As you might have read, I’m reorienting my freelance business. That means transitioning from at-the-coal-face copywriting, to copywriting coaching.
And part of that transition involves defining the problem my ideal clients face – people with small, established creative businesses. But more importantly, expressing that in a way they can connect with. The messages I send to these people must be framed in terms they understand.
This is standard copywriting practice. Moreover, it’s just how copywriters like me organise our thoughts. I’d do the with any copywriting project – experiment with angles, tone and message.
So this post is another brain-dump to help along that journey of developing my freelance business. It’s also my collected thoughts after chatting to a UI designer about their pain points. It revealed two interesting angles I’m toying with.
The premise underpinning these messages is described on my homepage. It’s that their work doesn’t feel as fulfilling as it could be. They need more meaningful work with their ideal clients.
The proposed solution is my insightful case study product. This is where I teach creative people how to gather and produce case studies. They’d use these market what they do, as well as better understand their value. I’d deliver this as a masterclass workshop or one-to-one coaching.
Here are two principal angles:
1. What you take for granted
There are unique things about you, the way you operate and what you stand for, that you completely take for granted. Trust me. How you do what you do may as well be magic to the people you serve.
Likewise, the things you stress about – like delivering on-time to budget, don’t matter nearly as much as everyone thinks they do. Sure, clients will say they’re important. But they’re not qualities they really care about.
Wouldn’t you like to know what they really care about? What they really value.
You could ask them. But they probably won’t give you a meaningful answer. You need insight that’s useful. Insight you can act upon, and use to gain more clients.
The way to get that is to frame your request differently.
And one powerful way to do that is by inviting them to take part in a case study. A story where they share insight for the benefit of people just like them (but also for you). About what it’s like to be in their position, how someone like you helps, and what really matters to them.
2. It’s not easy promoting yourself
Selling yourself is difficult. It’s not a natural thing for creative people to do. Especially when it comes to writing about yourself – marketing your services to the kind of people you want to work with.
So let’s look at this from another angle.
What are you a natural at talking about? I bet it’s your craft. You could talk all day about the finer points of how you illustrate, programme or design.
That’s safer territory for you.
So, what if you could use that as your frame of reference when it comes to promoting yourself? Instead of a hard-sell, you’d write about your craft instead.
Well you can, with the insightful case study.
Think engaging stories of people eventually getting to grips with a problem. Thanks to your help – their creative catalyst, they’re able to surmount their challenge. And share insight all about how other, likeminded people can do the same. Likeminded people who also happen to be prospective clients for you…
Writing like this is more authentic and believable. It’s also more useful and valuable to the kind of people you want to serve. So it’s more likely to get read and shared.
It’s just marketing. But marketing you can get behind. Because it’s on a subject you could talk all day about.