The best way to discuss your project is to schedule a no-obligation, 30-minute phone or Skype conversation. I offer the following services: writing (copy, content, technical), content planning, and marketing consultation.
At heart I’m a direct response copywriter. That might concern you, but it shouldn’t–really! Allow me to explain.
In the copywriting world, direct response copy has always been pitted against “brand” copy: ugly vs beautiful. But this assessment is wrong.
The distinction between direct response and brand copy comes down to action. That’s it. Direct response copy asks the reader, viewer, or listener to do something (aka, call to action). Brand copy doesn’t. Which means direct response copy doesn’t hinge on aesthetics or word count. There’s no uniform look to it either. Direct response copy allows you to track results, which is why marketers with limited budgets (e.g., the local ambulance-chasing lawyer) use it.
Brand copy tends to rely on personal whims, leadership consensus, and industry norms as a starting point, rather than starting with the intended audience.
There’s nothing new in what I’m saying. For example, newspaper coupons were an early direct response tactic. The coupons contained a traceable code tied to the paper in which they appeared. That’s still how coupons, links, and codes work today. As Peter Drucker said, what gets measured gets managed.
Still, while old copywriting habits die hard, the times are a changin’. Take McDonald’s for example. They dropped the “I’m lovin’ it” slogan because it did nothing to reverse decling market share. Now, according to Chief Executive magazine, McDonald’s new ad agency will only get paid on the profits they make for the burger giant.
My prediction is that other Fortune 500 companies will follow McDonald’s into direct response copy.
Content writing is sometimes viewed as a gentler approach to marketing than direct response copywriting (e.g., blog posts). It’s a good-enough definition as long as you remember this: content for its own sake is useless. You shouldn’t be posting, sending, or distributing written content without a goal for it. Further, you can’t produce subpar content and expect readers, viewers, and listeners to value it simply because it’s “something.”
Typically, I’m approached to write content for clients trying to stay top-of-mind with their customers and prospects. Most often, we accomplish this goal with email broadcasts, email drip campaigns, blog posts, and articles for social sites.
Clients who hire me to for technical writing projects need information conveyed correctly. I do this in two ways: (1) by using jargon sparingly and selectively and (2) using terms consistently. This makes how-to manuals, onboarding emails, and proposals easier to read, remember, and use.
To be clear, I only write the words (text) for your project. I will make suggestions for design and layout, but I am not a designer. I will gladly work with whomever you choose for design (including agencies).
Content marketing is a popular idea. It sounds cheaper and more effective long term, than say, buying ad clicks. Often it is. However, companies who’ve never tried publishing content before, or are in the midst of a rebrand, can get overwhelmed. So many ideas! Where to start?
I help companies by studying their existing content assets, understanding their core products or services, and analyzing their competitor’s content. There are always opportunities with content for creating meaningful market differentiation. As an outsider, it’s generally easier for me to catch ingrained blind spots and structural problems than an insider.
Once I’ve identified a plan for content, I usually build out a publishing calendar. At that point, the content deliverables can be handed back to your team or you can hire me to do the writing (see above).
As a marketing consultant, I study your business as it exists now and advise you on steps to move forward. It’s a longer process than most writing and content planning projects. My focus is the main drivers of your business, which I base on what I’ve learned as a sales and marketing writer. Consultation work normally stretches over several months.
I begin all consulting work with a questionnaire. That questionnaire is the starting point for my research. In addition, I will ask to interview you, employees, and happy/unhappy customers.
Hiring me as a marketing consultant will not disrupt your work schedule. The process can be simplified into reasonable and manageable pieces. You can stop the consultation process at any point and still benefit tremendously.
I’ve written for the following industries and niches: senior care, nonprofits (including churches), perfoming arts, finance, financial consulting, continuing education, natural health, consumer goods, staffing, medical products, digital desing, software, hardware, and… what else? Lots more. Try me out by scheduling a discussion.
My Guarantee to You…
…is that you’ll be happy with the final draft of your copy. In the rare event that you’re not 100% satisfied, I’ll work round-the-clock for the next 30 days until you have copy that makes you giddy.
I mean that.
Please be aware that I cannot guarantee the results of any project. That’s because copy and marketing advice is dependent on a lot of particulars beyond my control ( audience, offer, timing, presentation, competition, economy, etc.).
You should also know that I do not provide refunds for my services. There is some risk in hiring me. But in order to reduce the risk, our contract will stipulate agreed-upon deadlines for the first and final draft. I’m also happy to keep keep you informed about the progress of your project via reasonable checkpoints. This will allow you to see a writing project taking shape. By handling projects this way, clients know exactly what’s coming. The end result? Clients are usually thrilled with the final draft or deliveable.