Entries from December 2009 ↓

Freelance Copywriting on Facebook

Slower than most people, I have just started to get to grips with Facebook pages.

I use social media a lot in the marketing of my business. As a freelance copywriter the vast majority of my clients find me online, one way or another. So, utilising Facebook for business seemed the logical thing to do – after all it’s another web presence and another opportunity to build up content.

These ideas always seem great, but when it comes to putting things into practice, it gets a bit more complicated.

But I now have my freelance copywriting facebook page up and running. Why not pop over there now and take a look. If you like what you see become a fan.

I’m waiting to say hi!

Copywriting and The Power of Attraction


Because copywriting is sales writing it is designed to be read, persuade and sell.

Your writing has to emit a magnetic force that is so powerful it draws your reader in and holds their attention.

This isn’t a God given gift that only freelance copywriters have; it is something that anyone can achieve if they follow a few simple rules.

Want to know what they are?

Be direct

That doesn’t mean “Buy it!” will work.

People have a tendency to ‘over write’ because they think it sounds better – it doesn’t.

For example: “Most primary school children almost certain believe that Father Christmas still exists.”

Long winded or what?

Most primary school children believe in Santa.” – Much better.


This can be done in a good way to create a rhythm that’ll draw your reader in. Repetition can be good when done well. Repetition can be annoying when over used.


If you use the passive voice in your writing you’ll use more words, appear lazy and produce something that’s not engaging. A passive sentence would be “the cat was stroked by the girl” but by swapping round the subject and object of the sentence you will make it active – “the girl stroked the cat”

Being active is much better.


When it comes to writing, less is most definitely more. When people read, they usually manage the first few sentences and then start scanning. Get your important information in early and don’t waffle.

Short sentences

Short sentences are easy to read. They are easy to understand. When you start getting complicated, and I think we can all be guilty of that at times, people begin to get bored and you run the risk of them deciding it’s not worth persevering with your overly long sentences especially as by the time they’ve reached the full stop they can’t remember what they were reading about anyway. (Gasp for breath!)


Don’t answer all their questions. Leave them wanting more.

No adjectives

Adjectives are nasty little suckers that sneak into your writing and dull your message. During your first editing read through be ruthless and banish them.


Tell them a story about how your product solved someone’s problem. Understand what your product can do in a real life situation is very powerful.


Be conversational in your writing. Resist the temptation to write in a regional dialect – that really won’t work. Talk to your reader and they’ll respond; talk at them and they’ll walk away.

By putting these simple ideas into effect you’ll produce sales writing that’s readable and engaging.

Good luck.

Better Blogging


We all know blogging is good for business

Just about every business owner out there understands that blogging is good for their business. It will:

  • show them as an expert in their field
  • add value to their client relationships
  • drive traffic to their main website
  • raise their profile

As a freelance copywriter I use blogging a lot because it helps me reach out to a wider audience (especially when I couple my blogging with Twitter), I can demonstrate that I do know what I’m talking about and (more importantly) that I can write.

My whole blog is centered around eveything copywriting and marketing. This focus is essential because it’s relevant to my work and, when people subscribe to my RSS feed, they know each post I make will be of use to them – after all they subscribed because I give them copywriting and marketing tips. If I suddenly started posting stuff about recipies and knitting I would loose the relevance and a lot of subscribers.

I don’t know what to write

If I was given a pound everytime someone said that to me, I would have retired a long time ago.

All you have to do is take a look at what your business does – there’s your subject matter. Throw into the mix comments on industry news, debates about new ideas and you’ve got yourself an interesting and relevant library to write about.

Follow other blogs within your industry. What are they talking about? Expand on their ideas (but always link back to the original source of inspiration). You can even get inspiration from print media too – the opportunities are endless.

Do I have to do it myself?

My personal opinion on this is yes.

I know there are many people out there who’ll write and post blog posts for you (for a fee) but, for me, that defeats the whole object of having a blog.

Your blog should be a means of communicating your thoughts and personality to your readers. With each post you are building a relationship. Your readers are getting to know you. If you are using your blog to drive traffic to your main website, your readers are going to feel as though they know you before they do business with you.

If you’re not the one doing the writing, how can they forge a relationship with you? It’s a bit like when, back in the 1980s, Milli Vanilly was found to be a complete fraud and their Grammy was revoked after it was revealed that the lead vocals on the record were not the actual voices of Morvan and Pilatus.

Yes, blogging takes time but isn’t it worth it?

The whole stimulus for this post was actually another blog post written by Chris Brogan called Write Better Blog Posts Today. Chris talks about being focused on your end result. Why are your writing your blog? What do you want your post to achieve? If you have these ideas straight in your mind before you start, you’ll become blogging dynamite.

Newsletter Content – What Do I Write?


Producing a regular newsletter for your business is a great marketing tool.

Whether you write the content yourself or you hire a freelance copywriter, you must ensure the content is something your reader will want to read. If not, you’ll be buried under an avalanche of unsubscribers.

What makes a good newsletter?

This might sound obvious, but the clue is in the name – newsletter.

Yes, you’ve got it – news.

Tell them something they’ll be interesting in such as the latest industry news, tips that will be of use in their work, articles that are relevant to their industry etc.

This will help strengthen your relationship with your customers.

What makes a bad newsletter?

A newsletter that bangs on constantly about your achievements, your products and your services.

You walk a fine line because you’ll want your newsletter to generate business for you but you also want to build strong relationships.

How do I achieve the ultimate balance?

You provide information that is useful and relevant and within that copy you weave references to your products and services. Within this context they will appear as being of service to your reader rather than self-serving.

What kind of articles can I lead with?

It’s always a good idea to have a lead article for your newsletter. If you have too many subjects within one issue you’re reader may be left confused. Some great ideas for this are:

  • Latest industry news
  • Advice
  • Analysis on a new topic or product
  • How-to article
  • Case studies because people love to read real life stories

Your additional material could be things like – product updates, news about upcoming events, general information or reminders and teasers for the next issue

Of course – the final thing to remember (as with all email communication) is to include an opt-out option.

Unleash The Copywriter In You

“Anyone can write – this copywriting malarky is money for old rope!”


Is that right?

Many people believe they can write sales copy. Others appreciate how difficult it can be to produce something that:

  1. sells
  2. is interesting
  3. appeals to the reader and resounds with them
  4. appeals to the search engine spiders

I’ve been a freelance copywriter for about 2 ½ years and I learn something new on every project I work on. There is so much you have to take into consideration when writing:

  • what format will your copy take?
  • what media will you be using?
  • what message do you need to get across?
  • who is your audience?
  • what problem do they have that your copy will solve?
  • what tone should I take?
  • is there a ‘house style’ I have to stick to?

…and that’s just for starters.

SEO Website Copywriting

This is a biggy – everyone is beginning to realise their website has to work for them rather than just look pretty.

But if you want targeted traffic you have to appear in the search engine results.

In the past (and sadly it still happens today), some copywriters felt the way to achieve this was to stuff their copy full of keywords.


Keyword density isn’t important – what is important is writing in a natural style which your reader can understand and finds interesting. If you can achieve this, you’ll automatically include the optimium number of keywords in your copy.

To be a great SEO website copywriter you also need to know where the keywords should go, how to structure your pages, you need to understand internal linking structure….

See, it’s not as easy as you thought is it?

So I guess you’re wondering why the ‘Yoda-like’ title for this blog – well, after sitting through the recent re-runs of the Star Wars saga I came across a recent post on Copyblogger which made me smile.

In The Force is Strong With This One: 10 Ways to be a Copywriting Jedi, David Wright and Sean Platt take a Jedi look at Direct Response copywriting. Having gone through the stages of deciding to embark on a career as a freelance copywriter and building up my business to the success that it is today, their words of wisdom resounded with me and I thought you might get a lot from it too.