The Key To Getting Great Copy From A Freelancer
So, you want to hire a writer or editor to provide you with awesome content for your website, your emails, your book, your mailer, your ads, etc. Don’t forget that in order to get the best copy for your money, you need to provide your writer or editor with some marketing data. All written matter is copy, from a link on a website, to a novel, to the obvious advertisement in a magazine, and all copy targets the reader. That is why it’s important your writer or editor knows your market almost as much as you do.
Imagine if websites were only in programmer language, instead of the end-user’s. It would display code instead of links, colours, images and buttons for clicking. We would land on a page full of gibberish and, unless we were programmers, would leave because we would not know what to do. Luckily, websites have been translated into readable, user-friendly formats and have become a daily mode of communication.
Likewise, you want your readers to read and connect with your copy. So, it will need to be written in a way that matters to them enough, they won’t move on to something else. For that to happen, whoever writes your copy needs to know what matters to your market. Who better to deliver them the juicy goods than you?
7 Key Data Bits To Give Your Writer Or Editor
So what data should you provide your freelance writer or editor? Almost everything that describes your market and your offer. Give the intimate details, so that your writer can jump in your shoes, then in the reader’s shoes. Think of the movie What Women Want with Mel Gibson. To win a top account of women’s accessories, Gibson’s character, an ad executive, tries on facials, makeup and pantyhose to literally get into the client’s shoes.
You may not have a bag of accessories for your freelancer to try on, but there is still valuable data you can provide and I listed these below:
- Your missions statement. In 3 sentences or less. This serves as the central focus of your organization…your modus operandi. For inspiration, read my article where I list the missions statements of 20 different well-known companies.
- Unique Selling Proposition (USP). What is your USP? Why would the reader choose your organization over another? I also wrote about USPs, if you need more details on pinpointing your unique offer.
- Demographics. Any demographic data on your clients, such as average age, education, income, single or married, rent or own, etc.
- Psychographics. Any additional details you’ve already dug-up on your market. These can include tidbits on their lifestyle habits, past purchases, any trends in their behaviour, etc. This data can often come from surveys, market research, social media discussions, emails and complaints.
- Best past copy. Bring forward any past content, could be adverts, articles, etc., that generated top results.
- Worst past copy. Bring forward any past content that flopped. Often overlooked, these can be very telling.
- Competitors. Provide a list, in chronological order, from top competitor to bottom competitor. The list alone is a valuable gift as it provides a springboard for additional market information.
Put some if not all of this data in the hands of your freelancer and you will not only be added to his favourite clients’ list, but most importantly you will max your writing dollar. And that’s a win-win-win; for you, your freelancer and your reader.