Let's rename it "getting stuff done Friday"

Let's rename it "getting stuff done Friday"

Like a deadline, the last day of the week seems to focus the mind, the thought of the weekend ahead, having a break, taking time out with the kids.

I don’t know about you, but I get a regular flurry of new business enquiries, approvals on jobs I’ve quoted for and writing commission sign off’s during a Friday afternoon. It got me thinking, is it the impending deadline of the weekend and needing a clean slate before Monday that focuses people’s minds on getting stuff done or is it just that they’ve managed to get through another week, fire fighting, fielding enquiries, managing the day to day chaos? I think people just want to get another thing off their plate before they have a breather.

Either way, it’s always a privilege when a new client asks for help, I get that fire in my belly at the thought of a new challenge, whether it’s blogging about filter manufacture, website for the building trade, marketing literature for the latest battery application or a case study for a new garden design.

Above all, I love getting stuff done. So, if you’ve got a writing job that fills you with dread every time it pops into your head, hand it over. Then you can concentrate on the weekend!

After all it’s “getting stuff done Friday!'“

"I love it when a plan comes together"

"I love it when a plan comes together"

There’s nothing quite like planning ahead, knowing what you’re aiming for and putting an achievable, measurable plan in place to achieve it.

The best type of plan is the marketing kind. A well researched framework of focused, results orientated marketing initiatives for the up and coming season/year. With it, your business can stay one step ahead of the competition, proactive to existing and potential customer’s needs, not reactive. You’ll only kick yourself that you didn’t do enough when your competitors take chances and get themselves in front of your audience before you!


Planning ahead gives you the benefit of exploiting any seasonality there might be to purchasing your products or services, linking your product to industry initiatives, exploiting publicity opportunities, maximising your creativity so you stand out in the crowd and build in response mechanisms so that you can track who responds from your banner ad, poster, leaflet, blog post?  That way you can work out what works and what doesn't!

Planning doesn't mean spending more it just means spending better.

Happy planning.

 

 

Walk the talk

Walk the talk

Taking a client brief in the traditional sense might mean sitting down, armed with pen/laptop, briefing form/list of questions and interviewing a client from across the table whilst laboriously taking notes.

Surely to encourage free thinking, this creative process lends itself to being conducted in a far more creative environment? McCann’s Creative Director (shall remain nameless) used to march his creative team around the streets of Bristol city centre to thrash around ideas, to encourage blue sky thinking. Not at any point did they stumble into “The Old Duke” (pub!) oh no, no … absolutely not! So, today a client and I met in our own beautiful creative surroundings: the sea wall.

It’s great to have the flexibility, and the confidence (that comes with experience) to interview a client, whilst walking our dogs. Chat about her business, her vision, what sets her apart, her customers, perception and thrash out which direction to take the business in.

We can discount the white noise and agree the approach, content and tone of voice when it comes to writing the content.

The product? That’s a surprise.

You’d be amazed what business can be done when you walk the talk!

Go on, get out there, it’s glorious.

Where's my doppelgänger?

Where's my doppelgänger?

4 times this week new business contacts have been absolutely convinced that they've met me before because I look so familiar! 4 times!

I know I've got lots going on but I'd like to think I'm pretty good with faces and generally I know if I've met someone before, even if I've temporarily forgotten their name.

Anyway, I don't know about you, but this happens to me. A lot.  

Either I have a very common face and look like lots of people or (and this is slightly more exciting!) I have a doppelgänger!  

So, if there is a Vicks Ward double out there, how do I go about tracking her down?

Suggestions please on a postcard....

 

Writing for award winning superyacht designers

Writing for award winning superyacht designers

I'm thrilled to show you a website I wrote a couple of months ago for super yacht interior designers, Mark Berryman Design, whose striking website (designed by Freestyle Digital) went live today. A pleasure to write for a team where only the best is good enough.  Take a look @ www.markberrymandesign.com

"I need content written, but I don't have the time."

"I need content written, but I don't have the time."

Something I often hear clients say.

When business owners come to me for copywriting, they're often concerned it will take up valuable time they simply don't have.  It won't.

Whether it's for a blog post, strapline, brochure or website, I don't need much from you to get started. 

It's a really simple process, we just need a little time to chat:

1) I'll do a little background research before we talk.

2) We talk (over 'phone or in person) - I ask questions to get the info I need.

2) I listen - tell me what you do, buyer behaviour, what you need to achieve.

3) Research - I'll investigate your product, market, competitors, likes/dislikes, successes and failures.

4) The magic - all that info whirs and settles in my brain.

5) I start writing.

6) You'll receive a Word Document with all your content.

7) You're free to amend, delete or add any other info you like (so far, I haven't had a client change much!)

What are you waiting for?

Let's get cracking.

 

Writing with personality

Writing with personality

A new business contact told me this week she would consider working with me because she could see I was passionate about writing (and marketing) and "got the feeling I could write with personality!"  Were the pink shoes the giveaway?

Yes I write from the heart, with passion, enthusiasm and an unwavering focus on the end game.  I will write the copy that reflects your brand and achieves results.

To make my clients stand out, I've got to be a cut above and so does my content.  I've written for IBM, Lloyds Bank, my local garden centre, plumber and chiropractor and everything in between, so I'm nothing if not adaptable.

If you're good at what you do, it should be perfectly obvious from the way you present yourself.  

So ... be confident.  Less is more.

If you want bland, rambling content, you've come to the wrong place.

 

What does your 9-5 look like?

What does your 9-5 look like?

What's the norm when it comes to your working day?

Like many, my working day looks pretty unconventional. Just like my husband's yoga tree! But it doesn't mean I get less done. Quite the opposite actually.  If you want something done, and you want it done well, I'm your gal.

As a freelance copywriter, general workaholic (because I love it!) but above all mummy, I work the hours I need to get the job done, surpass client's expectations and still get to laugh at my husband's yoga practice.

When it comes to the working day, it's definitely not 9-5, but it never has been for me.  In a previous life (pre kids) working in advertising agencies, the day could start as early as 7am and finish anytime after 10pm.  Just as long as the job got done, on time and the client was happy, well 'thrilled' actually, then all was right with the world!  Never mind the fact that you might not have a social life or the cat hadn't been fed for days!

For me the focus has always been the job in front of me and the deadline, whether it's interviewing for the latest press release, campaign planning or writing content for a website launch.  I work the hours required.  There is always a deadline, it might be in a months time, but invariably it's tomorrow!

I've never let a client down and I don't intend to, but it does mean I work funny hours.  But is that acceptable to my clients?  Well, no-one's complained yet.  But I do wonder, am I right to assume it's OK to send a client an email at either 7am or 10 o clock at night?  Surely it's the client's prerogative when they check their emails?   I might be writing the latest blog post for a plastics manufacturer and the client might be overseas visiting customers.  I need approval before uploading it to their website.  My 7am is actually their 2pm, so I email it.

The working day has become so much more fluid.  I love working freelance, it allows me the flexibility to do a job I love (writing), use my marketing expertise (25 years), walk the dog (Elsa), be outside (a lot) and see my kids do stuff they love - yoga poses on an island at sundown! 

A recent YouGov (polling firm) survey reported that only 6% of people in the UK actually work the traditional 9-5.   Plenty of you are being just as effective (if not more so) job sharing, remote or hot desking, freelancing or working flexi-time/shifts to accommodate other life commitments.  

Surely if we have a better work life balance, it will be better for our mental state as well as our productivity levels.  I know I'm much more efficient during the hours I've designated to work, because I'm absolutely focused on delivering the best I can, every time, on time.  Only that way does my business keep moving forward.  After all - "you're only as good as your last job" - my first boss used to delight in telling me!  It's down to me, no-one else.

The aim: for every client to come back for more and happily recommend me.

So far, so good.

New website for Alpha House

New website for Alpha House

August 2018 - thrilled to share with you the launch of my client's new website www.alphahouseltd.co.uk  Alpha House supply batteries for many commercial and some domestic applications, from high street retailers, banks to reliable power for your home.  I'm proud to have come up with their strapline (it's also on their building!) and wrote their sales literature and website content.

A busy week!

A busy week!

This week I'm writing content for a UK based probiotic Belgian chocolate manufacturer, an online super yacht crew recruiter, cruise ship crew recruiter, plumber and UK plastics manufacturer.  You couldn't get more diverse!