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Maybe you thought you could write your website copy or brochure yourself. But you’ve slowly come to the realization that a professional copywriter is what you need to get the job done quickly and effectively.
You’ve checked the portfolios of several freelance copywriters and selected the person whose experience and skills best match your needs. The ball is in the copywriter’s court. However, your job isn’t done. You’ll still have an important role in helping your freelance copywriter to achieve the best results.
Yes, the copywriter is a professional and knows how to craft clever sentences and flowing narration. But she first needs to learn about your business. You know your products, your industry, your customers and your competition. She only knows as much as you tell her. So be prepared to provide her with useful information, verbally or from existing written materials, that she can use as the factual content in scripting your message.
Tell the copywriter about your marketing plans. You want your website, brochures and other marketing materials to convey the same basic message. And you want each item to have its place in your sales effort. Your copywriter needs to understand your marketing strategy before she puts pen to paper.
Identify the various steps of the project and create a timeline for completion. Provide the copywriter with deadlines but also set time goals for yourself. For example, if the copywriter is to provide first draft copy by a certain date, you should note a date when you’ll have completed your review of that draft. Be sure to allot enough time for each stage of the project so that the end result is the best it can be.
Working with the copywriter, spell out what each project will entail and get a price. Both parties need to know and approve the estimate before work begins.
Don’t micro-manage. The copywriter is a skilled professional. Let her craft your copy without looking over her shoulder. Allow her work her magic to create text that presents your material in an interesting way.
Copywriters are not mind readers. They’ll write a draft that hopefully comes close to what you expected, but it still may require some tweaking. Provide constructive feedback, not angry criticism, and then let the copywriter modify the text as needed.
Try to do all revisions in just one or two rounds. While some projects do require an iterative process, piecemeal reviews that involve creating version after version of the copy are inefficient and result in unnecessary extra work for both you and the copywriter.
Most copywriters include up to two rounds of revisions in their price. Go beyond that and you risk additional charges.
Your copywriter should provide a final draft that is perfect, but mistakes do happen. It’s your responsibility too to proofread the text for typing, punctuation and grammar, just to be safe. An extra set of eyes is always a good thing.
Treat your copywriter like a partner, and you’ll both benefit. The copywriter is on your side. She wants the finished product to meet your satisfaction and achieve your objectives. She’ll work hard to make it perfect. Help to make the journey toward that goal a pleasant one.