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These 8 Vital Steps — Presented By Our Experts — Make Building a Business MUCH Easier Than You Think…
The following plan works so well because the order is completely strategic… each step builds on the one before it.
So, by the time you complete five or six steps, you’re already “in business,” marketing your skills, and attracting quality clients…
And, once you finish all eight steps? You’re unstoppable!
Our speedy and simplified approach to building your freelance writing business starts with choosing (and properly defining) your writing niche…
Step 1: “Choose Your Niche Focus”
With Pam Foster
It’s the question we get asked most often, “Do I need a niche?”
The answer is always, “YES!” Always yes.
Whether you write for the Web, B2B, or any other type of copy, you must focus on a specific industry, or niche.
Some example industries (or markets) include fitness, financial newsletters, medical devices, farm equipment, wine, travel… you name it.
Your options are unlimited. Which leads to the next most common question I hear: “How do I choose a niche?”
It’s an important question, and the foundation of the next seven steps…
Choose wisely and you’ll accelerate your progress and set yourself apart from all the “generalists” out there. As you probably know, a specialist always gets paid more than a “Jack (or Jill)-of-all-trades.”
So, yes — it’s a big choice, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming…
In this lively and interactive session, Pam Foster (an expert when it comes to niching yourself) will teach you how to properly choose your perfect niche by combining your individual passions, background, and income goals.
Her proven approach will help you quickly make a confident choice, declare your niche, and start attracting clients in an industry you enjoy.
Together with Pam, you will…
- Discover the biggest benefits of choosing a niche… most of which are completely overlooked by today’s marketers.
- Dig into five exciting clues on what makes a great niche (in the eyes of your potential copywriting clients).
- Take real-world tours of niche copywriter websites and LinkedIn profiles to get ideas on how to market yourself.
- Learn how to find great clients in your new niche by looking over Pam’s shoulder as she investigates three potential niches, LIVE right before your eyes!
- Explore the absolute BEST niche for you. Using Pam’s handy (and proven) Personal Inventory Worksheet, you’ll review potential niches and make a niche decision with complete confidence.
- Choose your niche once and for all!
Plus, there will be plenty of time to ask Pam your niche questions…
Whether you’re trying to narrow down your options or discover today’s hottest niches, Pam knows the answer…
That’s because, over the years, she has coached hundreds of AWAI members on how to choose a copywriting niche… and she will do the same for you.
And, get this — just by completing Step 1 (choosing a niche), you’ll be well on your way to completing Step 2…
Step 2: “Create a Powerful Marketing Message”
With Nick Usborne
Our next expert, Nick Usborne, says there are three words that will completely transform how you promote your freelance business and how you feel about marketing…
What are they?
“Love your message!”
And, that’s exactly what Nick will show you how to do…
Instead of pitching your skills to potential clients, you’ll craft a powerful marketing message that will be easy (and fun!) to share.
This is how Nick started writing web copy way back in 1998. He literally had nothing… no website… zero clients… and not a single writing sample.
But, he had a message he loved.
You see, he noticed that companies were “writing” their website copy by cutting and pasting from their print material. At the time, they didn’t realize how ineffective their approach was… but Nick did.
So, his message became: “Writing for the Web is different.”
When potential clients heard his message, they were immediately curious and didn’t even ask about his qualifications or experience.
Because they believed his message.
Now, he’ll show you how to do the same…
During his presentation, you’ll learn how to:
- Uncover a message that gives you a clear direction, sets you apart from other writers, and increases your value.
- Deploy your new message across all your marketing materials — from your LinkedIn profile to your website.
- Use your message to start conversations with key prospects who want to work with you (and only you) based on what you say.
- Remove all pressure of “selling yourself” by making your value clear in your message.
- Build your marketing message into an asset that offers true “brand value.”
When Nick is finished, you’ll have the opportunity to ask any questions and even get live feedback on your new marketing message.
Step 3: “Build Your LinkedIn Profile”
With Ilise Benun
With LinkedIn, it only takes a few hours to create a professional presence on the Internet… where more than 106 million active LinkedIn users can view your profile, connect with you, and contact you for their next big project.
Best of all, because LinkedIn is mainly used for professional networking, it’s the perfect tool for bringing clients to you. Here are real-life examples…
“LinkedIn has been huge for me. I have thousands of companies at my fingertips. The clients on LinkedIn seem to be very direct and clear in what they want or don’t want, which is nice for me,” explains Lacey Jackson, who began her alternative health copywriting business in March 2016.
“To me, LinkedIn connections, and the potential there, feels like opening up a fire hydrant. There is tremendous potential for any number of copywriting projects from any number of sources,” adds Sherri Caldwell, who launched her copywriting career in January 2016.
“LinkedIn is 100% business. Armed with a good profile and effective networking skills, a freelancer can get good clients there. I’ve had several contact me because of my profile,” says Steve Maurer, AWAI’s LinkedIn Correspondent.
To navigate and master the power of this “client-attracting magnet,” you’ll work with self-marketing and LinkedIn expert extraordinaire, Ilise Benun.
- How to put together a professional LinkedIn Profile to promote your copywriting business
- The three most important elements of your profile
- How to use your profile to be found when clients search for your services
Here’s an added bonus: Just by completing your LinkedIn page, you’ll create a valuable sample of your writing!
And, after Ilise’s session, we’ll take any questions you have and answer them live.
Don’t forget: When you’re finished setting up your LinkedIn profile, send it in. We’ll give it a solid review and suggest anything you can do to improve your profile.
Step 4: “Develop Your Information Kit”
With Bob Bly
Up next, Bob Bly, an independent copywriter and consultant with more than 35 years of experience, will lead you through developing one of his most powerful strategies for getting clients: a “copywriting information kit.”
An information kit is essentially a letter to your potential client, including an overview of your freelance writing business. It gives you a huge advantage because it helps you get more leads and convinces prospects to hire you — before you even speak with them.
As Bob says, “I can attribute literally millions of dollars in sales of my copywriting services to having a great information kit!”
In this session, you’ll discover:
- What makes a great copywriting information kit and why you absolutely must have one — even if you already have a killer website.
- If charging a small fee for your kit improves the quality of the clients who contact you… The answer may surprise you.
- What works best for information kits — PDF, hard copy, or both?
- The five key elements every copywriting information kit must contain.
- An easy way to boost your kit’s value and get more prospects asking for it.
- Five marketing tactics that never fail to generate sales leads.
- How to use “lead magnets” to double response to your copywriting kit.
- And much more.
Plus, you’ll get an easy-to-edit template — just plug in your information and you’re good to go — and a copy of Bob’s actual information kit. Yes, this is the same kit that he’s used to generate copywriting projects worth millions of dollars.
And, finally, Bob will answer all your questions.
Now we’re halfway through our eight steps… and — because each step builds on the one before it — the rest will seem quite easy.
You already confirmed your niche, developed your message, set up your LinkedIn profile, and created your marketing content.
Now, let’s set up your home on the Internet…
Step 5: “Launch a Professional Website”
With Rebecca Matter
Another important piece — perhaps the most important piece — of your inbound marketing strategy is your website…
- First, it’s your online portfolio… whether you have samples or not, your website copy itself serves as an excellent example of your writing.
- Next, it’s the perfect way to get “found”… meaning when potential clients in your niche are searching online for a freelance writer, they can find you (and we’ll show you how!).
- And finally, your website gives your potential clients a low-pressure way to learn more about you and connect with you… via a contact form, phone number, email address, or social media.
In this session, you’ll meet with me, Rebecca Matter, to learn my headache-free method for building a freelance website… one that enhances and improves your credibility, the quality of the clients who contact you, and the professional rates you earn…
We’ll start with the copy on your website. Thanks to the sessions you completed in Steps 1-4, you’re 95% finished!
So, in this session, I’ll reveal all your content options — and explain how to get plenty of relevant content for your site — without doing a ton of writing at first.
Then, I’ll show you my proven exercise for writing compelling content that reflects you, your unique talents, and your unique skills. (Don’t worry if you haven’t yet identified your talents and skills — in this session, we’ll talk about how to uncover them.)
You’ll learn what pages your website should have, exactly what to say on each page, and what “content” will attract prospective clients to your brand-new website. We’ll even look at sample websites — both good ones and some not-so-good ones.
As an added bonus, you’ll also get my time-tested “Content Essentials Guide,” where we’ll cover the specific content you need, based on the type of copy you write…
We’ll cover Copywriting, Web Writing, Business-to-Business (B2B), Internet Research, Resume Writing, Grant Writing, Photography, Social Media, and more!
By following the suggestions in this comprehensive, handy guide — along with the templates and Swipe Files — you’ll have all kinds of new and exciting ideas for building out your website’s content. We’ll even cover what to do if you’re just starting out and have zero samples or little to no experience.
Finally, just like our other presenters, I’ll answer your questions, too.
By the end of our time together, you’ll feel 100% confident (and excited) about getting your website up and running.
Step 6: Get Clients Faster Through “Warm Email Prospecting”
With Ed Gandia
Like many beginning copywriters, when Ed Gandia first started out, he struggled to land great clients.
But all that changed when he discovered a simplified process for making it far less intimidating and much more “doable.”
His firsthand experiences — with his easy-to-replicate solutions — will save you years of struggle because he’s going to give you his exact process…
I’ll let Ed explain:
“I call it ‘Warm Email Prospecting.’ Mainly, because it’s the opposite of cold calling. And it’s very different from your standard, generic email prospecting.
“This is NOT mass emailing. It’s NOT about sending newsletters or trying to automate your prospecting. It’s the opposite of all that.
“Think of Warm Email Prospecting as ‘artisan prospecting.’ Each email must be personally handcrafted and written for one person only.
“When done right, a warm email positions you as a knowledgeable professional with a very relevant and timely message.
“It’s one of the quickest, most cost-effective ways to attract and land high-quality clients — without the unpleasantness of cold calling or the costs and time requirements involved with most traditional marketing tactics.”
In this nuts-and-bolts session, you’ll discover:
- Why Ed’s “Warm Email Prospecting” Formula is the most reliable and sustainable outreach strategy for freelancers today.
- Fill-in-the-blanks templates and powerful email samples you can model.
- A proven, repeatable process that turns prospecting from a dreadful chore into an enjoyable habit.
After Ed’s session, you’ll know exactly how to use simple emails to land a steady stream of clients and, if anything was unclear, you’ll have plenty of time to ask your questions.
Ed says Warm Email Prospecting has been a game changer for him… I know it will be for you, too.
Of course, once you get a client interested in your services, you need to know how to close the deal. That’s where Joshua Boswell comes in…
Step 7: “How to Close Clients”
With Joshua Boswell
In 2004, Joshua Boswell’s business folded. He was left $200,000 in debt and seriously concerned about how he would take care of his family. That’s when he found AWAI and borrowed $50 from his brother to get the first installment of The Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting…
Just 11 months later, after creating a system for bringing in work he loved, Joshua established himself as a copywriter and earned a six-figure income.
Today, Joshua says, “My income increases every year… our debt is completely paid off… and I live the writer’s life every day to the fullest.”
Joshua now supports his family very comfortably — making well into the six-figures. Now, he has set his income goal even higher: $1 million a year.
Even more impressively, he does it all from his home in Kansas City, working less than full-time. His wife and kids are just down the hall, homeschooling.
Joshua says, “If a blockhead like me can make this work, then I have no doubt YOU can do it, too!”
So, what’s his secret?
Joshua built his business by doing all the things you’ll learn in the Virtual Business Building Intensive. In his power-packed session, he’ll show you how it all comes together — into a business that easily attracts (and closes) high-paying clients.
- Joshua’s exact process (that he’s used time and time again) to create trust, close clients, and start getting paid work fast.
- How to land as many paying clients as you can handle — with complete confidence!
- The three-step method he used to quickly land a $2,000/month contract that lasted for more than two years and helped him actively build his portfolio and find other clients.
You’ll also get access to Joshua’s word-for-word closing and negotiating scripts to make every client conversation as easy and profitable as possible.
Whether you’re connecting with a potential client by phone, email, or in person, you’ll know exactly what to say to create trust and land paid work fast.
So, now you might be wondering…
What should I charge?
Well, wonder no more. We have that covered for you, too…
Step 8: “Establish Your Fee Schedule”
With Ilise Benun
Now, Ilise Benun — our client-getting expert, who taught you all about LinkedIn in Step 3 — will join us again. This time, she’s here to wipe out all your money concerns for good.
You see, to ensure your freelance business is successful, you need to know how to price your services (with confidence!) so you get paid what you deserve.
For more than 25 years, Ilise has worked with major “A-list” writers — like our very own Bob Bly — to develop foolproof tactics for negotiating smart deals for writing work.
You couldn’t ask for a better trainer when it comes to pricing your services accurately and talking about money with confidence.
Here’s an example. Ilise spoke at AWAI’s 2016 FastTrack to Copywriting Success Bootcamp and Job Fair. One of the attendees, Becky Stark Tumidolsky, used Ilise’s advice to immediately seal a deal for DOUBLE what she’d planned to charge before seeing the session.
Ilise is going to reveal:
- What to say (and never say) when someone asks, “What do you charge?”
- How to figure out what you need to charge
- How to find out what your prospects can pay
- How to control the money conversation
- Why you should stop asking for the client’s budget.
Plus, you’ll get Ilise’s simple fill-in-the-blank recipe for determining the minimum rate you should be charging for ANY project…
And, AWAI’s latest Copywriting Pricing Guide which lists price ranges for the top 75 writing projects in the direct-response industry today.
If you’ve ever struggled with writing winning proposals or getting your pricing right, those times are over!
By the time Ilise finishes her presentation, you’ll be able to confidently communicate to your clients: “I’m a professional who knows what I’m worth!”