Photograph of blindfolded women working at typewriters

7 tips to help you hire the right copywriter

Are you in the dark when it comes to choosing a freelance copywriter?

Hiring a freelancer can be stressful—especially if you’ve had a less-than-thrilling experience in the past.

Will she be reliable? Easy to work with? And what about product—will she create the kind of effective copy you’re looking for?

To help you confidently choose the right freelancer for your project, look for a copywriter who…

  1. Writes hardworking copy that moves customers to action—gets them to buy, click, sign up or take other conversion actions you establish. Not sure you can identify effective marketing content? Review 8 elements of hard-working copy.

  2. “Gets” marketing. A good marketing copywriter builds your business by positioning your products and services as unique solutions to your customers’ needs and problems. She stays on top of key trends—technological, economic and cultural—that shape your markets. Though some writers come to marketing through a creative or literary backdoor, a good copywriter relishes rolling up her shirt sleeves and diving into the marketplace.

  3. Makes it her business to learn your business. The right copywriter is familiar with your business—your products, clients, customers and competitors—or can quickly come up to speed. Ideally, the copywriter’s portfolio contains exactly what you’re looking for. If not, scrutinize her samples for similar or related work. Will the sum of several copy samples equal the whole of your envisioned project? Maybe one sample targets your audience, another shows familiarity with your product and a third illustrates the writer’s ability to “translate” difficult concepts and industry lingo. In addition to copy samples, an experienced copywriter will gladly share client testimonials and references.

  4. Puts you first and her ego last. The right copywriter offers expert marketing and copywriting strategies, but recognizes your macro-marketing imperatives and defers to you before push comes to shove. If you’re not sure your vision jibes with hers, ask for a written description of the project before she starts work. This “assignment sheet” can include specifics on content, marketing objectives, voice, tone and word-count. If the prospective copywriter insists on managing the project her way, you may need to consider another copywriter.

  5. Meets deadlines and responds to emails in a timely fashion. Most busy copywriters juggle multiple projects so you may get a short response—or an autoresponder—to your initial email with the promise of fuller communication soon to follow. Slow or no communication is a worrisome sign of inexperience or difficult personality. Barring a family or medical emergency—or natural disaster—there’s no excuse for a late deadline.

  6. Works as hard as you do. You put a lot into building your business and so should the people you pay to market it. Look for a can-do attitude, a track record of meeting deadlines and a willingness to revise copy when necessary.

  7. Possesses talent. “If you can talk you can write” copywriting courses notwithstanding, I believe some native ability is required to write well.

Am I the right freelancer for you? Check out my portfolio. Or get step-by-step details on how I plan your project—and hear what clients say about me.

Want to discuss your project? Contact me for a free consult.

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