Another way to build trust is to create some personal suggestions for each prospect, specifying what you would like to change. One of the things I recommend to my copywriting students is they actually put the suggestions on their own website, i.e. yoursite . com/ideas/JohnSmith ... that way John Smith, the prospect, can't resist becoming engaged with your site!

    Bottom line is... the way to make this idea work is to BUILD TRUST, and to MAKE AN IRRESISTIBLE OFFER to prospects you consider to be QUALIFIED.

    But the other things are also important. You want clients who are making sales already, and this means they're likely to be advertising. (This would perhaps be your qualifier for whether you think they'd make good clients or not.)

    Also, make it clear in your offer that you intend to use them as a case study, so they know why you want to change their copy. Plus, hint that "case study" equals free publicity.
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