Coach Knows Best
It all started with tennis. I played a lot of tennis growing up. I was captain of my high school tennis team, I played tournaments. I loved tennis. In tennis thousands of hours of practice separate great players from bad. What is fascinating is that the physical differences the hours of practice produce are tiny.
The differences don’t add up to much, maybe a few inches of difference, but those inches edge up the differences.
My senior year I had gotten better. I was left handed. That made it difficult for opponents. My edge would only last a set. Once the better opponent saw my weaknesses (landing balls short. I loved the slice even though it was a bad play) they would close the gap and win.
My coach saw what was happening. He knew small physical shifts in my play could extend my advantage and transform my game and my mindset.
Why Mindset Matters
Tennis is both a mental and physical game. Great players lose matches because they get into their head. Fundamentals would let me in opponent’s head. My coach’s plan worked. I had a strong serve and a strong volley. Being left handed helped as well. It worked. I started winning more.
Why This Matters
Last week I was working with a designer. She needed a new landing page, new emails and some headlines for ads. During a Skype sessions she mentioned she was having trouble with her proposals.
“Clients just aren’t interested in what I do. No one is booking right now.”
I knew this wasn’t true. Tens of thousands of jobs are listed everyday online. Every single job needs a freelancer. I asked to see her last three proposals. She emailed them over. Her problem was immediate and glaring.
The proposals were terrible.
Bad proposals are a huge hurdle for freelancers. We think proposals are where we have to do everything. It isn’t. You should think of a proposal the same way a copywriter thinks of a marketing funnel. The proposal isn’t about selling, it is about getting clients to take the next step.
Her proposals read like her website. I told her to join my Side Hustler’s Insider List. There we talk about how to write better proposals, find better clients and make more money (join here).
The proposal did nothing to advance the client’s pain point to a solution, did nothing to offer ideas and didn’t follow up on strategies she knew to work. Her proposal was a giant high five to herself and clients weren’t interested. That’s when I realized something.
What I realized
I realized how a message is received matters, ON ALL LEVELS. Copywriting is a core fundamental for every freelancer. Why? Good copy gets into client’s heads. If you can write good copy you,
*Can Increase Sales
*Do Work you Want
If I can teach you the 3 core principles that guide all great copywriting your bookings will increase in a week!
Why You Should Pay Attention
Look I know how it is. It is fun to look for the newest thing, the fastest paycheck, the easiest path. It’s human nature. What i’m about to share hacks human nature. By following the three principles I am going to share you can get into client’s heads and get them to pay attention.
If you follow the three principles i’ve shared below you will see a measurable growth in interest, emails back and bookings. I’ve laid it all out for you in my copywriting Blueprint.
How Danny Marguiles Woke Me Up
Danny and I have become pretty good friends. We are blogger buddies, we bounce ideas off one another and Danny gives me some epic help when dealing with a particular online freelancing platform. In short Danny is epic and awesome (check out his blog here)
During a conversation I mentioned that it is weird that not everyone is a copywriter. He told me it should be required teaching and then BOOM, mind magic. I knew if I shared three core principles of good copywriting anyone, anywhere could transform their business.
What is Good Copywriting?
Good copywriting isn’t a set of words or a formula. Good copywriting is a trail. You want to lead people to you. Think about what your current method as fishing without bait. You have a hook, you have a body of water and you are hoping that hook snags a wandering fish.
Good copywriting is different. With good copywriting you build a series of steps that lead the fish into a cove where you can pick them up. You don’t need a hook because you won’t have to fight to reel in clients. When done the right clients will come to you.
What You Are Going to Learn
You are going to learn how to plant the trail. The secret to increasing your bookings with clients is to increase your chances to interact with them. You are going to learn how to create a trail that leads the client from their problem to your solution.
That’s right. I took everything I know, have read and learned about copywriting and transformed it into a single, actionable step by step process to lead clients back to you. This is like reverse marketing. Instead of telling clients everything at once you are going to learn how to position information to lead clients towards you. The best part is i’ve made all the hard work easy!
What that means: You can take everything I share here and use it to transform the content that represents you and your services. You can niche down your language, increase your audience’s interest, get them nodding yes with your copy and close them with an epic call to action.
What it doesn’t mean:You won’t become a full time copywriter. If you wanted the numbers i’d say I am taking you about 70% of the way there. I am going to give you everything you need to transform your content immediately. Will you be able to go out and copywrite full time after this? What i’ve written will get you on the road and part the way down the trail but you won’t be scoring $125 hour gigs right away. (But we will be getting their friends, yes we will).
Here’s the Breakdown
I took apart everything that makes a good copywriting project and figured out the three easy steps you need to take to transform your content, sales message, proposal and client interactions so you can turn on the work tap.
The 3 Rules To Great Copywriting
Identify your client’s needs with your message: If you only get one thing from this post make it this. When writing a proposal, sending an email or designing a landing page ask yourself this,
‘Does this identify my client’s needs?’
For example if you are a graphic designer pitching for an infographic project don’t talk about how elegant your design is. Talking about ‘you’ is the hook. You are leaving behind hooks and building trails. Your client wants an infographic to capture leads so build a trail from his wants, ‘leads’ to your solution.
Write shorter proposals to start conversations: Almost all proposals are too long. As freelancers we feel the need to close a client in a proposal. We tell them everything we can think of, talk about how great we are and what we would charge. Clients don’t want that. Remember we aren’t hooking clients.
Proposals have changed. Proposals are no longer sales letters. The proposal is an opportunity to start a conversation. Use the proposal to create a path from the client’s problem, their needs, to solutions that fit their situation.
Follow Rule 1 by sending your client a short proposal explaining how you can give them what they need and what it would get them. Introduce the proposal as a way to talk about their project and you will see an increase in client’s responding to you.
Crush the Call to Action-This is the one thing people who don’t copywrite can benefit from. If you want your client to take an action eliminate any opposition that keeps them from taking the next step.
In copywriting we use a ‘call to action’ to compel readers to take the next step. When you lead someone along a trail you have to decide how long it is.Call to actions are the sign posts that get people to purchase products, opt-in for email lists and enter sales funnels. The call to action is where you tell your audience why they should do something and what they will get if they do something.
Keep your call to action simple. Tell your client what will happen, tell them why they want it to happen and then tell them what they need to do to take the next step. If you can follow these three rules you will transform your website, proposal and email game.
The Trail is the Way
For any form of copy to work you need to speak to a client’s needs. That is the first part of the trail. You show them there is a way and that someone has gone before them and found solutions.
That is Rule 1.
Rule 1 helps the client see that you are the solution to their problem. That means you don’t brag about yourself. If you have a huge website filled with how awesome you are and all your accomplishments you have a bad website! Remember, less hooks, more trails.
How to Get More Work
Start More Conversation. That is Rule 2
Getting work is all about starting conversations. People use the internet as an online cold calling machine. It doesn’t work that way. The best freelancers create conversations in the right forums and then close deals.
People don’t like feeling they are being sold. Sales is like therapy. You listen to what you client needs. You share how your experience shows taking a certain course of action will create the desired result. You then offer them an opportunity to achieve their results through working with you.
Closing the Deal
Tell the Clients What They have to do next. That is Rule 3.
Give up hard sales. Seriously. No more hooks. Hooks don’t work. The less time you spend trying to cut a deal the more time you can spend closing sales. Having good call to actions engages your audience, client, prospect into giving you their attention, money or time.
A good call to action iterates the points you made in your email, body copy, landing page, and ties everything together to make good on the promises you made during the conversation phase.
What to do with all this.
Create a trail the client feels compelled to follow. Engage your client with actionable advice, simple suggestions and opportunities to take the relationship to the next step. The best copy leads to solutions, so lead your client.
The smaller more precise a problem you solve the better the copy is. Do you generate more opt-ins for landing pages. Great! Tell your client how it works, what you will do and what they can expect.
What You Learned
Applying the three core rules in copywriting increased client interest, closes and re-hiring. My income increased because I focused on Identifying clients needs, offering solutions in relatable language and closing with powerful next step call to actions.
How Can you Apply This To your Business
Great copywriting gets great clients. Following simple systems increases income and removes the barriers between you and clients.
Interested in learning more about using language to get more clients? There are a couple of directions you can take. You could.
1)Read a lot of copywriting books:I did. I read thousands of pages and it really helped.
2)Go through the trial and error process:I tried dozens of things before I figured out what worked.
3)Listen to podcasts and lectures:They help! I spent weeks researching and got great advice.
4)Schedule a fifteen minute consultation with me:Look you can do all the work I did. You can spend hours reading, learning, listening and trying things until you find what works.
You’ve seen my stuff, you’ve seen how it works, if you know this is right for you then this is what to do next. Join my Side Hustler’s Insider List. Once you’ve joined contact me and i’ll send the free consultation form to you.
I Don’t Take Everyone
Look my time is valuable. I only want to work with the right people. So join my list and message me. If I see you are the right person i’ll schedule a fifteen minute Skype consultation. You will get my undivided attention to tear down proposals, rework your emails, anything you want and it is free. I look forward to hearing from you.
Join My Side Hustler’s Insider List to apply for your consultation today.
Spots will be opened on a limited basis and it is first come first served.