Updated: Jul 14, 2020
As compelling as it may be to look for talented writers, when it comes to brand content and communication, a natural problem persists: identifying, and hiring, experienced writers is time consuming and tedious.
Choosing from a marketplace swarming with freelancers and copywriting agencies of all shapes, sizes, and skills becomes difficult.
Finding the right candidate with creativity and experience + domain familiarity isn’t easy. It’s mythical. Except, it’s not.
Find out if you really need one
Before you begin your quest to find and hire the perfect copywriter, map out specifics regarding your project. Make a list of what you’re looking for, and why.
What do I want written?
What is my budget?
What metrics define my results?
When do I want to see these results?
How soon do I want to start?
Being clear about your requirement makes it easy to look for the right candidate.
Game, set, match.
Every copywriter is unique and has a distinct style and process. There are several ‘species’ of copywriters like SEO-, creative-, branding-, social media-, product-, technical-copywriters and many more.
Remember, you don’t need the perfect copywriter. You need a perfect copywriter for your project who can help you with your specific needs. What you need and who you find should fit like pieces of a puzzle.
When looking at copywriter profiles on Freelancer, or Upwork, or LinkedIn, look for these:
Have they worked with similar brands / products?
What kind of work was produced?
Does their speciality match your needs?
Does their process fit your work style?
Do they have enough experience to get you the results you want?
Can you see clear samples of work?
Do they have a project minimum (and does it fit your budget)?
Ideally, look for a writer whose experience matches your specific project, needs, and industry, and takes time understanding your business.
You’re better off spending some time with a check-list than getting stuck with “cheap” and "fast" copy.
Experience counts. Testimonials agree.
Too many people think they can write persuasive copy with a few facts sprinkled in. Several will promise “copy that converts”. You must see through the fog of inexperience and formulaic writing by paying attention to the kind of work they’ve done.
Typically, work filled with platitudes and low on substance is a big red flag and indicates the writer not having done their homework. You need a writer with experience and authority because lack of specialisation or experience becomes apparent to your audience - the seasoned, industry readers.
You’re hiring them to write for your audience. It damages your brands should the copywriter fail to understand what and how your stakeholders speak, share, read, and talk. To know if what’s on paper aligns with the actual results, request testimonials, or best, get a proof of concept done.
If copy is the stage, and the copywriter the conductor, then what lies behind the curtains matters too. That being said, it is the core values of the person that not only affect the work produced but also the work experience with your firm. It need not be that all your boxes of an ‘ideal’ person are checked. While having passion for the job is always a big plus, copywriting isn’t something that one can rush into. Being a copywriter is a commitment - if you are imagining a copywriter with a radiating light and a halo, snap back to reality.
It takes a lot of effort and a lot of dedication. It also takes a lot of time and research.
Remember: they will create your messages, for your audience, to complete your specific objectives.
In your hunt for the perfect copywriter, bear in mind that as humans, we buy based on emotions. Yes language and conversion and hourly charges are important to consider, but what really matters in how your project is executed is the curiosity to learn, willingness to put in time to understand you, the brand and its needs, and honesty. These qualities intertwine effectively with their work ethic, to say the least.
As Leigh Steinberg, the real-life Jerry Maguire once said, “Work needs to be a reflection of your social values. You are how you work!”.
Look for someone who doesn’t cut the same cloth when it comes to your unique content and communication needs. Hire someone who keeps it simple, has credible experience, tailors words to your audience, and is mindful of your objectives.
Like Content Conspiracy.