Many new (or new-ish) copywriters think that finding potential clients is hard. The truth is, it couldn’t be easier: Do a Google search, look at the items around your home, or just walk down the street. Once you have some clients, though, the next step it to determine the types of copywriting projects they may benefit from.
Most businesses and companies need copywriting help to some degree. It’s not finding potential clients that’s the tricky thing; it’s identifying how you can help them.
To that end, we’ve put together a list of questions to help you evaluate a potential clients’ marketing materials. Bear in mind, though, that this is just a list of questions you could ask (and a partial list, at that).
There aren’t going to be any obvious answers; you’ll have to use your copywriting training and experience to answer them—and figure out how to fix them for your would-be client.
What Projects Do Copywriters Do?
Copywriters take on marketing writing projects across mediums. (Of course, copywriters do so much more than writing, too.) Those projects may include digital work, like websites and email funnels, or print pieces like brochures, flyers, and direct mail postcards.
The more experience you have across mediums, the more attractive you are to potential clients. The vast majority of clients don’t have one copywriting project they need help with. It is much easier for them to find a copywriter (or several copywriters depending on project volume!) that they love working with versus having to find one copywriter who can write a webpage and one who can write a brochure and one who can …
You get the idea.
The principles of copywriting apply across medium. So, if you have training in the fundamentals of copywriting, you are equipped to take on whatever projects clients may have for you.
Types of Copywriting Projects to Pitch Clients
One of the big traps new copywriters fall into is thinking that there are certain high-ticket copywriting projects.
Here’s the thing: clients very rarely will hand you an entire website rewrite as their first project working with you—whether you’re experienced or not! Many clients would rather work with you on a smaller project first and make sure it’s a good fit. This benefits you, too, so you’re not stuck finishing a project you hate or working with a client who is a bad fit (because once you agree to a project, it’s pretty unprofessional to back out).
So, instead of trying to guess what clients or projects to pitch, focus on the value you can bring to these prospective businesses. You want to evaluate their marketing materials and come up with an opportunity for where they can improve in a way that will benefit their business.
For example, a welcome email that makes customers feel important and brings them back to the website, potentially increasing the chances of a purchase.
Here are four types of projects you can pitch prospective clients and the questions you need to ask to evaluate the copy and pinpoint new opportunities.
- Is their benefit clear?
- Is what sets them apart from their competition clear?
- Do you understand what they do?
- Do you understand their story?
- Do the copy and the design of the website work well together?
- Does the layout of the messages make sense?
- Does the website have an About page?
- Is there an email program?
- Are there multiple places to sign up for the program on the site, and are those enticing?
- Is there an automatic and immediate welcome email?
- Does the welcome email have a clear purpose, benefit to consumer, and CTA?
- What are the goals of the email program?
- Is there an email funnel in place?
- What is the goal of the email funnel?
- Do the funnels in the email teach, inspire, and persuade?
- What marketing materials does the client have?
- Do they make the benefit and differentiators of the business clear?
- What is the purpose of each marketing material?
- Are they running ads and, if so, do they convey they benefit and have a clear CTA?
- Do they have lead nurturing marketing materials like webinars or ebooks and, if so, are they effective?
- What ads is the company currently running on Facebook or Instagram?
- Is the benefit clear and does it make you want to click through?
- If the text is truncated, is the copy compelling enough that you want to click “see more”?
- Is it clear where the ads are taking you if you click them?
What Types of Copywriting Projects to Not Pitch
No matter, when you look at the copy you also want to ask:
- Is it clear who their target audience is?
- Are they using the right words to talk to them?
- Is their brand voice clear?
- Do they use it throughout their copy?
These questions may help you come up with additional opportunities for that business.
But the types of projects you don’t want to pitch are ones that don’t actually add value to the business or ones you can’t help them out with. For example, if you spot a typo on a business’s website, you don’t want to reach out as someone who can help fix it. First, that’s a copyeditor’s job not a copywriter’s (though you do want to avoid typos). Second, that’s not an opportunity for the business.
You also don’t want to say something like, “I noticed your website is out of date. I’d love to help you modernize it.” First, you don’t want to start with what’s wrong. You want to start with enthusiasm for what’s going well. Second, if you’re not a web developer, helping a client modernize their site is going to be hard for you to tackle. Stick to your expertise: copywriting.
Your turn! What types of copywriting projects have you pitched recently? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
Last Updated on July 5, 2023