Is There A Strict Format For Working With A Copywriter?

15 replies
Copywriters are expensive. And I know you guys say "its more expensive to not hire a good copywriter", but I've been profiting fairly well without one.

Mainly because I know how to get traffic to our site, and when we do get people on the phone, we can close them really well.

Our weakest point, would be getting people from google to the phone. So our conversions suck, but we're in enough places where it hasn't mattered that much. Our SEO descriptions in google could be a lot more appealing, the copy on our site can be A LOT better. Our youtube video CTR sucks, our google places CTR sucks. The problem is, I very likely can't afford to have a copywriter redo everything. Well let me rephrase that, I can't afford to have a copywriter redo everything, if they're not good at what they do.

So I was wondering, would most copywriters be cool with microtesting their work on a small scale? Like could I just pay a copywriter, to redo a few SEO descriptions, say on like 5 pages, then if I see an increase in my CTR, pay them for more work in the future?

Maybe there is a better way?

Should I just have them focus on 1 page instead. Maybe redo all the copy on my home page, then the SEO description for that page?

Just so I'm clear, I will rephrase the question like this:

What would be the cheapest way, to test a copywriter, to see if they know what they're doing, so it lowers my risk, and I can determine whether or not they're good at what they do?

Like is there a minimum amount of work that most copywriters will do for you? Maybe this is a stupid question, but I'm really curious.

Thanks guys - Red
#copywriter #format #strict #working
  • Profile picture of the author cindytsmile
    Mark Andrews is running a special right now. His reputation is stellar.
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  • Profile picture of the author cindytsmile
    Also, there is a list of copywriters at the top of this forum. If you know of one specific area of your website that you want to work on. Take a look at the list, different copywriters have different areas of expertise, you might find one there that fits your budget.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mark Pescetti
    From my experience...

    A money-making copywriter/client relationship is based completely upon transparent communication and passionate collaboration.

    Pick up the phone.

    Talk with a few copywriters.

    Feel their energy.

    Get a sense of whether there's a genuine connection - when you talk about what you do and what you're looking for in a collaboration.

    Be clear about what you want to achieve.

    Very clear.

    If the copywriter says the right things and you feel like you'd really enjoy working closely with him or her, take the next step.

    Mark
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  • Profile picture of the author Shazadi
    I think testing a copywriter on a smaller scale can be a smart decision. And as for your primary question, no, there’s no set “way” regarding how to do business with a copywriter. I think some of the bigger names would probably feel it was a waste of their time to do a smaller project like search descriptions and may pass you over because of that. However, if you truly do have more work and a bigger budget waiting on the backburner, it’s their loss.

    The thing is, a lot of copywriters (especially newbies) get scammed by the whole, “We’ll give you $4 to write a 2000 word landing page, and if you’re a good fit then we’ll pay you more for future projects!” Really it’s just a way for cheap clients to get cheap work and the promised higher pay never comes. So long as you’re honest in your dealings and can provide a reliable history as a client, then things should be fine.

    On one final note, some copywriters (such as myself) guarantee results with their work. As in, if their first draft doesn’t convert, you either get your money back or they rewrite it for free until it does work (more helpful since it saves you the time you’d need to look for someone else).

    That may be a better option for you because you can choose someone based on their past successes and know that even if it doesn’t work out initially, you have their promise (hopefully in a contract) that they will get you results.

    Not to hawk my wares too hard, but I would be open to the sort of thing you’re describing. Feel free to send me a PM if you’d like.
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  • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
    Originally Posted by RedShifted View Post

    Copywriters are expensive. And I know you guys say "its more expensive to not hire a good copywriter", but I've been profiting fairly well without one.

    Mainly because I know how to get traffic to our site, and when we do get people on the phone, we can close them really well.

    Our weakest point, would be getting people from google to the phone. So our conversions suck, but we're in enough places where it hasn't mattered that much. Our SEO descriptions in google could be a lot more appealing, the copy on our site can be A LOT better. Our youtube video CTR sucks, our google places CTR sucks. The problem is, I very likely can't afford to have a copywriter redo everything. Well let me rephrase that, I can't afford to have a copywriter redo everything, if they're not good at what they do.

    So I was wondering, would most copywriters be cool with microtesting their work on a small scale? Like could I just pay a copywriter, to redo a few SEO descriptions, say on like 5 pages, then if I see an increase in my CTR, pay them for more work in the future?

    Maybe there is a better way?

    Should I just have them focus on 1 page instead. Maybe redo all the copy on my home page, then the SEO description for that page?

    Just so I'm clear, I will rephrase the question like this:

    What would be the cheapest way, to test a copywriter, to see if they know what they're doing, so it lowers my risk, and I can determine whether or not they're good at what they do?

    Like is there a minimum amount of work that most copywriters will do for you? Maybe this is a stupid question, but I'm really curious.

    Thanks guys - Red
    Optimizing a site for persuasion and optimizing a site for search engine rankings are two different things. You can't do both.

    So in your present situation, I recommend you work with a SEO expert, not a copywriter.

    Alex

    PS - Disclaimer: I don't consider SEO a smart long-term business strategy. The search engines can kill your business in an instant with an algorithm change.
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  • Profile picture of the author Raydal
    Originally Posted by RedShifted View Post

    So I was wondering, would most copywriters be cool with microtesting their work on a small scale? Like could I just pay a copywriter, to redo a few SEO descriptions, say on like 5 pages, then if I see an increase in my CTR, pay them for more work in the future?
    Are you sure you are looking for a copywriter? There are some
    people who term themselves "SEO Copywriters" but they are
    two different fields as far as I am concerned. To write persuasively
    for the search engines and humans at the same time is not a skill
    I have acquired. I always find one of them not satisfied. I guess you
    can't serve God and mammon.

    -Ray Edwards
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    The most powerful and concentrated copywriting training online today bar none! Autoresponder Writing Email SECRETS
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    • Profile picture of the author angiecolee
      Originally Posted by Raydal View Post

      Are you sure you are looking for a copywriter? There are some
      people who term themselves "SEO Copywriters" but they are
      two different fields as far as I am concerned. To write persuasively
      for the search engines and humans at the same time is not a skill
      I have acquired. I always find one of them not satisfied. I guess you
      can't serve God and mammon.

      -Ray Edwards
      Agreed. I always write for humans first and foremost - Google has deep pockets, but it doesn't own the wallet that will ultimately buy from you. The great thing about that philosophy is I don't have to relearn anything or change the way I write every time an algorithm slaps a site down in the rankings. Whenever someone asks me about keywords and rankings, I refer them to one of my partners, who's much better at that stuff than I am.
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      Aspiring copywriters: if you need 1:1 advice from an experienced copy chief, head over to my Phone a Friend page.

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  • Profile picture of the author deezn
    I think what he means is, he wants a copywriter to re-write the description for his site, not for SEO purposes, but for persuasian purposes.

    He's done ok with SEO, so it appears in the SERPs. But people are looking at a list of 10 sites, with their descriptions, and not choosing his site often enough, and he wants to change that.

    In that sense, I don't think an SEO person works. SEO has to be kept in mind of course, but he wants people to read the description and click on his site, not the one above, and below.
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    • Profile picture of the author Alex Cohen
      Originally Posted by deezn View Post

      I think what he means is, he wants a copywriter to re-write the description for his site, not for SEO purposes, but for persuasian purposes.
      We understand what he means. And it doesn't matter if it's the description, the headline, or the content.

      If you rewrite anything on the site for persuasion purposes, even the description, it hurts SEO.

      Alex
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  • Profile picture of the author Matt Kendo
    I have realized the cheapest way to "test" a copywriter is to find a good copywriter that is willing to work for cheap on any size job, so they will do whatever you want, write a whole copy, revise one, revise just a part, whatever.

    It took me awhile but I found one. She is awesome, fast, professional and really cheap. I really don't mind helping her out because I know her company is quite new and eager to meet new clients and ensure survival.

    I don't even mind giving her email address out here: emma@alomay.com There you go, mention my name and she may even give you a discount! (I am not looking for commissions from her).
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  • Profile picture of the author expresswriters
    Start with one page, IE your busiest page - HOME. Track/analyze it after you have a copywriter and pay at least $20 to write a full page, 400-500 words ideally. Incorporate strong calls to action preferably at the end.

    We get a lot of web owner clients who work that way.

    If you see any results, IE increase in traffic, move to page 2 and onwards!
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    E-commerce online content shop. 60 copywriters hand-picked from all over the globe, working together with a passion for the written word. Content strategists, social media managers, copyeditors. We brainstorm writing, create, produce.
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  • Profile picture of the author AndrewCavanagh
    What kind of budget range are you willing to invest.

    Ideally you want to start by testing one page at a time
    with your changes.

    But keep in mind that it can be hard to get really great copywriters
    to work on tiny projects for small fees.

    That's more likely to happen if you have some kind of relationship with
    a copywriter and you respect his time.

    Kindest regards,
    Andrew Cavanagh
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  • Not every business is destined to do well on the inter web.

    In theory they can with the help of a top notch writer and an SEO expert.

    But you can be number 1 on google. And blitzing the social media with your outstanding messages...

    While your target audience is busy trying to find you in yellow pages, or frantically searching for the press ad, sales letter or postcard you sent them.

    They're just not inter web fans - and never will be.


    Steve


    P.S. I know you're thinking "nonsense" - every decent consumer is connected and buys from the net.

    Not everyone.

    Especially if your prospects are older - they've avoided the technology.

    And in many cases (far more than we would wish) - the people we want are online - but just won't buy or even call for more details from any Ad or promo they see on their computer screens.

    Even though the Ad is great and the company is reputable and credible - they just don't trust the web.
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  • Profile picture of the author Daniel Scott
    There usually is a "minimum", but it varies from copywriter to copywriter. Some are hungry for work so they'll do pretty much anything.

    A really good copywriter won't take you on as a client unless they're pretty damn sure they can make you your investment back. Unsurprisingly, they usually charge a lot too.

    Having said all that... it's your business. Why not put feelers out and see if there are any copywriters you gel with who are interested in a small "test" project? So long as you pay them well for the work, I imagine you'd get a decent number interested.

    -Daniel
    Signature

    Always looking for badass direct-response copywriters. PM me if we don't know each other and you're looking for work.

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  • Profile picture of the author verial
    If you plan to be writing your own sales pages for a long time, you might consider taking the money you would have spent on a copywriter and invest it in yourself.

    A basic plan:

    GRAMMAR
    -
    MARKETING THEORY
    -
    MARKETING CASE STUDIES
    -
    CONSUMER PSYCHOLOGY
    -
    COPYWRITING BOOKS
    -
    COPYWRITING COURSES

    Optional:

    Evolutionary psychology
    Negotiation
    Psychological differences in (culture/gender/age)--dependent on your market
    Economics (Pricing theory, mainly)
    Decision theory, specifically System 1 vs. System 2 processing (iirc, there's a decent pop-sci book about this that came out recently)

    Am I missing anything?
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