You may have heard the expression: “Success leaves clues.”
Well, what that means is: find someone who is successful at what you want to do, and copy them.
It’s as simple as that.
If you’re interested in becoming a highly paid copywriter, but don’t want to waste time and energy making decisions that don’t generate results, then take a few minutes to read this.
This is what successful copywriting students do to fast-track their copywriting careers
- Set personal goals
If you don’t have a goal, you don’t know what to aim for. Start by working out how much extra money you’d like to make each week. $300? $500? $1000? Whatever it is, write it down. Then, work backwards to find out how many jobs you have to get to make that money. It’s all worked out for you in a simple formula.
- Decide to make the change
If you’ve been muttering about ‘making a change’ for a while, decide right now that something has to be done about it. Successful copywriters decide that copywriting is their new career, and they go for it. They think, “Somebody has to write the copy, why shouldn’t it be me?”
- Get training
Teachers spend three years at university. Doctors work as poorly-paid interns for months. Carpenters work as apprentices for a year. It’s a fact of life – if you want to develop a new skill, you need to get training. Investing in training is investing in your future. Spend the time to find the right course for you and then just do it. Just make sure they offer on-going assistance and a 100% money back guarantee so you can be sure you’re getting what they’ve promised.
- Avoid the tyranny of perfectionism
Some writers insist on creating a perfect piece of copy before submitting it. This is fine, but on many occasions, the writer never submits it because it’s never perfect. This sense of perfectionism is admirable but it’s also costly. Why? Because you never complete anything.Lose the need to create a perfect piece of copy, get comfortable with ‘pretty good’ and let it go. Your first draft will never be the final draft anyway so get used to making changes along the way. Successful copywriters are happy with ‘good enough’.
- Start small
You don’t need a swag of clients to get started. You only need one. If you think about it like that, there’s bound to be someone in your life who is in need of a brochure, a web page or a postcard.Why not offer to re-write the menu board at your local café? In return, they can give you free coffees for a month, or a dinner for two. Start small.
- Spread the word
From now on, when people ask you ‘what you do’, you should tell them, in a big, strong voice, “I’m a copywriter”. This alone will generate work for you. If people don’t know you exist and they don’t know what you do, there is no way they can engage you.
- Treat it like a business
Successful students know from the outset that they want to work from home, earn good money and work with people they like. They see the huge benefits inherent in working for themselves. As such, they go about setting up their business in a professional way from the beginning.But what does ‘professional’ mean? Well, it’s more an attitude than anything else; the mindset of: “If I’m going to do it, I may as well do it properly.” This attitude then extends into their actions – following up with people who expressed an interest; creating a database of potential clients; getting their business cards printed etc.If you set out with this attitude, you’ll know that you’re laying the groundwork for a great business. Give people the chance to find out what you do and you’ll find that the work will follow shortly after. You have nothing to lose.
What do you have to do to get started?
Enrol in “Copywriting Essentials: Get Started as a Professional Copywriter” with the Australian Writers’ Centre.
Bernadette Schwerdt is creator of the course “Copywriting Essentials: Get Started as a Professional Copywriter“, an online course for those looking to become freelance copywriters or for those wanting to write copy for their own business.