Quick story about me, I started my copywriting journey in 2018 but was procrastinating until 2020 when I lost my job in March due to the pandemic, and on April 1st, my brother passed away...
This was when shit got real, I got no job, and I'm now the sole provider for my mother in Jamaica... and here I am, procrastinating with a skill that can provide a stable income.
The problem is, I was stuck in my comfort zone, with a nice paying job, and to be honest, this is the hardest thing to break away from when there's no need for extra money.
But the pandemic changed my life and kickstarted a fire up my ass to take my copywriting journey seriously.
Even though I was procrastinating, I was reading copywriting books repeatedly without taking any action. Most of the content in these books didn't make sense until I landed my first paying client on Upwork in February 2021.
Currently, I've made just over 10k and reduced my workdays at my 9-5 from five days per week to 4 days.
My goal is to slowly reduce days at my 9-5 and save one year of my wages, and by then, my skills will improve where I'm able to charge a minimum of $2k - 5k per project plus charge on royalties.
Here are the exact steps I used to succeed in my copywriting journey. ( I took exactly this route)
1. Work on your mindset.
This is the foundation, find a reason why you want to be a copywriter and make sure it's not just for the money.
In my situation, I'm an adventurous soul who loves to travel, and I'm not comfortable stuck in one location. I want to be free and hike all over the world...
Also, mom lives in Jamaica, and I can only see her for two weeks per year on holiday then back to 9-5... This isn't life, and it's killing me deeply, I want to be able to spend at least three months with her.
2. Be in a position where you don't need money ASAP
When you're in a position where you need money ASAP, you will ignore the red flags of terrible clients and take on whatever comes your way...
You got to be careful in your early career because one bad client can kill your confidence. So, get a job while you're learning; this will ease the pressure and allow you to pick and choose the projects you're interested in.
3. Read a minimum of two copywriting books.
The first one is: The Adweek Copywriting Handbook
Second: Kyle Milligan Take their money
Seriously this is all you want to get started. From 2018 - to 2020, I read over ten copywriting and marketing books, and it's not worth it.
Copy is more practical and less of theory. You will learn this in Kyle Milligan book above.
4. Apply on Upwork for projects that are less than $100
Don't get me wrong, you can apply for projects over $500, but I like to work my way up gradually. I think this helps build your confidence, especially when you have no mentor or paid courses yet.
For example: My 7th client on Upwork, I charged $50 for the first three FB ads, then $500 for an advertorial, then $1000 for the other advertorials once I saw the data that I increased their revenue by 17.8% in 13 days...
See first data here:
And now I'm doing a VSL for the same client for $5k - yes, you can find good clients on Upwork.
The key to Upwork is to apply to as many gigs as possible.
5. Buy a Course.
Once you make your first 1K, invest in a copywriting course. A course will give you more confidence and the framework to take on more projects. (This is why you need to be in a position where you don't need money. Otherwise, you won't be able to make this investment)
Some courses will offer a FB group where you can get some support. My course of choice was The FKS - Freedom Kickstarter by Mike Samuels, one of the Uk's best copywriters, and he does a yearly live meeting for anyone who bought his course (First time in 2021 at the live event, I got offered two jobs).
Having this course gave me more confidence to take on other projects and increase my price.
So instead of doing web page copy, amazon listing and odd jobs, I start offering email sequences & FB ads until I find that I prefer to write advertorials, and I stick to that.
P.S. Lot's of people fall into the trap of buying multiple courses, don't do that. Most of these courses are recycled content.
6. Get Your Copy Critique
This is important; as a beginner, it's always good to get a second eye over your work, and this can cost a lot of money, and most experience copywriters don't have the time to critique your work for free.
This is where networking comes in. When you build relationships with other copywriters, they are more likely to give you a free critique... This will be good enough until you're able to pay to get in-depth critique and feedback.
DON'T post your copy in free FB groups for critique - most people in there only read one copywriting book and think they are a copy coach or mentor overnight lol. Don't listen to them!
7. Join paid mentorships or groups.
There are groups where you can pay anywhere from $50 - $5000 per month to learn from a specific copywriter. So this is a better environment to be in because everyone here is spending their money and not low-quality content.
8. Stay away from free FB groups.
Yes, you can use them to learn and ask questions but don't get caught up reading people success stories and judging your growth.
And to be honest, most people chat shit in free copywriting groups.
I can't think of anything else to say other than keep working on yourself daily and practise the craft.
I will add some more content in the future on how to RESEARCH your prospect and so on. I just didn't wanna cram everything here.
Meanwhile, grab this book and read it. It'll improve your mindset and self-development, The Master Key System by Charles Haanel.
This is what works for me. Everyone will have a different idea and logic on how to go about it--all the best on your journey.