Looking for a copywriter? The process of hiring a copywriter starts with a simple question: what do I need?
Are you looking for a copywriter?
These days, it can be pretty overwhelming trying to figure out how to hire a good copywriter.
A Google search will show you what I mean: there are so many writers to choose from!
From large agencies to freelance copywriters; local hires to wonderful talents abroad – how do you narrow down your options and find your dream copywriter?
While there are no hard and fast rules on how to find a copywriter, you may want to consider these 5 practical points when making your decision.
Make the right choice: here’s how to hire a copywriter
1. What do you need?
You might be thinking it doesn’t matter who you hire – a copywriter is a copywriter.
Well, that’s not always the case. That’s because just like every other profession, copywriters have different backgrounds and work experiences that contribute, if not shape, their specialties. And that’s one of the factors you need to think about when hiring a copywriter.
- Do you need a B2C or B2B copywriter?
- Should you hire a niche copywriter?
- Do you need someone with a specific skill set, e.g. in social media, mass communications, sales and marketing?
There will be times where you’ll want a copywriter with a communications background. Like if you need help crafting your social media messages.
Then there are times where you’ll want a copywriter who has a sales or marketing background. Like if you’re looking to create lead-generating landing pages.
Takeaway: Understand your project’s needs first before hiring a copywriter.
2. Know your goals
You need to know what you want to get out of the project in order to choose the best copywriter for the job.
Do you need to lower the cost of acquiring new leads? You would want to work with an experienced landing page copywriter who can ensure ad and message consistency.
If you’re looking to spice up your menu with mouth-watering descriptions that’ll have your diners saying “must have now”—and maybe add an item or two to their order, because how can they possibly resist?!—you might want to look for a restaurant copywriter or someone with experience in menu writing.
Takeaway: Before you start looking for a copywriter, define your goals. Then find copywriters that can help you achieve those goals.
3. What’s your budget?
Your budget will play an important role in hiring a copywriter. It will also likely influence where you find your copywriter: an agency vs an independent freelancer vs a freelancer platform.
Experienced copywriters work in-house (for a company / brand), independently (they have their own website) or for agencies (e.g. ad agencies)—and they charge more for their services. They’ve worked long and hard to earn that right.
Newbie and low-cost writers tend to advertise their services on gig-finding platforms. To compensate for the low income, they take on as many projects at any given time as possible—yours could be just one of many.
If rates matter most to you, then keep in mind that pricing models vary. Some copywriters charge by the word, some by the hour, others by the project. Some copywriters have copywriting packages while others might choose to work on retainer.
Choose wisely. The most affordable option at first sight may cost you more in the end.
Takeaway: Get a quote and ask what’s included for that price.
4. Do your research
Wondering how to find a good copywriter? The answer is explore your options.
Let’s say you’re launching an online store for a line of specialty pet toys. You might start looking for a copywriter by searching for “website copywriter”. Should you end your search there? Not if you’re looking for the best copywriter for your brand.
Next, you might search for “e-commerce copywriters”, “pet copywriters” or even “dog copywriters”. From there, you have a wider range of qualified copywriters to choose from.
Takeaway: Don’t just settle on the first copywriter you stumble upon – get to know who else is out there.
5. Consult with the copywriter
You’ve perused various copywriters’ websites but in reality, that’s just an overview. In fact, many copywriters post fake rates and packages online to fool the competition.
In other words, you may not get a full or accurate picture unless you get in touch with the copywriter. Most offer a free email or phone consultation so take advantage of it!
What are some things you should discuss? Start by sharing the details of your project. Ask what kind of solutions the copywriter would recommend for you given the goals you have set for this project. Get a quote complete with what’s included for that price.
The consultation will help you figure out if you actually like the person you’re dealing with and, more importantly, if this is someone you feel you can trust with your copywriting project.
Are they professional? How quick are they to respond? Does the copywriter show genuine interest in what you do? Are they confident they can achieve your goals? Can you see yourself working with them for the duration of the project?
Takeaway: Experience, although highly desirable, may not end up as the important criteria in hiring a copywriter. Once you’ve consulted with your options, you might find that other traits matter more like their flexibility or ability to meet a super tight deadline.
Approach your search with an open mind and you’ll definitely find your dream copywriter—the perfect writer for your brand.
Copywriter for hire: here’s what to look for in a copywriter
Hiring a copywriter is supposed to make your life easier. Here are some qualities you should be on the lookout for.
Hire a copywriter who can match your writing style
The freelance copywriter should ideally be able to quickly adopt your brand’s style guide including tone and voice. Consistency is crucial, so there’s no use in hiring a copywriter with impressive specs only to find out that he can’t make text sound the way you need them to.
Hire someone with versatile writing skills
If you’re going to be working together long term, you might want a copywriter that isn’t just skilled in writing one specific type of copy, e.g. sales letters. You want someone who can develop text for different types of materials – whether it’s an old-school brochure or effective product descriptions.
Hire a good listener
It’s not enough to have a talented writer working on your project. You want a copywriter who listens to you and asks vital questions. Be wary of copywriters that don’t bother to get to know your business or your needs.
Hire a reliable and dependable copywriter
You want to choose a copywriter that you can count on—that includes delivering projects on time. You also want someone you don’t have to micromanage.
Having said that, “life happens”—we fall ill, have occasionally crappy / intermittent internet service, or simply encounter unexpected scenarios (like a global pandemic or other ‘acts of God’) that get in the way of what was agreed upon or scheduled. Nevertheless, that should still be the exception to the rule – not the norm.