What is your process?
After I interview a client (either in person or on the phone), there’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes before the first draft is ever seen. Here’s roughly how it goes:
- Background research into the marketplace, competition, target audience etc
- Evaluation of any previous marketing materials, supporting documents, product information etc
- Planning and organization
- Message development, brainstorming and lots of thinking
- Writing and revising
Then it’s time to present the first draft and see what the client thinks!
What’s so hard about getting website visitors to read?
Your website visitors go, quite predictably, through the following levels of commitment:
- Casual interest with the mouse hovering over the ‘close’ tab.
- A cursory glance around the screen to evaluate what you’re offering.
- A quick scan down the page, checking out anything that jumps out visually.
- A look at the end of the page, to see what the bottom line is.
- Browsing for more detailed information.
- Searching for specific facts.
You can lose your prospect at any of these stages, unless your copy is strategically designed to create a bridge between each level of commitment, and a good reason to keep going.
How much do you charge?
I do have a fee schedule which acts as a benchmark for the more typical projects, and which you can find on the <services> page. However, projects can be customized according to your needs, and will be estimated individually. Call 403-279-3606 or <email me> to discuss your project.
Do you guarantee results?
I really wish I could, but there are so many variables that I cannot possibly control – the product, the targeting, the economy, the news that day, the way the stars are aligned; you get the idea. I do guarantee, though, that I will write creative, strategic copy that you will love.
Do you charge rush fees?
Lead times will vary according to the size of the project and my current workload. If you want me to complete a project within such a timeframe that I will have to work evenings or weekends then I will charge a 20% rush fee.
Do you charge a cancellation fee?
If a project is cancelled any time after the deposit is paid, there will be a cancellation fee of $75 per hour for all work to date (including both project work and pre-project work; time spent evaluating and estimating the project, phone or in-person meetings and any other background work, as well as any writing or editing). The minimum fee is $100, up to a total of the full estimate.
What happens after you submit the first draft?
My prices include two sets of revisions. So, when you receive the first draft you should go through it in detail, and obtain detailed comments from anyone else who has a say. That way you can ensure that the first set of edits brings us as close as possible to what you really want. The second set, then, should just be fine-tuning.
If I don’t receive any comments within 30 days of submitting a draft or edited copy, I will consider the copy approved and submit an invoice, which will be payable immediately.
What will you need from us?
The more information you give me, the better of a job I’m going to do. Here are some of the things that you might be able to provide:
- Previous marketing materials
- Product/service information including specifications, features, benefits, unique selling points etc
- Competitors’ materials and URLs
- Marketing plan
- Target audience demographics, psychographics, buying patterns etc
- Market analysis
If we have an approval committee, how can we make sure everyone ends up satisfied?
If more than one person has a say in the final copy, it can be very difficult to achieve consensus. Here are some suggestions to help you handle a potentially tricky situation:
- Make sure the copywriter knows how many people will be involved.
- If more than one person will be evaluating the copy, it’s often best to start with a copy platform. This is a document provided by the copywriter to outline the intended approach.
- Submit the copy platform to everyone involved and obtain their sign-off. Make sure the copywriter is aware of all comments regarding the copy platform.
- Submit the first draft to everyone involved. Pull their comments together into one definitive set of instructions, and obtain their sign-off before returning the draft to the copywriter.
- Appoint one person to take final responsibility for copy approval.
- The second draft should then be evaluated and approved only by the one person with the authority to approve or ask for further edits.
If we don’t like your work do we still have to pay?
Absolutely not – although I like to think that isn’t likely to happen! As I do not work on spec, though, I ask that you meet the following conditions:
- Your detailed, written feedback on the first draft, spelling out precisely what you do not like, and what you would like to see
- At least two sets of edits, each followed by your detailed, written feedback.
If after that you are not confident that the work is heading in the direction you want, I will repay your deposit and that will be that.
If, however you do not provide me with the feedback I need to make the changes you would like to see, then I will invoice the project, and you will be liable to pay in full.
Who Owns the Rights to Your Work?
Once you have paid in full for anything I write for you, you will own full rights to use that writing in any or all of your promotional materials, and however you see fit.