AWAI Member Since: 2009
What's your current occupation?
What's your former occupation?
Billing Systems Specialist
What was the first project you landed?
The first project was one of my ex-bosses who I'd stayed in touch with over the years (networking!) and had started her own web design company. We immediately began talking about the eMarketing opportunities of the internet and I mentioned that I'd just completed Nick Usborne's Copywriting course through AWAI, and how fascinating I found it. I mentioned how I'd optimized my own site, and offered to do a "mock up" of a site for her new business venture. She loved all my ideas, and hired me on the spot. I re-wrote her entire website, re-positioned page elements and optimized copy. The results were positive and she has since recommended me to at least two other clients of hers, who need web copy.
What are your current projects?
I now work for four different web design agencies, as their outsourced SEO copywriter, which means I write optimized web copy for their clients, as well as consult on SEO strategy and conversion optimization. My current projects are a large petrochemical company, an e-commerce store and a tourism company. The projects are varied, so I’m never bored.
What has been your proudest copywriting moment?
My proudest moment was when I contacted Phil Gosling (Internet Publishing Revolution) in the UK with a question on affiliate tracking and he told me he'd had a look at my sales letter website for this particular project and he thought it was really good. Coming from Phil it was a huge compliment, and it was at that moment I started to take myself seriously as a copywriter, and to price my services accordingly.
What's your favorite niche to write for?
Independent companies who need a helping hand to break into the competitive online environment. Recently I’ve been doing a lot more B2B projects, mainly because my background is technical so I have a knack for deciphering complicated technical documents and transferring them to the web environment in the form of web copy, white papers and case studies.
What's your income goal for this year?
$300,000 (one and a half times my yearly salary as a billing systems specialist)
What's your writing routine?
I get up at 7am and spend ten minutes at my computer organizing my tasks for that day. Then I prepare breakfast and get my son ready for school. We walk to school and I power-walk back, which gives me some exercise. I’m back at my desk by 9.30 and tackling my first project of the day. I work through until about 3pm, breaking for lunch. Then I’m off on the school run and spend the rest of the day being a mom. At 8pm I’m back at my computer finishing up, reading emails and responding to queries. I usually finish up around 11pm and read for a few minutes before going to sleep. This system works for me as I have a busy life and need my sleep. I couldn’t manage getting up at 5 or 6am to work. I believe everyone has to find a way of working that fits their lifestyle and ability.
Please give us an example of how your life has changed since becoming a copywriter.
I am no longer stuck in a 9 to 5 job doing the same mundane tasks for a limited salary. I love the freedom of working from home, being able to take my son to after school activities and playing an active role in his life. The work is interesting and varied, and now that I’ve proven myself, there is a constant flow of projects, which means money is never a problem.
What success tip would you like to share with your fellow writers?
Do not give up. And I used my current salary as a guide. When I started matching it through freelance work, that's when I quit. It's a tough decision to make, especially if you're the sole bread winner like me but it's worth it and you need to have confidence in your abilities.
When did you realize you were living the copywriter's life?
When I could leave my desk at 3pm to fetch my child from school it suddenly hit me that my time was my own, and I’d made it! I’m now living the life I always dreamed of.