Frequently Asked Questions

How much does an experienced freelance copywriter charge? How long does it take for a professional content writer to turn work around? I’ve compiled answers to these great questions along with others that I am frequently asked.

I can easily answer any further questions you may have – just drop me an email, send me a note or give me a call and I’ll be happy to help.

What exactly is a copywriter?

A copywriter is your go-to-person any time you need words to engage with your customers, such as traditional printed brochures or new digital media, like your website and blog.

A copywriter will help your customers engage with your business by producing accurate, trust-worthy copy that informs and educates, entices and persuades.

This is achieved through years of experience of what works and what doesn’t, big wins as well as missteps along the way.

How much do you charge?

I charge a set amount per project which I will provide a quote for during the free no-obligation consultation call or in the subsequent written quotation.

I will base your customised quote on your unique needs. This means you will have the peace of mind knowing how much the bill will be from the start.

For larger projects, I can break this into smaller tasks if you need to keep tight control on time and/or budget.

Will you provide a copy sample before I agree to contract your services?

I have a portfolio of work available for prospective clients to view before engaging my services. This is your opportunity to see if my writing style suits your business. I can also write a spec assignment if you would like to see if my writing style suits your business or industry.

How quickly can you write my copy?

How quickly I can turn around copy will depend on my current availability, how much copy you require and how much research is needed. Once I know your exact requirements, I will be able to give you an idea of lead time.

Do you offer discounts?

I offer discounts for regular repeat work, such as producing five blog articles a week for six-months or writing a repeat monthly newsletter. I’d be delighted to discuss this during the consultation call.

Do you need a deposit?

Yes, I require a 50% deposit upfront as a commitment from clients. The balance is typically required within 30 days of the final approved copy being submitted. See my terms and conditions for further information.

I’d like to work with you. How do we get started?

I like to keep things as simple as possible so, once you’ve sent me some initial details via my contact form, email or over the phone, I’ll contact you so we can discuss the project further and I can provide you with a quote and timescale. I’ll either be able to do so during our chat or for more complicated projects, I’ll follow up with a written quote asap.

The quote is valid for 30 days and, if you wish to proceed, I’ll send you a simple Creative Brief to complete.

I’ll then provide you with an outline (typically for long copy such as a blog post) and/or draft copy within the agreed timescale for you to review and mark up with any amends.

How do I mark-up your copy with amends?

I am flexible and happy to work whichever way suits you and your business best.

Go old school and print off a hardcopy to write on, scan and send back to me. Alternatively, use the comments tool (under the Insert tab on Word or Ctrl Alt M on Google Docs) to highlight a phrase and note what you would prefer the copy say.

If I am unsure of any amends for whatever reason, I will contact you to clarify.

Amends that are too complicated to annotate can be discussed over the phone, Skype, Zoom or in-person.

I will then make the necessary changes and send a second version for you to sign off before sending a final clean copy. Any further revisions will incur additional fees (see terms and conditions).

Do you only work remotely?

Yes, I am currently based in Timaru, New Zealand which is a long way from most places, but I have clients based around the world, including the UK, Europe and America. Of course, if you are local, I am happy to meet face-to-face.

What experience do you have?

I have 20 years’ experience in sales and marketing. Most of this has been in the travel, tourism and leisure industry, although I also have experience in retail, insurance, financial services and accountancy.

I have written countless holiday brochures for destinations around the world; penned copious leaflets, such as for events like roadshows, conferences and bridge holidays (yes, that’s a thing); produced adverts for car, house and pet insurance. I have also ghostwritten letters on behalf of Captains, CEOs and commercial buyers.

I am a thorough researcher so anything I don’t have direct knowledge of, I can find out.

What copywriting services do you offer?

I offer traditional offline print copywriting services for brochures, leaflets, postcards, adverts and letters. I also write online product descriptions, and content for web pages including homepages, FAQs, about pages or bios, product descriptions, you name it. Check out my services page for more detail.

What industry do you write for?

I have written extensively for the travel, tourism and leisure industy, as well as insurance and financial services.

As a professional copywriter, I can write copy for any industry, from local businesses like restaurants, hairdressers and pest control, to the technology sector and SAAS.

Once you have decided to work with me, I will send you a simple briefing form to complete. This will help give me an overview of your business’s objectives, products and services, and customers. I’ll conduct further research into your industry, and if needed, will interview SMEs (subject matter experts) too.

Whatever your industry, I’ll use my wordsmithing skills to make your product or service as easy to understand for your customers as possible so they can make an informed decision. Not being weighed down with tons of industry knowledge can often prove beneficial.

However, if I feel that I am not the right copywriter for whatever reason then I can refer you to a colleague in my network who may be better suited.

What if I need to amend or cancel my project?

Minor revisions are included within the quotation however a rebrief will result in work on the current project being stopped and billed to date, and a new quotation being issued.

If you need to cancel the project, I will refund your 50% deposit, unless I have already started work, in which case I will bill you for the work that has so far been completed less the 50% deposit.

What if I don’t like the copy?

I aim to produce copy that clients are 100% happy with. That’s why I include revisions within the cost to allow for any wrinkles to be ironed out. I value constructive criticism and take feedback as an opportunity to refine my copy. After all, to err is human, to edit, divine!

Once you have signed off the copy and settled your account, the copyright for the copy that I have supplied to you will belong to you.

What assurances can you offer me about confidentiality?

I treat the confidentiality of my clients with the utmost importance and will not disclose any confidential information. I can sign a confidentiality agreement if you require further assurance.

Do you manage web sites or offer design services?

As a professional copywriter, words are my forte although I can offer my opinion on imagery and photographs if needed.

Can you liaise with my other suppliers?

I am happy to collaborate with your web team or designer to ensure words, imagery and layout work together. The workflow process is something we can discuss during the consultation call.

Do you manage Facebook ads?

I specialise in copywriting for print and digital, including advertisements which can be used in a client’s marketing campaigns. However, I do not currently offer SEM services such as PPC or Social Media Marketing.

Can you track ROI?

Whilst I hold qualifications in digital marketing, I prefer to focus my efforts on producing quality copy. I can recommend strategies for you to monitor and manage your advertising as well as marketing professionals better suited for this task.

Why can’t I write my copy?

There is absolutely no reason you can’t write your own sales copy. However, you may want to engage the services of a copywriter if you find you’re not getting the results you had hoped for.

A copywriter can offer impartial advice – sometimes a set of fresh eyes is all that is needed. Sometimes, being adept at grammar and spelling isn’t enough (in fact, some of the best copy completely breaks the rules).

A professional copywriter will know what to mention as well as what to leave out. They will also know what language to use depending upon your intended audience, as well as how to talk to your audience using your brand’s tone of voice (think of it as ghostwriting).

I offer proofreading services so get in touch if you would like me to critique your promotional material or website.

Why don’t you charge by the word?

Writers who charge by the word may be tempted to pack copy with unnecessarily flowery or superlative descriptions that lead to ineffective copy, wasting your time and money. That’s not to say there isn’t a time or place for the occasional adjective, you just don’t need them all at once.

Good copy should convey as much information as succinctly as possible. This is true in print where advertisers charge by the line or page, and in new digital media as people’s attention span becomes shorter and shorter.

I may write hundreds of words only to spend just as long trying to cut out as many as possible. There would be no incentive to refine my writing if I were charging per the word.

Another way to look at it is you wouldn’t ask a carpenter to charge by the plank or a seamstress by the thread.

Do you charge by the hour?

By charging a set rate, you will have the reassurance of knowing exactly how much your project will be from the get-go and won’t have the worry of billable hours racking up.

Plus, I prefer to feel unencumbered by time constraints and the worry that time is running away from me. Whilst I enjoy the challenge of working to deadlines, writing on an hourly basis can impede the creative flow. Sometimes the words come easily, sometimes they need to be wrangled screaming onto the page.

Do I need a website?

A website is your shop window that people can view anywhere, anytime.

Between 2015 and 2018, 90% of New Zealanders on average used the internet according to Statista so it pays to be where your customers are.

There are multiple providers where you can quickly and easily set up your website for low or no cost and little technical know-how.

However, your business’s web presence should match its physical look and feel, such as your shop or printed advertising material (otherwise known as branding). Your website needs to look professional, work flawlessly and intuitively, and read well. This is where hiring the services of a professional copywriter and web designer will ease the burden.

Do you guarantee to get my website to the top of Google?

Many factors influence Google’s clever algorithms to work out where your site ranks on the SERPs (search engine result pages). This will depend on the search term used, site layout, alt captions, links, website maturity etc. I could go on but then I’d have to charge you.

What I can guarantee is that web copy I supply is written with SEO in mind to improve your organic SERP results. This will include using appropriate keywords and structure, such as headlines, subheads, and most importantly, writing the kind of content Google loves most ­- original, quality copy!

Do you collaborate on projects?

Absolutely! I have plenty of experience working with designers and marketers and would be delighted to work collaboratively with other creative professionals. Drop me a line and let me know what you have in mind.