“You can’t make a living as a writer.”
“Good luck finding a job.”
“Are you sure you don’t want to just be a professor and teach writing or something?”
I’m sure glad I didn’t listen to any of the naysayers back when I was a journalism major in college. Why? Because it made it a whole lot easier to just keep right on not listening when I began writing sales copy and turned it into a very successful business in just two years.
The truth is, if you can write words that sell products and services, you will never go hungry. If you can do it really well, you can generate more income than the naysayers would have ever believed.
As long as there are basic human needs, sales will always exist. And as long as sales exists, there will be a need for writers who can communicate in a way that brings buyers and offers together to create sales.
We just so happen to live in a commercial society where billions of dollars of goods and services that are well beyond basic human necessities are sold every day. So yeah, you’ll never be out of a job if you can do two things: write sales copy and get clients.
Where Have All The Clients Gone?
Even though there’s a lot of opportunity out there for sales copywriters, that doesn’t mean breaking into the business and creating a reputation for yourself will be easy. In this article, I’ve compiled my list of five simple strategies to attract copywriting clients WITHOUT using paid advertising.
When you’re struggling for clients, the last thing you want to do is drop money on Facebook ads, am I right? These five strategies can be done for FREE with nothing but a cell phone or device with a wifi connection. They take nothing but some time and attention, so set aside the first 30 minutes of your working day, grab this list, and let’s go drum up some business!
Strategy #1: Optimize Your Social Platform Profiles
It seems like a no-brainer, but be honest - there’s a social platform out there with your name on it that hasn’t been updated in awhile, isn’t there? I could raise my hand here too, because I know for a fact that my LinkedIn needs my attention too.
The thing is, you want to make sure that wherever people see your name or your business’ name, your information is current and attractive. That means go to your Instagram account, your Facebook page, your Pinterest, and your LinkedIn and read it like someone who is NOT you.
Read it as if you’re someone who is looking for a copywriter - someone you would LOVE to work for. Then ask yourself these questions:
Basically, you want to make sure you’re positioning yourself so that your dream clients can’t help but stop and take notice because you’ve got exactly what they need and you’re making it easy for them to get to you.
Strategy #2: Give Value in Groups
I know you’re not unaware that there are about a bazillion Facebook groups out there where people gather to share and talk about their common interests. If you haven’t already, go out there and join a bunch.
But don’t just join ANY old Facebook group. Do your research. Find the ones where the people you want to write for are hanging out. For instance, if you live to write for e-commerce sellers, join Shopify groups and Amazon groups and WooCommerce groups. Join the groups run by the big names in e-commerce. Join groups that promote training platforms or software used by e-commerce sellers. You get the idea. Just target the groups where the people you want to write for are, then visit regularly.
Don’t just be a lurker though. No one will notice you if you’re just hanging towards the back, throwing a “Like” or two in there every now and then. Go in with the intention of providing value to people. Answer questions. Give advice.
There’s no need to hold back on the information you share. Give your best information right there in the group. They won’t use it against you. In fact, the more value you give, the more you’ll stand out as an expert they’d love to work with.
Strategy #3: Network Your Face Off
If I had to say what the single most powerful asset I’ve ever leveraged in my business was, it would be hands down my network. I don’t know who said the net worth is in the network, but they were 100% correct.
People want to work with people they like. They want to recommend people they like. And you know what, if they don’t even know who you ARE, then they definitely can’t pass your name along to friends and business buddies.
You WANT people to pass your name along to friends and business buddies. So while you’re in all those Facebook groups, make friends. Share memes. And if you can, join a mastermind group or two. It doesn’t have to be a high-ticket mastermind, although those are the groups that tend to have the high-level connections.
For now, just join some group masterminds where you can rub elbows with and get to know other people in the industries you’re interested in writing for. And when you can, I highly recommend joining a paid mastermind.
Mastermind groups also have the added benefit of upleveling your skill set and offering a community of support and accountability. And when someone in another member’s network says they need a copywriter, guess who’s name they’ll mention first?
I have personally generated hundreds of thousands of dollars in client work and recurring contracts because of networking alone. It’s worth it!
Strategy #4: Ask for Testimonials
Yes, your results will speak for themselves … but they’ll speak a WHOLE lot louder coming from the mouth of happy clients!
I know it’s awkward and feels braggy, but you must get testimonials from your clients and you must use them. Video testimonials are best, but written or screenshot will do. Just make sure you get permission first. Most of your clients will have no problem boosting you up when you’ve done something to help grow their business.
Here’s one way to think about asking for testimonials that has helped me a lot. By not asking for a testimonial on how your work impacted someone else’s business, you’re keeping that information from someone else who NEEDS what you can do for them.
In this way, getting testimonials is actually serving your future clients better!
Testimonials are so powerful. Don’t neglect collecting them. Seriously. Testimonials sell you without you having to say a word.
Strategy #5: Ask for Referrals
This one sounds kind of awkward too, but I promise, it’s easier than it sounds. If you’re looking for clients, go ask your current clients if they know anyone in need of your services.
Not only does this give them the opportunity to help their friends or business associates out by connecting them with an awesome copywriter (you!), but it may jog their memory of another project or two they’ve been meaning to bring to the front burner and put you on.
Think about it this way - don’t you trust someone your friend or business buddies recommend? That’s how it works here too. Your client is trusted and liked by others who need what you can do for them. Let them be your hype man. They’ll probably be thrilled to do so!
Go Get ‘Em!
So there you go - five simple strategies to finding copywriting clients that don’t break the bank. All they take is a bit of time, and several of them you can start doing right now. In fact, why don’t you go email your clients right now for some testimonials and referrals?
The worst they can say is no, and then you’re no worse off than you are right now.
More from Christa Nichols Messaging
Want to learn more about how to close clients on calls? Read this blog article here, then grab my 8 Must-Ask Questions guide for the eight questions I always ask about my clients about their target markets. These questions help me write copy that follows the five stages of sales copy - and it WORKS. Click here to download it now: 8 Must-Ask Questions For Copy That Connects And Converts.
Hi, I'm Christa, an Iowa-based messaging expert specializing in targeted messaging, copywriting, and ghostwriting services. I have one handsome hubby who's my partner in crime (not literally) and two great kids who keep us busy (Track and field! Volleyball! Basketball! All the sports!) Using words to help people promote what they love is my favorite!